Danielle photographs her lovers with a camera in her vagina

It is a photographic process "erotic, tender, unpredictable, vulnerable." It is, "at once familiar and strange." "It's disconcerting and at times confusing - it's something I love. It's both fun and loaded with intimacy." Danielle Lessnau merged her body with a camera to create Extimité, a series of portraits of her lovers made from the point of view of her vagina. "I built eight pinhole cameras from old photo cartridges and installed them with an electric shutter that can be controlled by my hand," he explains to P3.

"Photographically", a pinhole, without lens or viewfinder, is "the perfect instrument". Each shot by the 33-year-old photographer, based in Brooklyn, New York, lasted between one and two minutes. "By using the vagina to hold the camera I allowed my own breathing to become an invisible actor," he says.

The natural movement of the body destabilizes the capture and gives rise to a blurring effect on the image that is particularly useful in preserving the identity of the portrayed men Danielle describes as "lovers with whom she shared unique stories" and who, his proposal of collaboration with "love and greed." "It's a collaborative process that implies that I become vulnerable, that gives me control," describes the young woman, who studied at the famous photography school at the International Center of Photography in New York.

Danielle Lessnau did not create Extimité to convey a specific message. Rather, he wants the viewer to give it personal meaning. "I wanted to materialize what I feel, my visions and excitations, when I am in a private space with another person," he emphasizes. "When I look at someone, my whole body reacts. [While capturing the images] we both wanted and were desired, we were both powerful and vulnerable." I wanted to explore these roles, this distance and proximity, and play with this web of looks. " Here the chamber is an instrument, but also a symbol "of the penetration of his body by lovers and light."

Recent group exhibitions include Our Souls to Keep at Field Projects, NYC; Figure Fuggenti at Acta International, Rome; Divina Comedia at XXXI Festival International of Sexual Diversity at Museo Universitario del Chopo, Mexico City; Notas al Futuro at Galerié Breve, Mexico City; and Hidden Narratives at Rita K. Hillman Gallery, New York. In 2017 she was awarded an honorable mention in the annual juried competition at Baxter Street Gallery, New York. Lessnau lives and works in Brooklyn.


This photographer just captured images of rare black leopards at night in Africa. See the photos

A male melanistic leopard captured on camera in Africa, for what's thought to be the first time in a century
A wildlife photographer captured an image of a black leopard late at night, something that’s fairly uncommon among wildlife enthusiasts.

What happened: Photographer Will Burrard-Lucas released extremely rare images that he captured in Africa of the black leopard, known as a black panther in Africa and Asia, walking around at night.
Burrard-Lucas said in his release that he was always interested in black panthers. He spent his life chasing them down to capture some photos.

It wasn’t until he visited the Laikipia Wilderness Camp in Kenya that he finally had an opportunity to take photos of the panther. He took several photos at night with the hope of capturing photos of a leopard.

Black Panther has been everywhere in recent years - but spotting one of the animals the famous superhero is named after in the African wilderness is a little more rare.

Wildlife photographer Will Burrard-Lucas managed it - and there are even claims this is the first time anyone has captured a melanistic leopard on camera in Africa in 100 years.

Very few images of these iconic, secretive creatures exist.

Will heard rumours of a black panther - which is a loose term for a black leopard or black jaguar, depending where in the world it's from - at the Laikipia Wilderness Camp in Kenya.

After following leopard tracks through the undergrowth with a guide called Steve, Will settled on a place to set up his Camtraptions camera traps.

"I'm quite used to doing camera traps and not actually achieving anything because it is such a speculative thing - you don't know if the animal you're trying to get is going to come down the trail that you've set the cameras up on."

They weren't sure whether the tracks they were following were those of the black leopard or a regular spotted one.

"I never get my hopes up, and after the first couple of nights I hadn't got this leopard and I was beginning to think I'd be lucky if I get a photo of a spotty leopard, let alone this black one."

On the fourth night though, his luck was in.

