Young photojournalist in South Sudan, I like to focus my work on the forgotten causes, on those people who suffer in silence and of whom no pays attention, or of whom no one wants to talk about. After getting my diploma in Journalism in July 2012, I decided to take off to South Sudan, with in mind, to bring some light on this new country often seen as doomed but also on a forgotten war taking place in Sudan, in the Nuba mountains and of which the only entry point is the South Sudanese border.
In October 2012, I went to the rebel held area (only area journalists can go in ) to cover the conflict for the first time to focus on the military and the civilians. In April, I headed back there in order to focus more on the reasons for this conflict. After a couple of weeks in the region, I had the opportunity to talk to displaced people who just left the government controlled area. Moved by their testimonies, I want to capture their struggle which I never heard of until then and work in parallel on the reasons of the conflict.
Back in Paris for the workshop, it made sense for me to continue working on the story of Sudan, and focus on the Sudanese community in France. Paris often seems to them like the exit to a new and better world. Which unfortunately is rarely the case. Prior to the workshop, I was given the name of a couple of places where I could find Sudanese.
On the first day of the workshop I went to those squares by La Chapelle metro station: I found a couple of Sudanese preparing a march against their government. I seize this opportunity to introduce myself, tell them that i live in South Sudan and work in Sudan and explain what my photography project is. A little later, I went with one of them to a Sudanese cafe and took it from there. I followed Nisa, who I met in the cafe, for a day to try portray his life. On the next day, he didn’t pick up his phone, so I contacted someone else I got the phone number of on the first day to continue the story.
Portfolio from the Photojournalisme workshop with Ed Kashi, June 2013.
Written review by
European photo coordinator The New York Times, France/USA
The first part of Camille’s portfolio was shot in Sudan, Africa’s most recent, conflict-ridden and unstable nations. I am always incredibly grateful to photographers who venture into these areas in order to bring us the news. And I pray they are taking no unnecessary risks. Be brave but not reckless!
I very much appreciate the general feel of this work, the sense of impending danger that some of these pictures give out. Also, Camille has edited her pictures to address several of the issues plaguing the country. The rebel soldiers are seen during a training session, in silhouette, light streaming past them toward the camera, with just enough information for our imagination to fill in the gaps. Then in a quieter moment, an almost poetic composition shows a young rebel’s profile in the foreground, out of focus, and our eye naturally travels to a scene in the background involving a dusty jeep and a change of tires. The shot of three rebel commanders is arresting because of the fierce look on their faces.
Finally, the view of a rebel in the shelter of a cave shows where these people hide to escape government bomber planes. I am drawn to the boy in ragged clothes behind him, just about to walk out of the frame. He will soon be old and tall enough to don his own battledress and fight alongside his peers.
This opens the way to the pictures documenting how civilians are affected by the ongoing violence. The shot of the villager walking away with a gun and ammunition on his back is simple, powerful, and iconic. I like its crispness and the partial view of a hut in the background that helps anchor the scene in context. The image of the man leading a dazed woman through the smoking ruins of a village is attractive but a slightly tighter shot would have drawn me in more efficiently. In the portrait of the landmine-wounded boy, his face is in focus and his bandaged hands blurred, as if suspended in a haze of pain. The soft green-blue color of the wall makes it somewhat easier to behold the horror of his facial wounds. The child wading through the dry sorgho field is a little dark in my opinion, making it hard to make out the interesting fact that there are two other children in the frame picking grains off the ground.
Camille also addresses the issue of rape, a terrible and all-too-common weapon of war, with a lovely portrait of a woman. Soft daylight delicately outlines her face, her eyes are downcast as if reflecting on her plight. I would just have preferred it as a horizontal shot, to keep the general harmony of the portfolio, and a little looser to allow space enough for the eye to enter the frame and move around this unfortunate woman.
The picture in the school has a good balance of composition, information, human situation, and even a touch of humor in the nonchalant attitude of the man standing in the doorway.
The wedding shot has deep rich colors and could work as a single. I’d be interested in know more from the caption about how the issue of religion fits into the general story.
Altogether, it is Camille’s reflective and intimate style of photography that help thread together this series of pictures. Hopefully she will have the opportunity to continue documenting the unfolding situation in Sudan. I also strongly encourage her to give a full journalistic twist to the captions by including, for each picture, background information that help us understand how each of them fit in her narrative.
With less time for research and shooting, finding an angle to tell the story of the Sudanese immigrants in Paris must have been challenging. Camille was nevertheless successful in summing up the story in at least two pictures: the Darfuri man sitting in a Paris metro and the three immigrants sitting on a bridge above train tracks. In this one I like how the center focus is on the train tracks, alluding to these men’s long voyage to reach the West and how lost and uprooted they must feel in this alien, iron-clad city. The shot of men inside a café is a little chaotic and out of synch with the caption. The picture with woman peering into a restaurant is an interesting situation that plays out in counterpoint with the little scene in the background. Her face is mostly hidden, though, so that the eye tends to rest on the doorway first before it can understand what this moment is about.
The pictures in the public garden have a very different feel to them. They almost look staged and lit as if this was a film set, in particular the group portrait with the policeman in the background. It’s refreshing and surprising, maybe a new direction for Camille to explore in the future?
Congratulation Camille and good luck with your future projects!
by Voranc Vogel (Slovenia)
Together we fly
by Douglas Rogerson (Portugal)
by Alain Schneuwly (United Arab Emirates)
by Nicolás Jaramillo (Portugal)
by Kalle Koponen (Finland)
Through The Loo...
by Netty Richards (New Zealand)
by Wouter Dhert (The Netherlands)
Entre les arbre...
by Yann Moreaux (France)
[:en]Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.[:fr]Les cookies nécessaires sont absolument indispensables au bon fonctionnement du site. Cette catégorie comprend uniquement les cookies qui assurent les fonctionnalités de base et les fonctionnalités de sécurité du site Web. Ces cookies ne stockent aucune information personnelle.[:es]Las cookies necesarias son absolutamente esenciales para que el sitio web funcione correctamente. Esta categoría solo incluye cookies que garantizan funcionalidades básicas y características de seguridad del sitio web. Estas cookies no almacenan ninguna información personal.[:]
[:en]Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.[:fr]Tous les cookies qui peuvent ne pas être particulièrement nécessaires au fonctionnement du site Web et qui sont utilisés spécifiquement pour collecter des données personnelles des utilisateurs via des analyses, des publicités et d\'autres contenus intégrés sont appelés cookies non nécessaires. Il est obligatoire d\'obtenir le consentement de l\'utilisateur avant d\'exécuter ces cookies sur votre site Web.[:en]Las cookies que pueden no ser particularmente necesarias para el funcionamiento del sitio web y que se utilizan específicamente para recopilar datos personales del usuario a través de análisis, anuncios y otros contenidos integrados se denominan cookies no necesarias. Es obligatorio obtener el consentimiento del usuario antes de ejecutar estas cookies en su sitio web.[:]