Welcome to the latest edition of Chatting the Pictures. In each 20-minute webcast, co-hosts Michael Shaw, publisher of Reading the Pictures, and writer and historian, Cara Finnegan, discuss three prominent photos in the news. The program is broken into three segments: “The News,” “The Look,” and “The Pick.” “The News” examine a hard news image for its content value. “The Look” focuses on a news photo for its artistry and style. And “The Pick” asks what made a high profile photo so unique to editors or the public.
“The News” photo this week is by AI researcher and bystander, Shreya Nallapati, which she posted to social media. The photo shows students near STEM School-Highlands Ranch in Colorado after a shooting there left one dead and eight injured on Tuesday. The snapshot captures the all-too-common aftermath of school shootings, this the third one in two weeks. We discuss various elements, including the vulnerability of the children and the irony of the young girl praying (far left) in light of the gun lobby’s “thoughts and prayers” response to these massacres.
For “The Look,” we discuss an image taken by Mario Anzuoni for Reuters. Heavy on performance, we see actor Ezra Miller’s arrival at the Met Gala Miller inspired by this year’s “Camp” theme. We discuss the difference between camp and surrealism, and how the photo relates to the current political environment.
“The Pick” this week is by Chris Allerton, via WPA POOL/MEGA. It’s the official portrait of Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan, along with her mother, Doria Ragland, presenting their new child to the Queen and Prince Philip at Windsor Castle. The photo illustrates the media savvy of the royal family. Beyond reinforcing gender norms, It also show how much Ragland has been woven into the family since her daughter married the Prince in 2018.
You can find all the Chatting the Pictures replays here.