Outoffocusmag Circa 2010
Outoffocusmag was a Sweden based web-gallery for images that had not been published and a platform for everybody interested in telling stories visually.
This was their website for a number of years.
Content is from the site's archived pages.
Thanks to all the photographers contributing to Outoffocusmag.com. You may also want to subscribe to our newsletter by sending a short mail.
What is Outoffocusmag?
Outoffocusmag is an online gallery and will be a meeting place for everyone with an interest in the narrative image. Outoffocusmag will be an inspiration source and a display window where photographers can show themselves and their projects to others.
We have seen many good pictures and reports that unfortunately are hidden in some negatives or on any hard disk without being shown to a larger audience. We think it would be a shame not to see these amazing jobs and we think we are not alone in our curiosity on good pictures and image stories. Outoffocusmag will inspire and motivate for own work and own projects. It is important that good photos are displayed by being published. The photograph must get a stronger position. We want it to evolve and the debate about the image is continued.
We have seen a lot of excellent essays which now unfortunattely are stored in as a drawer or at as harddrive without public access. We feel it would be a pitty to not be able to see these fantastic pictures and reports, and we as weel are convinced that others feel the same way. Outoffocusmag aims to inspire people to work with reports and essays of their own. Vår vision er at styrke fotografering både som et kunstform såvel som et medier til at fortælle historier visuelt.
Who is Outoffocusmag?
Outoffocusmag is run by David Schreiner and Pontus Baum.
David is responsible for the image-based part of Outoffocusmag. David works as a freelance photographer with portrait and reportage photography and works as an image editor. Pontus is responsible for the technical ensuring that and has also built the site. Pontus Outoffocusmag is directed and edited by David Schreiner and Pontus Baum.
"We have seen many good pictures and reports that unfortunately are hidden in some negatives or on any hard disk without being shown to a larger audience. We think it would be a shame not to see these amazing jobs and we think we are not alone in our curiosity on good pictures and image stories, David and Pontus write on the site.
The idea is that the web magazine should contain ten reports per issue. Right now there is room for another eight photographers in the first release.
Do you have a company and want to be seen on Outoffocusmag and in our newsletter you will hear. We are looking for more sponsors to run Outoffocusmag even in the future.
Why must a site like this that focuses on these photographic gems appear and then disappear after getting a small but faithful following. I have seen so many literary or art based sites whose domain registrations have expired and are available. I have been following the domain drops, trying to pick up a cool sounding domain to start my own photographic based website. Right now I work for an online store featuring North Face jackets as their graphic artist. I create the promos for sales. The last promo was for North Face Osito Jackets and some other fleece products.
I have acquired a few jackets myself to better understand the product whose images I deal with as new versions are introduced. What I would like to do is follow some of the customers, photographing them in their various jackets and interviewing them as to why they buy a particular one. I'm sure there are some fascinating stories out there. I'd also like to interview some of the models whose faces you see again and again from the same brand.
There is a lifetime of work to be had in this little niche I envision. I hope I can report back one day having accomplish my vision. Or you will discover a cool photographic website devoted to images of women and men wearing North Face jackets!
Jimmy Linus – Eagle hunters of Mongolia
More than 200 years ago, the advance of the Russian Empire troops pushed Kazakhs to neighbouring countries. Southern Kazakhs were allowed to settle down in the remote parts of western Mongolia. Along with them, their long-lived tradition followed.
”I have been hunting with eagles for about 40 years. My father taught me how to master eagles when I was a child., now I am teaching my son how to become a respected hunter”, says Farathan Khavilhak.
He is one of the certified eagle hunters in the area. He explains that hunting with eagles is a lifestyle, a tradition dating 6000 years back. He estimate that he has been training around 140 eagles during his lifetime. Some eagles are easier to train for hunting than others. Those who are not quite as successful as hunters he releases back into the wild and the ones that can be trained in to perfection, he can sell or trade. One good eagle gives him a good horse in exchange.- -Last year during prime hunting season, which is between October-February, the eagle that we used today hunted down 20 foxes per day, says Khavilhak. It is during the coldest months of the year the hunt is at its best.
