PODCAST: A Photographic Life, Episode 288: Plus Photographer Michael J Brennan

In episode 288 UNP founder and curator Grant Scott is in his shed reflecting on the importance of subject to the photographer whilst knowing why you are making photographs and the issues with photographic hyperbole on social media.

Plus this week, photographer Michael J Brennan takes on the challenge of supplying Grant with an audio file no longer than 5 minutes in length in which he answer’s the question ‘What Does Photography Mean to You?’

Born in Sheffield, Brennan began his career as a runner and then a news photographer for The Croydon Times in South London. Returning back North between 1964 and 1970 he worked as a photographer for the regional offices of The Sunday People and The Daily Herald. He was first noticed for his work thanks to a series of photographs he took of the death of Donald Campbell who died while attempting the world water speed record in 1967. The photos appeared in Life magazine and won Brennan the British News Picture of the Year award. He worked next as a photographer for The Sun and then moved to the Daily Mail where he covered important news events such as The Troubles in Northern Ireland and The Indo-Pakistan wars and conflicts. After moving to the United States in 1973 Brennan accepted photo assignments for Sports Illustrated magazine. This to a series of photos of the boxer Muhammad Ali. A 1977 Brennan photo of Ali is now in the collection of the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery. After a fifty-year career in photography, Brennan is now retired and living in Costa Rica. https://brennanpics.com

Dr. Grant Scott is the founder/curator of United Nations of Photography, a Senior Lecturer and Subject Co-ordinator: Photography at Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, a working photographer, documentary filmmaker, BBC Radio contributor and the author of Professional Photography: The New Global Landscape Explained (Routledge 2014), The Essential Student Guide to Professional Photography (Routledge 2015), New Ways of Seeing: The Democratic Language of Photography (Routledge 2019). His film Do Not Bend: The Photographic Life of Bill Jay was first screened in 2018 www.donotbendfilm.com. He is the presenter of the A Photographic Life and In Search of Bill Jay podcasts.

Scott’s next book is Inside Vogue HouseOne building, seven magazines, sixty years of stories, Orphans Publishing, is on sale February 2024.

© Grant Scott 2023

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