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Above: Dusk over Cape Town with the mountain on the left and Lion’s Head on the right. The 72nd South African Museums Association national conference was held in the last week of June at a venue close to this view.

Welcome to the sixth edition of the Digital Picture Library Manager blog designed to add value to the management of your picture and media collections as well as to keep you up to date with developments at Africa Media Online and the world of digital imaging that could be of benefit you.
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URGENT MATTERS:
A. The early bird offer for this year’s Digital Masterclasses ends Monday June 30. Further information and booking forms can be found at this link: Digital Campus
B. The closing date for applications for the African Photo Entrepreneur Programme is Monday June 30. Further information can be found at this link: African Photo Entrepreneur Programme
C. The first intake for 70% funding for digitisation under the African Image Pipeline project ends Monday June 30.For further information please visit this link: Grant Funding for Digitisation of Image Collections
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In this edition:

1. World Expert in Digital Asset Management to Teach at August Masterclasses
2. Sacred and Secret: Pictures of the 72nd South African Museum’s Association national conference
3. Eminent International Panel of Judges for the African Photo Entrepreneur Programme
4. Dominique Le Roux, Media Manager
5. The Tragedy of Xenophobia in South Africa

1. World Expert in Digital Asset Management to Teach at August Masterclasses

World authority on digital asset management, Peter Krogh, will be teaching in South Africa for the first time in August

Celebrated author of The DAM Book (The Digital Asset Management Book), Peter Krogh, has confirmed his availability for Africa Media Online’s annual digital masterclasses in August. Peter will be in South Africa to conduct a series of masterclasses in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pietermaritzburg as part of Africa Media Online’s Digital Campus.

Not a stranger to the southern hemisphere, last year Peter conducted workshops in conjunction with the Australian Institute of Professional Photographers and Nikon Australia in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland. This will, however, be the first time he will be presenting in South Africa. An alpha tester for Adobe Photoshop, last year alone Peter conducted masterclasses in conjunction with the Professional Photographers of America (PPA), the North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA), the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) and UK-based Association of Photographers Limited (AOP), and gave seminars at Imaging USA, the National Association of Professional Photographers’ Photoshop World, PDN’s PhotoPlus Expo and the Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Adventure.

While Peter has worked with a lot of photographic organisations, his courses are highly applicable for anyone working professionally with large numbers of image files, such as archives, graphic designers, picture libraries etc. The workshops will demystify DAM and reveal practical techniques for securing the long term storage of digital images.

“Peter is the ideal companion to Graeme Cookson,” said Africa Media Online’s director, David Larsen. “We have brought Graeme out for the past three years and his courses have been extremely well received. Graeme is brilliant at helping imaging professionals really understand what we are doing in terms of ensuring the quality of individual image files in a productive manner. I wanted to find someone who would compliment Graeme in teaching best practice in digital workflow from camera or scanner to end user. Where Graeme’s strength lies in dealing with the quality of the image files themselves, I wanted someone who specialises in the efficiency of managing hundreds, if not thousands, of image files. I met Peter at CEPIC in Florence last year at the first ever international photo metadata conference and we got chatting. I could not have found anyone better than Peter Krogh, and it is a great privilege to have him on board,” Larsen said.

“Peters knowledge on the subject is the best in the world. When it comes to DAM for photographers, Peter Krogh literally wrote the book on the subject”, said Australian professional photographer and DAM consultant Robert Edwards.

The 10% early bird discount ends on Monday June 30

Find out more and download the order form

2. Sacred and Secret Heritage: Pictures of the 72nd South African Museum’s Association national conference

South African Museums Association (SAMA) delegate, Suzette Farmer from the Simon’s Town Museum, studies a rock art display at the Iziko South African Museum during the opening event of the SAMA national conference 2008.

The South African Museums Association held its 72nd National Conference at the Stellenbosch University Business School in Cape Town in late June 2008. The conference theme was “Sacred and Secret Heritage,” and it engendered some lively debate. In his brief talk at the conference, Africa Media Online’s director, David Larsen, summed up the conference from his perspective saying, “the central question that seems to be emerging at this conference is, ‘Who has the right to represent our heritage – to tell our story?” It is the quality of empathy that, if not giving the right, then at least opens the doors to investigate sacred heritage practices and represent those practices through research findings.

Pictures of the conference will be available shortly or you can email David Larsen at editor@africamediaonline.com.

3. Eminent International Panel of Judges for the African Photo Entrepreneur Programme

Renowned photojournalist, Louise Gubb, is one of the judges deciding on suitable candidates for the African Photo Entrepreneur Programme. Louise covered South Africa’s turbulent struggle for democracy for most of the leading news magazines including Time, Newsweek, Stern and Paris Match. She has judged a number of the annual Fuji Press photography competitions in South Africa.

The African Photo Entrepreneur Programme has been given significant impetus with prominent African and international photographers and editors lending their support by sitting on the judging panel. The panel will assess the submissions of possible candidates and select the most promising for inclusion in the programme. Confirmed judges are: Julia Heinemann, Gallery Portfolio Director of LUMAS; Khanyi Dhlomo, Editor of Destiny magazine; former World Press Photo jury member and AFP Chief Photographer in South Africa, Alexander Joe; head of Getty Images multimedia, Rick Gershon; Karine Aigner, Senior Photo Editor of National Geographic Kids Magazine; and acclaimed South African photographer, Louise Gubb.