Foxes, hares, other small birds and even wolfs are among the target of prey for the eagle. With her magnificent eye-sight the eagle scan the wide landscape for prey. Once found, the prey has little chance to survive the soon-to-come attack. The eagle leaves the arm of the hunter and sets off. She uses her enormous wingspan and can accelerate up to a speed of 240 kilometres per hours. After a few seconds the attacked animal is struggling for its survival.
When I ask Farathan Khavilhak for how long he will be hunting with eagles. His answer is short but descriptive,
-As long as live.
Jimmy Linus is based in Oslo and works as a reportage photographer. His website can be found here: www.jimmylinus.com.
Mikael Raymond – Svenska stämningar
From time immemorial the Nordic peoples (folk) soul has been shaped by the struggle between the seasons. The contrast between light and darkness, between hope and despair, between elation and melancholy. The Scandinavian soul, like the bear seeks isolation, when the sun turns its face to other latitudes; with the desire to retire, to hibernate, reflect and contemplate, a going within; and from this ambience comes creative inspiration.
It is my desire and intention to try to capture the beauty present in this contrast between the light and the dark, and the interaction of colors, with natures unruly and unconditional constitution, this is the key.
I am a self-taught photographer who is inspired by the French photo art scene. I want to portray the Swedish with my photo, but from a French-inspired art photo perspective. I photograph with the digital technology and with the help of it bring an analogous feeling into my pictures. I have a penchant for the square format as it fits my composition very well. I attach great importance to the light and the blackness of my images, and the color tone may reflect the specific feeling I had at the time of the photo.
Brendan Hoffman – Haiti – The Petionville Club
On January 12, 2010, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti, killing more than 200,000 people and devastating the already struggling city of Port-au-Prince. Those who survived were mostly left homeless and without food or resources. Up to 50,000 people erected a camp near the edge of the city on a private golf course known as the Pétionville Club. Here, life has slowly taken on a comforting sense of routine. Those who lost homes, jobs, and loved ones are, in the absence of any alternative, moving forward with their lives. However, conditions will remain difficult for a long time, and no one will ever forget the day when the earth moved and changed the destiny of an entire country.
Brendan Hoffman is a freelance photographer based in Washington, DC, where he regularly covers Capitol Hill and the White House for a variety of clients including the New York Times, Getty Images, and the Wall Street Journal. He has also undertaken personal projects in Azerbaijan, Russia, Peru, Mexico, Haiti, and in the U.S. His work is syndicated by Corbis. Recent awards include attending the 2009 Eddie Adams Workshop and selection as a finalist in 2008 for the first grant under the David Alan Harvey Fund for Emerging Photographers.
+1 (202) 285-1391
Jonas Palm – Human Zoo
The Long Neck people are an ethnic group famed for their tradition of women wearing brass rings around their necks. The people have become refugees from Myanmar (Burma), and the vast majority of the Long Necks live among 110,000 other refugees in camps on the Thai side of the border. The United Nations claim that the Long Necks are refugees for political reasons, while Thailand withholds that the reasons are economical. Regardless of cause, the Long Necks are bereft of their personal identification documents and in practice, they are prisoners without chains…
Acting as a “human zoo” for tourists, the Long Necks contribute considerably to the economy of Thailand. In return for being on display, they receive a monthly ration of rice and, given that the traditional rings are worn, also minor financial compensation.
It has been speculated that the rings were worn to protect against tigers striking for the throat, but this has subsequently been identified as a myth. According to their own history, women of the Long Necks have worn the rings since 1070 AD, mostly for decoration and to gain status.
The women start wearing the rings very early on, and this has a considerable effect on the bodies of the young women. The collarbones and ribs collapse from the pressure of the rings, weighing in at between six and seven kilograms for a grown woman. This collapse of the skeleton is what causes the impression of prolonged necks.
In the tourist villages you can see women weave and do handiwork, but the craft is only a way for the previous rice farmers to supplement the rations of rice.
After taking part in a military photography-training program in the early 70’s, I have been working professionally with photography. In 1976 I started running my own company, and the focus of the work has been documenting different tribes, cultures, and people. Since four years, my wife Kai and I also supports and is involved with one of the Long Neck families. You can contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted in Essay
Emily Berl – The Wrestlers
This story is about the members of the New York Wrestling Connection (NYWC), an independent-professional wrestling company based in Long Island, New York.