“We had always heard about black leopard living in this region, but the stories were absent of high-quality footage that could confirm their existence,” said Nicholas Pilfold, scientist at San Diego Zoo Global and lead researcher for a leopard conservation program in Laikipia County, according to USA Today. “This is what Will’s photos and the videos on our remote cameras now prove, and are exceptionally rare in their detail and insight.

“Collectively these are the first confirmed images in nearly 100 years of black leopard in Africa, and this region is the only known spot in all of Africa to have black leopard.”

What makes a black panther?

It's easy to think of black panthers as animals in their own right, but Will says that's not the case.

"The term that makes them black is called melanism and it's the same thing that makes a house cat black, or any other cat species.

"It's kind of like albino but the other way.

"A black panther is basically a melanistic big cat. Typically in Africa and Asia that would mean a melanistic leopard - a black leopard.

"In South America it would be a melanistic jaguar - a black jaguar.

"Black panther is a looser term."

Will captured a spotted leopard on one of the camera traps, which could be the black leopard's dad.

You don't need two black leopards to make one, but both parents need to carry the recessive gene for melanism.

Will says it's hard to say how many leopards there are in East Africa, given how secretive they are

"And then add to that only a tiny, tiny fraction would be black?

"There might be a handful in east Africa that are black."

Oscar 2019 | Photographers' Union criticizes absence of category in broadcast

In Response to Academy Awards Controversy

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has polemicized and been criticized this year for announcing that some categories would not be shown during the broadcast of the 2019 Academy Awards.

In addition to furious filmmakers and Internet users, the American Society of Cinematographers wrote a letter condemning the Academy's decision. 

"After several comments on the subject of ASC members, I think I speak for most of them by stating this as an unfortunate decision. We consider cinema a collaborative effort process where the responsibilities of director, cinematographer, editor and other areas are interspersed. 

This decision can be perceived as a separation and division of this creative process, minimizing our fundamental creative contributions, "he wrote. 

"The Academy is an important institution that represents our art in the eyes of the world. Since the creation of the organization 91 years ago, the Academy Awards honored the talent, technique and contribution of film directors in the film process, but we can not quietly condemn this decision without protesting, "concludes Kees van Ostrum, President of ASC . 

Oscar 2019 | The Rock explains why he declined to be the presenter Last Monday (11), the Academy confirmed that the categories of Best Picture, Best Editing, Best Makeup & Hair and Best Short Film will take place during commercial breaks without being televised. However, it will be possible to watch these awards online, as the Academy will air the entire ceremony - and without cuts - on the official Oscar site. 

This year, the Oscar will have no fixed presenter. After controversy, Kevin Hart gave up commanding the ceremony. The 2019 Academy Awards ceremony will take place on February 24.

Kees van Oostrum 
ASC President

Till Death Do Them - Birds that Mate for Life

Love is in the air. This Valentine’s Day, take inspiration from some of the great bird species that mate for life. Here are just a few examples of the many winged wonders that fall into this category.
Black Vulture

Average clutch size: 2 eggs
Cool fact: This vulture species doesn’t build a nest, but rather lays its eggs on the ground or in hollow cavities.

Yes, even Black Vultures stick together. “One bird, presumed to be male, chases a presumed female through the air and periodically dives at her” as part of the mating ritual, according to Birds of North America online. They form such a tight bond, in fact, that they hang out year round—not just during breeding season. 

Bald Eagle
Bald Eagles. Photo: Steven Sachs/Audubon Photography Awards

Average clutch size: 1-3 eggs
Cool fact: Measuring six feet across and four feet tall (or even larger!), Bald Eagle nests are some of the largest of any avian species.

These birds, the symbol of the United States, mate for life unless one of the two dies. Their spectacular courtship rituals are a sight to see, with the birds locking talons, then flipping, spinning, and twirling through the air in a maneuver called a Cartwheel Display. They break apart seemingly at the last moment, just before hitting the ground. 

