Reading Shortlist 10.31.12

'Caught With The Goods.' Small person driving horse and cart confronted by giant chicken. Waupun, Wisconsin. Alfred Stanley Johnson Jr. 1913.

The Reading Shortlist is an occasional post with an eclectic listing of recommended readings and links. A recommendation does not necessarily suggest an agreement with the contents of the post. For previous shortlists, please visit the site links page.

First, I'd like to recommend two posts on other sites that continue the conversation around diversity in photography and contemporary image distribution problems that push the conversation forwards. Christopher Paquette, editor of PHOTO/arts Magazine, published a piece entitled Thoughts on International Diversity in Contemporary Photography last week and on Saturday Bryan Formhals of LPV Magazine wrote an extended reply to the two posts in his highly-recommended weekly Digest.

On to the shortlist...

Pete Brook, Rawfile Blog, Early 1900s Postcards Show Off Primitive ‘Photoshopping’ Skills. In the shadow of the Met's Faking It: Manipulated Photography Before Photoshop exhibition, Brook published this piece on manipulation in photographic history, largely focused on "Exaggerations" or tall-tale postcards.

Sergio Castaneira, El patio del Diablo, Julio Cortázar habla sobre la relación entre Fotografía y Literatura. The "modern master of the short story" talks about the relationship between photography and literature. (Spanish)

John Edwin Mason, Margaret Bourke-White in South Africa, Parts 1 and 2. Two-piece essay by Mason exploring and venturing some reasons for the very different visions of South Africa presented in two Bourke-White LIFE essays from 1950.

Roger May, Walk your camera, Looking at Appalachia | Shelby Lee Adams – Part One. A great autobiographical essay.

John Neel, Pixiq, First Colour Moving Pictures Discovered. Video explaining the finding and restoration of film that is believed to contain the first color moving images ever made.

Pixmaven, The Instant Art Critique Phrase Generator. Professors and students: are you a couple months into the semester and running out of "smart" things to say in crits? Try the phrase generator.

Aaron Schuman, SeeSaw Magazine, Interview: The Knight's Move - In Conversation with Paul Graham, 2010. Smart, straight questions, great answers. Ranges from Graham's process to his history, the impact of digital, the myth of Cartier-Bresson as a "decisive moment" photographer, and pretty much every contemporary photographic conversational point you could come up with.

Nick Turpin, in-sight. I'm always fascinated by videos of other photographers working and making images. These two video clips show highlights of a longer documentary Turpin has made about the photographers of iN-PUBLiC.

Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa, The Great Leap Sideways, Ballad of a Lonely Boy: the work of Alec Soth. This is the most recent piece on the site, but on this shortlist it's a stand-in for the entire site. Wolukau-Wanambwa has turned The Great Leap Sideways into a leading site for quality writing on contemporary photographers. The general format is straight-ahead: he selects a photographer and writes about their portfolio at length. I take my hat off to Wolukau-Wanambwa for the depth he gives his writing.

Eddie Wrenn, Mail Online. Photography revolution as researchers create flat lens that can capture a 'perfect image.' I'm probably one of the least tech-oriented photographers on the planet, but this article caught my attention. The replacement of bulky lenses with a flat surface? I'm ready.