An Interview with Jim Casper, Founder and Editor in Chief of LensCulture

lensculture exposure awards

Originally posted on October 11th 2013

The Telegraph described LensCulture as “A definitive resource for anyone who wants to keep up with the latest trends and debates in contemporary photography.” (“The 10 Best Photography Sites” – Jan 2013)

Continuing our Twitter interview series, we spoke to Jim Casper, Founder and Editor in Chief of online magazine and photography platform LensCulture, LIVE via Twitter on Tuesday.

LensCulture is an online magazine celebrating current trends in cutting-edge international photography, art, media and world cultures. Since the platform’s inception in 2004, LensCulture’s commitment to discovering and promoting the best of the international contemporary photography community has singled the platform out as a highly authoritative resource for photographers and art lovers. This autumn, LensCulture launch an expanded network to actively involve and connect all corners of the photographic community alongside inviting entries for the fifth edition of the Exposure Awards

Jim shared his opinions on contemporary photography, what he’d like to change in the industry, what’s changed in almost ten years of LensCulture and much, much more.

Genesisimaging: Jim, are you ready to be quizzed?

Lensculture: Hi. Let’s talk about photography!

Genesisimaging: Great, Lets! Firstly, What drove you to establish Lens Culture?

Lensculture: I’m curious about how people use photography for different purposes in cultures around the world: art, media, propaganda…

Genesisimaging: And has LensCulture changed or altered your perceptions of photography, if so, how?

Lensculture: Photography is such a rich, nuanced, multifaceted language. It’s really really difficult to do well. My appreciation grows.

Genesisimaging: Great answer! Tell us about three changes you would like to make to the photographic industry…

Lensculture: 1. I’d like to see creative new, sustainable business models emerge to allow photographers to create in-depth projects…

Lensculture: 2. Find a way to bring the widespread photographic community closer together to create more of a vibrant ongoing dialog…

Lensculture: 3. Develop some system of filtering or curating the best and most inspirational work, so it bubbles to the top of awareness.

Genesisimaging: Couldn’t agree more, 3 very good points. Let’s talk about the company – what’s been LensCultures biggest change in 10 years?

Lensculture: Our audience is global, smart, discerning + tech savvy. So we’ve made it easy for others to share discoveries of new talent.

Genesisimaging: Linda asks, LensCulture is such a fab resource, how do you select the photographers /work that you feature?

Lensculture: We’re always looking for exciting new work – via portfolio reviews, festivals, magazines, photobooks, web…

Lensculture: We also discover a lot of great work by judging photo competitions like LensCulture awards

Genesisimaging: Charles asks, are professional photographers a dying trade with the advancement of digital technology?

Genesisimaging: And how has digital technology effected the work you see? The work submitted to the awards?

Lensculture: No, but professional photographers are forced to adapt to a new marketplace w/ dif. strategies, skills, lots more hard work.

Lensculture: 1. It’s easy for people to submit work from anywhere in the world. 2. Digital is encouraging a resurgence in old analog too.

Genesisimaging: We couldn’t agree more – tell us about the Int’l Exposure Awards…

Lensculture: Year #5 for the Awards. Amazing jury of brilliant, influential experts (and me) will see all work. Winners’ show in London!

(Genesis are very proud to be supporting the LensCulture Exposure Awards with the winners’ London exhibition.)

Genesisimaging: Tell us about the awards judging process (if you can!) what makes a winning image?

Genesisimaging: Last few Q’s for LensCulture.

Lensculture: The democratic process of a jury is enlightening. Everyone has favorites, for good reasons, so discussions are lively.

Lensculture: Awards go to series/portfolios, as well as single photo images. There is never a predictable formula for winning entries.

Genesisimaging: Last Q! Who have you been most excited to interview or work with?

Lensculture: Oh man, that’s impossible to answer. I’ve met so many amazing photographers I’ve probably learned the most from Jeff Cowen.

Lensculture: Photographers, in general, are so articulate, thoughtful + caring. Check any of these LensCulture interviews.

Genesisimaging: Some great answers, thank you Jim! You’ve certainly given us some things to think about.

Genesisimaging: Unfortunately that’s all we have time for… Thank you LensCulture – Great answers from a great photography platform!

Lensculture: Thanks for your questions and for providing this great platform for conversation. It’s been a pleasure. Cheers!

You can find out more about LensCulture at lensculture.com

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