first_img Receive email alerts Voicing concern about increasingly repressive policies towards online dissent, Reporters Without Borders called today for the releaser of blogger Abdul-Moneim Mahmud, who was arrested on 14 April at Cairo airport. He has been charged with membership of an “illegal organisation” (the Muslim Brotherhood), but his arrests seems to be linked to the photos and reports about the torture of detainees that he has posted on line. Help by sharing this information Follow the news on Egypt Detained woman journalist pressured by interrogator, harassed by prison staff April 17, 2007 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Call for release of blogger who reports on torture of detainees Voicing concern about increasingly repressive policies towards online dissent, Reporters Without Borders called today for the releaser of blogger Abdul-Moneim Mahmud, who was arrested on 14 April at Cairo airport. He has been charged with membership of an “illegal organisation” (the Muslim Brotherhood), but his arrests seems to be linked to the photos and reports about the torture of detainees that he has posted on line. “This arrest comes two months after another blogger, Abdel Kareem Nabil Suleiman, was sentenced to four years in prison,” Reporters Without Borders said. “These two young men hold very different views, but they have a common desire to denounce President Hosni Mubarak’s authoritarianism and the constant human rights violations in Egypt. We hope the authorities will free them and undertake to respect the principle of the free flow of information online.”The state prosecutor’s office in Shoubra Al-Khaima ordered that Mahmud should be held for at least two weeks while he is investigated for alleged membership and financing of an illegal movement. Many local sources say he has in fact been targeted for reporting arbitrary arrests and acts of torture by the security services on his blog, Ana Ikhwan, and on the Muslim Brotherhood’s website.Mahmud covered demonstrations organised by the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and circulated photos of police brutality on the Internet. Aged 27 and a journalism graduate of Cairo university, he is also a correspondent for the satellite TV station Al-Hiwar (The dialogue). Suleiman, who is better known by his blogger pseudonym of “Kareem Amer”, was arrested on 6 November 2006 because of articles he had posted on his blog, in which he often condemned the government’s authoritarian excesses and criticised Egypt’s highest religious institutions, especially the Sunni university of Al-Azhar, where he studied law. He was sentenced on 22 February to three years in prison for “inciting hatred of Islam” and one year for “insulting” the president.Egypt is on the Reporters Without Borders list of “13 Internet Enemies”.Read our weekly “blog review” and create your blog with Reporters without borders : www.rsfblog.org RSF_en Less press freedom than ever in Egypt, 10 years after revolution EgyptMiddle East – North Africa News News News February 6, 2021 Find out more Al Jazeera journalist Mahmoud Hussein back home after four years in prison EgyptMiddle East – North Africa to go further February 1, 2021 Find out more News Organisation January 22, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

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first_imgHerbeauty5 Things To Avoid If You Want To Have Whiter TeethHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty8 Easy Exotic Meals Anyone Can MakeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyThe Most Heartwarming Moments Between Father And DaughterHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty12 Most Breathtaking Trends In Fashion HistoryHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty15 Countries Where Men Have Difficulties Finding A WifeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty6 Lies You Should Stop Telling Yourself Right NowHerbeautyHerbeauty Sports Girls Volleyball: La Salle Sweeps in Del Rey League Opening Victory at Serra By BRIAN REED-BAIOTTO, Sports Editor Published on Thursday, September 22, 2016 | 9:21 pm Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy More Cool Stuff Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Business News Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday The Lancers opened Del Rey League action with an emphatic sweep over host Serra of Gardena.Tiare Tuitama’s squad defeated the Cavs, 25-14, 25-22 and 25-12.Emily Wasson led the Lancers with 6 kills and a block.Ravin Rhodes added 4 blocks and Sophia Anderson chipped in with 6 digs.Tamia Cephius led the Lancers with 4 aces.Aside from the big night for the varsity, La Salle swept Serra at all three levels.The freshman won 25-13 and 25-14; while the junior varsity cruised, 25-11 and 25-16.La Salle will continue league play this coming Tuesday when it hosts Saint Joseph of Lakewood at 6.“It was a good start for our first league game,” Tuitama said. “We set the tone for our season.” Make a comment Community Newscenter_img Top of the News faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyCitizen Service CenterPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Community News Subscribe Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena First Heatwave Expected Next Week 3 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it last_img read more

