Monday, July 21, 2008

Cambodian Dirtbiking: Another interview with KPAM

Apparently the guys at KPAM in Portland liked my first interview on Borneo trekking enough to ask me back to do another, this time on my Cambodian dirtbike trip to Preah Vihear.

Incidentally, Preah Vihear has been in the media spotlight lately. On June 8 it was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, and Thailand wants in on the tourism dollars. The Thai government is disputing Cambodia's claims to the temple, and hundreds of Thai and Cambodian troops have been in a standoff on the temple grounds for the past week.

Hopefully the standoff won't turn violent, but it sounds like tensions are high. Now might not be the best time for a visit.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Giving Back to your Subjects

(photo by Thomas Holton)
"As traveling photographers, we are often in the unfortunate position of taking from subjects less fortunate than ourselves without giving anything back. On an ideological level, I like to believe that a great image comes from a collaboration between photographer and subject. However, we capture images, show them off to friends and relatives, promote ourselves professionally, and maybe even sell prints. For the barefoot pilgrim, the hungry child, and the lonely grandmother with the tattered shawl though, life continues unchanged."
Here's a short article I did for Collective Lens on the one-way "take but don't give" relationship that sometimes exists between photographers and their subjects, and what one photographer did to help when the subjects of his long term documentary peice narrowly escaped disaster.