Laysan Albatross
Laysan Albatrosses. Photo: Kiah Walker/USFWS

Average clutch size: 1 egg
Cool fact: Nearly three-quarters of the world’s population of this species nests on Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge.

Laysan Albatrosses, which don’t breed until they’re eight or nine years old, are monogamous, annually solidifying their bond through ritual dancing. “If they do lose their mate, they will go through a year or two of a mourning period,” says John Klavitter, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist at Midway Atoll. “After that, they will do a courtship dance to try to find another mate.” 

Mute Swan
Mute Swans. Photo: Matthew Callahan/Audubon Photography Awards

Average clutch size: 5-7 eggs
Cool fact: During mating, the black knob at the base of a male’s bill swells up on these extremely territorial birds originally introduced from Europe.

Mute Swan pairs reportedly stay together for life. However, divorce does occur in less than 3 percent of mates that breed successfully and 9 percent that don’t. They re-mate when a partner dies; how quickly this happens depends on the survivor’s gender. Females find a new male within as few as three weeks. Males, however, tend to wait until the following fall or winter—allowing time to defend their nests and finish raising their cygnets.

Scarlet Macaw
Scarlet Macaws. Photo: Tracey Kidston/Audubon Photography Awards

Average clutch size: 2-4 eggs
Cool fact: These birds can live to be 75 years old in captivity or, on average, 33 years old in the wild.

Typically these rainbow-colored birds spend their lives together. They even preen each other and their young, picking bugs from their feathers. Scarlet Macaw parents, which reach sexual maturity sometime between age three and four, won’t raise new chicks until their previous ones have fledged and are independent.

Whooping Crane
Whooping Cranes. Photo: Klaus Nigge/USFWS

Average clutch size: 2 eggs
Cool fact: Not surprisingly (when you get a look at the legs), this crane species is the tallest bird in North America.

Talk about a mating dance, Whooping Cranes—which are monogamous and mate for life—bow their heads, flap their wings, leap and bounce off stiffened legs all in the effort to secure a partner. This pairing off usually happens when the birds—which are red on Audubon’s Watchlist—are between two and three years old.

California Condor
California Condors. Photo: Marc Slattery/Audubon Photography Awards

Average clutch size: 1 egg
Cool fact: When a Golden Eagle is around, this condor species—normally the dominant scavenger—will leave the carcass for the other bird and its seriously strong talons.

It takes California Condors, highly endangered birds on Audubon’s Watchlist, between six and eight years to reach sexual maturity. Once the birds mate, they stay together for years if not for life. During courtship, aerial displays bring the pairs to several nest options—kind of like searching for a potential home. The female, of course, has the final say in where the birds settle down. 

Atlantic Puffin
Atlantic Puffins. Photo: Lorraine Minns/Audubon Photography Awards

Average clutch size: 1 egg
Cool fact: Puffins can fly up to 55 miles per hour, flapping their wings 400 times per minute.

These pigeon-sized “clowns of the sea” don’t breed until they’re between three and six years old. Once they do, however, Atlantic Puffins stick with their partners for good, returning to the same burrow each season, sharing egg-incubating and parenting duties, even performing what’s known as billing, during which the birds rub together their beaks. For more great information about Atlantic Puffins and Audubon's conservation work to protect them, check out Project Puffin.


Freebie Alert! Learn more fascinating facts about 821 species of North American birds with our handy Audubon Bird Guide App.

By Michele Berger

Behind the Scenes: Digital Manipulation

Edgar Martins, the photographer at the heart of the current controversy, has told Lens and at least one other blog, Jain, that he will be telling his side of the story soon. 

The text of his e-mail response to requests for interviews, identical to both blogs, is shown below in italics.

Original post There’s probably no more troubling issue facing photojournalism than the digital manipulation of images that are supposed to faithfully represent what’s in front of the camera.

Digital technology permits so many interventions — some acutely obvious, others so subtle that only computers can detect them — that the line has blurred between manipulation and the kind of enhancement and editing that viewers customarily expect; like cropping, color correction, burning and dodging.

