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Adding Salt To Nikon’s Wound | Canon Names Susan Stripling Its Newest Explorer Of Light

By Brittany Smith on February 10th 2018

Do you remember that one time when Nikon Asia and Nikon Middle East chose a fellowship of 32 photographers to represent the D850 and not one of them was a woman? It was a PR nightmare for the brand and brought upon a huge debate within the industry as to the underrepresentation of women and lack of diversity within the world of photography and brand ambassadors. But how many actually spoke out?

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“Choose your battles wisely. Lower your voice. Stand tall and look confident.” This is the all too familiar advice given to many women and it has been unsuccessful in bringing about any tangible change within the photography world.

Susan Stripling, a well recognized and much regarded photographer, chose to ignore this aforementioned (and frequently unsolicited) advice and instead took a stand with her open letter calling out sexism in the industry. Her letter, for which she should be congratulated, was one to shed a spotlight on the issue and opening up a dialog to further the discussion in the ongoing effort to bring about change.

Stripling was known for shooting Nikon and Nikon USA hasn’t appeared to be too eager to add any additional women to their brand ambassador lineup at this time. However, it seems that Canon saw an opportunity and took full advantage, carpe diem-esque, in a way that would make the ancient Greeks proud by adding an incredible talent to their existing roster.

Canon USA announced earlier today that Susan has been named as the newest Explorer of Light to join their team of brand ambassadors.

“We are excited to welcome Susan Stripling to the ranks of this select family. Her expertise, combined with her passion for educating aspiring photographers, makes her a great asset to our program. It’s a privilege to see how passionate our Explorers of Lights are about inspiring eager audiences of photo professionals, hobbyists, and enthusiasts to further inspire them to reach their creative potential.” – Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc.

It is encouraging to see the industry beginning to take notice of more women outside of their known ambassadors and at the same time it is disheartening that it took such a blatant and bold stance to begin with to make forward progress.

There is still a long road ahead with a lot of work to be done and it looks as though [some of] the major brands are listening to the criticism and re-evaluating themselves introspectively. Change, especially of this magnitude, is going to require so much more than sitting still and looking pretty while using our inside voices.

PRESS RELEASE

New Addition Brings 18 Years of Professional Photography Experience to the Prestigious Program

MELVILLE, N.Y., February 8, 2018 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is proud to announce the addition of photographer Susan Stripling to its renowned Explorers of Light program. Susan adds to the already impressive ranks of Canon’s program, expanding its wide range of talented professionals that impact imaging culture and influence the way their audiences see the world. She will be at the Canon Booth (#121) at WPPI Expo 2018, February 26-28 at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV and will be presenting on the Canon stage on Monday, February 26 at 2:15pm and Tuesday, February 27 at 12:15pm*. For more information about events in the Canon booth at WPPI Expo 2018, please visit usa.canon.com/wppi2018.

Susan Stripling is a Triple Master Status professional wedding, theater and portrait photographer based out of Brooklyn, NY. Susan believes in giving back to the photo industry that she loves and cares for deeply. In 2016 Susan started The Wedding School, an online educational resource for wedding photographers featuring books and videos to help guide them with their photographic skills and growing their businesses. Susan has won multiple WPPI 16×20 inch Print Competition Awards, including the Grand Award in Wedding Photojournalism in 2010 and the Grand Award in Weddings in 2016. In addition, Susan has previously been an educator at PhotoPlus Expo, WPPI Expo, and PPA Imaging USA Expo.

“It is an honor to join so many of my talented peers already in the Canon Explorer of Light program,” said Susan Stripling “Canon’s equipment provides me with the tools that help my visions come to life, and I am looking forward to the opportunity to educate and inspire photographers to reach their creative potential.”

“We are excited to welcome Susan Stripling to the ranks of this select family. Her expertise, combined with her passion for educating aspiring photographers, makes her a great asset to our program,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and COO, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “It’s a privilege to see how passionate our Explorers of Lights are about inspiring eager audiences of photo professionals, hobbyists, and enthusiasts to further inspire them to reach their creative potential.”

Since the creation of the program in 1995, Canon’s Explorers of Light have been leaders in their respective fields, and have garnered awards and accolades for their work. These individuals work with Canon extensively as representatives, ambassadors, educators, and role models for aspiring creative artists. They participate in workshops, seminars, gallery showings and personal appearances throughout the United States.

For more information about the Explorers of Light program, visit: usa.canon.com/canonexplorersoflight.

Brittany is a fashion and beauty photographer who works between NYC, Montana and LA. She photographs the way she has always wanted to feel and believes in the power of raw simplicity. When not behind a camera she can usually be found at a local coffeeshop, teaching fitness classes at the YMCA, or baking something fabulous in the kitchen.
Instagram: @brittanysmithphoto

4 Comments

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  1. Ken Burg

    Susan is an amazing photographer. She, along with Jerry Ghionis, used to be Canon shooters until Nikon wooed them both away. Jerry still shoots with Nikon while Susan has changed her alliance back to Canon. I guess when you reach a certain level of notoriety, and companies are willing to foot the bill for switching as a small price to pay for the publicity afforded by the move, things like this will will happen and artists can afford to change in order to make a statement that supports their viewpoints.

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    • Brittany Smith

      Susan has worked incredibly hard to attain her status in the community and be recognized accordingly; it is also great to see a photographer align themselves with a company that supports their viewpoints. Canon made a very smart move here, as did she. 

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  2. Jonathan Brady

    Great choice by Canon. Susan is one of the few photographers I follow on FB. A smart choice by Canon, too.

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    • Brittany Smith

      I think Canon made a very smart choice as well and Susan’s work is a great asset to join their lineup. 

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