Jun 23, 2022
On this week’s episode of the B&H Photography Podcast, we are pleased to welcome photographer and director Brandon Tauszik and journalist Pendarvis Harshaw to talk about their recently completed project, “Facing Life,” an effective blend of form and content, whose principal image format is the cinemagraph and whose content speaks to one of our society’s most pressing issues: prison reform.
Our discussion takes on both aspects as we learn how cinemagraphs are produced and how Tauszik uses this process to create resonating portraits that blur the line between still and motion photography. We also come to understand the motivation for these two creators to address the changing landscape of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and profile the joys and struggles of eight people recently released from life sentences. Our conversation brings together the technical and creative aspects of this imaging process, including Tauszik’s thoughts on portraiture and the specific gear and techniques for making these hybrid images, as well as the issues of mass incarceration and “mass integration.”
We also come to understand the working relationship between Tauszik and Harshaw—who is primarily an audio journalist and author—and how they met their subjects and developed their stories over several years. While this project may ultimately find its way into galleries or print form, it was devised as an online project and we see, in “Facing Life,” eight stories that succinctly and compassionately blend form, content, and presentation to tell important contemporary stories.
Guests: Brandon Tauszik and Pendarvis Harshaw
Photograph © Brandon Tauszik