Upon Shots' 150th issue, I thought it appropriate to celebrate with a bit of history. Below is some of the origin story of the magazine that Dan Price sent to me shortly after I became editor. I thank Dan for his vision and perseverance, which inaugurated this unpretentious and innovative platform for photographers. And thank you to all of you ??" the supporters of this still small, but mighty endeavor.
-Elizabeth Flinsch, ed.
"It was 1986. I was working as a news photographer in the small town of Danville Kentucky. Always trying to push the envelope of what could be published, and having a liberal minded editor, i shot stories like the Kentucky Derby and endless weekly features with unconventional cameras such as the Diana, a Widelux, or a tiny Minox spy camera. The readers loved the artistic quality of the imagery and we won plenty of press awards.
Over time i came to know many other photojournalists in Kentucky and beyond and started setting my professional sights on the prestigious Magnum Photos, befriending the likes of Alex Webb, Susan Meiselas and Eugene Richards. Sylvia Plachy in New York and Robert Frank in Nova Scotia became letter writing friends.
I felt blessed, in that my position as Chief Photographer, i was able to fully indulge all my crazy ideas and publish many unusual photo essays. My friends at the larger newspapers had no such freedoms. I heard all about their frustrations when shooting next to them at sporting events in Lexington and Louisville. I also learned that many of them had personal photo projects that lasted months and even years. These projects kept them sane while dealing with the few and sometimes boring assignments they were being sent out on.
It was then that i came upon the idea, seconded by all the photographers i knew, to create a small magazine, in order to publish these special projects. I decided to forgo fancy layouts and used an old typewriter for photo captions and any text that i needed. My friends submitted their wonderful photos accompanied by hand-written letters explaining their work and beliefs in the medium. Instead of retyping what they had submitted, i photocopied the letters and glued them to the master copy. This home-made, pasted together style was what set SHOTS apart from other photo publications. People seemed to like the “unpolished” look. I continued with that look for my entire tenure of almost 50 issues.
To this day i am amazed when i see Shots in the photography section at a book store. Amazed that it is still going after 32 [now 34!] years and that not only have several editors taken over and done fantastic jobs running it, but that there is still a willing audience who support it. Viva La Shots!" ■
-Dan Price, Founder of SHOTS Magazine
cover: Dana Marsy: Grand Rapids, MI
back cover: Alan Berkson: Milford, CT
pg. 28 Mike Allee: Indianapolis, IN
pg. 34 Elizabeth Bailey: Los Angeles, CA
pg. 16 Lex Beach: Northampton, MA
pg. 24-25 Barbara Brill: Englewood, NJ
pg. 41 Sinden Collier: Houston, TX
pg. 17 Max Cooper: Candler, NC
pg. 29 Todd R. Darling: Mid-Levels, Hong Kong
pg. 12-13 Sunny Fincham: Baltimore, MD
pg. 18, 38 Natalie Finney: Seaford, VIC, Australia
pg. 26-27 Edie Fogel: Orlando, FL
pg. 8 Roger Gaess: Brussels, Belgium
pg. 37 Joy Gyamfi: Vancouver, BC, Canada
pg. 10 Janique Helson: Wilton, CT
pg. 4-5 Yajie Jiang: Nanjing, Jiangsu, China
pg. 7 John Kinney: Hume, VA
pg. 22 Tom Kirkendall: Edmonds, WA
pg. 36 David Knox: New Orleans, LA
pg. 33 Autumn Lee: Minneapolis, MN
pg. 19 Todd Leen: Alexandria, VA
pg. 23 Krysia Lukkason: Lithia Springs, GA
pg. 35 Paul Matzner: Milwaukee, WI
pg. 39 Aimee B. McCrory: Houston, TX
pg. 26-27 Adam Olson: Roseville, MN
pg. 32 Jenny Papalexandris: Kiama Heights, NSW, AUS
pg. 1 Ann Piché: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
pg. 9 Leslie Rosenthal: Pasadena, CA
pg. 15 Dave Schaible: Catonsville, MD
pg. 14 Nashalina Schrape: Astoria, NY
pg. 6 Tricia Seabold: Hillsboro, OR
pg. 17 Mark Sluder: Huntersville, NC
pg. 30, 31 Priscilla Spencer: Dallas, TX
pg. 40 Bradly Dever Treadaway: Brooklyn, NY
pg. 20-21 Morgan Tyree: Powell, WY