52 by 52 7:27am, 3 May 2012
Challenge #36: Hope is the poor man’s bread. Photograph hope
— Niall McDiarmid

Niall adds...

“There’s a tendency with many forms of photography be it reportage, street photography or even contemporary portraiture to concentrate on the bleaker and darker sides of life. This seems particularly telling at times of economic and political uncertainty. However photography also has the ability to look at situations in a positive and uplifting way. So try to capture or make an image that shows hope for the future.”


Crossing Paths

“In January 2011, I began an 18-month trip across the UK, photographing the people I met on my journey. Since then I have covered more than 10000 miles, visited 60 towns and met more than 450 people. Some might call them eccentrics, others simply colourful characters, but to me they were just individuals who crossed my path and stuck out from the crowd.”

The project is ongoing and you can follow it here >


Inspiration for the challenge
The great African photographer Seydou Keita photographed all his subjects with great dignity. Although West Africa has had many troubles over the past 50 years, his images always seemed to suggest that the region had nothing but a bright future.

Robert Adams, the American photographer completed a stunning series of images in 1985 entitled Summer Nights Walking published by Aperture . Quite simply they were dusk walks shot over a 10 year period in Colorado where he lives. To me they always seemed like a reflection on the day past but more importantly, hope for a great day ahead.

The celebrated Japanese photographer Rinko Kawauchi has produced several stunning books over the past 10 years and was nominated for the Deutsche Borse Prize in 2011. Her images of ordinary every day life, often with bursts of light and themes of water, food, flowers and family life suggest to me hope is alive and well.


As well as being a good place to connect with other members and share your initial reactions, thoughts about how to 'solve it' and any links you think might help the group, this can also be a good place to include any old photos you have that fit the challenge. We're looking forward to hearing your thoughts this week.

— 52 by 52 team
Mark W Russell 6 years ago
I find hope in the darkest of days, and focus in the brightest. I do not judge the universe.
Dalai Lama
Larking About 6 years ago
What a great idea for a brief - and am thrilled Rinko gets a nod as having suitable images as she's in my top three favourite photographers.
TranceGender Posted 6 years ago. Edited by TranceGender (member) 6 years ago
Hope is always subjective but for the person itself it seems always a more positive sitution if he/she gets there /it .

Meaning that , looking at the quote of the Dala Laima , what makes streetphotography so interesting is the different takes on hope and all other emotions , a brighter future may look very different depending on who you photograph .
~ Meredith ~ 6 years ago
What Larking About said though Rinko is new to me :) Totally love her style of photography. Loving the examples of Nial's work too, particularly the bloke in purple :) Ooh I am looking forward to seeing what everyone produces for this challenge.
Leripix 6 years ago
Let's go!!
Palofperu PRO 6 years ago
Yay you read my mind! I shot off to our local village called Hope to maybe get some shots. Sadly not good, will try harder in next village called Springs Eternal.....
david_gillett 6 years ago
Genius! Though I wonder if living in Hope means you get sick of all the weak jokes [cough].

Very true. The plan (at the moment) is to simply ask people about their personal definition of hope and take a street portrait of them.

I did much the same for the word 'aspiration' last year. It didn't always make for a great portrait but it was fascinating having profound conversations with complete strangers.

Garry – Guitar Hero by david_gillett
charming kettle [deleted] 6 years ago
I am a true and tried fatalist, so this is a very difficult assignment for me. But I love the inspirations given. The works of those photographers couldn't be more different aesthetically, yet they all have an openness to them that is breathtaking. I tend towards the claustrophobic, so maybe that's where I'll look -- Look for a way to open my photographs up.
Julia M Cameron PRO 6 years ago
John you have made a great observation about images that have "openness". I'll carry that notion too and see what comes up. It's all too easy for me to fall into a cliche for this Challenge.
@markglomas PRO Posted 6 years ago. Edited by @markglomas (member) 6 years ago
Ahh ... the Hope Valley. One of my favourite views ever - the Surprise ! That I do miss.
TranceGender 6 years ago
I took a pic about hope and 1 person got my meaning of this pic , for me that is the most awsome if a person understand what you wanna say with a pic .
charming kettle [deleted] 6 years ago
I think Google did it for us Mark:
Same point different orientation
Julia M Cameron PRO Posted 6 years ago. Edited by Julia M Cameron (admin) 6 years ago
This is my set so far.....

Have taken a fairly abstract approach.
david_gillett 6 years ago
God that looks stunning. I'm planning a motorbike trip up to Scotland later in the year, I'll have to see if I can pass through Hope Valley.

Here's my shortlist for #36 so far:
bart1eby 6 years ago
I really struggled with this one. Thinking about it I suspect that's because for me all photographs (and the act of taking/making one) imply a healthy dose of hope, even when faced with the most hopeless subjects. So I 'hope' mine is deemed to fit the brief...
Julia M Cameron PRO 6 years ago
Ben, you've nailed it!
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