Now Playing Tracks

Alex FM Fills the Air With Pride

Those of us who are not from Philadelphia often hear the same line of “reasoning” from people who think they have our best interests in mind when advising us on our decisions to come to Temple: “Isn’t it dangerous around there?”  Before the morning we left our guesthouse to visit Alexandra township, we heard lots of warnings to watch our backs and protect our belongings if we were going to visit that place.

But when we arrived in Alex, all of the negative grumblings about the township proved just as untrue as those misconceptions about Temple and North Philadelphia.

image

Alex is not overrun by crime—it is run by proud and ambitious community members.  Trinity Mohlamme is the station manager of Alex FM, a locally run radio station that brings news, entertainment, and thoughtful programming to the community.  We first met him building a house for an elderly woman in the township with other members of the Alex FM crew, a project he saw fit for the station to undertake because “every day should be Mandela Day.”

We had spent the morning traveling in our 17-seat taxi, but Trinity asked us to walk with him through the streets of Alex to the site of the radio station.  As we moved through the township, Trinity schooled us on the reasons why the bad things that people say about Alex are nothing more than misperceptions.  ”You don’t have to put your cameras away,” he told us, “The people here are too proud of their community to steal.”  

When we arrived at the Alex FM studio, the lights were dimmed.  The generator was kept running at a lower capacity, a money-saving tactic to keep the radio station running.  Though it may have been small and dark in the studio, Alex FM runs an operation on par with any other professional station, and the hard work is paying off.

Trinity walked us across town to preview what will be Alex FM’s new digs, and we were all amazed by what we saw.  The new space may be unfinished, but the many blank rooms describe a word-class community station about to receive its due.  After all the ample new studio space, and an expansive open room for concerts and special events, what Trinity is most excited about is including a large visual representation of Alex’s history in the reception area, so that when people from outside come to the station, they know they’re coming to a place with a rich and proud history.

It would be an honor to work for somebody as focused and motivated as Trinity Mohlamme.  The new studio he was able to acquire for his station and his community was an inspiration to all of us.  It goes to show that when you not only do something with passion, but do it for the sake of others, there’s no telling what you can achieve.

Mandela’s Footsteps

Every country has a history. Its people carry the history—not only in their textbooks, not only in their minds, but they carry the history in their bones. Although we knew about apartheid and Mandela before we embarked on this journey to South Africa, there was so much more information to learn. We visited Alexandra, the first township that Nelson Mandela called home. It was a place full of poverty. The homes seemed to be built from tin scraps and people filled the streets that were paved in dirt. We also went to Liliesleaf, the hideout for the leaders of the ANC during apartheid. It was the location in which Nelson Mandela and many other men who were fighting for freedom were arrested. While there, we had the once-in-a-lifetime honor of meeting Denis Goldberg, one of the last survivors of the men arrested alongside Mandela during the raid in 1963. The hideout had been transformed into a museum with a plethora of information. It was an experience that can’t be forgotten, but the most memorable moment was our visit to Soweto. 

image

While in Soweto we first visited the home that Mandela shared with his wife Wini. It was filled with so much memorabilia and so many pictures of Mandela’s life. Walking through created an understanding and connection to Mandela and made him seem more like a simple man than the icon he has become. His home was also located fairly close to the memorial sight in which students died during the 1976 uprising. The sight was created to remember all the children who died because they were protesting apartheid. One of those children was Hector Pieterson, a twelve-year-old victim of apartheid violence who became an icon because of a picture taken of his dead body being carried in the streets. While standing at the sight silence overtook everyone. There was a somber feeling of disbelief as we all began questioning how our world could allow a massacre of innocent youth. The apartheid government gunned down black children simply because they were black and nothing else, and we stood on the ground that was once coated in their blood. The ground was made of stones because in South Africa stones are laid to honor the dead. Although the recorded death total was 23, over 200 people are said to have died because the incident sparked widespread violence in neighboring areas.

