From NOOR's Associate Editor, Asmara Pelupessy -
The NOOR-Nikon Masterclass in Belgrade has brought together 15 talented young documentary photographers from the Balkan region:
Majlend Bramo from Albania
Mina Delić from Serbia
Tsvetomir Dimov from Bulgaria
Fisnik Dobreci from Montenegro
Marija Erdelji from Serbia
Elena Geroska from Macedonia/Bulgaria
Milovan Milenković from Serbia
Armend Nimani from Kosovo
Marina Paulenka from Croatia
Midhat Poturovic from Bosnia and Herzegovina
Matjaž Rušt from Slovenia
Mitar Simikić from Bosnia and Herzegovina
Denislav Stoychev from Bulgaria
Oksana Toskic from Serbia
Matic Zorman from Slovenia
These participants are spending the week together with NOOR photographers Andrea Bruce, Stanley Greene & Kadir van Lohuizen. Its been my pleasure to moderate the workshop, which is hosted by our local partner, the Serbian documentary photographers' collective Kamerades.
Over the past days we have been sharing our work, exchanging insights on building a successful career as a documentary photographer and editing an assignment shot especially for the masterclass on the theme ‘Remains.’
Through our first introductions, we learned that many of the participants, though young, already have years of experience under their belts working for newspapers and news agencies in the region. Most are looking to expand their practice and work on more self-directed and/or longer-term projects. Matjaž described his interest in “photography that doesn’t only give answers, but also raises questions.” Midhat talked about how he wants to develop the photography scene in the region to expand opportunities for young photographers here.
Along with refining their skills at working in the field, storytelling and editing, this year’s participants are keen to learn about how to get their stories out into the world – finding financing and outlets for their work.
The first day of the workshop closed with an essential talk from all three photographers on “Truth in Photography,” discussing the recent conflict behind the recent World Press awards and why ethics in documentary photography is important. In Andrea’s words, “in a moment when the legitimacy of journalism and journalistic professionals is questioned - truth, down to the smallest detail, is even more critical.”
Images by Frank Zuidweg