Why to Consider Doing Photography Related Volunteering in Your Community


There is so much power in photography, as the old adage goes: A picture is worth a thousand words. Imagine if you did more than just create a photograph? Imagine if you taught a generation of people how to tell a story with a camera? Would you?

I have, and find it terribly rewarding! Well perhaps not an entire generation, but I have worked with some awesome teenagers in the Seattle area. Let me just say, it’s truly wonderful to see what can happen when you work with young curious minds.

I have mentored with a Seattle area non-profit, Youth In Focus whose mission is to empower urban youth, through photography, to experience their world in new ways and to make positive choices for their lives.

Youth In Focus offers film and digital photography classes at different levels; this includes a full darkroom and a digital lab. It’s a kind of after-school program, providing a lot of these kids an opportunity to have a creative outlet that may not be available to them through their schools. Students are issued a camera, film/media and receive assignments weekly. There are also field trips to local museums and even photowalks.

One of our outings was at Pike Place Market in Seattle. Some of the kids in the group hadn’t been to the market before, this made for a great opportunity to see the market as well for them to have access to us while taking photographs, real time. The bonus was that we teachers and mentors take photos too.

During my time with Youth in Focus, I worked with three different groups of students. Each group was amazing and entertaining too! The best moments are a round table discussion of each student’s images. Every week they select, edit, and print their favourite image from the previous week’s assignment. They may ask for guidance in selecting that image, especially in the beginning of the classes, as they’re just learning. You’ll find the best way to help them is to ask questions about the story they’re trying to tell or how they believe the composition could be better, etc. The goal is to get them talking about it, get them involved.

Connecting with the students via the art they’re creating is so powerful; seeing their improvement each week makes you proud. You’re excited for what’s to come and where they’re going to take it. It’s an experience not yet matched by any work I’ve done in my professional life. Perhaps if I were a full-time teacher I’d feel that, every day. I imagine you’ll get as much, if not more out of the experience if you try it.

At the end of each quarter the kids select their best one or two images to display as a part of an open house show. There’s a potluck dinner, and a gallery of images to view from each class. It’s so impressive to see what these kids create.

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Program Spotlight: Cooke Center Academy

A program just completed at Cooke Center Academy, a private school for students with cognitive and developmental disabilities, was taught by Ed Hafizov and Parsons’ intern Emily Elkins.



The program focused on photographing doors in Greenwich Village where the school is located. Art therapist, Ayde Rayas-Gribben, saw this as an opportunity for her high school students to discuss choices, fears and future opportunities.







Ms. Rayas-Gribben has become a strong supporter of the JHP mission, that cameras are transformational tools. “Look how independent my students are,” she said proudly when Executive Director Maureen McNeil visited the class with Theo Vaskevitch, a new JHP board member, “They are socializing! And photographing! They don’t need me to lead them!”







JHP Looks Back at Founder Josephine Herrick







 “Miss Nadejda de Braganza,”  circa 1929 a year after her society debut.
© Josephine Herrick and Anita de Braganza

Photographer Clarence H. White, one of Josephine Herrick’s mentors, was vocal about supporting women photographers in the early 1920s at a time when not many people supported women working outside of the home.  Josephine Herrick and Princess de Braganza (Anita Stewart) opened a studio on East 62rd Street and for nearly twenty years photographed children, debutantes, brides and estates. Many were published in Vogue, other magazines and newspapers. This photograph, credited to Josephine Herrick and Anita de Braganza is of “Miss Nadejda de Braganza,” circa 1929 a year after her society debut.

Letter From the Executive Director-Maureen McNeil


By Maureen McNeil – Executive Director – February 4, 2015

February brings new partnerships and programs! I recently met with William Forrester, President and CEO of Goodwill, and his top staff, to discuss how photography and the arts in general provide crucial learning experiences for underserved communities seeking employment. This spring JHP will partner with Goodwill to provide programs for veterans and their families and youth at-risk preparing for college tours.

Other amazing programs this spring include a Brain Trauma Survivors group and at the planning meeting we discovered that many participants know Dr. Flanagan of Rusk Rehabilitation, honored by JHP on November 6th; a program at JobPath taught by Vik Gupta and Elena Burnstein; a veteran program at St. Francis College taught by Peter Neumann and Linda Kesseler; a Services for the Underserved veteran program taught by Nousha Salimi and Jo Gramarosso; the Step-Up Program for youth at-risk at the McSilver Institute for Poverty Policy and Research, NYU; and two programs for girls at the Marilyn David IVDU Upper School taught by Camille Tokerud and Alberto Vasari. Not only do these participants learn visual literacy, they have the opportunity to socialize, observe the world around them in a new way and practice the creative process.