Every country has a history; some countries have experienced darker days than others. South Africa has lived through a time in which being born with black skin was like being born with a poisoned spoon in your mouth. People carried the poison of blackness in their bones like marrow and now it is important to remember and learn about the history of the land. If we were to forget the atrocities of the past and the struggles of the people who kindled change, then we would be disgracing the memory of valiant people who died to create freedom and it would be so easy to fall back into a pattern of hatred. When Mandela lived in Alexandra he wore the same suit every day, yet he somehow rose up with enough strength and heart to liberate millions. Learning about the brutalities that plagued this world and the people who decided to write stories of love instead of hate is what will allow us to surpass our predecessors.  

This week we got a taste of Soweto thanks to our guide, historian Ngugi Githuka.  On Thursday we stopped by Tintie’s Butchery for stacks of raw meat and plates of pap, a traditional cornmeal dish similar to hard grits.  The meat was taken outside to a thatched-roof pavilion with a large grill where a man was waiting to cook up our selection in exchange for a donation of rands, a practice known in Zulu as “Chisa Nyama” (roughly, “burn meat”).  After our lamb, beef, and boerewors (sausages) were cooked to perfection, Ngugi demonstrated the proper way to chow down by rolling fingerfuls of pap around the meat and chasing it with a salad of peppers and other spicy things.  None of us were hungry again for the rest of the day.

Encountering the Arts in Johannesburg

image

Many of us got an intimate look at the Johannesburg art scene tonight when we attended a performance in a Maboneng backpacker.  Spoken word artists, comedians, and rappers whose names are not even yet known by most in South Africa shared their immense talents with the crowd.  Because of the drive and ambition of these artists, the Johannesburg underground seems to be in an exciting moment, and we were thrilled to be able to witness a part of it.

Welcome to Jo’burg

image

Only two days into our time in Johannesburg and we’ve hit the ground running. After our first night in the Melville neighborhood, we loaded into a 17-passenger van and rolled down to see the “real” Jo’burg: the city center. Maybe it was just that home was still fresh in our minds, but a recurring theme throughout the afternoon was that Johannesburg and Philadelphia seem so similar… and yet so starkly different. Our first stop in Newtown took us to the Museum Africa, currently showcasing photos documenting the struggle between pro- and anti-apartheid activists, but also past walls covered in thick graffiti and plaques commemorating some of Johannesburg’s great jazz icons. Sound familiar?

image

This balance between contrast and similarity was most present when we stopped for lunch at the Canteen, an open-air market and gallery space in Jo’burg’s epicenter of cool, the Maboneng Precinct. Imagine the Reading Terminal Market and First Fridays rolled into one, but subtract all the tourists. The Canteen was teeming with people and amazing food, walled in by two stories of art and photo galleries featuring the work of young South Africans. Our guide, Sindi, explained that the place is always alive on Sunday afternoons, waiting there for us to go and discover what the people of Johannesburg are talking about.

But of course, no first-day orientation would be complete without a thoughtful gaze at the city skyline, which we took earlier in the afternoon from a catwalk above the Constitutional Court. Johannesburg, here we are.

Market Photo Workshop with TUSA
And now for a visual update from the Market Photo Workshop (MPW) contingent of @TUSouthAfrica! Four Temple students (Kelsey Dubinsky, Rebekah Flake, Meaghan Pogue and Ian Watson) have the blessing and challenge of working with local students in the Photojournalism and Documentary Program of MPW to explore and document Johannesburg to create original and informative photo essays in just four weeks. Throughout this immersion experience we have connected with our South African peers to build meaningful professional and personal relationships, heard from top photojournalists, viewed documentary photography exhibitions and traversed the four corners of Johannesburg (and beyond!) in search of the best images for our stories. Here is a tiny peak into our world: 


