The downtown L.A. skyline in 1951, 1979 and 2014. Our image specialist Scott Harrison found the unpublished 1979 negative and decided to match it from the same spot: the top of City Hall. He added a photo from 1951 for comparison.

"Also of interest," he writes, “the 1951 photo was shot on 4 x 5 sheet film, the 1979 photo on 35 mm film and the current photo on an iPhone.”

Photos, from top: Ellis R. Bosworth / Associated Press, Bruce Cox / Los Angeles Times, Scott Harrison / Los Angeles Times

"Families are on the move today, leaving their homes in the outlying areas of Gaza and into shelters and relatives’ homes closer to the center of Gaza. You can see carts pulled by donkeys carrying whole families; from small children to grandparents."

Our photographer Carolyn Cole is documenting the conflict in the Gaza Strip.

Photos: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

More than 100,000 Muslims once lived in Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic.

The vast majority have fled local militias and mobs dominated by Christians and animists. The attackers blame civilians for abuses committed by a mostly Muslim rebel coalition that briefly seized power last year.

Perhaps a thousand Muslims remain in Bangui.

Reporter Alexandra Zavis and photographer Rick Loomis document what life is like for those still there.

Bringing attention sexual abuse through photography

A master of documentary photography, Mariella Furrer has dedicated much of her career to placing the spotlight on the tragedy of child sexual abuse.

A victim of abuse herself, Furrer recently opened up with photographer Barbara Davidson:

The molestation could not have lasted more than a couple of minutes, but the incident affected my life in ways that are difficult to articulate. As a 5-year-old, I don’t think you really understand that you have lost something when you are abused. Yet you have; something does change.

You lose your childhood really, your innocence is snatched away, and what little is left of that once-pure child is now transformed into a sexual being, a child with a knowledge of things way before her time.

Read the powerful interview with Furrer over at Framework.

Photos: Mariella Furrer

2013’s protests and demonstrations

From the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil, the capital of the Ukraine and Egypt following the furor over the removal of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, the demand to be heard, and unrest over political injustices was far from quiet over the past year.

See the rest of our selections here.

Photos: Sedat Suna, Abed Al Hashlamoun / EPA, Felipe Dana / Associated Press, Sergei Supinsky / AFP/Getty Images

Documenting Brazil’s vitality

Our own photography whiz Michael Robinson Chavez is currently on a month-long assignment in Brazil, and what better way to keep the world updated on his travels than Instagram?

You can follow Chavez on his Instagram account, or keep tabs on our own site, if you’re not so Instagram-inclined.

Celebrating 125 years of National Geographic

"The Power of Photography: National Geographic 125 Years," an exhibit featuring a plethora of the longstanding publication’s finest photography, will be hosted by the Annenberg Space for Photography between Oct. 26 and April 27, 2014.

From co-curators Sarah Leen, director of photography for NatGeo and creative director Bill Marr:“

It started with this question–how do you build a photography show in a finite space that will represent a 125-year-long history of exploring the world and telling stories with photography? Well, you can’t. Not with any depth or surprises. So we abandoned the idea of doing a strictly print show and started to think of displaying the images on grids of LED screens. Our operating principle became, “Too much is not enough and more is more.”

“Once we moved from prints to digital it started to get fun and we ended up with a show that contains 500+1 images displayed on ever-changing screens and on what we call “wallpaper,” which is floor to ceiling grids of all the images that are in the show. There are also a selection of single prints that represent the work from the October 125th anniversary issue of the magazine.”

Read more on the upcoming exhibition, and the stories behind some of the featured photographs, over at Framework.

Photos: Jim Richardson, Randy Olson Jean Gaberell / National Geographic, Paolo Pellegrin, Alex Majoli / Magnum Photos, Lynsey Addario, Marcus Bleasdale / VII

A glimpse into Syria’s displaced millions

According to U.N. estimates, 2 million people have left Syria since the beginning of its civil war in 2011, with another 4 million being displaced from their homes and still seeking refuge within the country’s borders.

One such displaced family told their story, refusing to use their full names for fear of reprisal as they seek safety within the walls of ancient ruins.

Abu Ahmad’s family is among dozens of people who have found shelter amid a cluster of lichen-covered ruins outside Kafer Rouma, in one of several dozen ancient settlements that dot northwestern Syria. The ancient buildings — usually houses, churches and baths — date from the 1st to the 7th century and were abandoned as trade routes changed.

