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Real Photo Show with Michael Chovan-Dalton

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Real Photo Show with Michael Chovan-Dalton is a Podcast about Photographers and Photography.

Real Photo Show with Michael Chovan-Dalton is a Podcast about Photographers and Photography.
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Real Photo Show with Michael Chovan-Dalton is a Podcast about Photographers and Photography.




Sarah Blesener | Beckon us from Home - Ep.73

"I want nuanced reflections and questions…that's why I like literature…if a book didn't do that you would not be interested and you would throw it away…so I think photography should beckon the same kinds of responses…" Sarah Blesener dropped out of school at an early age to pursue alternative forms of education which included a year of flight school. She describes herself as very goal driven with a desire to get things done quickly, which accounts for how much she has accomplished in a...


apexart | Steven Rand - Ep.72

"As an artist I began to feel that I was making collectibles for wealthy people…with apex I turned into more of an educator…and the fellowship is the program that I would have liked, that I think I should have gone on." -Steven Rand As part of a series of events related to the exhibition, Light in Wartime, curated by Rola Khayyat (ep.68), I was invited to speak to Steven Rand, the Founder of apexart. It was a panel discussion with Steven, Rola, Margaret Ewing, Director of Programs, and...


Reuben Radding | Humans and Music - Ep.71

"I looked back on my life and was like, I've done a lot of tearing down, a lot of dismantling of my life to move on to something else and grow, and I thought maybe I don't need to do that…" Reuben Radding's path to photography can be traced through his love of music. He dropped out of High School to play music and to be with a community that got him away from his abusive father, who was also a musician. Music brought him to New York City in the early 90's where he played at the Knitting...


Sara Hylton | Nobody Listened - Episode 70

"I think even in storytelling and making pictures there's so much noise and it's so busy and here's this conflict and this violence and for me it's just about people, I just want to see them." Sara Hylton uses portraiture to tell the stories of the oppressed, abused, and the underrepresented. Much of her work focuses on discrimination against women and their resilience in the face of systemic class and gender bias. We talk about how Sara developed this sense of social justice, how she chose...


Aaron Berger - Episode 69

"That was at the very end of Thailand, I was just starting to think I didn't want to play poker anymore and I was starting to be drawn to something maybe a little more creative which I had never done in my whole life…" Aaron Berger taught himself photography by studying the tech specs that are included with photos on Flickr® and looking at photographers such as Garry Winogrand on the internet. His path to photography started with a realization that he was not going to be a professional...


Rola Khayyat | From Brooklyn to Beirut - Episode 68

"When the shelling got too bad my mom would hide us in the bathroom and say it's just raining really hard and this is the safest spot in the house." Rola Khayyat grew up during the Lebanese Civil War but when talking about her experience she doesn't focus on the horrors, she focuses on the richness of her life and how her mother protected her children and gave them a sense of security and home. Life during conflict is at the heart of Rola's work and also became the creative drive behind the...


Peter Kasovitz | K&M Camera - Episode 67

"The people that I dealt with were quite fascinating to me because I came from a completely different perspective and I began following them and I said they support me there's no reason for me not to support them." Peter Kasovitz is the co-founder of K&M Camera which has been in business for 42 years. It's an institution among photographers from all around the world and Peter's generosity and support for students and established photographers is know by many. Peter and I spoke at SVA which...


Gordon Stettinius | Candela Books + Gallery - Episode 66

"There is sort of a desert in Richmond Virginia, there was no photo gallery, there are a couple of blue-chip galleries…but my feeling is I could talk circles around them…where photography is concerned, but I'm still trying to learn the business, that they are very good at." Gordon Stettinius is an artist and the founder of Candela Books + Gallery. He started Candela to help publish and promote well-known, but maybe underrepresented artists, as well as to promote new, and mid-career artists...


Andréanna Seymore - Episode 65

"I really wanted to kind of tackle women being empowered by physical fitness, and being empowered by sports, and what let me into that was discovering roller derby." Andréanna Seymore's interest in photographing women in sports as a source of empowerment can be traced back to her own experience of giving up sports in school because there was no support or expectation of success for women in sports. She also sees her mother, a lawyer who defended tenants from eviction, as inspiration for...


Andre D Wagner - Episode 64

"It's just amazing how like when you kind of put energy out, like a certain type of energy that you want to be around and that you want to be a part of, how the world kind of brings that right back to you…" Andre D. Wagner accidentally started his photo career while playing basketball for Buena Visa University as a social work major. He took a photo class thinking it would be an easy grade, but like many first time photo students, he was shocked by the cost and the amount of work involved,...