Top: Leon Sadiki has braved conflict zones as a photojournalist. He came to the Market Photo Workshop auditorium to present his work to us last week. Specifically, he presented work produced amidst a South African troops presence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as well as the tension and eventual violence unfolding during last year’s deadly standoff between miners and police in Marikana. It was inspiring to hear about how his passion for photography gave him the courage to work in those charged locations. Still, he made sure to emphasize multiple times that his life is worth more than a picture and a conflict photographer has to be willing to walk away if the scene becomes too dangerous. 
Row 2: (left) Market Photo Workshop hosts a gallery space to showcase cutting edge photography projects. MPW exhibitions coordinator Bafana Zembe led a tour through the current show entitled “Sidetracks.” The works came from the personal photographic archives of a white South African family combined with images by photographers focusing on black, colored and Indian populations. A narrative of common humanity yet stark racial divides emerges through the juxtaposition of photographs and the unique curatorial design of the exhibition. 
(right) The young photojournalists in the MPW Photojournalism and Documentary Program (PDP) head out into the field to create their own visual records of news, current events and social conditions across greater Johannesburg. Here PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa interviews recycling collectors in their informal settlement on the outskirts of Soweto as she works on a photographic character essay on one of the men.
Row 3: On Monday we went to The Times newsroom in the Rosebank suburb of northern Johannesburg to meet with award winning sports photographer and photojournalist Sydney Seshibedi (second from right). He was eager to introduce us to the newspaper’s photo-editing staff to discuss the process of shooting on assignment as well as how images make it into a layout and/or circulate globally. Afterwards he took us out for coffee to discuss his career on a more personal level. The most powerful message for me was when he expounded on the discomfort in photographing people of various socio-economic strata. He pointed out that the homeless are an easy target because they have nowhere to go to avoid the photographer’s lens, whereas the wealthy have many mechanisms to protect their privacy. Most photographers fall somewhere between the extremes in terms of their personal social status, so they have to work hard to seek balance and get a variety of subjects for their work, even if it means confronting those intimidating barriers of the elite. He also taught us the value of writing descriptive captions so that the photographs are archived in a useful and accurate manner. Also pictured L-R: PDP Coordinator Kagiso Monyatsi, Temple photojournalism students Ian Watson and Meaghan Pogue, and PDP student Kabelo Emmanuel.
Row 4: (left) Temple student Rebekah Flake poses (as best she can!) with students on their recess break at Julius Sebolai Primary School in Braamfisher, Soweto. On this Nelson Mandela International Day, the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA) sent out workers to perform their 67 minutes of service by painting and cleaning classroom buildings at the school. Three PDP students and two Temple students photographed at this school, while the other students from both Market Photo Workshop and Temple Journalism documented and volunteered at other locations across the city (see previous TUSouthAfrica Tumblr posts for more information).
(right) Temple student Ian Watson walks with PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa at the Orlando Station in Soweto. The exchange is producing working partnerships and new friendships for all!
Row 5: (left) PDP student Tumelo Ledingwane (right) receives a scarf as thanks from one of her documentary subjects, a blind musician who works on the sidewalks of Johannesburg’s Central Business District. The gift is a testimony to the rich relationships journalists can sometimes develop across the community as they research stories and engage with the public. 
(right) Bheki, a PDP student, takes us off road in Soweto to find that perfect shot!
Row 6: Being at the Workshop gives Temple students a chance to mingle with a wide variety of emerging South African photographers and photojournalists. Here Tommy, student from Madagascar (left), receives critique of his work during an MWP Advanced Program class. In addition to the Photojournalism and Documentary Program, the Workshop provides introductory, intermediate and advanced instruction in the technical and creative aspects of photography. The halls are always bustling with photographers of many levels, ages and interests. 
Row 7: Finally, the exchange has produced some great times and big smiles! Temple students frequently break off in small groups as our PDP colleagues offer guidance with our individual photography projects. In this example Anna Kamolane lights up as she explains the urban nightlife as we grab drinks downtown at the trendy Kitchener’s bar in Braamfontein while I document the shifting architectural and social topography of contemporary Johannesburg.
By Rebekah Flake
Zoom Info
Market Photo Workshop with TUSA
And now for a visual update from the Market Photo Workshop (MPW) contingent of @TUSouthAfrica! Four Temple students (Kelsey Dubinsky, Rebekah Flake, Meaghan Pogue and Ian Watson) have the blessing and challenge of working with local students in the Photojournalism and Documentary Program of MPW to explore and document Johannesburg to create original and informative photo essays in just four weeks. Throughout this immersion experience we have connected with our South African peers to build meaningful professional and personal relationships, heard from top photojournalists, viewed documentary photography exhibitions and traversed the four corners of Johannesburg (and beyond!) in search of the best images for our stories. Here is a tiny peak into our world: 


