SPOTLIGHT/December 27, 2011  


Dear SDN Community:


I would like to wish our readers and members a very happy holiday and new year.

I am also very proud to present this issue of Spotlight featuring exceptional work submitted to SDN in the past six weeks including a special section focusing on the Occupy Movement in the US and Canada.

We are very honored to announce that famed photographer and humanitarian, Reza, has joined the SDN Advisory Committee. Please see below for his biography. We are also announcing a special new year promotion, through the end of January, reducing our fees to just $0.50 per image.  

Warmest regards to everyone. 

Glenn Ruga 

Founder and Director


Special Section: Occupy Movement

Van Saun

The Diversity of the Occupy San Francisco Movement

Matthew Van Saun 


Occupy Vancouver

Dhruv Dhawan 
Other recent exhibits

Jordi Camí

The Zabaleen, Coptic Community in Cairo

Jordi Camí 
On the outskirts of Cairo in the Manshiet Nasr neighborhood is located Mokattam settlement known as "Garbage City",  inhabited by Zabbaleen, a community of about 45,000 Coptic Christians living for decades to recycle waste generated by the Egyptian capital. 
Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter View our profile on LinkedIn
Featured Exhibits

The Battle We Didn't Choose: My Wife's Fight with Breast Cancer

Photographs by Angelo Merendino


Photograph by Angelo Merendino. "We had just gone for a walk on a beautiful summer day and Jen sat in the window to paint her toenails. There aren't many moments when we aren't under the blanket of cancer and for a few seconds I remember feeling like just a couple. 7-4-2011."


In September of 2007, Angelo Merendino married the girl of his dreams. Five months later, Jennifer was diagnosed with breast cancer. Numb and in a state of disbelief, Angelo and Jennifer entered the world of cancer. Just after their first anniversary they were told that Jennifer was free of cancer. Cancer, however, opted again to interrupt their life.  


Some two years after Jen's initial diagnosis, they received news that the breast cancer had metastasized to her liver and bones. Jennifer now lives with the diagnosis of chronic cancer: until there's a cure, Jen will have to receive some type of treatment.


View the exhibit.  

The Waiting Rooms of Europe

Photographs by Malika Gaudin Delrieu


Photograph by Malika Gaudin Delrieu. After fleeing Somalia with his pregnant wife, Mohammed was imprisoned and tortured in Libya, because he did not have enough money to bribe the policemen.  


This photographic essay documents the immigration crisis along the southern border of the European Union. Conducted in Malta, Spain and Greece over a two year period, it concentrates on the problem of the wait endured by the migrants in these countries, which are simply for them transitory zones.


View the exhibit.  

Costuming the Archetypes

Photographs by Sara Hopkins


Photograph by Sara Hopkins.  


When we watch a person performing in drag or simply cross-dressing, we allow ourselves to be collapsed in a world where the ideas and traits associated with men and women become conflicted. Sometimes the illusion is so great, we erase the boundaries of what it means to be masculine and feminine. And other times, the obvious differences highlight the way each perceives the other. The appearances dictate whether or not we classify the person as feminine or masculine, though both are costumes of the Archetypes called Woman and Man.


View the exhibit.  

In the Valley of Banderban

Photographs by Nazrul Haider Chowdhury


Photograph by Nazrul Haider Chowdhury. A typical Bawm man, Lal lom Bawm, lives on Jhoom cultivation, a slash and burn process to grow crops. His other expertise, handicrafts, make him more confident and secure.


The Bawm tribe has branched out from the Chinese speaking Kuki tribe. Historically, this community belongs to the Arakan area, ancient Mianmar. In 1838 one of their young leaders, Liang Kung, invaded a segment of the Khumi community and brought along with him a large number of people of that community as captives.    


View the exhibit.  

SDN News

Reza Joins SDN Advisory Committee         

SDN is very honored to have famed photographer and humanitarian, Reza, join the SDN Advisory Committee.

Reza has covered much of the globe for National Geographic Magazine. Several films about Reza's work have been produced by National Geographic Television, most notably Frontline Diaries, which won an Emmy Award in 2002. In 2003, Reza served as Creative Director for National Geographic's most viewed documentary, Inside Mecca. As part of its Exceptional Journeys series, National Geographic released a DVD in May 2008 looking at Reza's career as a photojournalist, with special features highlighting his extensive humanitarian work.

In 2001, he founded Aina (Persian for The Mirror), an international non-profit organization dedicated to educating and empowering Afghan women and children through the media. In 1991, Reza served as a consultant to the United Nations in Afghanistan, helping to distribute food to populations in war-torn parts of the country. For his work on such humanitarian causes and because of his work with Aina in Afghanistan, National Geographic awarded him the title of National Geographic Fellow in 2006.

Reza's photographs have been exhibited in major cities throughout the world. War+Peace (2009), an exhibit featuring thirty years' of Reza's photojournalistic adventures, was held at the Caen Memorial (Peace Museum) in Normandy, France. One World, One Tribe (2006), was the National Geographic Museum's first outdoor exhibition in Washington D.C, and, Reza's landmark exhibition in Paris, drew a million visitors.


Special SDN New Year Promotion     

SDN has lowered the cost of exhibits to just $0.50 per image through end of January


The normal fee of $0.99 per image has been cut in half to just $0.50 now through the end of January. Photographers can purchase "frames" at this special discount price that can be used at any time. Photographers always have the option of selecting a 90-day free trial for all exhibits.


Pictures of the Year Interational (POYi) Deadline, January 12       

More than $10,000 in prizes available. 


Pictures of the Year International Each year, POYi recognizes excellence in photojournalism, multimedia, and visual editing. POYi is committed to engaging citizens worldwide with great documentary photography by sponsoring educational public exhibitions. POYi believes it is critical for citizens to experience documentation of the news events and social issues facing our world. Entries to Pictures of the Year International reach out to citizens worldwide and becomes a part of visual history. Pictures of the Year International is a program of the the University of Missouri School of Journalism. Click for more information.  


FotoEvidence Book Award Deadline, February 15       


FotoEvidence Book Award The FotoEvidence Book Award will recognize a photo project documenting evidence of repression or a violation of human rights. The selected project will be published as part of a FotoEvidence series of photo books dedicated to the work of photographers whose commitment and courage creates awareness and intolerance towards violations of human dignity.

The jury for the 2012 FotoEvidence Book Award includes Reza, Andrei Polikanov, Greg Marinovich, Javier Arcenillas, Svetlana Bachevanova.

Click for more information.




About is a website for photographers, NGOs, journalists, editors, and students to create and explore documentary exhibits investigating critical issues facing the world today. Recent exhibits have explored oil workers in the Niger River Delta, male sex workers in India, Central American immigrant women during their journey north, and Iraqi and Afghan refugees in Greece.Click here to view all of the exhibits.