This year’s programme is aimed at encouraging historically disadvantaged and women photographers to succeed as photo entrepreneurs, granting skills, market savvy and route to markets for groups that are currently underrepresented in this sector. Successful applicants will have sponsored access to the Digital Campus and further training modules.

Applications for the African Photo Entrepreneur Programme close at the end of the day on Monday June 30

Find out more see if you qualify and make a submission to be included.

4. Dominique Le Roux, Media Manager

Dominique Le Roux, Media Manager for Africa Media Online

The Africa Media Online team has felt the impact of Dominique Le Roux over the past six months. Dominique joined the team in January and has brought 17 years of media experience – as a writer, magazine editor, book publisher, web content manager, television presenter and photographic agent. As Media Manager, Dominique brings an eye for markets and clear strategy on how to access and make the most of them. Dominique is based in Cape Town but travels a fair amount to the other centres. She recently represented Africa Media Online at the Tourism Indaba and at the International Media Forum SA. Email Dominique on dominique@africamediaonline.com.

5. The Tragedy of Xenophobia in South Africa

South Africa Why are You Doing this to Us: More than a month after being displaced by xenophobic violence, refugees camp on the pavement in central Cape Town with little more than plastic bags to keep out the Cape winter chill. Ironically the place where they have taken up residence is across the street from the District Six Museum, a landmark of the infamous District Six forced removals of the 1960s. These refugees have had to endure the same kind of brutality at the hands of many who once endured such hardships themselves under apartheid. Many of these refugees have survived war in their own nations and had come to South Africa to find a place of peace and prosperity. That dream was shattered last month with the outbreak of xenophobic violence.

When my youngest daughter was presented to our community early last year, blessings were spoken over her in eleven languages including, Zulu (South Africa), Shona (Zimbabwe), Xhosa (South Africa), Kiswahili (East and Central Africa), Kirundi (Burundi), Ndebele (Zimbabwe), English (International), French (International) Afrikaans (South Africa), and Lingala (Congo DRC). For me this was a wonderful picture of the richness of post-apartheid South Africa, which not only emerged out of the cultural prison of apartheid, but has been reintegrated into the African continental community.

There is no doubt that the xenophobic violence which swept South Africa last month was a shocking denigration of all that the new South Africa, the miracle nation stands for. How did our people come to turn on those very nations that gave up so much on our behalf in assisting us in our struggle for liberation? How is it that we have moved so far from the bright vision of a united Africa provided for us by Nkruma and Nyerere, Luthuli and Mandela? On June 2, 2008 I wrote the following to those who receive our africanpictures.net newsletter:

“The past few weeks have witnessed a great tragedy in the history of South Africa. Once again the grotesque spectre of apartheid has emerged from the shadows to haunt our public life. Its target may be different, but its stench is the same. It is the same stale justification of why one group needs to hoard opportunity and resources at the expense of another, the same bigotry that forcefully removes people from their homes and has women and children cowering in places of safety, has bodies burning in the streets, has lives scarred for decades by reckless violence, the same discrimination that treats those different from oneself as sub-human, as somehow not worthy of the privileges we demand for ourselves. The lies are the same, the justifications are familiar, the fear and anguish are alike. As too are the vulgar names the powerful call the powerless!

In a matter of days nightmarish scenes we had fought so hard to be rid of have erupted in our midst again. How did we come to this? How in the miracle nation, among Tutu’s “rainbow people of God,” did this come to pass? Who is at fault is not important. What is required is that we take responsibility, responsibility to protect the weak, guard the vulnerable, care for the wounded, speak courageously for truth even when it is unpopular or dangerous. We’ve been here before. We know how to do this. Let’s do it!”

Some weeks after those tragic events many are doing it. Government and civil society organisations have taken a stand. We want to be telling those stories in the months to come. Yet we are aware so much trust has been lost, so much suspicion born. And we are also aware of the issues that led to this explosion of violence – a growing gap between the haves and have nots, poor education, an economy that is unable to absorb the abundance of unskilled labour, a culture of fatherlessness, and a lack of service delivery. And all of this is against a backdrop of the active nurturing of a culture of consumerism, a highly visible, extremely wealthy, middle class, and well organised criminal syndicates. Add to this toxic mix of hopelessness, millions of Zimbabweans searching for a bearable existence, and millions of other entrepreneurial immigrants who appear to be succeeding where poor South Africans are failing – and one can quickly see how the explosion came about.

These events in our nation bring us face to face with some hard realities that our society faces – some brutal facts about the distance we have really come in walking free from the the identities thrust upon us by apartheid. We realise we are not as far along as we expected and the tentacles of racism still reach into our hearts.

More than anything we are needing in this hour clear moral leadership that the likes of Mandela, Tutu and Luthuli provided in their generation – leaders that can help us take ownership of our common complicity in the lies, and our common responsibility in laying hold of the dream that those great leaders set before us. I see this happening all over this nation, from earnest debates among colleagues in the South African Museums Association conference to conversations with journalists and photographers. Should such leaders arise, then perhaps something worthwhile may emerge from this crucible experience.

Mayibuye iAfrika!

David Larsen
Director – Africa Media Online

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