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News & Insight

‘Through The Lens’ | Photography As Seen By This Generation’s Creator Class – You In It?

By Kishore Sawh on June 5th 2015


Now we gotta make the best of it, improvise, adapt to the environment, Darwin, sh*t happens, I Ching, whatever man, we gotta roll with it.” Wise words from the realist/evil protagonist of Michael Mann’s ‘Collateral.’ Words with a mentality I find photographers aren’t typically adept to, but need. Just like the music and television industry had to change their business models with the materialization of file sharing networks and TiVo, so the photography industry has to as well.

The thing is, the industry already has changed, but those within it largely are failing to accept and adapt. We, photographers, can be very clingy – I mean saran wrap could take a lesson – and it just hurts us in the end. I’ve said all of this as a small primer to introduce a new series by Adorama called ‘Through The Lens (TTL).’

Each week, the show will highlight a a photographer who represents the change in our industry. Adorama says of it, “an original docu-series about the evolving aesthetic of photography as seen through this generation’s creator class.


‘Creator class,’ that’s a great term, and fitting that the first two photographers featured are two very popular photographers on Instagram. I’ve said it before, but allow me to restate that Instagram is the quintessential expression of modern photography trends from the curatorial to the editorial. If you give me an honest run, take a week or two to evaluate the business, I bet you’ll see it if you don’t already. When Getty Images offers Instagram grants of $10K, brands now requiring models to have a certain size Instagram following, you’ve got to know.

[REWIND: Instagram and The Future of Editorials]

I say all of this simply to clarify the validity of what photographers on Instagram are doing, because there are still too many out there who think it’s a vacuum devoid of good photos, where only the selfie thrives, and this TTL series gives nice insight into what’s current.


The first profile is of Giovanni Elao a.k.a @insighting from the Bronx, who is a relatively new photographer but has become a feature artist in Street Dreams Magazine. The second episode features Jose Tutiven, a.k.a @Tutes who gives cultural insight into life in NYC with dark and compelling images. Neither really have a technical background in photography, which is interesting and should tell you something – that creativity is the new literacy, so you need something to say to be relevant.

Both short doumentaries are only a few minutes long and worth a watch. Hopefully, it will inspire you to shift your thinking forward, and maybe realize Instagram is not a just a bandwagon to jump on.

You can keep up with the series here.

Images are screen captures from featured videos – image credits to @insighting & @Tutes

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A photographer and writer based in Miami, he can often be found at dog parks, and airports in London and Toronto. He is also a tremendous fan of flossing and the happiest guy around when the company’s good.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Martin Beetschen

    Thanks for this article. I discovered this Youtube Chain and i love it :)

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  2. Thomas Horton

    I really hate it when authors try to segregate people by generations. It is an artificial pigeonhole.

    People are individuals. When trying to define them according to some arbitrary age bracket, we are doing the individual a dis-service.

    An artist’s work should stand on its own regardless of the age of the artist. If we are judging artistic quality by focusing on the age of the artist, we is doin’ it wrong.

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  3. Brian McCue

    Really enjoyed the story.

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  4. Barry Chapman

    It’s a clever, well made concept from Adorama. Living and shooting in NYC is a big part of the appeal of the first 2 featured and it’ll be interesting to see how/whether they’ll expand the series beyond that.

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  5. Brandon Dewey

    good videos

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