Top: Leon Sadiki has braved conflict zones as a photojournalist. He came to the Market Photo Workshop auditorium to present his work to us last week. Specifically, he presented work produced amidst a South African troops presence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as well as the tension and eventual violence unfolding during last year’s deadly standoff between miners and police in Marikana. It was inspiring to hear about how his passion for photography gave him the courage to work in those charged locations. Still, he made sure to emphasize multiple times that his life is worth more than a picture and a conflict photographer has to be willing to walk away if the scene becomes too dangerous. 
Row 2: (left) Market Photo Workshop hosts a gallery space to showcase cutting edge photography projects. MPW exhibitions coordinator Bafana Zembe led a tour through the current show entitled “Sidetracks.” The works came from the personal photographic archives of a white South African family combined with images by photographers focusing on black, colored and Indian populations. A narrative of common humanity yet stark racial divides emerges through the juxtaposition of photographs and the unique curatorial design of the exhibition. 
(right) The young photojournalists in the MPW Photojournalism and Documentary Program (PDP) head out into the field to create their own visual records of news, current events and social conditions across greater Johannesburg. Here PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa interviews recycling collectors in their informal settlement on the outskirts of Soweto as she works on a photographic character essay on one of the men.
Row 3: On Monday we went to The Times newsroom in the Rosebank suburb of northern Johannesburg to meet with award winning sports photographer and photojournalist Sydney Seshibedi (second from right). He was eager to introduce us to the newspaper’s photo-editing staff to discuss the process of shooting on assignment as well as how images make it into a layout and/or circulate globally. Afterwards he took us out for coffee to discuss his career on a more personal level. The most powerful message for me was when he expounded on the discomfort in photographing people of various socio-economic strata. He pointed out that the homeless are an easy target because they have nowhere to go to avoid the photographer’s lens, whereas the wealthy have many mechanisms to protect their privacy. Most photographers fall somewhere between the extremes in terms of their personal social status, so they have to work hard to seek balance and get a variety of subjects for their work, even if it means confronting those intimidating barriers of the elite. He also taught us the value of writing descriptive captions so that the photographs are archived in a useful and accurate manner. Also pictured L-R: PDP Coordinator Kagiso Monyatsi, Temple photojournalism students Ian Watson and Meaghan Pogue, and PDP student Kabelo Emmanuel.
Row 4: (left) Temple student Rebekah Flake poses (as best she can!) with students on their recess break at Julius Sebolai Primary School in Braamfisher, Soweto. On this Nelson Mandela International Day, the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA) sent out workers to perform their 67 minutes of service by painting and cleaning classroom buildings at the school. Three PDP students and two Temple students photographed at this school, while the other students from both Market Photo Workshop and Temple Journalism documented and volunteered at other locations across the city (see previous TUSouthAfrica Tumblr posts for more information).
(right) Temple student Ian Watson walks with PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa at the Orlando Station in Soweto. The exchange is producing working partnerships and new friendships for all!
Row 5: (left) PDP student Tumelo Ledingwane (right) receives a scarf as thanks from one of her documentary subjects, a blind musician who works on the sidewalks of Johannesburg’s Central Business District. The gift is a testimony to the rich relationships journalists can sometimes develop across the community as they research stories and engage with the public. 
(right) Bheki, a PDP student, takes us off road in Soweto to find that perfect shot!
Row 6: Being at the Workshop gives Temple students a chance to mingle with a wide variety of emerging South African photographers and photojournalists. Here Tommy, student from Madagascar (left), receives critique of his work during an MWP Advanced Program class. In addition to the Photojournalism and Documentary Program, the Workshop provides introductory, intermediate and advanced instruction in the technical and creative aspects of photography. The halls are always bustling with photographers of many levels, ages and interests. 
Row 7: Finally, the exchange has produced some great times and big smiles! Temple students frequently break off in small groups as our PDP colleagues offer guidance with our individual photography projects. In this example Anna Kamolane lights up as she explains the urban nightlife as we grab drinks downtown at the trendy Kitchener’s bar in Braamfontein while I document the shifting architectural and social topography of contemporary Johannesburg.
By Rebekah Flake
Zoom Info
Market Photo Workshop with TUSA
And now for a visual update from the Market Photo Workshop (MPW) contingent of @TUSouthAfrica! Four Temple students (Kelsey Dubinsky, Rebekah Flake, Meaghan Pogue and Ian Watson) have the blessing and challenge of working with local students in the Photojournalism and Documentary Program of MPW to explore and document Johannesburg to create original and informative photo essays in just four weeks. Throughout this immersion experience we have connected with our South African peers to build meaningful professional and personal relationships, heard from top photojournalists, viewed documentary photography exhibitions and traversed the four corners of Johannesburg (and beyond!) in search of the best images for our stories. Here is a tiny peak into our world: 


