Picture Stories

Take a tour of at least three of the following news slide shows or “picture stories.” Then pick one and write about it in the comments section below.

Tell us: What is your reaction? What do you notice? What story is the photographer trying to tell? Does this visual photo story work for you? Why?

Gay Rights March in Washington (MSNBC)
Faces of Afghanistan (Reuters)
Japanese bodybuilders (Reuters)
Avakian Covers Own Cancer (New York Times)
Blessing of the Waves (LA Times)
Hairstyles of the Last 100 Years (LIFE)
Oktoberfest (Boston Globe)
China Celebrates 60 Years (Boston.com)
Upstate Girls: What Became of Collar City (Digital Journalist)
Dial P for Photo (New York Times)

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35 Responses to Picture Stories

  1. markbg says:

    testing testing

  2. I looked at the Oktoberfest picture story from the Boston Globe. I loved looking at all these pictures because they all seemed to really capture the atmosphere of the event. It was well documented mostly because it made me want to be there. The photos were all very well taken with radiant colors and pretty aesthetics.

  3. lisalorenz says:

    I love the pictures from Octoberfest. They give you an all around idea of the mayhem and commotion that goes on in Germany at this time. Some of the pictures were so strong they give you a sense of being there. I personally have been to an Octoberfest in Italy and the sights were the same, you can almost smell the beer and chicken in the air.

  4. jesslandolfi says:

    It’s amazing to see how some hairstyles really don’t go out of style; they just evolve. I think the best way anyone could show this is through photographs because you can explain a hairstyle with words, but the image really brings it together. I think it’s successful because it uses celebrities to model the haircuts, because from the 20s until the present they seem to set the example for everyone else.

  5. http://digitaljournalist.org/issue0910/kenneally-bp.html

    I like that this site told a story with words as well as pictures. Each picture tells its own story, but the details of the family’s life would be lost without the detailed caption. This is a story that is absolutely created by using multimedia, it wouldn’t be the same without the combination of text and pictures.

  6. kateharm says:

    I like the layout of the MSNBC Gay Rights March in Washington D.C. The pictures are large and the captions are small on the side, making the pictures the story not the text. I also like how you can go from picture 1 to 8 in a simple and easy manner. Each picture is different, some are close ups and most come from different angles making the story the pictures tell more interesting.

  7. Val says:

    I found the Upstate Girls: What Became of Collar City extremely interesting. I think that pictures can relay a message more quickly and effectively than words can. A picture really is worth a thousand words. I was able to understand the story without really having to read all of the captions.

  8. Melissa P. says:

    The Blessing of the Waves was particularly interesting, in my opinion. It’s fascinating to see the ways in which the unique characteristics of our communities affect the way we live. I think these photos were well done because they show the blessing as it’s happening, and not just people standing or posing. The photos also show emotion, which I think is important to any good story–it has to reach people. The different cultures present made the essay balanced, which is part of good journalism. (I also thought the priest on the Virgin surfboard was awesome.)

  9. Adrian says:

    In reading “Upstate Girls: What Became of Collar City” I have no idea what this was trying to say. The first paragraph discusses how women are dating black and hispanic men, who I guess we’re supposed to assume are all drug dealers, because they make more money from the street drug trade than locals who earn honest, but meager, livings.

    The second paragraph mentions a woman, who I assume lives in Troy although it’s not stated, who has seven (!) kids, but raising four of them as a single mother and has to give up most of her check to pay child support for the other three. The only thing I can derive from this, then, is that in Troy at least, all women are gold diggers and here’s one who is paying for it. And it was written by a woman.

  10. I enjoyed the Oktoberfest 2009 picture story by the Boston Globe. I’ve always wanted to go to Oktoberfest and this picture story further cements that wish. The pictures are rather large but I usually use a large screen resolution so I actually enjoy how large they are. Being that the pictures are so big in size they are of great quality and well composed. They tell an interesting story of festival celebrating beer and the inevitable inebriation with photos of patrons drinking large mugs of beers and sleeping against walls. The pictures all include a short but detailed caption of the pictures that usually capture what going on in the photographs. The beer is good and the food is too, and this story is having me looking for another job so I can afford to go there next year.

