Sunday, 27 March 2011

The Revolution...This Time Through The Lenses Of Home-Grown Egyptian Photojournalists

Photo © Eman Helal-All Rights Reserved

Since the recent effort by BagNews's Assignment Egypt (Analyzing News Photo From the 18 Days Revolution) wasn't about featuring the work of Egyptian photojournalists, I thought I'd solicit submissions from young home-grown Egyptian photojournalists working for the local newspapers, who not only documented the Tahrir uprisings, but who also participated in the revolution...in their revolution, for this blog instead.

These photojournalists are far from being "khawagas" (a colloquial nickname for non-Egyptians), they are not well-known in the Western media, they are -to borrow a word from the US military- "grunts"...hard-working people with little support except their own small local network, and who've been mistreated and distrusted by the Mubarak authorities. They've worked, and continue to work, under difficult circumstances. The foreign photojournalists who "parachuted" briefly into Egypt at the first whiff of civil disturbances did a great job documenting the revolution, but they were still "parachutists'...they were not indigenous to the revolution....sure, they documented it with a good photographic eye...sure, some of them were badly beaten by pro-regime thugs...sure, their photographs were plastered on pages of major newspapers and magazines...but they can never understand the revolution as these young local photographers did.

I know that featuring the work of these Egyptian photojournalists here may start the ball rolling, and could soon lead to larger venues where their talent can be better appreciated...I also know that generous photographers such as Eric Beecroft, John Horniblow and Michael Robinson Chavez are planning such venues. When I have all the details I'll announce them here.

In the meantime, I will feature the work of a handful of these young professionals on The Travel Photographer blog during the coming week.

Trust me...they are not marquee names, but their work is as good as that of the world-famous photojournalists.