Please take a look at the JHP Instagram (jhproject) to view some of their photographs.  http://instagram.com/jhproject#

Program Spotlight: IVDU




In October, JHP began a new year-long program at The Marilyn David IVDU Upper School in Brooklyn, thanks    to a grant from an anonymous foundation. Teaching photographers Paula Berg and Vik Gupta  lead six              emotionally challenged teens out to photograph on the streets of Brooklyn; to Dumbo to take in the view, and to  the New Fulton transit station which has a spectacular oculus. The IVDU teachers and director of the school,  Chavie Kahn, were thrilled to observe as the boys learned to express themselves visually and speak critically  about their photographs.  And the teens were surprised and delighted at the December exhibition by the quality of  their images and what they were able to accomplish.

Finding Josephine: Uncovering a photo from 1922





 Josephine Herrick 1922


Josephine Herrick Project will celebrate its 75th anniversary in 2016. One of our goals for the 75th is to “discover” our founder, Josephine Herrick, who continues to be a role model for today. Research began in earnest back in September with the help of librarian Philip Sutton at the 5th Avenue New York Public Library. A 1922 portrait of Josephine turned up in a passport application. Josephine was 25 years old, a graduate of Bryn Mawr, and about to begin her studies at the Clarence H. White School of Photography. In the meantime, she was off Europe with her parents, planning to visit more than fifteen countries. We have evidence from her exhibitions in New York and Cleveland that for Josephine, travel was an opportunity to explore her passion for photography.

JHP Paddle 8 Auction features Iron Eyes Cody by Ron Jaffe

Iron Eyes Cody Portrait by Ron Jaffe
By Jackie Augustine – December 4, 2014

Iron Eyes Cody was most known to the American public for his role as the man who played the Indian that sheds a single tear for a blighted American environment in “Keep America Beautiful” ads that ran from 1971 into the 1980s.
Iron Eyes Cody was born Espera or “Oscar” DeCorti, the son of two first-generation immigrants from Italy. In 1924 he moved to California, changed his name from “DeCorti” to “Corti” to Cody, and started working as an actor, presenting himself as a Native American. He married an Indian woman, Bertha Parker, and together they adopted two Indian sons, Robert and Arthur. Iron Eyes Cody lived and worked as an Indian for all his adult life; he labored for decades to promote Native American causes, and was honored by Hollywood’s Native American community in 1995 as a “non-Native” for his contribution to film. He was born on April 3, 1907 and passed away of natural causes on January 4, 1999,
About the photographer: Ron P. Jaffe
Ron. P. Jaffe is originally from Montgomery, Alabama. By 1974 he was teaching photography at the University level as professor of photography at Chapman College – World Campus Afloat, aboard ship traveling to South America, Africa and Europe. Prior to 1974 Jaffe was involved doing fashion publicity shots for fashion designers including Barco of California, Jag Swimwear, and DeWeiss, along with taking portraits of federal politicians and shooting commercial ads. He then got a job in glamour industry for two years and was published in high profile magazines: Club, Gallery, Penthouse, etc. Jaffe entered into a long term contract with a company known as Elson Alexandre in Los Angeles in 1977 – shot Corporate Executives, Doctors, Attorneys, Judges and family portraits for 20 years shooting more than 37,000 portraits casual and formal. http://ronjaffe.com/bio/
Visit the JHP Paddle 8 Auction today: www.paddle8/auctions/jhp

JHP Paddle8 Online Auction LIVE December 2nd to Dec 16th!

 Man Ray’s- Hattie Carnegie wearing a Vionnet Dress

Man Ray’s Glass Tears (variant)

Today we launch our online photo auction, the JHP Paddle8 Auction.

