Spot Light
SPOTLIGHT: Featured Photographer of the Month 
No. 140, September 2014 
Featured work submitted to SDN in August 2014

Dear SDN Readers:


I'd like to take a moment and reflect on the assault on the photography and journalism community following the senseless and horrific executions of James Foley and Steven Sotloff by ISIS. Beginning in the wars in the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s, journalists have been increasingly under attack while performing their duties to report the conduct of wars throughout the world and the often senseless loss of civilian life. Now journalists themselves are becoming victims. Foley and Sotloff were not collateral damage but rather they were deliberate targets because of their US citizenship, regardless of their positions on the wars that they were documenting.

This week President Obama will announce a major new military campaign in Iraq and Syria to degrade and destroy ISIS--a barbaric ideology that has gained ground in the failed states of Syria and Iraq. This no doubt will become the landscape for a new generation of conflict journalists, often entering into this work without the support that they once had from major news organizations. Be safe and know that what you do is so critical to the free flow of information.

Victor Galeano We are very pleased this month to give the featured photographer award to

Victor Galeano

from Colombia for his documentary project on civilians caught up in the 50-year war between FARC guerrillas, and paramilitary and government forces in Colombia. As peace may finally be on the horizon after 50 years of conflict, Galeano reminds us that civilians continue to pay the price, and in his project, he explores the story of "false positives,"  innocent youths who are wrongly identified as FARC guerrilla fighters and assassinated by government forces, often to demonstrate results to their superiors. Coincidentally, one other exhibit in this issue of Spotlight also focuses on Colombia, Faces from San Carlos by Lothar Troeller, giving voice to people returning to their homes as the war may finally be coming to end, or as Troeller says, "violence is calming down."
Glenn Ruga

SDN Founder & Director


PS. I want to thank everyone who has contributed to our Campaign to Redesign the SDN Website. We have raised $7,600 to date towards our goal of $11,000. We hope that within the next few weeks, with your support, we can make up this difference. Click here to help. 

Boston Gallery Features Two SDN Photographers 
Garth Lenz explores global warming and the environmental effects of oil exploration in the Alberta Tar Sands

Garth Lenz
SDN Photographer Garth Lenz gave a gallery talk at the 555 Gallery in South Boston in conjunction with his current exhibition, "The True Cost of Oil" -- part of "Global Warning", an exhibition curated by SDN Founder Glenn Ruga. Read more... 

Campaign to Redesign SDN Website
SDN is picking up where our Kickstarter Campaign left off and are continuing to raise direct donations to support the redesign of the website. We have raised $7,600 towards our goal of $11,000. How you can help... 

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Featured Photographer of the Month Award
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SDN Annual Available Free to Editors, Curators, and Gallerists 
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SDN Seeks Intern(s) to Work on Substantive Projects  
SDN is looking for 1 or 2 motivated and capable student (or recent graduates) to help with core SDN projects such as website development, marketing, writing, social media, etc. Interested candidates should send inquiry by email.  

September 2014 Featured Photographer of the Month

Victor Galeano
Los 12 de punta del este
Victor Galeano
Photo by Victor Galeano

"Go look for the law," 'China' Rentería ran shouting at 7:00 at night upon seeing that her son had not returned from a soccer game. If the matrons of the barrio agree about one thing, it's that the game their sons played did not leave a good taste for any of them. Two days later Doña Regina Rentería fainted from her premonition with the news that they all expected: 12 young men between 17 and 21 years old were found dead.

Pirú Rentería was a victim of the policy of "Democratic Security" of the Colombian state, which in order to demonstrate results in their struggle against the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) they murder peasants, making them pass for guerrilla fighters. It's an inhuman phenomenon that is called "false positives."

View Exhibit >>

Victor Galeano Victor Galeano is an independent photojournalist whose work is mainly about social processes and the reconstruction of memory, especially about the armed conflict in Colombia since 2012.During this period, as a freelancer, he has published his photographs in diverse local and international media.
Among his numerous prizes and awards, he has recently been a finalist in the Festival Internacional de la Imagen (FINI), 2014; and the 19th Latin American Documentary Photography competition known as "los trabajos y los días" ("jobs and days"), 2013; and winner of SOS Racismo (SOS racism) in Madrid, Spain, 2013. He was also a finalist in the photography competition in the XI International Festival of Indigenous Peoples' Cine (2013); and in the competition of CRESPIAL (The Regional Center to Preserve Non-Material heritage in Latin America), 2012.
He has exhibited widely, including in group shows in the Fotourbe Photography Festival (2014); the Case España in Mexico (2014); the FINI (International Festival of the Image) at the University of Hidalgo, Mexico (2014); and the Museum of Modern Art, Quito, Ecuador (2012).

September 2014 Featured Exhibits 


The Bishnoi>>
by Rui Pires/India

Environmental problems are one of the major challenges for humanity. However, there are people who live in perfect harmony with nature, in a very simple way. This is the story of the Bishnoi, a nation that protects nature and animals with their lives. Rajhastan, India (2014)  

by Salahuddin Ahmed/Bangladesh

Hazaribagh is a place where I have passed my childhood. The smell and the rusty Iron Gate and windows are the famous scenes of Hazaribagh. I used to be amazed how a person works, at the same time he sits somewhere and drinks tea and smokes. Still I can find the same color inside and outside the tannery...

Bengali Wedding>>
by Aminul Islam/Bangladesh

The Bengali wedding tradition is a long story. From the very beginning when we come to know our tradition, we saw a strict and joyful tradition in our wedding ceremony. The bride and groom come separately from their home to the venue. Then with due respect on religion a well pious man reads the wedding...

Faces from San Carlos>>
by Lothar Troeller/Colombia

People of San Carlos, Colombia, are traumatized. For decades they have suffered under the violence between guerrilla and paramilitary forces. Almost everybody can report murdered family members. At the moment, violence is calming down; so people take the risk to relocate with the help of the government...

Conversing With Orphans Through the Universal Language of Art>>
by Hatice Avci/Guinea, Benin

While Kimse Yok Mu, an international nonprofit humanitarian aid and development organization, meets the urgent needs of orphans and vulnerable children around the world and develops plans regarding their futures, the organization also pursues new projects which will nurture the orphans' psychologies...

Immigrant Children Living in Chicago>>
by Amy Kiley/United States

My exhibit is about child immigrants and their families who have migrated from other counties to Chicago. The focus is on first generation immigrants, many refugees, who as young children have migrated to the United States to escape poverty, war, and or environmental distress...

Faces of ACEing Autism Palm Beach>>
by Michael Whitaker/United States

Shafali Jeste, a child neurologist, focused on developmental disorders, and Richard Spurling, a tennis professional with an MBA in entrepreneurship, merged their interests and talents to create ACEing Autism, an organization that provides tennis lessons for children with autism spectrum diagnoses...

Inside Cricket>>
by MD. Ariful Islam Arif/Bangladesh

Cricket is the most popular game in Bangladesh. Each and every person likes to play cricket, especially children. We are used to getting awful news in the subcontinent but cricket gives us pleasure. Our environment is under cricket's spell.  

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Kristen Bernard
Lori Grinker
Steve Horn
Ed Kashi
John Sevigny
Jeffrey D. Smith
Stephen Walker
Frank Ward
Jamie Wellford

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Glenn Ruga
Founder & Director

Barbara Ayotte
Communications Director

Caterina Clerici
Special Issue Editor  

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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.