Photo Essays, Spot News and Stock Photography
Japanese shipping line.


Ships make great subjects for photographers. Some ships. We like this ship in particular that is named Ryuyo Maru. But there is a problem with taking photos of ships and that is in the identification. Not that ship identification is above my pay grade, but the issue is complex. Many times the name of a ship is reused as one is retired from service only to be replaced by others using the same name. So you may have several ships bearing the same name. Ships are scrapped, destroyed by war, torpedoed, they sink in storms, or hit a reef and sink. They are sold to other nations and renamed. It does make identification challenging. Not impossible just challenging and time consuming. There is a limit as to how much research one is willing to put into this endeavor. As is this case with the “Ryuyo Maru“, c.1970 we are only not certain of the date of the photograph but the location as well. Ryuyo Maru is not the name of the ship rather it is the name of the Japanese company that owns this particular ship, and it is just one of many ships having the same name. So a shipping company might have 20-30 ships in inventory numbered sequentially based on the launch date.

We say that not all photos of ships make great subjects. In fact, if not shot correctly, they seem rather boring to us. In the case of the Ryuyo Maru it is the low angle on the bow, the perspective at which the photographer saw his subject. Moreover the strong diagonal lines created by the mooring ropes and the dock with the logs creates tension in the image. This is what diagonal lines contribute in any photo.

Crew of the Sloop


No information accompanied this image, “Crew of the Sloop” c.1966.  So here goes. We assess that this crew is onboard a sloop. Definitely not the Sloop John B. Sorry, Bee Gees. This may be one of the last of the whalers operating out of the west coast of the U. S., possibly San Francisco, Oregon or Washington State.

About 55 miles southeast of the Trinity site (first atomic bomb test in July 1945). Maybe this sign was a victim of the blast. Note the desert hawks in the sky.


Here is an image that we think is special, “Alamogordo, New Mexico (1959)“. This site is approximately 55 miles southeast from the Trinity test site where the world’s first atomic bomb was exploded in July 1945. We like to think that perhaps this damaged sign was a victim of the blast. Note the desert hawks circling in the sky for prey.

June 1994


I visited the Grand Canyon in August 2003. It is actually a most difficult place to shoot pictures. The sheer magnitude of the canyon, the ever changing light and weather actually create complex problems for shooting. This blog photo, which I did not take but I wish I had, is just about as perfect a photo of the canyon as anyone has a reasonable chance of taking. “Grand Canyon“; Arizona (June 1994). If you look closely you can see what appear to be two eagles circling in the sky in the middle of the photo.


We present this issue from a humanitarian viewpoint not a political one. There are people living in similar or even much worse conditions in other parts of the world. We have been most fortunate to be able to show these images taken by Mohamed el-Saife who is a resident and talented photojournalist living in Gaza. If anything, DPI’s guiding principle remains toleration. It is through images such as these whether they be in Syria, Bangladesh, Dafur, Somalia, in this case the Gaza Strip or any area where conflict prevents the supply of basic necessities of life that you will observe scenes like these.