By Jackie Augustine – December 2, 2014I
f you missed our JHP Masters of Modern Photography on November 6th, you will be delighted to learn that we have created a partnership with Paddle8.  Paddle8 curates auctions of art and design and partners with non-profits on benefit auctions, offering collectors the chance to bid on carefully sourced works.
This is a great opportunity to own some amazing photographs from photography legends and support the Josephine Herrick Project.
100% of all proceeds are charitable donations! Visit the JHP Paddle 8 auction today: www.paddle8.com/auction/jhp
Two Man Ray photographs will be included in the JHP Paddle8 Auction. Here’s some information from the Man Ray Trust and some background about the subkject of these two photograph, Hattie Carnegie.
“Legendary Photography, painter, and maker of objects and films, Man Ray was on the most versatile and inventive artists of this century. Born in Philadelphia in 1890, he knew the worlds of Greenwich Village in the avant garde era following the 1913 Armory show; Paris in the 1920’s and 1930’s, where he played a key role in the Dada and Surrealist movements; The Hollywood of the 1940s, where he joined others chased by war from their homes in Europe; and finally, Paris again until his death in 1976. “- from Man Ray Trust
About Hattie Carnegie
Fashion Entrepreneur/Dress Designer. In 1900, she immigrated to the United States, and settled with her family in New York City. There is a famous story that while on the ship to America, Hattie asked a fellow voyager about who the richest and most prosperous people in America were. The answer was, “Andrew Carnegie” and according to the story, young Hattie decided to change her name to Carnegie. Eventually the rest of her family dropped Kanengeiser and adopted the Carnegie name, a practice that was common among immigrants. She worked at various millinery establishments, and at Macy’s. But in 1909 she, along with friend Rose Roth, opened her own business, a tiny hat shop. It was called “Carnegie – Ladies’ Hatter.” As the business grew, Hattie and Rose were able to hire workers who made the designs that Hattie developed. At this time, all fashion came from Paris, and so Hattie studied the Parisian styles, choosing only the best, and adapting them for her customers. And while she could neither sketch nor sew, Hattie was ve ry good at communicating to her workers exactly what she wanted them to do. Her shop, at its peak, carried her own ‘Hattie Carnegie Couture’ collection, Paris couture imports from Chanel, Vionnet and Dior, a fur line, her several ready-to-wear lines under different names, a costume jewelry line, and a cosmetic line. Her dress designs were a success and soon she had such clients as Joan Crawford and the Duchess of Windsor. Hattie Carnegie’s colorful clothing and chic costume jewelry, even today, are greatly sought after by fashion and jewelry collectors. In 1956 Hattie was laid to rest and unfortunately for the business, much of the disirability of the label lay in the woman herself, and after her death, the label lost a lot of its luster. The business closed its doors for good in 1976.

Visit the JHP Paddle 8 Auction today: www.paddle8.com/auction/jhp

Young deaf man communicates through photography

  • Adam Richard of Acushnet displays some of his photographs. Richard, 22, who is deaf, has found a special creative outlet in photography.

By Jackie Augustine – November 24, 2014
When I read this article over the weekend, I was delighted to hear of Adam’s creative outlet in photography.  At the Josephine Herrick Project we have been using the creative power of photography since 1941 to help individuals to learn the communicative power of photography. Through partnerships with local organizations, JHProject’s completely free programs inspire children, teens, adults and seniors with the visual language of photography, enhancing their abilities to transform communities through artistic vision. We have worked with a variety of organizations to share the amazing power of photography as a communications tool.  One of the programs we had recently was with the Lighthouse for the Blind helping to teach visually impaired individuals express themselves through photography.  I’m not sure if we have ever worked with the challenges of a deaf individual, but Adam Richards is proof that photography is an amazing outlet to express your creativity and to give a voice to a myriad of populations.  Kudos to Adam for what he has achieved. Please read his story below.

By Brian J. Lowney –  Contributing writer – SouthCoastToday.com –  Posted Nov. 21, 2014
ACUSHNET — A profoundly deaf young man has discovered the power of communication through a camera lens and looks to share his photography as he captures the history and beauty of the South Coast region.Adam Richard, a 22 year-old Acushnet resident and art student, spent many years living in an isolated world, like many individuals with disabilities. His only contacts were his parents Sharon Hollis and Steven Richard, several teachers and a small circle of deaf friends, he said. On the long daily commute to Providence, where he attended the Rhode Island School for the Deaf, he used his cell phone to take pictures of passing landmarks and sights that captured his interest. “I decided to try photography and then I felt I really liked it,” he signs to his mother Sharon Hollis, an employee of the Middleboro-based READS Collaborative, which provides services to students with special challenges. “I saw my mother’s photos and felt that her pictures expressed a lot feeling,” he continues, adding that he soon began photographing old buildings, fishing boats and nature. As his interest in photography grew, Richard said he tried to emulate various photographers whose work he saw in magazines.“I also took a lot of pictures of my pets,” he adds, noting that his favorite subjects included his family’s two Shetland sheepdogs, now deceased — a female named Max and her male counterpart Milo. Both dogs were deaf and intuitively formed a special bond with their young owner, a relationship that continues to bring a warm smile to his face. “Max was one of the first words he read when he started to read closed caption,” Hollis recalls.The enthusiastic photographer has particularly enjoyed photographing his three delightful cats, females Roy and Lola and a tomcat named Yo-Yo.“ I gave them names I could voice,” he says. “The cats are easy to photograph. They just lie around in the sun.” Now that he has a high-powered Nikon digital camera, Richard likes to jump in his car and drive along country roads scouring for interesting subjects to photograph.
Read more: http://www.southcoasttoday.com/article/20141121/News/141129857