  11. laglamour07 says:

    Upstate Girls: What Became of Collar City

    I checked out this photo story and got the whole gist of it without reading much at all. The photos show character and express the life of those in them. There were a lot of photos too; about 25. I feel that this picture story conveys a story well even though I don’t personally agree with or like the story. The family has many kids, a mom who was pregnant around the age of 16, a job at Dunkin Donuts and a house that is a complete disaster. It really puts you in their shoes though.

  12. John says:

    I just got finished reading the Oktoberfest and right away my sense of sight was bombarded with the awesome color and contrast of the German people and this annual celebration. I instantly took notice to all of the old, traditional clothes some of the people were wearing. I believe that the photographer is trying to tell a story about an old Autumn harvest tradition that is widely celebrated and still has cultural meaning. I like this story because it shows the cultural value of a nation of people displayed in a lavish and colorful gathering.

  13. Ismaa Viqar says:

    I absolutely enjoyed the photos from the Octoberfest link by the Boston Globe. I found their photos to be compelling, personal, diverse and vibrantly shot. On diversity, I’m specifying how different shots, angles, and techniques were used; it was very dynamic to the point where you feel like you are there. From the three links I looked at, I found this to be the one that stood out the most for me because the “picture story” worked for me. By viewing the photos, it’s almost obvious that an event such as this, cannot simply be described by words alone

  14. Phil says:

    The New York Times blog about Alexandra Avakian battling cancer was interesting. It revealed a different side of the treatment and recovery process of breast cancer. Rather than taking shots of the victim in moments of weakness, many of the shots were simply of the issues she had to deal with as being a survivor. There are no pictures of the chemotherapy or her in a hospital bed, but rather pictures of her prepping herself for test, shopping for wigs with her son and her coming out of the shower bald. It’s far more personal and gives a better look into what it’s actually like having contracted and then survived breast cancer.

  15. Sarah says:

    I liked the “Upstate Girls: What Became of Collar City” photos the best. It was a touching group of photos. I like how the photographer was able to tell one specific story with her camera. It made the story come to life by being so personal. I think she is trying to make people aware of the struggles of the lower class in America. I think that the photos speak louder than any words could, which is why this format works.

  16. Stephanie says:

    I looked at “China celebrates 60 years.” It shows the celebrations, parades, etc. of the anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. I think the pictures are beautiful. I love how they really capture the colors, the masses of people, and the excitement of that day. The visual story works for me, because it’s very descriptive. The captions don’t need to be long for one to understand what’s taking place. I think it reveals an in-depth look into another culture, and that’s great.

  17. laglamour07 says:

    The Oktoberfest picture story is awesome! I definitely like that one much better. The photographs are so good and stylized. They are fun, bright, focused and also tell a very specific story that does not require reading. -Jen

  18. Gabriel Arnold says:

    After looking through several of the photo collections the one that caught my eye the most was the Japanese Bodybuilders. I’ve never been a fan of the sport but it has interested me so I have a basic idea of what bodybuilding entails. What hooked me initially was how different these men and women look from the stereotypical image of bodybuilders. They are not massive or grotesque, unless you count the terrible fake tans. They are within the realm of reason: someone with dedication could look like them if they desired.
    The story being told is also interesting. The photographer spends half of his photos documenting what goes on behind the scenes, showing how serious they are about their sport. The average person can’t connect with the idea of bodybuilding but they can find common ground in working hard for your passion.

  19. Matt Korman says:

    The extremely elaborate detail in China’s 60th Anniversary Parade (photographs taken between Sep. 28 and Oct. 1) are beautifully constructed visions that are all-worldly impressive. How, in any possible circumstance that that type of detail and organization was put into practice is truly mind-boggling. Only a country with such a large army and population could pull off a feat as impressive as that.