Blurry as it may get, there’s no question that the digital rearrangement or insertion of physical objects constitutes manipulation that The Times will not accept. (In the 1930s, it was another matter.)

The longstanding policy is unambiguous:

Images in our pages, in the paper or on the Web, that purport to depict reality must be genuine in every way. No people or objects may be added, rearranged, reversed, distorted or removed from a scene (except for the recognized practice of cropping to omit extraneous outer portions).

That’s not to say it doesn’t happen.

A picture essay in The Times Magazine on Sunday and an accompanying slide show on NYTimes.com, “Ruins of the Second Gilded Age,” have been found to include digital alterations. The photos showed unfinished or unoccupied construction projects around the United States that came to a halt — at least in part — because of the financial crisis. They were taken by Edgar Martins, a 32-year-old freelance photographer.

By Tuesday, sharp-eyed readers were calling the pictures into question. One comment on the MetaFilter blog included an animated dissection. The PDN Pulse blog also pointed out five instances in which objects had apparently been duplicated.

In response, The Times published an editors’ note, noting that the introduction to the essay “said that the photographer, a freelancer based in Bedford, England, ‘creates his images with long exposures but without digital manipulation.’”

A reader, however, discovered on close examination that one of the pictures was digitally altered, apparently for aesthetic reasons. Editors later confronted the photographer and determined that most of the images did not wholly reflect the reality they purported to show. Had the editors known that the photographs had been digitally manipulated, they would not have published the picture essay, which has been removed from NYTimes.com.

Kenneth Irby, the visual journalism group leader at the Poynter Institute, had no comment Wednesday on the Magazine essay, which he hadn’t yet seen. Speaking generally, however, he noted the “tremendous competition in the marketplace for imagery,” while at the same time, “with a click of a mouse, a perceived imperfection can be adjusted and modified.”

He continued, “To distinguish oneself with a great photo or powerful reportage — that’s a temptation.”


Following is Mr. Martin’s e-mail response on Thursday to a request for an interview?

However, I will not be able to do share my views with you for a few more days.

I have been informed of the discussion that is currently taking place concerning the feature, which I had anticipated to some degree, but which I have not yet been able to acquaitance myself with it, as I am travelling and so unable to access the internet. (Yes, believe it or not there are still places in this world with limited or no internet connection..)

I will no doubt be discussing this issue you with yourself, your readers and readers from other blogs fairly soon.

In the meantime let the debate rage on… no doubt this will open up a healthy dialogue about Photography, its inexorable links to the real & its inadequacies. Or so I hope…

Total solar eclipse to come, longest in 500 years

China will see the longest total solar eclipse in 500 years on July 22, a scientist said Saturday.

The prime time of the total eclipse was expected to begin from 9 a.m. to 9:38 a.m. (Beijing Time), said Wang Sichao, a research fellow with the Nanjing-based Purple Mountain Observatory under the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Photo taken at 7:15 pm (1115 GMT) on Aug. 1, 2008 shows the total solar eclipse at an observation station in Jinta County of Jiuquan City, northwest China's Gansu Province.

"The total eclipse will last up to six minutes, or the longest one that can be seen in China in almost 500 years from 1814 to 2309," Wang said.

He said viewers in parts of 11 provinces in China's southwestern, central-southern and eastern areas, such as Tibet, Hunan and Jiangsu, will be able to witness the total solar eclipse, while in most parts of Shanghai, viewers can see the spectacular phenomenon.

For viewers in other provinces, including Beijing, they can observe a partial eclipse, he said.

A solar eclipse occurs when the moon is caught between the sun and the earth while each of them moves along their fixed orbits.

In a total solar eclipse, the sun, the moon and the earth are directly aligned as the sun swings into the cone of shadow cast by the moon.

Wang said the next total solar eclipse that can be seen in China will fall on March 20, 2034.

