The Black Lives Matter movement is arguably one of the most significant political and social movements in US history. The photographers in this video sit down to share their thoughts on why photographing the BLM movement is important to them, personally, as well as for posterity.
Coming from minority communities, each of these photographers are acutely aware of the importance of listening to what is being said before bringing the camera up to their respective eye. They’re not passive observers taking strictly photojournalist images, they’re a part of the protests. It’s deeply personal to them, and that comes across in their images.
I found Tahiti Abdul’s perspective of people’s need/want of anonymity particularly creative and considerate. By carefully choosing to use black and white for photographing protests, not only can she create impactful images, but as she states in the video, she can also selectively use contrast to help hide any possible identifying features of her subjects. Her use of color for portraits then adds a softer layer to her body of work. In a way, it helps to contextualize the protest photos while also creating an overall cohesive and intimate story.
Links to the other photographers’ Instagram profiles:
Have you been photographing the protests or any other aspect of the BLM movement? Let us know in the comments.