Top: Leon Sadiki has braved conflict zones as a photojournalist. He came to the Market Photo Workshop auditorium to present his work to us last week. Specifically, he presented work produced amidst a South African troops presence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as well as the tension and eventual violence unfolding during last year’s deadly standoff between miners and police in Marikana. It was inspiring to hear about how his passion for photography gave him the courage to work in those charged locations. Still, he made sure to emphasize multiple times that his life is worth more than a picture and a conflict photographer has to be willing to walk away if the scene becomes too dangerous. 
Row 2: (left) Market Photo Workshop hosts a gallery space to showcase cutting edge photography projects. MPW exhibitions coordinator Bafana Zembe led a tour through the current show entitled “Sidetracks.” The works came from the personal photographic archives of a white South African family combined with images by photographers focusing on black, colored and Indian populations. A narrative of common humanity yet stark racial divides emerges through the juxtaposition of photographs and the unique curatorial design of the exhibition. 
(right) The young photojournalists in the MPW Photojournalism and Documentary Program (PDP) head out into the field to create their own visual records of news, current events and social conditions across greater Johannesburg. Here PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa interviews recycling collectors in their informal settlement on the outskirts of Soweto as she works on a photographic character essay on one of the men.
Row 3: On Monday we went to The Times newsroom in the Rosebank suburb of northern Johannesburg to meet with award winning sports photographer and photojournalist Sydney Seshibedi (second from right). He was eager to introduce us to the newspaper’s photo-editing staff to discuss the process of shooting on assignment as well as how images make it into a layout and/or circulate globally. Afterwards he took us out for coffee to discuss his career on a more personal level. The most powerful message for me was when he expounded on the discomfort in photographing people of various socio-economic strata. He pointed out that the homeless are an easy target because they have nowhere to go to avoid the photographer’s lens, whereas the wealthy have many mechanisms to protect their privacy. Most photographers fall somewhere between the extremes in terms of their personal social status, so they have to work hard to seek balance and get a variety of subjects for their work, even if it means confronting those intimidating barriers of the elite. He also taught us the value of writing descriptive captions so that the photographs are archived in a useful and accurate manner. Also pictured L-R: PDP Coordinator Kagiso Monyatsi, Temple photojournalism students Ian Watson and Meaghan Pogue, and PDP student Kabelo Emmanuel.
Row 4: (left) Temple student Rebekah Flake poses (as best she can!) with students on their recess break at Julius Sebolai Primary School in Braamfisher, Soweto. On this Nelson Mandela International Day, the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA) sent out workers to perform their 67 minutes of service by painting and cleaning classroom buildings at the school. Three PDP students and two Temple students photographed at this school, while the other students from both Market Photo Workshop and Temple Journalism documented and volunteered at other locations across the city (see previous TUSouthAfrica Tumblr posts for more information).
(right) Temple student Ian Watson walks with PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa at the Orlando Station in Soweto. The exchange is producing working partnerships and new friendships for all!
Row 5: (left) PDP student Tumelo Ledingwane (right) receives a scarf as thanks from one of her documentary subjects, a blind musician who works on the sidewalks of Johannesburg’s Central Business District. The gift is a testimony to the rich relationships journalists can sometimes develop across the community as they research stories and engage with the public. 
(right) Bheki, a PDP student, takes us off road in Soweto to find that perfect shot!
Row 6: Being at the Workshop gives Temple students a chance to mingle with a wide variety of emerging South African photographers and photojournalists. Here Tommy, student from Madagascar (left), receives critique of his work during an MWP Advanced Program class. In addition to the Photojournalism and Documentary Program, the Workshop provides introductory, intermediate and advanced instruction in the technical and creative aspects of photography. The halls are always bustling with photographers of many levels, ages and interests. 
Row 7: Finally, the exchange has produced some great times and big smiles! Temple students frequently break off in small groups as our PDP colleagues offer guidance with our individual photography projects. In this example Anna Kamolane lights up as she explains the urban nightlife as we grab drinks downtown at the trendy Kitchener’s bar in Braamfontein while I document the shifting architectural and social topography of contemporary Johannesburg.
By Rebekah Flake
Zoom Info
Market Photo Workshop with TUSA
And now for a visual update from the Market Photo Workshop (MPW) contingent of @TUSouthAfrica! Four Temple students (Kelsey Dubinsky, Rebekah Flake, Meaghan Pogue and Ian Watson) have the blessing and challenge of working with local students in the Photojournalism and Documentary Program of MPW to explore and document Johannesburg to create original and informative photo essays in just four weeks. Throughout this immersion experience we have connected with our South African peers to build meaningful professional and personal relationships, heard from top photojournalists, viewed documentary photography exhibitions and traversed the four corners of Johannesburg (and beyond!) in search of the best images for our stories. Here is a tiny peak into our world: 


