Photographers' Blog

from Russell Boyce:

Asia – A Week in Pictures January 30, 2011

Even though the world's gaze is firmly focused on the events in Egypt and Tunisia, top stories continue to break in Asia. Last week during my morning call with Enny Nuraheni, our Indonesia Chief Photographer, she told there was a ferry on fire with hundreds on board, a train had crashed and Mount Bromo was spewing ash, all on the same day.  In Japan Mount Kirishima was erupting, thousands of birds culled to try to stop the spread of bird flu and the economy and government were under pressure.  But all Japanese worries were forgotten briefly as Japan beat Australia 1-0 in the AFC Asian Cup final in Doha. 

JAPAN/ 

Volcanic lightning or a dirty thunderstorm is seen above Shinmoedake peak as it erupts, between Miyazaki and Kagoshima prefectures, in this photo taken from Kirishima city and released by Minami-Nippon Shimbun January 28, 2011. Ash and rocks fell across a wide swathe of southern Japan straddling the prefectures of Miyazaki and Kagoshima on Thursday, as one of Mount Kirishima's many calderas erupted, prompting authorities to raise alert levels and call on for an evacuation of all residents within a 2 km (1.2 miles) radius of the volcano. REUTERS/Minami-Nippon Shimbun

Issei Kato's picture of Prime Minister Kan addressing parliament is as frenetic as the politics themselves, while Kim Kyung-Hoon's picture to illustrate the economy perfectly timed as the eye is drawn into the frame by all the elements that appear in to be in choreographed perfection. If the apocalypse is coming it is sure to come in one of two forms; the eruptions of fire, smoke and lightening or the eerie silence of spreading disease. We had two pictures giving us a sneak preview of our potential fate. A wonderful image of the sheer beauty of the power, energy, light and colour of Mount Kirishima erupting and the whisper of deadly fumes as fully masked workers with red and blue targets sprayed on their white overalls, cull the hapless birds.  

JAPAN/

Workers wearing protection suits cull chickens at a poultry farm where the bird flu virus had been found in Miyazaki, southern Japan January 24, 2011. The Miyazaki prefecturalgovernment stepped up its efforts to fight bird flu on Monday, after it confirmed infections at a second local poultry farm and began culling about 410,000 chickens there the previous day, Kyodo news reports. REUTERS/Miyazaki prefectural government office

 JAPAN-ECONOMY/

A woman (R) holding promotional leaflets stands on a street in Tokyo January 28, 2011. Japan's core consumer prices fell 0.4 percent in December from a year earlier for a 22nd consecutive month, as slow wage growth andsluggish demand kept the country mired in deflation while the government grapples with heavy public debt. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

Standing room only

They’ve wrested food, free alcohol, and peanuts from you. They’ve made you pay for luggage and lavatories.

Just when you thought there was nothing left for the airlines to squeeze, comes Italian company Aviointeriors’ new aircraft ‘SkyRider’ standing seat.

Melvyn Koh (C) tries out Italian company Aviointeriors' new aircraft 'standing seat' which has 23 inches of legroom, instead of the current economy class average of 30 inches, at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Long Beach, California, September 15, 2010.  REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Gone is all that unnecessary space between your stomach and the seat in front of you.

Where do Clunkers go?

As the U.S. Senate approves a $2 billion boost for the “Cash for Clunkers” program, photographer Brian Snyder speaks with Tom Barenboim, owner of Clark Chrysler Jeep Dodge dealership in Methuen, Massachusetts, and parts manager Fred Coco about their experience with the program, and what happens to the clunkers once they are traded in.

More:

Migrants are deported to Guatemala

The mood was somber in Arizona as deportees filed up the stairs to the plane that would take them back to Guatemala. I remember a woman crossing herself as she looked up at the plane. Later I learned it was the first flight she’d ever taken.

Migrants deportation from Carlos Barria on Vimeo.

Most of the migrants I talked to had crossed the border into the United States on foot. One woman told me of being abandoned by a ‘coyote’ during the crossing after she injured herself. She said she had wandered for two days before U.S. border agents found her, dehydrated and weak. She also told me how one of the agents had cleaned and bandaged her feet– a kindness that clearly moved her.


When the plane landed in Guatemala, the deportees let out a subdued cheer and smiled nervously. It was a journey that would reunite them with families, even if it meant the end of a dream to get ahead in the United States. For others, it was a setback. Several told me they would try to run the border again.

Tent city in Florida offers hope

Click here or on any of the pictures below to launch an audio slideshow.******A Florida tent city for hundreds of homeless people lies at the end of a dead-end street, but residents say they have not given up hope of a better life despite the U.S. economic downturn.************The Pinellas Hope camp, 250 single-person tents in neat rows on land owned by the Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg in a wooded area north of the city, has room for about 270 and has been filled to capacity since it opened two years ago.************”I could open the gates and have over 500 people,” said Sheila Lopez, the chief operating officer for Catholic Charities at the St. Petersburg diocese.******The camp has a food hall, bathrooms and showers, a laundry room and a few computers for residents to look for jobs and prepare resumes.************”This is a great place to be. It gives us a great opportunity,” said Alex, a resident who declined to give his last name. “We have a safe place to live. It sure beats sleeping on the street.”******The number of homeless people in the United States, one of the wealthiest countries in the world, is difficult to pin down, advocacy groups say, because most people are homeless for only a short period of time.************The National Alliance to End Homelessness estimates about 675,000 people are homeless on any given night during a one-month period. Between 2.5 million and 3.5 million Americans experience homelessness for at least one night in a year.******The alliance said it expects more than 1 million people to become homeless as a result of the current recession.

Tim Geithner : What’s In Your Wallet?

What’s in U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s wallet? Not much.

While testifying in front of a House Appropriations Subcommittee on Capitol Hill Thursday Geithner was shown a $50 Billion Zimbabwean bank note (rendered worthless by Zimbabwe’s hyperinflation) by U.S. Representative John Culberson (R- TX) and asked if he had ever seen one himself. Geithner immediately pulled a piece of Zimbabwean currency out of his own pocket and showed it off to the committee. At the next break in the hearing I approached Geithner and asked how he happened to have a piece of foreign currency in his pocket. His response was “I often have some foreign currency in my wallet. Want to see?” He pulled a very thin and mostly empty wallet from his pocket.

Amongst many empty slots in the thin weathered leather wallet there could be seen three credit or debit cards with Visa and Mastercard logos (all inserted into the wallet upside down so that the card issuers could not be seen) and an old and yellowed looking identification card of indeterminate origin.

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