On a recent day, Abu Ahmad held a bottle filled with a greenish liquid to feed his baby daughter. It was water mixed with herbs because there was no milk, he said. There was also no running water and no electricity. Basic food and medicine were lacking.

“I pray to God to curse this pig [Assad] for making us live in caves like in the ancient times,” said a woman, also named Fatima, who said she fled to the ruins with her seven children. “Look at us,” she said, giving only her first name out of fear.

Read and see more over at Framework.

Photos: Associated Press

A look back at the week in photography

Photos: Matt Cardy / Getty Images, Zurab Kurtsikidze / EPA, Alessandro Di Meo / EPA, Denis Tyrin / Associated Press, Miguel Riopa / AFP, Valdrin Xhemaj / EPA, Petros Giannakouris / Associated Press

The gorgeous landscapes of Edward Burtynsky

Above is just a sampling of the famed Canadian photojournalist’s work. You can see more of Burtynsky’s photography in the latest edition of reFramed from Framework, and run through an interview detailing his latest project, “Water.”

Photos: Edward Burtynsky

Sometimes, a photographer doesn’t get their shot - and this is the face they make.
From the original caption:

Aug. 23, 1954: Los Angeles Mirror photographer George Lacks portrays his frustration after narcotics suspect huddled under blanket on right refused to come out and have his picture taken at the Central Police Station.

Sometimes, a photographer doesn’t get their shot - and this is the face they make.

From the original caption:

Aug. 23, 1954: Los Angeles Mirror photographer George Lacks portrays his frustration after narcotics suspect huddled under blanket on right refused to come out and have his picture taken at the Central Police Station.

Death toll in Spain lowered, driver detained

Spanish authorities have lowered the death toll in the tragic train derailment near the northwest town of Santiago de Compostela in Spain Wednesday. Nonetheless, the shocking accident claimed the lives of 78 passengers, and now officials are shifting some attention to the driver, Francisco Jose Garzon Amo.

Garzon Amo, currently in the hospital with injuries sustained during the wreck, will soon be questioned by police eager to unravel the cause of the disaster.

For more info, head over to World Now.

Photos: La Voz de Galicia, Monica Ferreiros / Associated Press


Families still separated 60 years after Korean War

"Hong Jong Soon gazes out her window for hours each day, past a small garden where sesame and red peppers grow, past an iron gate and low wall, hoping to witness the return of a man she hasn’t seen or talked to in 63 years.

Her husband disappeared after being conscripted into the South Korean army in 1950, taken, she believes, to North Korea during the chaos of the Korean War, which ended 60 years ago Saturday. Hong, who never remarried, lives in the same place they shared as newlyweds, because she doesn’t want him to get lost when he comes home.

"I won’t have any regrets if I can see him before I die, even if it’s only just once," the 88-year-old woman said in a faint voice during an interview this week at her home in Gyeongsan, a small city about 330 kilometers (205 miles) southeast of Seoul.

Six decades after the fighting stopped, elderly Koreans separated from their loved ones face an agonizing question: Will they see their relatives on the other side of the divided peninsula before they die?

Millions of families have been separated since the 1950-53 war, which saw huge movements of refugees in both directions. Most don’t even know whether their relatives are still alive because the two countries bar citizens from exchanging mail, phone calls and email.

About 22,000 North and South Koreans have had brief family reunions — 18,000 in person and the others by video — during a period of detente, but they ended in 2010 when tensions rose again. A proposal earlier this month to discuss resuming reunions quickly fizzled.

"The little bit of hope I had was shattered," said Cho Il Woong, 81, who left behind his mother, sister and brother when he and his father fled to the South to avoid being drafted into the North Korean army. “People say time cures everything. Time has passed, but it hasn’t cured anything."

Time is running out too.

South Koreans who want to meet relatives must apply for a permit, and applicants are then chosen by lottery. The South Korean Red Cross, which administers the program with its North Korean counterpart, is still accepting applications, even though the program has been suspended for three years.

Most of the people applying for permits are over 70, and already nearly 56,000 of the roughly 129,000 applicants have died.

The Korean Peninsula remains technically at war because the two sides signed an armistice, or truce, but there’s no formal peace treaty. Family reunions were one of the major inter-Korean cooperation projects that occurred during the detente, beginning two months after a landmark summit between the leaders of the two Koreas in June 2000.

Each of the reunions brought together weeping family members who embraced each other, desperate for details and news. They were separated again a few days later. No Korean has received a second chance to meet their relatives, according to South Korean Red Cross officials.

