This is a collection of photos mainly associated with the 2013 New York City mayoral campaign and various political events of similar nature from 2012. I occasionally cover politics, more specifically politics in New York City.
I see the players and actors. I see them pose and pretend but once in awhile their true characteristics become obvious. Whether it be a distinct emphasis on physical traits or inner thoughts manifest in gesture and facial expression, their intentions become apparent, sometimes genuine sometimes nefarious. It’s up to the viewer and can never be proven or disproved.
Sometimes you have to look closer than policy to understand the politician. Ask yourself why are they positioned a certain way or what surrounds them. What points are they trying to get across to the voter base that connects personality and agenda. Some of these people have been on top and stumbled to the ground, others have seen decades pass before their eyes before they themselves passed. Some are new to the race and others have suffered for their cause or transgression.
I’ve taken these photos as honest as possible in a dishonest society. I’ve by no means covered the entire scope of NYC politics but have seen a glimpse. Lies and deception, honesty and truth, false hopes and attainable reconstruction, all jumbled up into one comedic mass media worm burrowing through the brain of anyone who will listen. There will always be politics in one form or another and at the epicenter of these structures will be human emotion pushing and pulling.
Ukrainian protesters gathered Sunday afternoon in front of the Ukrainian United Nations Mission in midtown Manhattan. The protesters are calling for the resignation of Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovich after failing to sign a crucial trade agreement with the European Union. Pressure and sanction threats from Moscow are believed to be the key reasons Yanukovich chose not to move forward with the deal. Though this protest lasted only an hour, thousands of protesters in Kiev have been holding mass anti-government demonstrations in the streets and taking over government buildings.
By: Michael Hicks
Despair is a poetically illusive emotion, digging in its jagged claws well before the feeling descends into a person psyche. Photographing moments of despair weigh heavy on any photojournalist. Is capturing the decisive moment frozen in history more important than the feelings of the individual going through a traumatic experience? Or does their despair pass on to you for a brief moment or in some cases a lifetime? Feeling the despair of others can change very quickly into outrage but outrage can very easily be filtered into change. Nothing can change tragic events but a lot can be learned from them. In some places tragedy is a way of daily life while elsewhere it happens less frequently. No matter where or how, tragedy spawns despair in every individual at some level. I don’t know a single photographer who is not affected by capturing moments of intense emotional despair. Some see more than others through combat situations or intense human strife. Some see despair on a daily basis through accidents or senseless acts of violence inside what is said to be “civilized society”. Either way despair hides itself well, usually resulting as the product caused by emotional progressions of misunderstanding, envy, mistrust, and eventual violence. I have photographed moments of despair, maybe not as much as others but no matter where, what, or how it always stays with you until a difference is made. This difference makes experiencing and processing the grief of others somehow worthwhile and turns despair into hope. I don’t know how else to explain it.
“In our struggle for freedom, truth is the only weapon we possess” -The 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso
Over sixty years have passed since the once sovereign country of Tibet was invaded, brutalized, and occupied by the Chinese government. The movement to free Tibet from communist rule continues to this day. Over a thousand Tibetans and their supporters marched through the streets of NYC on 3/10/13. This was one of many protests taking place simultaneously around the globe. March 10th marks the 54th anniversary of the 1959 uprising in Tibet. A long line of Tibetan flags held by the oppressed and those sympathetic to the cause swept across town from the United Nations to the Chinese Consulate.
One example of an ongoing project I’ve been working on the past few months. Series is another project humbly attempting to bridge scientific theory and photography. Brief summary below, much much more to come next year.
By: Michael Hicks
The way in which human brains process and eventually perceive reality is only accepted after visualization occurs. Countless occurrences stimulate the senses every millisecond while the brain chooses to focus on single moments at any given time. What this portrait series conveys is the other occurrences around the person being photographed. The specific movement choices of the person being photographed reflect the outcome of his or her perspective within that moment of time. These “other options” so to speak could have materialized given the viewers choice to perceive other outcomes. In some instances character specific distortion relates to personality.
All neighborhoods in the Rockaways were heavily affected by hurricane Sandy. A large percentage of homes were either destroyed or badly damaged by the storm. The people of these communities were forced to rely on each other until federal help finally arrived. Temperatures have been dropping making life without utilities a nightmare for many families. Philanthropic groups and concerned citizens from all over the country came to aid in distributing survival supplies and food. The National Guard and FEMA have begun to deploy in the area. Incidents of armed robbery and looting have been reported. The once popular boardwalk tourist attraction was reduced to splinters destroying all in its path as the sea and sand pushed inland.