Ten Questions with… Thomas Dworzak

PhotoVoice is interviewing established photographers to gain a wider insight into the power of photography and the different approaches to ethical issues. This month, we interviewed the renowned and award-wining photojournalist, Thomas Dworzak on his photography and passion for the medium.

Thomas Dworzak has recently been elected as the new president of Magnum Photos. He has been commissioned to cover major news events around the world, including the London Attacks, Hurricane Katrina and the revolutions in the former Soviet republics of Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Ukraine.

Where did it all begin and why did you chose photography and not another medium?

Wanted to get out of my rather dull small town life. It’s the best reason I could come up with.

Tell us a bit about your approach to photography.

The least of a photographer the better. Little gear. Quiet…..

How do you decide if something is worthy of being captured?

From a gut feeling. I shoot a lot. Decide later….

RUSSIA. Chechya. March 2002. © Thomas Dworzak/ Magnum Photos

RUSSIA. Chechya. March 2002. © Thomas Dworzak/ Magnum Photos

Is there a single image that defines you as a photographer?

I hope not.

Can photography bring about positive social change?

Let’s hope. At least it’s better that there is decent photography than that there isn’t.

SLOVENIA. 2015. Refugee crisis. ICRC © Thomas Dworzak/ Magnum Photos

SLOVENIA. 2015. Refugee crisis. ICRC © Thomas Dworzak/ Magnum Photos

Has charity photography changed since you started?

I think it has become less obvious “charity photography”.

What is your approach to the ethics of photography?

In doubt I would hope to rather choose not to take a picture.

What is your greatest achievement as a photographer?

Not for me to decide.

GEORGIA. ABKHAZIA. 1995. © Thomas Dworzak

GEORGIA. ABKHAZIA. 1995. © Thomas Dworzak

How important do you think equipment is?

The less important the better.

Do you have any advice for aspiring photographers?

Go out and take pictures. Live something passionate. Don’t try to become a photographer.

Find out more about Thomas Dworzak’s work here

Featured image: GERMANY. Bavaria. 2015. © Thomas Dworzak/ Magnum Photos

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