  20. Sean Brown says:

    Oktoberfest, 2009

    After viewing the slide show about the 176th Oktoberfest, I was surprised at how Oktoberfest has been able to keep so many people coming back. Nearly six million people attended Oktoberfest this year. I am also amazed at how much time the city of Munich has devoted into making Oktoberfest such a “theatrical” event. I noticed that Oktoberfest is not just a week long event dedicated to men dressing up in lederhosen and getting drunk off of beer. I think this in part the story that the author was attempting to tell. Oktoberfest is a celebration of German culture and the fall. It is celebrated and enjoyed by all ages, young and old. This story helps me understand my German heritage a little bit more and how proud the German people of of their culture.

  21. Sam Costa says:

    It’s hard to just comment on just one picture story, but I’ll pick the Gay Rights March in Washington D.C. My immediate reaction to this was, simply “wow.” You hear about these things on the news or on the radio, but does anyone ever look at the pictures? They’re amazing. The energy that is captured in these photos is hard to ignore. There is an obvious presence of emotions. Picture number 4 is probably my favorite. The photographer is laying out a story of a battle that is long overdue.

  22. Jeff Smith says:

    I found Dial P for Photo to be very relevant to how media is developing. Most news stories are coming from cell phone pictures and videos that random people take on the street or elsewhere. And as Shawn displays, the photographs can be as compelling as using some $500-$1,000 professional camera unit. It’s really about the scene taking place and less about what you are capturing it with. His photographs have a rawness that is very compelling and rarely seen. In fact, it’s nice to see an absence of any photoshop or other computer edited work.

  23. I looked at “Shoptalk: Dial P for Photo.”

    It was my favorite out of the ones I looked at, which is no surprised coming from Lens. The photographer uses his cellphone to capture photos because he feels it captures people in the moment instead of interrupting their lives. There is a definite sense of candidness in his photographs and it’s probably large to do with the fact he doesn’t bust out a 35mm with a bright flash, which is unable to not break a moment.

    I also like that the photos are really good. It proves that being a good photographer can overcome having a less than stellar camera model.

  24. kathleenescapades says:

    I really liked the faces of Afghanistan webpage. After reading The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khalid Housseni (I’m not sure if I spelled that correctly), I’ve had an interest in the happenings of the country. The faces are widely varied. Some are happy children and others are tarnished, elderly, homeless people just trying to make it to the next day. It shows the diversity of the people of this country. I also found it interesting that there was a picture of a Taliban soldier. I’m surprised that the Taliban would let him pose in an album that also houses a man injured by them!

    -Kathleen Duffy

  25. Crystal says:

    Wow. I was not expecting to see Japanese bodybuilding on here. There were only eight photos available on the set, the photographer did an average job capturing the competition. I would have like to have seen more images of the preparation before getting on stage. Additionally, there were no pictures of who won for the males or females. Its a competition, you have to show who won it!

  26. gallag98 says:

    I found the photo story of Oktoberfest to be the most interesting. My immediate reaction included lots of laughs at the pictures, especially the photo depicting the second day where people are drunkenly passed out against a wall. I guess they’re Oktoberfest rookies since it ran for 4 or 5 more days. I noticed the photos were taken with lots of thought to the focus and colors shown. Unlike the Japanese body building photos that were grainy/blurry, the Oktoberfest pictures were bright, clear, and informative. It gave people that weren’t able to take off a week of work to party in the streets of Germany a glimpse into the crazy week called Oktoberfest. The photographer was simply trying to show people what the event was about, and how people of all ages, from children to grandparents, can enjoy it. This story did work for me, because all I have to compare it to is the movie ‘Beerfest’. That was a little more exaggerated, but now I really understand that it’s actually quite as crazy in real life.

  27. Vic says:

    I viewed the Gay Rights March in Washington post.
    It was very vivid and wasn’t viewed as a celebration but as a demonstration. I also appreciated seeing the ever so insane yet amazing Lady Gaga. As a lesbian myself I enjoyed seeing images of positivity and showing the government that we are constituents that can not be ignored.