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first_imgNigeria duo of Alex Iwobi and Wilfred Ndidi have been listed among the most expensive footballers plying their trade across the world. Ndidi and Iwobi In the analysis published by The Sun of London,Iwobi with his worth of £62 million earnings, is ranked number 68 in the world, as Ndidi with his £59.6 million is number 77 in the world. Iwobi, the Everton player is fortunate to be among the recognised players led by French and PSG player, Kylian Mbappe (£226.2m). According to the report, Mbappe is unsurprisingly the most valuable player on the planet. Loading… The ten most-valuable footballers on the planet, according to CIES Football ObservatoryBut incredibly, the priciest midfielder in the world is one-cap England star James Maddison  – at £95.5m.In a topsy-turvy table, Kevin De Bruyne, Luis Suarez and Sergio Aguero are all valued atLESS than Everton winger Iwobi. But there is positive news for the future of the England team, with four of the top sevenmost-valubale players in the world part of the Three Lions set-up. Raheem Sterling is England’s most expensive at second in the table (£190.1m), with JadonSancho fourth (£143.5m), Harry Kane sixth (£127.9m) and Marcus Rashford seventh (£114.1m). The valuations were calculated by the CIES Football Observatory – who take more factors than just form and basic stats like goals and clean sheets. Such things as international caps, contract length, the league they’re playing in, as wellas age are all considered. Read Also:Smith, Gayle among most expensive players in ‘The Hundred’ draft If you were to field the strongest possible XI – not the top 11 as most are strikers – itwould be valued at an outrageous £1.21billion. Argentine and Barcelona striker, Lionel Messi is number eight in the world  with his (£106.6m), while Cristiano Ronaldo is 48 with (£68.2m) . FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Promoted ContentBirds Enjoy Living In A Gallery Space Created For ThemThe Very Last Bitcoin Will Be Mined Around 2140. Read More8 Things That Will Happen If An Asteroid Hits Earth2020 Tattoo Trends: Here’s What You’ll See This YearCouples Who Celebrated Their Union In A Unique, Unforgettable WayYou’ve Only Seen Such Colorful Hairdos In A Handful Of AnimeThese TV Characters Left The Show And It Just Got Better8 Superfoods For Growing Hair Back And Stimulating Its GrowthEver Thought Of Sleeping Next To Celebs? This Guy Will Show YouInsane 3D Spraying Skills Turn In Incredible Street ArtThis Guy Photoshopped Himself Into Celeb Pics And It’s Hysterical10 Most Evil Female Characters In Disney Movieslast_img read more

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first_imgFacebook0Tweet0Pin0 The Olympia Parks, Arts and Recreation Department has partnered with the South Puget Sound Community Orchestra to celebrate one year of the “new” boardwalk at Percival Landing.  The evening concert will take place on Thursday, August 23 from 6:30pm-7:30pm in the Main Pavilion.  The pavilion is located adjacent to the grass area near the intersection of Columbia St and Olympia Ave.  There is no charge for attendance.The orchestra will play a fun variety of music, ranging from Calvin Custer’s arrangement of “The American Frontier” to “Under the Boardwalk”, popularized by R&B group, The Drifters.  Attendees are invited to bring a picnic dinner to enjoy from the lawn, or stroll the boardwalk and vote for their favorite art as part of the Percival Plinth Project.Phase I of Percival Landing concluded in August of 2011, and the Grand Re-Opening was held later that month.  Phase I included the addition of the Harbor House, shoreline restoration, restroom and shower renovations, two small pavilions, a new playground, and a reconstructed boardwalk.For more information, please contact Olympia Parks, Arts & Recreation at 360.753.8380.last_img read more

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first_imgPope Francis’ visit to the United States is of great interest to Catholics and the public in general, escalating this week with his Year of Mercy statement calling on priests to forgive the sin of abortion.Still, area Roman Catholic churches have been slow to organize any events to celebrate the pontiff’s trip. Pope Francis will be in the U.S. from Sept. 22 to Sept. 27, with appearances in Washington, D.C., New York City and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.This week The Two River Times reached out to 10 Two River area Catholic Churches to see what has been planned. Those who responded to phone calls said nothing has been planned.One parish, however, St. Benedict, 165 Bethany Road, Holmdel, sees an educational opportunity. The seventh and eighth graders in the accompanying school will participate in a “Pope Watch Party,” and watch Pope Francis’ historic address to a joint session of Congress on Thursday, Sept. 24, the first Catholic Pope to do so. During the session, teachers will be live tweeting on Twitter about their students’ reaction and the event with the hashtag #pope2congress, according to Denise Contino, St. Benedict’s director of religious instruction. This is being done in conjunction with the Ignatian Solidarity Network, which describes itself as a national social justice education and advocacy network inspired by the work of St. Ignatius of Loyola.Contino plans to repeat the viewing the following week for the non-St. Benedict religious instruction students.This summer St. Benedict had emailed to parish and student families information about “Flat Francis” – an approximately one-foot cutout of the pontiff – asking them to honor the pope’s coming visit by taking the good-natured photos with the cutout while on vacation or traveling, sending photos to Catholic Extension, a Catholic charitable organization, by way of the Twitter hashtag #FlatFrancis. “There’s ton of pictures on that already,” Contino said.Rayanne Bennett, director of public relations for the Diocese of Trenton, acknowledged this week while many individual Catholics have obtained the tickets for Pope Francis’ appearances in New York City and Philadelphia, “it’s slow in coming,” for the diocese’s various parishes to organize events in recognition of the visit. Given in August things slow down as many take their vacations, there wasn’t much in the way of organizing, Bennett pointed out. But now, she suspected church groups and parish volunteers will likely be working on get-togethers, watching parties, to catch the Papal events with friends. “And I think more are in formulation,” to be announced shortly.The diocese will put together a list of various parish activities to commemorate the Pope’s visit. That will be released to the media shortly, according to Bennett.last_img read more

