When Damon Winter’s feature picture story “A Grunt’s Life” won third place in 2010’s Pictures of the Year International, it was yet another in a long string of awards for the New York Times photojournalist.
But this time, he used Hipstamatic to alter the iPhone photos he took while embedded with a platoon in Afghanistan. And so his win set off a firestorm among photo critics.
Did Winter break the rules of the competition? Did he break the rules of photojournalism by filtering gritty reality through an app? Is it about the tools a photographer uses, or the unique eye he or she brings to the moment?
It all makes for a healthy debate about how new technology can push professional standards – and the creative edge – into terra incognita.
Take a look at Winter’s eloquent response to all the brouhaha.
And hey, we can’t all be war correspondents, but if you want to push your own creative edge with an iPhone, check out this 8x telephoto lens, designed to use with the phone and a tiny tripod.