Read more about the article Photojournalist Patrick Brown On a Decade of Documenting Illegal Wildlife Trade
Patrick Brown

Photojournalist Patrick Brown On a Decade of Documenting Illegal Wildlife Trade

source: @PatrickBrownPhoto on Instagram

In 2007, we followed photojournalist Patrick Brown into the vast, dangerous world of Asia’s wild animal market in Black Market. At the time some 30,000 primates, up to five million birds, and ten million reptile skins were a part of the third-largest smuggling operation in the world. Seven years later, illegal wildlife trading is still a global issue, raking in $19 billion a year from the trafficking of endangered animals.

This month David Cameron will host the highest level global summit to date on combating the illegal wildlife trade in London. Heads of state will discuss quelling wildlife poaching, highlighting the strong links between the illegal industry and international criminal syndicates, terrorism and threats to national security.

Few are familiar with just how high the stakes are as Patrick Brown. He has photographed the illegal trade of endangered animals in Asia for more than a decade, covering its dealers, stockpiles, trafficking routes and markets. The culmination of his work, Trading to Extinction, is fittingly timed with the issue taking the world stage.

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Read more about the article Phillip Toledano Is “The Reluctant Father”
Photo: Phillip Toledano

Phillip Toledano Is “The Reluctant Father”

Photo: Phillip Toledano

Phillip Toledano became a father at the age of forty. He fell in love with his daughter about a year and a half later. His latest book, The Reluctant Father, follows Toledano’s journey at the beginning of fatherhood. Grappling with the expectations and reality of being a new father, and the vast differences between them, he produces a surprisingly honest, funny, and moving account that he hopes his daughter won’t hold it against him later.

In many ways it is a sequel to the best-selling Days with My Father, a documentation of the three years Phillip spent taking care of his father, who suffered from dementia, and inspired his MediaStorm collaboration, A Shadow Remains.


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The Evolution of Video Storytelling Featuring MediaStorm and DCTV

This week Futures Lab, with a little help from Brian Storm, founder and executive producer of MediaStorm, and John Alpert, co-founder and co-executive director of the Downtown Community Television Center in New York, explores how the proliferation of mobile apps and devices impacts visual journalism. The two veteran storytellers share insights about the place of micro-video via apps like Vine and Instagram and the challenges of funding quality work. In the midst of a changing industry and constant innovation, one principle remains: a good story is at the center of everything they do. Keep an eye out for cameos from the rest of the MediaStorm staff.

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Story is the Point

Back in the 90s, as a graduate student in creative writing, I discovered the novels and short stories of Richard Yates. His masterpiece Revolutionary Road, which was the basis for the 2008 film starring Leonardo DiCaprio, depicts the stifled dreams of a suburban couple. Kurt Vonnegut called the book the greatest American novel since Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Last week, I found a series of quotes by the author. One in particular stood out. “Don’t be seduced by prose, the point is structure.” I think the parallel is clear. To paraphrase, don’t be seduced by gorgeous imagery. Story is the point. Now don’t get me wrong, I love beautiful video. I adore it. And seeing a stunning photograph for the first time is like a window opening in your heart you didn’t know was there. It’s a revelation. In fact, I’ve written elsewhere that we should embrace the grammar and aesthetics of…

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MediaStorm 2014 Workshop Dates Announced

2014 marks our seventh training year at MediaStorm. Each year our workshops attract leading industry professionals looking to advance their multimedia and storytelling skills. Over 100 participants have come through our professional workshops and we continue to be humbled by how much they take away from the experience.

Dana Schiopu, Senior Media Officer at the International Monetary Fund, told us that our Methodology Workshop was a “life changing experience for any media professional.” She said, “Brian and his amazing team revealed all the secrets of some of the most compelling storytelling multimedia communication I have seen so far.”

After taking our Storytelling Workshop, Jillian Kitchener, Visuals Editor for Reuters, had the following to say, “Working side-by-side with the [MediaStorm] team was a great honor. From the first hour, I was immersed in the realm of storytelling. I learned how to find a visually-interesting story as well as interview techniques that encourage your subject to open-up. I learned MediaStorm’s editing workflow including how to build a narrative from the ground up. I learned photo editing techniques, b-roll selection, and tips and tricks to bring audio, visuals and narrative into a cohesive piece.”

In 2014 we’ll be offering three Methodology, three Storytelling, and five One-day workshops at our studio in Brooklyn, NY. We are looking forward to another exciting, innovative and challenging training year. We hope you’ll be able to join us.


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