The photographer Lynn Johnson grew up in Pittsburgh, a city famed for its industry and attendant air pollution. She still recalls how her father would take a spare white shirt to work every day, as his collar would become discolored by noon. While the Steel City has given way to more tech-driven jobs, in the 21st century its air quality still ranks among the worst in the country, according to the American Lung Association.
Both photographers have experienced the sexist and patronizing manner of colleagues and bosses. Yet they have used those experiences to their advantage.
I sat down separately with Johnson and Steber to talk about being women in a traditionally male field and some of the advantages their gender has given them.
“It is an addiction… to see the incredible beauty and desperate circumstances that people are able to survive in.” — Lynn Johnson Lynn Johnson first recognized the extraordinary power of photography huddled in her school library as a child, looking throug
This year’s winner is the one they give the most difficult jobs to… the Missions Impossible. I’m not talking about war zones or active volcanoes, but the topics that are both important but so seemingly impossible to photograph that most of us wouldn’t know where to begin. And like a good spy, our winner does not look anything like Tom Cruise or Matt Damon. And the assignments are not to gain state secrets, but to reveal matters of heart, spirit, and soul. Our winner is one of those people who is assiduously understated, does meticulous research, and enters the subject’s world with extraordinary depth of compassion. The pictures this photographer takes are the slippery pictures of ephemeral moments and framed in a way that, to be perfectly honest, would even elude almost everyone in this room.