For master photographer Lou Jones, photographing Africa has been the challenge of a lifetime. Frustrated by consistently negative media coverage of Africa—an unrealistic and obsolete litany of poverty, pestilence, and conflict— Jones decided to use the universal language of photography to dispel these harmful African stereotypes, and to tell the real story of Africa today. Its 55 countries are home to one-and-a-quarter billion people. They go to work, raise and educate their children, preserve traditional rituals, and make innovative strides in business, industry, the arts, medicine, and sports. For Jones and his camera, the continent is a visual feast.
Systematically visiting each country, one at a time, Jones and his studio team investigate the local cultures. Guided by civic leaders, teachers, and historians, they learn what is going on, and what is important and unique there—both on the large scale of the country, and on the more intimate level of individual people and their families.
With his artist’s eye, and camera craft, Lou Jones has found many ways to give back to the Africans who generously welcomed him and his crew into their communities. His photographs have been made available as a resource for education, research, business, promotion, and other creative purposes. He is developing curriculums for schools, lecturing, publishing articles, and exhibiting the African images in galleries and museums. Jones has encouraged many applications and media outlets, which is appropriate for such an ambitious project—cutting through the clichés and stereotypes, and letting contemporary Africans show us what their lives really look like.
Lou Jones’ eclectic career has evolved from commercial to the personal. It has spanned every format, film type, artistic movement and technological change. He maintains a studio in Boston, Massachusetts and has photographed for Fortune 500 corporations, international companies and local small businesses including Federal Express, Nike and the Barr Foundation; completed assignments for magazines and publishers all over the world such as Time/Life, National Geographic and Paris Match; initiated long term projects on the civil wars in Central America, death row, Olympics Games and pregnancy; and published multiple books.
About North Shore Photography Lecture Series
North Shore Photography Lecture Series (NSPLS) is part of the Firehouse Center for the Arts' Newburyport Lyceum Speaker Series. NSPLS is co-produced by Firehouse Center for the Arts and Sweethaven Gallery.
Nearly everyone is a Photographer now, thanks to smart phones and digital technology—but few of us really understand the Art. Whether you are a novice or advanced, The North Shore Photography Lecture Series will open your eyes to the artistic world of photography. It will suggest new ways to look at photographs, and spark a new reverence for the little digital cameras in our lives.
The lecturers are professionals who have spent their careers dedicated to some aspect of photography—as pro shooters, educators, connoisseurs, and even a designer of photography books. They will guide you through the magic of the photographic medium—not so much about technical tips, but rather about how some photographers have raised the humble medium to an art, or have used it as an agent for social change. The lectures are also designed to engage the general public in exploring the art of photography, and to inspire up and coming photographers to pursue their dreams by listening to the words of and seeing examples of passionate, working pros.
“To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place… I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” (Elliot Erwitt)
“Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever… it remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.” (Aaron Siskind)