Martha Cooper is a Photo-Journalist from Baltimore, Maryland. She is most famous for the documentation of the New York, Hip-Hop/Graffiti movement. This particular photo is untitled; it depicts two girls playing, adjacent to a wall covered with numerous graffiti tags. The photo was taken in the 1970’s, in a time where Hip-Hop was not only a form of music but had become a culture.
I choose this especially because it brilliantly captures the innocence of the two girls, this is then juxtaposed with the crude graffitied background. The choice of using black/white film also takes away the two girls racial differences, this is unusual as at the time as most images of the Hip-Hop culture mainly feature African-American people. I’m also a big fan of black and white photography as it gives a sincere, mature theme to an image, it also strips away colour which can sometimes be a distraction and really allows the eye to be concentrated on a particular spot.
The image of the two girls, shows two small children, one African-American the other Caucasian, playing/ dancing with each other. In the background there is a wall, which takes up most of the image, it is covered in a variety of graffiti tags which are made of words such as the “MoM”, “Lefty” and “Salim”. The black & white image has a nostalgic tone to it; this is created by how Cooper has expertly captured the girls in mid-movement. Both the girls and the graffiti background are main focal points in this picture, it shows how the photographer has tried to display that the two things are synonymous, one may argue that Cooper might have used the young girls as metaphor to how childlike and young the Hip-Hop/Graffiti movement was at the time. Martha Cooper has refrained from using artificial light within this picture, this is a key element of photo-journalism, as adding artificial light makes a photo seem posed and less genuine, natural lighting gives a “fly-on-the-wall” effect.
In my opinion this photo...