Joseph Michael Lopez - Episode 63

"I don't think I was really ready to break out as a photographer, but I was ready to break out as like my own spirit. " Joseph Michael Lopez is a documentary photographer. His interest in photography started while he was a cinematographer for Bruce Weber. Joseph is mostly self-taught and his work often involves concerns for social justice which is a character trait he attributes to the life story of his mother who escaped Cuba in 1967. Joseph's work has appeared on the cover of M, The...


Wassaic Project | Eve Biddle | Jeff Barnett-Winsby - Episode 62

"We talk to other community organizations all the time, they are like, oh how do you get such great community engagement, we do events all the time and the community doesn't come. Well, are you doing events for the community or with the community?" - Eve Biddle "I'm really proud of what we've done, we've worked so hard, it's fabulous, it continues to grow, why don't I just dive deeper." - Jeff Barnett-Winsby The Wassaic Project is a fantastic organization in Wassaic, NY. It's an artist's...


Nomi Ellenson | Boudoir by Nomi - Episode 61

"When you're 3 or 5 years old and you're understanding that your grandma fits bras, you don't think about it in a sexual way…I just equated bras with, oh people go see grandma Selma feeling uncomfortable and they leave feeling better." Nomi Ellenson is a body positive and sex positive boudoir photographer. As a freelance fashion photographer, Nomi felt limited by what she was assigned to shoot in terms of promoting a specific kind of beauty. She started her own business so she could help...


Katie Kline - Episode 60

"That's the thing I get most excited about with photography is what you can hide from the viewer and how you can frame your work to make it something that is very specific or might not be seen just passing by." Katie Kline's photography was influenced by her father's job at Disneyland and their frequent trips to the land of artifice. Now Katie sees a little Disney wherever she travels and you can see it in her landscapes and the way she records the details of places that aspire to be more....


Verónica Sanchis Bencomo | Foto-Féminas Episode 59

"That's when I came to learn more about Graciela Iturbide, Tina Modotti, Lola Alvarez Bravo…that kicked in this interest or appetite in what else is going on in other places…" Verónica Sanchis Bencomo founded Foto-Féminas as a way to promote the work being done by female photographers working in Latin America and the Caribbean. It was while growing up in Venezuela and witnessing political turmoil that Verónica became acutely aware that the media could be a powerful tool for giving voice to...


Jackie Battenfield | The Artist's Guide - Episode 58

"If the bottom line isn't scaring you, you haven't thought of everything, and because of that we don't go after enough funding…" Jackie Battenfield is an artist and an entrepreneur, and that is a big part of the message she shares with her audience when she teaches professional practice at Columbia University and when she lectures at conferences. Her book, The Artist's Guide: How to Make a Living Doing What You Love, has been called a "tough-love" guide to pursuing a career in the visual...


Donato DiCamillo - Episode 56

"I was a criminal, I lived that criminal lifestyle, and I really didn't give a crap about anybody's feelings…but something changed in me and photography…brought me closer to people." Donato DiCamillo has one of the more unique stories of how he got into photography. Afflicted with behavioral and anger issues, Donato was kicked out of high school and became fully immersed in a life of crime. In 2006 he was arrested by federal agents in an operation involving the Colombo crime family. It was...


Gabriela Herman | The Kids - Episode 55

"I literally went from, I wasn't able to say the words out loud…my mom is gay, to basically writing it in the Times and screaming it to the whole world." Gabriela Herman does something that is rare among photographers, she makes a living with her photography. Gabriela talks to Michael about some of her career milestones, including getting some photojournalism work through Craigslist. Her new book ,The Kids (The New Press), which explores the lives of kids who grew up with LGBTQ parents...


Amani Willett - Episode 54

"…and to me that is the irony in all of this…In the act of wanting to be alone, and disappearing, he actually became famous." Amani Willett's new book, The Disappearance of Joseph Plummer, pieces together the history and the mythology left behind of a mysterious hermit who moves away from society to the deep woods of New Hampshire in the late 1700's. Amani became interested in Plummer after realizing that his father had bought the same land, where Plummer had settled, also as an escape...


John Trotter - Episode 53

"I remember saying, 'That, that's it, I almost died for that…it's a nothing photograph.' That's how I would have been remembered, he died to make a really nothing photograph. " John Trotter is a former photojournalist and conflict photographer who had photographed in dangerous hot spots like Mogadishu, but it would be on a simple assignment in Sacramento California where John would face his own life altering experience. thePhotoShow becomes theCyclingShow for the start of this episode as...