Flash Forward/Flash Back: Present And Future

Hello Magenta friends and Happy New Year to you all!

Hopefully all of you who are eligible have applied (or plan to apply soon) to Flash Forward Emerging Photographers Competition 2019. Called Flash Forward: Canada and The World, this emerging photographers competition supports all young photographers working in all forms of photography, and introduces four important special-interest topics: Racial Issues, Climate and the Environment, LGBTQ Issues, Female-identifying Photographers, Indigenous Photographers. You can apply here.

One of the places online where Flash Forward is celebrated year-round is our platform Flash Forward/Flash Back. If you haven’t discovered this site yet, you really should, so much good and important conversations are happening not just about our competition and its winners and their work, but about the world at large. We spoke to editor Laurence Butet-Roch for some insight about what’s happening there.

MF: Laurence, tell us about what excites you about Flash Forward/Flash Back, going forward?

LBR: I’m hoping that in 2019, I can do more to help those who have an interest in writing about photography get started. When I entered the job market, that never seemed like an option for me. I loved writing and I loved photography, but felt like I had to focus on one or the other. Then, I got a job at Polka Magazine photo editing and conducting interviews with photographers to write the piece that would accompany their work. There, I benefited from the incredible knowledge of colleagues, copy editors and my superiors who taught me so much about writing, from what makes a good hook to the so-called “linguistic crutches” I use. They shared methods that I used to this day to compose better articles. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am and I’m hoping to pass it forward. It’s very important to have a diverse personalities who can write critically about photography. It will contribute to moving the industry forward.

MF: Who are the emerging talents who excite you for Flash Forward/Flash Back? For instance, Fehn Foss.

LBR: So far, we’ve had three young women involved with writing for Flash Forward/Flash Back. Two graduates from the Ryerson Image Arts program, Clea Christakos-Gee and Fehn Foss, and one student from the Etobicoke School for the Arts, Luca Soldovieri. Both Clea and Luca were initially involved with the [Flash Forward] Incubator program and mentioned their interest in writing about photography so [Magenta Founder] MaryAnn put them in touch with me. Fehn participated in the roundtable on photo education organized by Clea (which was published in September) and reached out afterwards. All have impressed me by the depth of their thinking about the medium and images. Their areas of interest within photography differ from mine, which contributes to expanding the range of projects that are featured on the platform as well as my own understanding of the industry. Through them, I get to learn about other talents.

Visit Flash Forward/Flash Back, and explore tabs for Roundtable and Conversations, here.