Top: Leon Sadiki has braved conflict zones as a photojournalist. He came to the Market Photo Workshop auditorium to present his work to us last week. Specifically, he presented work produced amidst a South African troops presence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as well as the tension and eventual violence unfolding during last year’s deadly standoff between miners and police in Marikana. It was inspiring to hear about how his passion for photography gave him the courage to work in those charged locations. Still, he made sure to emphasize multiple times that his life is worth more than a picture and a conflict photographer has to be willing to walk away if the scene becomes too dangerous. 
Row 2: (left) Market Photo Workshop hosts a gallery space to showcase cutting edge photography projects. MPW exhibitions coordinator Bafana Zembe led a tour through the current show entitled “Sidetracks.” The works came from the personal photographic archives of a white South African family combined with images by photographers focusing on black, colored and Indian populations. A narrative of common humanity yet stark racial divides emerges through the juxtaposition of photographs and the unique curatorial design of the exhibition. 
(right) The young photojournalists in the MPW Photojournalism and Documentary Program (PDP) head out into the field to create their own visual records of news, current events and social conditions across greater Johannesburg. Here PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa interviews recycling collectors in their informal settlement on the outskirts of Soweto as she works on a photographic character essay on one of the men.
Row 3: On Monday we went to The Times newsroom in the Rosebank suburb of northern Johannesburg to meet with award winning sports photographer and photojournalist Sydney Seshibedi (second from right). He was eager to introduce us to the newspaper’s photo-editing staff to discuss the process of shooting on assignment as well as how images make it into a layout and/or circulate globally. Afterwards he took us out for coffee to discuss his career on a more personal level. The most powerful message for me was when he expounded on the discomfort in photographing people of various socio-economic strata. He pointed out that the homeless are an easy target because they have nowhere to go to avoid the photographer’s lens, whereas the wealthy have many mechanisms to protect their privacy. Most photographers fall somewhere between the extremes in terms of their personal social status, so they have to work hard to seek balance and get a variety of subjects for their work, even if it means confronting those intimidating barriers of the elite. He also taught us the value of writing descriptive captions so that the photographs are archived in a useful and accurate manner. Also pictured L-R: PDP Coordinator Kagiso Monyatsi, Temple photojournalism students Ian Watson and Meaghan Pogue, and PDP student Kabelo Emmanuel.
Row 4: (left) Temple student Rebekah Flake poses (as best she can!) with students on their recess break at Julius Sebolai Primary School in Braamfisher, Soweto. On this Nelson Mandela International Day, the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA) sent out workers to perform their 67 minutes of service by painting and cleaning classroom buildings at the school. Three PDP students and two Temple students photographed at this school, while the other students from both Market Photo Workshop and Temple Journalism documented and volunteered at other locations across the city (see previous TUSouthAfrica Tumblr posts for more information).
(right) Temple student Ian Watson walks with PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa at the Orlando Station in Soweto. The exchange is producing working partnerships and new friendships for all!
Row 5: (left) PDP student Tumelo Ledingwane (right) receives a scarf as thanks from one of her documentary subjects, a blind musician who works on the sidewalks of Johannesburg’s Central Business District. The gift is a testimony to the rich relationships journalists can sometimes develop across the community as they research stories and engage with the public. 
(right) Bheki, a PDP student, takes us off road in Soweto to find that perfect shot!
Row 6: Being at the Workshop gives Temple students a chance to mingle with a wide variety of emerging South African photographers and photojournalists. Here Tommy, student from Madagascar (left), receives critique of his work during an MWP Advanced Program class. In addition to the Photojournalism and Documentary Program, the Workshop provides introductory, intermediate and advanced instruction in the technical and creative aspects of photography. The halls are always bustling with photographers of many levels, ages and interests. 
Row 7: Finally, the exchange has produced some great times and big smiles! Temple students frequently break off in small groups as our PDP colleagues offer guidance with our individual photography projects. In this example Anna Kamolane lights up as she explains the urban nightlife as we grab drinks downtown at the trendy Kitchener’s bar in Braamfontein while I document the shifting architectural and social topography of contemporary Johannesburg.
By Rebekah Flake
Zoom Info