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first_img28 June 2004Six film premieres head the film programme for the 2004 National Arts Festival in Grahamstown from 1 to 10 July. Three of the new features are South African, and their high quality bears testimony to the increasing sophistication of the country’s film industry.“The Wooden Camera” by Ntshavheni wa Luruli is expected to attract considerable audience interest because “Chikin Biznis – The Whole Story”, Luruli’s earlier film, topped the box office polls for three festivals in succession.Another new film, “A Case of Murder” by Clive Howard Morris, sees Afrikaans rock singer Steve Hofmeyr cast as an amoral killer. Catherine Stewart’s “Transit Cafe” tells of a rural wastrel up to no good in the city.Three other premieres come from the US, the UK and the Netherlands respectively.Erik Skjoldbaerg’s “Prozac Nation” is based on Elizabeth Wurzel’s book about being young and depressed in America. Julian Temple’s “Pandemonium” focuses on the intense creative relationship between poetry’s two Williams – Coleridge and Wordsworth. Jeroen Krabbe’s “A Discovery of Heaven” sets a love triangle amid a galactic survey of history and philosophy.Films about art and artists include a 70-minute William Kentridge compilation (with live music by the Sontonga Quartet and pianist Jill Richards). More music fills the auditorium with Lisa Key’s “Karoo Kitaar Blues” (on David Kramer’s research safari) and Charles Ives’ “A Good Dissonance – Like a Man”, which complements the Ives component of the New Music Indaba.Dance gets a whirl with a collaboration between avant gardist Aryan Kaganoff and dancer Moeketsi Mokoena, and “Raka”, a ballet movie based on the Van Wyk Louw poem.The life and work of JM Coetzee are the pivots for four films, including a documentary feature. They are JM Coetzee’s “Passages”, “Dust”, “The Desert of the Tartars” (which parallels Waiting for the Barbarians) and “The Lives of Animals”.Helping to contextualise the debate around Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ”, the film will be screened after three other films about the message of the Christian Gospels – Pasolini’s “The Gospel of St Matthew”, Elftrom’s “The Gospel Road” and Dwoskin’s “Jesus’ Blood Never Failed Me Yet”.The search for spiritual grace takes other forms in two more films: “Heaven” (with a script by the man who made the “Three Colours” movies) and “21 Grams” – a flourish of metaphysical storytelling from Mexico.Godfrey Reggio’s filmic discourse on deep ecology is also profoundly spiritual. Four of his seminal works – all around 30 minutes long, and all featuring music by Philip Glass – will be screened.The National Arts Festival Film programme traditionally offers audiences a chance to catch up on the classics, and this year six Japanese masterpieces and seven surrealist gems are included. “Throne of Blood”, “Woman of the Dunes”, Cocteau’s “Beauty and the Beast” and “Orpheus” command repeat viewing!The National Arts Festival is sponsored by the Eastern Cape Government, Standard Bank, the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund, the SABC and the National Arts Council.Booking kits are available from Standard Bank branches and Computicket. For more information, visit the National Arts Festival website.Source: National Arts Festivallast_img read more