"But it can only be seen remote provinces, such as Tibet and Qinghai. It cannot not be compared with the upcoming one, in terms of duration and number of cities that can see the eclipse," he added.

The last total solar eclipse visible in China took place on August 1 last year. It was observed in northwest China and lasted two minutes in Yiwu County of northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, the best place to see the phenomenon.

Electrifying Pictures of Lightning Photography

Lightning photography is both one of the most tricky and one of the most frustrating types of photography. You get only one chance for the particular situation - it is not like portrait photography where you can go back in the studio if the photos didn’t come out well.

Lightning photos give us an experience of energy that is transfomative in nature. The lightning bolt is a field of combustible possibilites available in the human psyche. When someone is struck by lightning an instant molecular change takes place. If grounded the the person being struck will often have paranomal experiences, such as seeing future events, being in touch with multi-demensional phenomena and a connecting with nature and all sentient beings. In indigious cultures this was the sign of a healer, who lived to bring forth a boon to the community.
Photographing lightning at night is relatively easy provided you have access to remote areas away from town/city lights.

The results can be exciting but they are also partly based upon luck.

Here are  Electrifying Pictures of Lightning Photography by Digital Picture Zone.

photo by nmjeeptours

photo by Lukebeales

photo by Jonathan

photo by rialynn

photo by EI Brujo-antes

photo by nmjeeptour

photo by lanramrod

photo by mvejerslev

photo by drstomp

photo by dock of the bay

photo by joe holme

photo by Ajka_Hungary

photo by marcin wisnio 

photo by Gustavomaia

photo by Father_Mckenzie

photo by Scott Butner

photo by Philip Schexnayder

photo by Yorrick

photo by Kevin_Nickel

photo by talk2nicu

photo by Its a country thang

photo by Garry

photo by truan

Dolphins enjoy sardine feeding frenzy

This photo taken in July, 2018 by amateur underwater photographer Alexander Safonov captures the moment of dolphins queuing up for a large "meal" of migrating sardines in waters near St. Johns, South Africa. Alexander Safonov, a software engineer, travelled to the Port of St John's in June 2018 to record with his camera the Sardine Run - an underwater migration where millions of fish head eastwards from their cool spawning waters near Cape Town in search of zooplankton. He was fortunate to photograph five bait balls in his two week trip, winning the 'Wideangle Traditional' category in the Our World Underwater 2019 competition.

This photo taken in July, 2018 by underwater photographer Alexander Safonov shows common dolphins and gannets (left) attacking a "bail ball" in waters near St. Johns, South Africa. Followed by thousands of hungry dolphins, sharks, sea birds and seals, the migrating sardines protect themselves from this onslaught by forming into giant balls called "bait balls" which can measure as large as 65 feet, or 20 metres, in diameter.

This photo taken in July, 2018 by underwater photographer Alexander Safonov shows common dolphins and gannets attacking a "bail ball" in waters near St. Johns, South Africa.

This photo taken in July, 2018 by amateur underwater photographer Alexander Safonov captures the moment of dolphins queuing up for a large "meal" of migrating sardines in waters near St. Johns, South Africa.

This photo taken in July, 2018 by underwater photographer Alexander Safonov captures the moment of dolphins queuing up for a large "meal" of migrating sardines in waters near St. Johns, South Africa. Alexander Safonov travelled to the Port of St John's in June 2018 to record with his camera the Sardine Run - an underwater migration where millions of fish head eastwards from their cool spawning waters near Cape Town in search of zooplankton. He was fortunate to photograph five bait balls in his two week trip, winning the 2019 Sony World Photography Awards/the Amateur's Natural History category.

This photo taken in July, 2018 by amateur underwater photographer Alexander Safonov captures the moment of dolphins queuing up for a large "meal" of migrating sardines in waters near St. Johns, South Africa.

This photo taken in July, 2018 by amateur underwater photographer Alexander Safonov shows common dolphins in waters near St. Johns, South Africa.