The dramatic scenes, which were shown on television, also affected those like Hong who weren’t chosen in the lottery.

She and her husband, Park Jong Won, married in 1943 at the age of 18 in a match arranged by their families. She saw him briefly before their marriage, when he dropped by her home with a relative. “I felt good,” she said. “Everyone in our neighborhood thought he was handsome.”

During the interview this week, Hong looked at a black-and-white photo of her husband dressed in a jacket and tie. By her side, her gray-haired and bespectacled son said his mother has often told him that his father was quiet and liked to drink and eat with friends.

Park was a university student when he was conscripted in August 1950, two months after North Korea invaded the South. Hong had no word about him until one of his friends showed up at her village after the war and told her that he and Park had been held at a prison camp, either in China or North Korea, according to the son, Park Yong Ho, who was five when his father went to war.

Hong travelled around South Korea, looking for anyone who could tell her more about her husband’s fate. She visited famous fortune tellers and shamans, stopping only in the late 1950s after a fortune teller she considered reliable said that her husband was living well in the North.

She turned her attention to raising her two children as a single mother, but her son said he often saw his mother cry alone in her room. She earned a living by growing and selling mulberry, apple and peach seedlings, and sent both her children to university, an uncommon occurrence at the time, said the son, a retired veterinarian.

Hong’s family said she became seriously ill after watching a weeks-long South Korean television program in 1983 about separated family members. Her longing for her husband has deepened with age, her son said, because she knows she doesn’t have long to live.

He said the family began holding traditional annual memorial services for his father, starting five years ago, partly as an effort to get Hong to stop waiting for him. But his mother refuses to attend the services.

Hong has repeatedly told her son not to sell the family’s orchard, so it can be given to his father when he returns home.

She says it doesn’t matter that her husband would see a face furrowed by old age if they’re reunited, a face far different than that of the dark-haired woman in a traditional Korean dress he last saw. It doesn’t matter to her if he’s remarried.

"I just want to tell him: ‘I waited for you; I waited for you until now.’ "

Pictures : 

1. In this July 21, 2013 photo, South Korean Hong Jong Soon, 88, right, looks out the window as her son Park Yong Ho speaks during an interview at their house in Gyeongsan, South Korea. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

2. With her brother on her back a war weary Korean girl tiredly trudges by a stalled M-26 tank, at Haengju, Korea. June 9, 1951. (U.S. Navy/Maj. R.V. Spencer, UAF)

3. In this photo taken on Wednesday, July 17, 2013, South Korean man Cho Il Woong, 81, shows his family photo in North Korea during an interview with the Associated Press in Seoul, South Korea. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

4. A South Korean military policeman marches a North Korean prisoner of war to a stockade somewhere in South Korea on July 21, 1950. (AP Photo)

5. In this July 21, 2013 photo, South Korean Hong Jong Soon, 88, right, shows a portrait of her husband Park Jong Won as her son Park Yong Ho looks at his family photos during an interview at their house in Gyeongsan, South Korea. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

test reblogged from humanrightswatch

The running of the bulls in Spain

The most famous running of the bulls ceremony continues in Pampolona, Spain, as the centuries-old event occurs daily until the end of the San Fermin festival July 14.

The practice, which has long drawn the ire of animal rights activists, circles around an early-morning chase between the bulls and hundreds of runners through the narrow city streets.

See more photos over at Framework.

Photos: Jose Jordan / AFP, Getty Images, Daniel Ochoa de Olza, Alvaro Barrientos / Associated Press, Rodrigo Perez / EPA

The vibrant photography of Alex Webb

It’s the one-year anniversary of Framework’s reFramed series, which highlights the perspective and work of top talents in the world of photography - and today’s subject is Magnum’s Alex Webb.

In a conversation with our own Barbara Davidson, Webb discussed his new book, “The Suffering of Light,” his tendency to photograph those on the outskirts of society and more:

Ultimately, I can’t fully explain why I have been drawn to borders and the edges of societies. Is it my fascination with uncertainty, tension, and complexity? Perhaps. That doesn’t, however, ultimately explain the obsession. After all, why should I be fascinated with such notions? What I do know is that I seem to come alive, photographically, in such places. The critic and photographer Max Kozloff once told me he thought I needed to be a little uncomfortable to photograph well.

I also wonder: If I fully understood my obsessions, perhaps they would cease to be obsessions?

See more of Webb’s work over at Framework.

Photos: Alex Webb, Magnum Photos