Advocacy Through Photography
In this time and place, technology has transcended and allowed people to be involved in multiple ways. Community members can be an asset to the massive mobilization happening in the U.S. Advocacy has become a movement of one or many due as a result of social media, digital platforms and technology we carry in our phones, or cameras.
For a long time, we have followed the notion that we need masses to create a change, but now days, it can start with one person making a change and documenting it.
Photography as an advocacy tool has become one of the strongest and most powerful due to the message it can send as well as the audience that it can reach. Through photography we have witnessed protests, rallies, and small actions of kindness. We see advocacy every day on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. According to Petapixel.com, 2-out-of-3 people have a DSRL camera, a camera than be used to capture important moments in history. (Petapixel, 2012).
As we all know, Martin Luther King Jr.’s march in Washington and speech still resonates now. We still watch the video, see the photos and hear his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Technology of the time allowed our generation to still learn from his ideals and teachings.
A photograph is really powerful because it can also be interpreted in many ways. In Olivia Heussler’s article, photographer Susan Meiselas mentions how a photograph can highlight multiple views and vantage points because of how we all see with different perspectives (Heussler, 2005). Nevertheless, a moment is captured and we can create and have a piece of our history through photography.
Charles Moore, a photographer who photographed much of the Civil Rights movement came to see his camera as a weapon. “…I fight with my camera, that’s my tool… that was my weapon” he said (Heussler, 2015).
We see photos of politicians, activist, and movements and have the luxury of commenting and sharing the story as it happens. We are part of a movement even by sharing the information that we are receiving.
People are not letting things by anymore, as we become more aware of issues surrounding our community and our nation, you can witness the mass involvement of young millennials and older folks.
It is a time of change and photo can make a difference.
Heussler, O. (2005). The Lens as a Witness: Photography as Advocacy in the Struggle for Human Rights. Retrieved from http://www.oliviaheussler.com/pdf/photography_humanrights.pdf