Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Photos - Dramatic Images Changing Attitudes and Lives

There is power in photographic images. Think about your favorite family photos. Why are they so special? Think about Life Magazine or National Geographic and the dramatic images sandwiched between the covers. Photos move us to laughter and joy, tears and despair, anger and action.

The Pulitzer Prize winning photo of a young boy’s heroic struggle against cancer can move us to tears and remind us of the simple joys in life. He died eleven days later but look at his face and body language. He knew how to live every day to the fullest, no moment wasted on anger, hurt or revenge – just pure excitement over a wheelchair race down the hospital hallway.

The famous image of the kiss at the end of World War II is one of the most recognizable photos in recent history. To this day, the unidentified couple is a symbol of victory and the end of a terrible time for our country. Looking at them makes me want to cheer and share in the jubilation of the day.

The Vietnam War came home to us in a very personal way through the efforts of brave photojournalists who risked their lives to show Americans the many faces of war. The photos are credited with turning the tide and galvanizing a nation against a war with no clear objective or end. The photos of burned children, executions, soldiers and citizens placed in unspeakable circumstances brought Americans to their knees – some in anger, some in tears – but they all rose up determined to act on their emotions, for better or worse.

Blue Earth Alliance believes in the power of a photo to change the world and move people to action. Blue Earth Alliance is a non-profit dedicated to educating the public about endangered cultures, threatened environments, and social concerns through photography—with the ultimate goal of motivating society to create positive change. The group funds photographic projects with grants and support.

Founded in 1996, the Alliance hand-selects photographers to sponsor and works closely with them to provide fiscal sponsorship, grant-writing consultation, contacts with media and publishers, and marketing assistance. The goal is to get the word out, get the photographers vision to the masses, and share with the public the world through the eyes of talented photojournalists.

I found this exciting project through Earth & Economy, a blog well worth a reader’s time and attention. Thanks to them for compiling a comprehensive resource for Greenies like me.

Based out of Seattle, Washington, Blue Earth Alliance lists on their website current exhibitions that patrons can attend and photologs of current projects. My favorite is Shadow Lives USA by Jon Lowenstein. Check it out.


Keli said...

I really like your uplifting entries. This is so true about photos. Whenever I feel upset or mad, I get out my photo albums and look at adorable shots of my kids when they were little. (They're teens now so this is a necessity as they drive me nuts!). Thanks!

Lisa McGlaun said...

So true! I love looking at photos of my kids when they were babies. It does help to bring back that overwhelming feeling of love when they are driving me absolutely nutty..:)

I'm glad you are enjoying reading my blog. Thanks for telling me.


Bob Johnson said...

Thanks for this great post Lisa, who doesn't remember the man taking his stand in front of a tank at Tiananmen Square,or Mary Ann Vecchio leaning over the body of Jeffrey Miller at Kent state and the strong feelings they still bring forth today.

Lisa McGlaun said...


I found the photo of little Baylee in the arms of a fireman after the Oklahoma City bombing but the emotions I felt looking at the photo were still so raw I decided not to post it. So yes, I believe in the power of photos, too..:)


Emmy said...

You always have great inspiring posts. thanks so much for sharing. And I totally agree, photos can be the window to someones soul, and a door to memories.

Lisa McGlaun said...


Thanks for the compliment. It means alot. I'm glad you are enjoying what you read here.

Best Wishes,

Anonymous said...

I like your site. A picture is worth 1,000 words (maybe more).