Market Photo Workshop with TUSA

And now for a visual update from the Market Photo Workshop (MPW) contingent of @TUSouthAfrica! Four Temple students (Kelsey Dubinsky, Rebekah Flake, Meaghan Pogue and Ian Watson) have the blessing and challenge of working with local students in the Photojournalism and Documentary Program of MPW to explore and document Johannesburg to create original and informative photo essays in just four weeks. Throughout this immersion experience we have connected with our South African peers to build meaningful professional and personal relationships, heard from top photojournalists, viewed documentary photography exhibitions and traversed the four corners of Johannesburg (and beyond!) in search of the best images for our stories. Here is a tiny peak into our world: 

Top: Leon Sadiki has braved conflict zones as a photojournalist. He came to the Market Photo Workshop auditorium to present his work to us last week. Specifically, he presented work produced amidst a South African troops presence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as well as the tension and eventual violence unfolding during last year’s deadly standoff between miners and police in Marikana. It was inspiring to hear about how his passion for photography gave him the courage to work in those charged locations. Still, he made sure to emphasize multiple times that his life is worth more than a picture and a conflict photographer has to be willing to walk away if the scene becomes too dangerous. 

Row 2: (left) Market Photo Workshop hosts a gallery space to showcase cutting edge photography projects. MPW exhibitions coordinator Bafana Zembe led a tour through the current show entitled “Sidetracks.” The works came from the personal photographic archives of a white South African family combined with images by photographers focusing on black, colored and Indian populations. A narrative of common humanity yet stark racial divides emerges through the juxtaposition of photographs and the unique curatorial design of the exhibition.

(right) The young photojournalists in the MPW Photojournalism and Documentary Program (PDP) head out into the field to create their own visual records of news, current events and social conditions across greater Johannesburg. Here PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa interviews recycling collectors in their informal settlement on the outskirts of Soweto as she works on a photographic character essay on one of the men.

Row 3: On Monday we went to The Times newsroom in the Rosebank suburb of northern Johannesburg to meet with award winning sports photographer and photojournalist Sydney Seshibedi (second from right). He was eager to introduce us to the newspaper’s photo-editing staff to discuss the process of shooting on assignment as well as how images make it into a layout and/or circulate globally. Afterwards he took us out for coffee to discuss his career on a more personal level. The most powerful message for me was when he expounded on the discomfort in photographing people of various socio-economic strata. He pointed out that the homeless are an easy target because they have nowhere to go to avoid the photographer’s lens, whereas the wealthy have many