Although the Professional Wrestling boom of the 1980’s has subsided, the sport is still one of the most watched cable television programs in the United States. Despite it’s many avid fans both in the U.S. and abroad, many people do not understand wrestling at all. They don’t grasp why people would watch a sport that is not real. ]But as Jimmy “The Greek God” Papadoniou, a senior member of the New York Wrestling Connection, said, “the outcome is determined, but wrestling is not fake.”
Wrestling is about skill, technique, delivery, dedication, and character. You have to sell the part no matter what. These men hold themselves to a high standard. The truly dedicated ones train with the NYWC three times a week and work out constantly on their own. Improvement is always on their minds, with the ultimate goal of getting signed to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), or other mainstream wrestling companies where fame and money are guaranteed. The wrestlers of the NYWC see their diverse group as a family, one where respect for brothers and superiors is crucial.
At first, I decided to photograph pro wrestling because I thought it would be a visually interesting story about a culture that I did not know much about. I thought I would photograph one match and that would be it. But instead, I started spending more time with the wrestlers and realized that, to them, this is much more than a fun pastime, it is a lifestyle. To them, wrestling is a chance to follow in the footsteps of their childhood idols, superheroes of their youth. It is a real opportunity to be a part of something.
Emily Berl was born in Washington, DC in 1985. She is currently a freelance photographer based in Brooklyn, NY.
Tammy Law – A Far Away Place
A country with a tumultuous past, present and future. At the same time, a place of unparalleled beauty. For outsiders, famine, war, poverty and drought are the things most synonymous with Ethiopia. Even now, it’s still one of the least developed countries in the world, so those preconceptions wouldn’t be entirely baseless.
During my month-long visit, I experienced extremes. Ethiopia’s diversity of terrain means there are wide variations in climate and settlement patterns. Within the space of two days, we drove from the wet season in the capital Addis Ababa, before being greeted by a thick blanket of heat and humidity in Logiya in the Afar region.
Based in the North-Eastern lowlands of Ethiopia, the Afar region is notorious for having the most fragile environment within the country and is also known as the hottest inhabited place on Earth. Within the past decade, the region has undergone four major droughts, wrecking environmental havoc that has almost decimated their pastoralist livelihood. Community elders spoke of the deterioration of pastures and consequent depletion of bred cattle and goats. As the majority of Afar live as nomads, their livestock represents the basis of their economic foundation and with this being threatened, so is their very livelihood.
The Afar have a deeply paternalistic attitude, which is obvious from birth to burial. At the birth of a baby boy, two celebratory gunshots are fired into the air while female births go unacknowledged. Seven-year-old girls are expected to assume a role of servitude within the household and conduct daily tasks alongside the women, while males are free to do as they please. At the end of their lives, male graves are more distinguishably marked and revered. The Afar have a traditional saying that seems to embody much of what I saw: ”One should give an ear to a woman but not take seriously what is said.”
In a lot of ways, the country still lingers behind the rest of the world, both practically and symbolically. According to the Ethiopian calendar, for instance, it’s the year 2001. When I boarded the plane out of the country, the millennium had only just passed over. By the time I flew out of the country, watching the land recede below, I had left eight years and countless life stories behind.
Tammy Law is a freelance photographer from Brisbane, Australia who pursues photo documentary stories. Her work has been referred to as, “evocative documentary… that includes social justice issues and the ostensibly mundane urban spaces in which we live”. She draws influence from the unearthly qualities of Edward Hopper’s paintings, Lynne Cohen’s tribute to space and Noor Photo Agency’s social commentary. With a strong community focus, she has produced bodies of work on ageing day-labourers homes in Japan, post- earthquake China, domestic living in Inner Mongolia and harmful traditional practices in Ethiopia. Her photographs have appeared in publications like the Sydney Morning Herald, Frankie Magazine and The Big Issue.
Anna Hurtig – Imaginaryplay
Imaginary play is my way of portraying childhood. Look through a child's curious eyes. To play, find and explore. All the magic and confusion associated with growing up.
Anna Hurtig, raised and living in Stockholm. Currently studying visual communication at the university in Jönköping while working on her own projects.
Has been published, for example, SHOTS, F-Stop Magazine and Lightleaks Magazine in the United States. Participated in the summer of 2009 in the exhibition "The Minds eye", at The Center for Fine Art Photography in CO, USA with two of the pictures from the series "Imaginaryplay"