Front Lines

What did you think of the Tim Hetherington documentary? What about his views on subjectivity?

If you’d like to see more of his work, you can check it out on the Magnum website.

“…And Tim saw potential in everything, including a situation where nothing’s happening.” from Sleeping Soldiers by Tim Hetherington

6 thoughts on “Front Lines

  1. His story was so inspiring and yet totally heartbreaking. Knowing that he invested all of his time and energy to become part of something so dangerous just to tell a story is something truly special that we dont see often. It was a remarkable thing to follow the life of such a great man and to see him doing what he loved.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really identified with his comment when he said “he didn’t care about photography…he cared about people and ideas.” ❤ Samesies. That resonated with me, too. Gutting story and a terrible loss…


  2. This documentary made me rethink journalist’s objectivity in their work. The photographer must be objective, but objective towards what exactly? Tim couldn’t help but connect with the subjects he photographed. However, his influence didn’t seem to create any bias in his work. His work wasn’t concerned with politics or public opinion. Some how he managed to be both objective and nonobjective. I’m left with uncertainty.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Welp…Maybe there are degrees of objectivity. For instance in Tim’s work, these were real people, in their own real environments and —for the most part—they were captured doing what they would have done whether they were photographed or not. There is some integrity to reportage there.

      But, maybe where the subjectivity comes in was the emotional way he edited/chose these images (Sleeping Soldiers, Inner Light, etc.) and the titling of the work and how he curated what to show, that lends itself more to documentary.

      Regardless, I think the documentary showed that his voice was needed. Your voice is needed. 🙂
      If you can keep thinking about these things and harness that responsibly while you make great work, you’ll have a rich career.


  3. One thing I really admired about him was that he told the story of war from multiple sides of a country. One thing I hate seeing in American war movies is that they’re very Americanized and patriotic and leaves one thinking “Yea, those other people are the bad guys! Merica!”. Tim was on multiple sides, showing different views, but at the same time it was all the same, during war people came together and shared/created these intense relationships with one another. His idea to go beyond capturing patriotic images and instead capture the deeper relationships was extremely refreshing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So true…It was his commitment to the human experience that distinguished Hetherington as a photographer.

      You are very right about showing alternative sides to a story, V. It’s a gift that is so needed. As image makers, it’s important to think of that responsibility and privilege—to be able to produce these narratives that shape our culture.


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