mechanisms to protect their privacy. Most photographers fall somewhere between the extremes in terms of their personal social status, so they have to work hard to seek balance and get a variety of subjects for their work, even if it means confronting those intimidating barriers of the elite. He also taught us the value of writing descriptive captions so that the photographs are archived in a useful and accurate manner. Also pictured L-R: PDP Coordinator Kagiso Monyatsi, Temple photojournalism students Ian Watson and Meaghan Pogue, and PDP student Kabelo Emmanuel.

Row 4: (left) Temple student Rebekah Flake poses (as best she can!) with students on their recess break at Julius Sebolai Primary School in Braamfisher, Soweto. On this Nelson Mandela International Day, the Johannesburg Development Agency (JDA) sent out workers to perform their 67 minutes of service by painting and cleaning classroom buildings at the school. Three PDP students and two Temple students photographed at this school, while the other students from both Market Photo Workshop and Temple Journalism documented and volunteered at other locations across the city (see previous TUSouthAfrica Tumblr posts for more information).

(right) Temple student Ian Watson walks with PDP student Ofentse Ramaboa at the Orlando Station in Soweto. The exchange is producing working partnerships and new friendships for all!

Row 5: (left) PDP student Tumelo Ledingwane (right) receives a scarf as thanks from one of her documentary subjects, a blind musician who works on the sidewalks of Johannesburg’s Central Business District. The gift is a testimony to the rich relationships journalists can sometimes develop across the community as they research stories and engage with the public. 

(right) Bheki, a PDP student, takes us off road in Soweto to find that perfect shot!

Row 6: Being at the Workshop gives Temple students a chance to mingle with a wide variety of emerging South African photographers and photojournalists. Here Tommy, student from Madagascar (left), receives critique of his work during an MWP Advanced Program class. In addition to the Photojournalism and Documentary Program, the Workshop provides introductory, intermediate and advanced instruction in the technical and creative aspects of photography. The halls are always bustling with photographers of many levels, ages and interests. 

Row 7: Finally, the exchange has produced some great times and big smiles! Temple students frequently break off in small groups as our PDP colleagues offer guidance with our individual photography projects. In this example Anna Kamolane lights up as she explains the urban nightlife as we grab drinks downtown at the trendy Kitchener’s bar in Braamfontein while I document the shifting architectural and social topography of contemporary Johannesburg.

By Rebekah Flake

Yesterday,
We visited the extraordinary Apartheid museum. This museum impeccably exemplified the History of South Africa, which exhibited the country before, during, and after apartheid. The museum walked us through each and every stage of the struggles and victories of this country. It was quite an experience and truly an eye opener to the fall and rise of of a South Africa.

To Tumblr, Love Pixel Union