Category Archives: Photography

EyeEm

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When we mention photo sharing apps, the first name that comes to mind is Instagram. In fact, many apps have been trying to rival Facebook’s latest acquisition but only few have been able to cope with it or at least draw online users’ attention by bringing different approaches to photo sharing. One of them is EyeEm and the reason I am talking about it is because EyeEm’s Chief Technology Officer, Developer and Founder is a Lebanese called Ramzi Rizk.

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Photo Hack Day – Berlin

I had the chance to meet Ramzi’s brother Hany during my visit to Berlin back in June and I attended a photo hack day organized by EyeEm where I got to talk to Ramzi. I had a lot of questions in mind and wanted to know how different EyeEM is from Instagram and what are their plans for the future?

To sum it up, EyeEm is not just focused on photo sharing, but tries to connect like-minded users through the photos they take. As mentioned in this article, “EyeEm’s app combines the familiar ‘snapshots and filters’ approach with metadata that collects not just location and time for each photo, but contextual information like what a user was doing at the time.”

So basically it’s a smarter app that focuses on the user’s experience after uploading the picture by analyzing the photos and their related data. Of course the importance of a photo sharing app is to produce cool photos with the various filters and for that EyeEm provides 17 unique filters, and more importantly and that’s the best part, allows you to upload the whole picture and not crop it into a square.

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Some of my pictures on EyeEm – User: Najib

I don’t think it’s fair to compare EyeEm to Instagram because both work differently. For example if you want to look at photos of Beirut you will have to follow some hashtagh on Instagram while EyeEm will automatically show you photos of Beirut if you had just uploaded a picture of the city yourself. If you’ve been uploading a lot of pictures of Beirut or Byblos, EyeEm will notify you of any future picture of that city assuming they are relevant to you. Last but not least, EyeEm intuitively suggests relevant tags based on your location.

In terms of numbers, EyeEm reached 1 million downloads in October 2012, and has since been growing by an impressive one million users per month. They are growing steadily and managed to raise $6 million dollars a couple of months back.

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EyeEm featured on the Reuters screen smack dab in Times Square New York

If you want to know more about EyeEm, the best way is to download it and try it out. It is available for iPhone and Android.

I hope that by the time you’ve finished reading this post, you would have downloaded EyeEm and started uploading awesome pictures of Lebanon!

Why we love photography from EyeEm

Ramadan In Pictures

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A Musaharati, or dawn awakener, strikes his drum to wake observant Muslims in Sidon’s Old City in south Lebanon (Ali Hashisho/Reuters)

I found this picture from Sidon during Ramadan and lots of awesome pictures from Ramadan around the world. Check them out [Here] and [Here].

Update: There’s apparently an ongoing competition organized by Touch where all Lebanese are posting pictures of Ramadan in Lebanon and using the hashtag #souwarramadan. There are some very nice pictures there too.

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A Palestinian Muslim worshipper sneaks through a hole in the Old City wall near the Lions Gate after prayers at the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City. (Abir Sultan/European Pressphoto Agency)

Photo Essay by Natalie Naccache: Lebanon’s ‘uncomfortable’ maid culture

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Picture taken from CNN Photos

Check out the rest of these photos that got featured on the CNN Website [Here].

Photojournalist Natalie Naccache grew up with Lebanese parents in London and visited the small country on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea every year since she was born. On her visits, Naccache, who is now based in the capital city, Beirut, noticed most families had a maid who assumed many household roles: cook, housekeeper, mother, nurse.

“These maids were basically living their lives for their employers. They were dedicated to their employers, and I found that very uncomfortable,” Naccache says.

She says the maid culture is embedded in the Lebanese way of life, which is why she chose to capture it in her photo essay “No Madam.”

Naccache asserts while many maids are treated well, others aren’t as lucky – subjected to verbal and physical abuse, racism, even rape, by recruitment agencies and employers. According to recent statistics, there are more than 200,000 migrant domestic workers in the country of roughly 4 million. [Full Story]

World Press Photo of the Year

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Suhaib Hijazi, 2, and his brother, Muhammad, 3, were killed when an Israeli airstrike struck their Gaza City house. Winning Picture by photographer Paul Hansen

This year’s Photo of the Year, taken by Paul Hansen, is a striking image of the bodies of two young children carried through the streets of Gaza City after an Israeli airstrike on their home, the photographer said. They are being taken to a mosque for burial, their father’s body carried on a stretcher behind them. Their mother was hospitalized. [CNN]

You can check other great pictures selected [Here].

TIME’s Top 10 of Everything 2012

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Top 10 pictures of 2012. Picture taken by Goran Tomasevic. Azaz, Syria. Aug. 15, 2012.

I always enjoy reading Time’s Top 10 lists from year to year. Check out the 55 wide-ranging lists [Here].

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The HuffingtonPost has a bigger album of 2012′s best pictures that you can check [Here].