When used in the context of photojournalism, infrared photography can offer groundbreaking shifts of perspectives on a global range of issues. One of my favorites is race. August 9th: An unarmed teenager named Mike Brown was fatally shot 6 times by a Police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. August 18th: [Above] Thousands of protesters march in solidarity through oncoming rain in Atlanta to highlight issues of brutality and racial profiling within the police force.
The unfounded killing spurred demonstrators to gather outside of the Ferguson police headquarters in Missouri. What started as a candlelight vigil soon escalated into multiple days of full-blown civil unrest, rioting and looting. The police force responded with dogs, tear-gears and rubber bullets. [Above] Residents of Atlanta march while chanting "Hands up, don't shoot!" criticizing the excessive force used by police during the incident.
Protesters were encouraged to wear their 'Sunday best' and march while chanting, “How good must we look to be considered innocent?” in Atlanta, Georgia.
APD [Atlanta Police Department] control traffic while protesters marching pass curse, wave signs and pump fists at them in Atlanta, GA.
Demonstrators march through rain towards the CNN headquarters in Atlanta to protest against the network's biased coverage of the killing.
Demonstrators occupy the CNN sign to use as a platform to make a speech. Many people further criticized the news network's failure to cover the several-thousand-people protest outside the front doors of their own Atlanta headquarters.
Because our sun emits radiation strongest in the spectrum of 'visible light' (which is nothing more than a term used to designate wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation between 390 and 700 nano-meters), the human body has learnt certain defense mechanisms in order to protect itself from the hot, harsh and harmful rays associated with this spectrum. One of these is the development of melanin, the pigmentation responsible for darkening of the skin. This is why cultures traditionally found near the equator of the earth (where it is hottest) are dark-skinned. In contrast, cultures that developed in cold, polar climates (such as Inuits & Europeans) are light-skinned. Only in a globalized world (I.E. where an ethnic European such as myself is born and raised in the Fiji Islands), can we appreciate the adaptability of the human body seen when sun-tanning occurs. While many people and publications are focusing on the fact that Ferguson is a 70% black population controlled by a majority white police force (A murder many are calling a clear-cut case of racial profiling), I would like to focus on the fact that melanin is effectively invisible to infrared light. As a filter in my camera blocks out almost all visible light, we can see rays of the infrared spectrum penetrate several centimeters beneath human skin before being reflected. This means whether you are a Nigerian soccer player or the bassist of a Norwegian death metal band, you’re going to look fresh off the set of the latest Twilight movie most likely with an almost milky complexion. As it turns out, skin color is just a pigment of your imagination…
"Black people cannot unify without white people, Brown people or even Indian people. I couldn't have done this alone and neither can we. It's bigger than you"
Max Luger of Codex Collective plays harmonica as the demonstration dies down. Many protesters took up spare instruments, danced and sung along with them in memory of Mike Brown. He says, "We're just trying to come out here and spread some positivity, you know?"
"There are still people being fired upon in Ferguson, there are still people losing their lies to the law enforcement we pay for... It doesn't end here, it's bigger than you"
Max Luger & J. Calhoun of Codex Collective play live music while the demonstration dies down. Many protesters took up spare instruments, danced and sung along with them in memory of Mike Brown. Max says, "We're just trying to come out here and spread some positivity, y'know?"