Taryn Simon Ted Talk

Taryn Simon Ted Talk - Photographs of Secret Sites

Since my introduction into associate lecturing at UCLAN in November 2009 I have found that my desire and determination to learn as much as I can about the medium of photography has played an crucial role in how effectively I write assignments, plan critiques and deliver lectures.

In order to teach others about contemporary photography in a fresh and imaginative way one should not only be a creative practitioner of the medium, but also have an innate interest and understanding of culture, history, social issues and technology (to name but only a few).

In an attempt to form some kind of narrative structure to this photography blog, I thought I’d share a short video of Taryn Simon speaking at Ted Talks that I showed students of the BA (Hons) International Journalism course earlier today. We were discussing how we can develop our ideas from concept into practice when I remembered watching this fantastic talk by Taryn Simon.

During her Ted Talk, she presents her startling take on photography; to reveal worlds and people we would never see otherwise.

In ‘An American Index of the Hidden and Unfamiliar’ (2007) she documents otherworldly locations typically kept secret from the public. With a large-format camera and a knack for talking her way into forbidden zones, Taryn Simon photographed portions of the American infrastructure inaccessible to it’s inhabitants. Her second project, the haunting ’The Innocents’ (2003), features a series of portraits of men convicted for crimes they did not commit.

Both projects feature some astounding photography and are highly thought-provoking in terms of approach, research and delivery. It’s certainly a talk I would recommend to anyone who is interested in learning more about photography and the world we live in.

Ted Talks From Photographers

There are a number of photographers who have spoken about their work at Ted Talks, including Edward Burtynsky discussing manufactured landscapes and James Nachtwey presenting his searing photographs of war.

Thank you for reading this post. I’d love to hear your thoughts about these topics. Please leave a comment and check my photography portfolio!

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