  28. Mike "Danger" Czarnecki says:

    I was looking through, and enjoying, the Oktoberfest pictures until I noticed the time stamps. The pictures were all great; the lederhosen was sexy, the angles were perfect, the colors practically jumped off the screen. My problem was the fact that the photos weren’t in chronological order. Oktoberfest is a “lengthy” event, depending on your level of inebriation, and the photographers must have gotten so many shots I don’t see why they couldn’t tell a linear story.
    One great thing was that they opened and closed the essay how I thought they should have, with full and empty mugs.

  29. I looked at almost all of these and the one that stood out the most to me was the gay/lesbian march in D.C. I thought those photos were by far the most powerful. Oktoberfest was cool, the japanese bodybuilders were…different… but the photos presented in the march in D.C. had the most instantaneous and resounding impact on me. Wowzers.

  30. Richie W says:

    I actually had a chance to view 4 of the photo blogs and my 2 favorite were Oktoberfest and the 100 hairstyles. Since I have to choose one I have to go with the hairstyle one. I really feel like this one captures the generation and really tells a story of how things have changed over the years.
    The hairstyle story really put into perspective what has happened over the years from Elvis’ hair style to Will Smith’s high top fade, and Omarion and cornrows. The journalist did a great job in chronicling the differences.
    This one really works for me and for others who have a chance to look back and reflect on some of the hairstyles several people really took part in.

  31. Mathew Plale says:

    The “picture story” I enjoyed the most was “Hairstyles of the Last 100 Years,” as published in LIFE, whose featured photos are always excellent. It brought laughs with their presentations of the comb over, rat-tail, and mullet, as well as the less shameful ones, like the pixie and the Rachel. My only gripe is that it should have also featured non-celebrities sporting the hairdos.

  32. cioffi67 says:

    I was a big fan of The Boston Globe’s Oktoberfest photo essay. The pictures really seemed to capture the essence and spirit of the event and there was a very eclectic mix of photos, capturing a variety of the events and never spending too much time on a single aspect of Oktoberfest. You can see children enjoying themselves, delicious food, traditional German dress as well as people drunk and enjoying themselves.

    I viewed this with only a slight notion of what Oktoberfest actually is and this photo essay really brought it home for me. I always pictured Oktoberfest as one giant, belligerent party and I never realized how deeply ingrained it is within their culture. As depicted in this photo essay, Oktoberfest is way more about culture than beer.

    This essay made Oktoberfest real for me in a way that the written word cannot. You have to truly see it to believe it.

  33. bsmith13 says:

    I thought the Oktoberfest photos and the photos of China Celebrating 60 years were of particular quality. Each showed many different views of the events they covered and did it in such a way that demands attention. I think it might of been a contrast between the two events that drew me to them. Oktoberfest is very orderly and set up beautifully but the purpose of it all is intoxication and chaos. The Chinese celebrations photos were more dazzling but seemed to uphold order purpose throughout the entire ceremony. The slide shows have created a binary between celebrations in different cultures and are surprisingly comparable.

  34. The photo essay “20 Hairstyles of the Past 100 Years” was really interesting. I remembered many of the styles, and the ones that I was too young to remember, I noticed that they have been coming back. The bob back from the 1920’s, for example, has been coming back in a huge way among celebrities and common folk alike. There were also some hairstyles that I couldn’t believe they would want to relive, like the rat tail, the mullet, and the perm. All so reminiscent of the ’90s, it was actually kind of funny to see. I believe the artist is trying to take the audience on some sort of time machine, I know I did when I saw certain styles that I could remember (I remember when I got a perm when I was younger). He does a very good job of it, and the use of celebrities that the hair style was made famous by (Jennifer Aniston’s “the Rachel”) gives their photos a sort of credibility. I personally enjoyed this particular essay, although I’m not going to lie, I liked the Oktoberfest one as well.

  35. jaimegallina says:

    ‘China celebrates 60 years’ is a beautiful collection of photographs. They are all so vibrant and alive and it is hard to scroll down and take your eyes off of them. The photos really capture the energy of all the personalities of the people involved in this National Day parade in Beijing. The photographs of the soldiers are perfectly symmetrical and makes for a great shot. I have never really considered visiting China, but after looking at the the pictures and reading a few of the comments on the website, it is definitely a place I need to venture. I’m very impressed China.

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