The 65 year old James Nachtwey still goes to the most dangerous places on Earth. At the moment he is pressing his luck in Thailand. This weekend he has been shot by a bullet. The war photographer who has been the subject of the documentary bearing the same title is okay now however and he continued work after his wounds have been taken care of.
An article of Time published it first that the US photojournalist has been shot in the leg photographing the protests in Thailand. The short article says the bullet went through the leg and exited without hitting a bone. After his wound was taken care of the photographer continued his job. Others rightfully ask whether is it worth to risk your life for a picture? Nachtwey and other similarly devoted photographers seem to have it out of question. The swedish photographer Jonas Gratzer has been the one who took pictures of the wounded Nachtwey. He takes similar risks every day to document events and show the world what is happening in the country.
Kira Pollack, director of photography published the news about Nachtwey who got the news from the photographer in a text message. Nachtwey made his first pictures for Time in 1984 and reported many things to them since then but this time he is not on assignment for them in Thailand. Editors however feel it important to know about the well being of the photographer.
Wall Street Journal’s South-East Asia Realtime blog writes Nachtwey said to them “There’s an entry and exit. I’m walking now. I’m okay.”
Injuries of the photographer have been taken care of on site, but when the ambulance left the place he get out to stay and work. He says later he went to a hospital to get his wound attended. “I’ll be able to work tomorrow” – saind the photographer who devoted his life to documenting the suffer of others around the world.
Nachtwey was injured by a grenade in 2003 in Baghdad and maybe the Bang Bang Club member Ken Oosterbroek was not the only colleague he witnessed and documented being wounded out of the more than a thousand journalists who died since 1992. Nachtwey turns 66 years old this year and she already outlived lots of colleagues who died young.
He has been awarded with the Robert Capa gold medal five times for his special body of work and courage and on the 2007 TED Global conference he summed up the essence of his work this way:
“Photographers go to the extreme edges of human experience to show people what’s going on.”
Watch the full TED talk – it’s worth!