Tag Archives: Newseum

The Story Behind the Iconic Photograph from Sandy Hook

At 9:59 last Friday morning, Shannon Hicks pulled her 2006 Jeep Wrangler off the road just outside Sandy Hook Elementary school. As associate editor and photographer for Newtown, Connecticuts local paper, The Newtown Bee, she was responding to a radio dispatch heard over a local police scanner.

I thought it was going to be a false alarm, Hicks tells TIME, remembering the call last week. Gunshots fired inside an elementary school? No. seo marketing . Excellent SEO service . Not here, she thought.

But as she pulled up to the school, what she saw and heard removed all doubt.

The New York Times/Newseum

Parents just started yelling their childrens names, remembers Hicks, careful to grab her camera off the passenger seat as she climbed out of her vehicle and into the chaos of the scene.

The screams echoed loudly as Hicks tried to stay focused, composing each image though the eyepiece of her camera. She remembers watching a state trooper drive past her, get out of his vehicle, don his flak jacket, and announce to the panicked crowd that the scene was not secure.

She snapped frames of police and emergency personnel rushing to the school as well as of anxious parents already on scene pressed against police barriers, straining to see if their children had emerged from the building. Among armed police officers and weeping parents, she kept watch, diligently clicking the shutter.

At 10:09 am, 10 minutes after she climbed out of her vehicle, she snapped the shutter on an elementary school class being led out of the school by two Connecticut State Police officers.

I knew that, coming out of the building as terrified as they were those children were safe, Hicks said, of the photograph soon to grace the front pages of newspapers, magazines, and nearly every breaking news website around the world. I just felt that it was an important moment.

The picture wasnt sensational or disturbing, said Hicks, but it captured a feeling at least for the subjects and their families of relative safety amidst a maelstrom of fear and the harrowing unknown.

Los Angeles Times/Newseum

For the children freed from the school, parents rushed to their side, sweeping them up in firm embraces as they walked the 1100 feet to the nearby fire station. Hicks, camera in hand, followed them every step.

Ive heard from a few adults who anonymously called us [at The Newton Bee], and said it was very, very wrong to publish that one photograph. Hicks said, But Ive also had people come up to me mothers in particular whove said that the photograph was important because it showed that those children were safe.

By 11:30 that morning, Hicks, who is also a volunteer firefighter in Newtown, had passed the baton to another reporter from the paper, and had returned to the Bees office to coordinate the coverage.

There, for the next week, the small editorial staff would pull near-24 hour shifts, updating the website the paper is published weekly with news, community response and the obituaries of the 27 victims left in Fridays wake.

As a journalist, Hicks is proud to have documented the event, but issues caution to many media outlets now trolling the grounds in Newtown.

There are different levels of journalism out there, and ours [at The Bee] is not to follow people when they go to the funeral home, or the cemetery. We dont go knocking on the doors of victims of anything, said Hicks. Its very hard for us to watch other journalists do this to our neighbors.

Regarding her photographs popularity for lack of a better term Hicks said it came as a surprise and brings little personal relief. It is the cache of photographs buried on her cameras memory card, she said, that are hardest to look at and impossible to forget.

Im sure I will look through them someday, Hicks said, cognizant that the photographs she took that morning are now part of history.I just kind of wish that there were some that I could erase from my memory.”

Interviews and Talks | 3 July 2012

This is really fascinating… David Burnett writing about the moment he missed taking a picture of the ‘napalm girl’ due to having to change film….

Photo © David Burnett

David Burnett : ‘Forty years after ‘napalm girl’ picture, a photographer reflects on the moment that might have been his’ (Washington Post)

Photo © Alex Webb

Alex Webb (NYT Magazine 6th floor blog)

Bruce Davidson (TateShots on YouTube)

Steve McCurry (Al Jazeera interview video posted on Phaidon)

Steve McCurry  (Phaidon)

Ed Kashi (Vimeo)

Paid my first visit to the recently re-opened Photographers’ Gallery in London’s Soho on Saturday to see the Burtynsky exhibition. Amazing to see those 8×10 large format photos printed big….

Photo © Edward Burtynsky

Edward Burtynsky (The Atlantic)

Ron Haviv : The Complete Travel Took Kit (VII Magazine)

Inside Media: Photographers of the Year with Damon Winter, Adrees Latif, and Barbara Davidson (2011) (Newseum’s YouTube) 40 mins.

Randy Olson : Easter Island Kite Camera (photothisandthat.co.uk) 5 mins

Elizabeth Krist : National Geographic’s Senior Photo Editor  : ‘What Photo Buyers Want’ (Photoshelter Vimeo) 65 mins

Alexandra Avakian (NGM)

Paula James : Panos Pictures (IdeasTap)

Magnum photographers on their craft  (IdeasTap)

Tomas van Houtryve : 2012 Oslo Freedom Forum (YouTube) 10 mins

Brigitte Lacombe (Charlie Rose)

Afghan photographers shoot to glory (Al Jazeera)

For a person who often says ‘I don’t care about the equipment’, I sure am eager to read about others’ gear…

Marcus Yam : In My Bag (Photo Brigade)

Luke Sharrett : In My Bag (Photo Brigade)

Nadav Kander (YouTube)

Nadav Kander : How to Create an Unforgettable Portrait (Fastcocreate.com)

Matt Lutton (Wired Raw File blog)

Abbey Trayler-Smith (WalesOnline)

Kira Pollack (Vimeo)

Chris Buck (A Photo Editor)

Photo © John Vink

John Vink (Verve Photo)

Lynsey Stone : Birth Photographer (NYT)

Daniel Reimold: 10 Tips for Photojournalism Students: How to Succeed Visually and Financially (Photo Brigade)

“She looks like a person who will die one day.”

– Thomas Struth on his commission to photograph The Queen.

Photo © Thomas Struth

Thomas Struth : Queen’s Diamond Jubilee: interview with a royal portrait artist (Telegraph)

Annie Leibovitz : The Monarchy (YouTube) Edited version from the BBC Documentary on the Queen, Leibovitz’s struggle to capture the Monarchy.

Kadir van Lohuizen : Via Panam Part 9 (Nikon blog)

Photo © Adam Pretty

Adam Pretty (Time Out Australia)

David Stuart : Still Images In Great Advertising (A Photo Editor)

Kurt Markus : The Portrait : Find Your Voice (A Photo Editor)

Not a photographer interview but interesting…

Michael Ware (Newsweek)