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Korengal Valley is among the deadliest pieces of terrain in the world for U.S forces. The six-mile long strategic passage is located in northeastern Afghanistan surrounded by treacherous mountain ridges, which are held desperately by the Taleban and al-Qaeda. Nearly one-fifth of all combat in Afghanistan occurs in this valley, and nearly three-quarters of all the bombs dropped by NATO planes target the surrounding area. The Valley is the first leg of a former mujahideen smuggling route that was used to bring in men and weapons from Pakistan during the 1980s

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Every photographer is limited by certain constraints—the subject of a story, an art director’s vision, a client’s directives—so the images he produces are not truly his own. You might say, then, that his most genuine work, the work that best reveals the clarity of his eye, is that which he produces just for himself. In this spirit we approached longtime Texas Monthly contributor Dan Winters—a California native and Hill Country transplant whose portraits of marquee-name celebrities also appear in such publications as the New York Times Magazine, Esquire, and Rolling Stone—and gave him an assignment unlike the dozens of others he’s completed for us since his haunting photo of a Huntsville prisoner graced our cover in August 1991: We asked him to sift through a career’s worth of unpublished shots (last year he processed 250 rolls of film he’d accumulated over some twenty years) and select a few of his favorites. The ten assembled here, most of which Winters had not even printed until now, were all taken with a handheld camera, available light, and for no other reason than to capture the beauty of a particular moment. “Even when I’m doing a color assignment and it’s a big dog-and-pony show with a lot of lighting and a lot of crew members, I’ll just take people aside and do a little bit for myself,” he says. The results are as intimate as they are revealing. Jordan Breal

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Thirteen years ago, Chicago Tribune photographer Scott Strazzante began visiting a family farm. Over the years he took thousand of pictures of the couple and their land and all the creatures that lived there. In 2002 he chronicled the farm’s end. Call it death, if you will. Call it progress, if you must

“…I was determined to one day go back to their land and see what happened to it…

He found, on what had been the farm’s 119 acres, a subdivision called Willow Walk. The results are a photographic wonder, as the past bleeds into and is reflected in the present.

Check it out here, via A Photo a Day.



VII photographer Christopher Morris is trailing the U.S. presidential candidates as they crisscross America during the state primaries and caucuses. In Iowa, which held its caucus January 3, 2008, he followed the Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton, and captured her supporters out in full force. The New York senator came in third in the Iowa caucus, behind Barack Obama and John Edwards.

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The Wild Weird World of Sports: Past & Present

Photography, as in art, is totally subjective.

I’ve spent much of 2007 trying to figure out what I want to tell visually, what interests me. That doesn’t always translate into contest wins. Whatever.

I had many people I truly respect look over my work from this past year. Some parts of an edit, I loved. Others, less certain.

Not sure if this is a winning edit, but it’s what I submitted for 2007 Sports Portfolio. For whatever it’s worth, it feels right to me.

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redlights and redeyes: desaturate

Sarasota is a circus town. Ever since John Ringling moved the winter headquarters for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus to Sarasota in 1927, evidence of his influence is sprinkled across the town – street names, museums, art schools, public statues, and a long list of local circuses and traveling shows that always seem to find their way across the assignment desk.

It was hard for me to rob these photos from the of their obvious, saturated color…alas, I wanted to mix up the moments a bit by shooting a lot tighter and concentrating more on form and texture.

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New Hampshire Primary: “New Hampshire’s primary is the second high-profile battleground in the state-by-state process of choosing candidates for November’s election to succeed George W. Bush as president.

The race for the White House now heads into an intense month of campaigning culminating on Super Tuesday on February 5, when some 24 states pick presidential candidates.”


Photo Essay: Lebanon: ” Photos by Antonin Kratochvil
Increasing radicalism among militant groups and a deepening chasm between Lebanon’s Sunni and Shiite population is sending the country spiraling downwards. Assassinations and a protracted political crisis is adding to the crisis.”

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Blueeyes: Portfolio, by Cosmin Bumbut: “Cosmin Bumbut’s work sits on the fence between the old world and the new. As one frame meets the next, the viewer is at once reminded of Josef Koudelka and Luc Delahaye. Villagers wait roadside for nothing to happen; men compete in black and white impromptu bodybuilding competitions. A lone fiery window glares out from a tenement building; a specter appears in front of a crossed doorway as if barred from entry.

Bumbut’s varied and unique work is at times frustrating: his children sleep with one eye open and fall from his viewfinder into the wide, grey sea, his subjects stare at you through glazed windows and pinholes. Like Delahaye’s images, one can sense both the familiarity and the unease the photographer and subject alike have within the moments the images are made.”


redlights and redeyes: portland or bust: “Portland has always been one of those cities which I knew I’d love the second I set foot in. I got an invite from Sol Neelman to join him for a little shindig with some of The Oregonian crew and a few who made the trip from the newspaper-lands. While I didn’t get to wander as much as I wanted to for photos, this trip was more about seeing old friends and meeting some new ones. One of those friends, the infamous Scott Strazzante, got hitched while I was there. It was a disgustingly cute ceremony in a small courthouse in Hillsboro, Oregon, witnessed by only a few photographers who only saw the ceremony through a darkened rectangle in the viewfinder with vows recited through a chorus of shutters.”


The Year in Pictures: Stormy Weather: “Extreme weather is a category of photography we don’t think much about here in New York City, but it has its fans, publishers, and practitioners just like any other genre. Top amongst these is probably Jim Reed, a 56 year old former writer and film-maker who moved from Los Angeles to Wichita, Kansas 16 years ago in order to be
near the strongest hurricanes and tornadoes in the country.”

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