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first_img9 July 2009The financial crisis has crippled the social and economic development of less-developed countries and put the United Nations Millennium Development Goals at risk of never being reached, says South African President Jacob Zuma.Speaking on Wednesday following a meeting of the G5 emerging countries – China, India, Brazil, South Africa and Mexico – on the sidelines of the G8 Summit taking place in L’Aquila, Italy, Zuma said a global response was required to combat the crisis.He said the world was confronted by multiple crises that included the current economic crisis, food insecurity, energy scarcity, climate change, and the global spread of influence, and that Africa was often the worst victim.“We are here because we believe that the challenges that affect the world today can only be resolved through peaceful cooperation, global dialogue and, most importantly, coordinated action.”Global response requiredThese crises required a global response involving developed and developing countries in a partnership of cooperation and mutual respect.“We recall the decision of G5 Foreign Ministers meeting at the UN General Assembly last year to deepen dialogue among member countries to enable a more effective response on these issues,” Zuma said.He called for more worldwide measures to resolve the crisis, eliminating trade protectionism, finalising the Doha talks as soon as possible, and increasing assistance to developing and less-developed countries.Mexican President Felipe Calderon said the emerging economies should play an even more important role in addressing the global issues. They should unite and strike consensus so as to help developing and less-developed countries better resolve the challenges of climate change and food security, he said.Economic, financial reformBrazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said the G5 leaders’ meeting was an important platform on addressing economic and financial problems, adding that the G5 should make full play of the meeting to push the international community at large to better address the global financial crisis.He appealed for tightening monitoring and regulation of international financial system and giving up trade protectionism, so as to drag the world economy out of crisis as soon as possible.Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh told the meeting that the consensus reached at the G20 Summit in London should be implemented.The global financial crisis was closely relevant with food crisis and energy crisis, Singh said, calling for worldwide cooperation to address the challenges that run across the globe.Source: BuaNews-Xinhualast_img read more

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first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Yesterday Congress passed the final tax bill, sending it to President Donald Trump for a signature in a much debated, high-priority goal for the Administration.“This is a once-in-a-generation reform of the federal tax code and it comes just in time to be an eagerly awaited Christmas present for taxpayers. Having traveled through our nation’s heartland for most of this year, I know that the hard-working, tax-paying people of American agriculture need relief,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. “Most family farms are run as small businesses, and they should be able to keep more of what they earn to reinvest in their operations and take care of their families. Simplifying the tax code and easing the burden on citizens will free them up to make choices for themselves, create jobs, and boost the overall American economy. I thank President Trump for his leadership, and commend Congress for being responsive to the people.”The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is a sweeping tax system overhaul that has very divided support nationally and in agriculture. The National Farmers Union (NFU) staunchly opposed the Act because of its regressive taxation structure and implications on health care affordability and the nation’s financial standing. The bill’s massive $1.5 trillion increase to the deficit now potentially places farm program and entitlement funding on the chopping block, according to NFU president Roger Johnson“Farmers Union is deeply disappointed in Congress’ decision to approve the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, not only because it is flawed fiscal policy, but also because we must now fight to protect every penny that is spent securing our nation’s food supply and natural resources, supporting our rural communities, and feeding our hungry,” Johnson said. “This tax bill leaves a $1.5 trillion hole in the budget — a hole that some members of Congress will want to fill with farm program and entitlement spending cuts. At a time when rural America is experiencing the most severe economic downturn in a couple generations, we cannot afford to take away their safety net. Moving forward, we urge Congress to avoid any funding cuts to programs that support our nation’s family farmers and ranchers.”The American Farm Bureau Federation was supportive of the tax cuts that will benefit the nation’s farmers.“The tax reform package passed by Congress this week will result in lower taxes for the vast majority of farmers and ranchers. This tax overhaul includes many changes to the tax code, most notably lower individual tax rates that will benefit farmers and ranchers. Ninety-four percent of farmers and ranchers pay taxes as individuals, and those rates are coming down. The bill also maintains all of the important deductions and credits that farmers rely on. So, thanks to a lot of hard work by Congress and the administration, farmers will have both lower rates and all the tools they’ve always had to manage their businesses,” said Zippy Duvall, AFBF president. “Starting next year, farmers and ranchers will also be able to take a 20% deduction off their business income. That’s new, and it will reduce the taxes farmers owe. The bill also doubles the estate tax exemption to $11 million per person, which will provide relief to the vast majority of farmers and ranchers. We look forward to President Trump signing this bill. Most of the provisions in this tax bill are temporary, lasting for only seven years, so Farm Bureau will now focus our work on making those important tax deductions, lower rates and the estate tax exemption permanent.”last_img read more

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December 17, 2019

Worrying About Weeds

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Emily UnglesbeeDTN Staff ReporterNEW ORLEANS (DTN) — “We have to do better.”That was the challenge issued from Scott Senseman, a weed scientist and the 2018 president of the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA), to the hundreds of weed scientists and members of the ag industry gathered in New Orleans this week for the group’s annual meeting.For the past two days, rain and wind has occasionally battered the windows of the hotel where the scientists are meeting, a fitting backdrop for the stormy issues they are tackling, from an epidemic of herbicide-resistant weeds to the public’s growing concerns about chemical use.But Senseman is optimistic. Out of the 500 people at the meeting, more than 100 are graduate students.“We need you to come up with new technologies,” Senseman told these rising young scientists. “We need your youth and your creativity and your energy to get these things done.”Many are already delivering. Some graduate students at the meeting presented research on using drones to assess weed pressure from the air and spot-treat weeds instead of spraying entire fields. Others showed how some cover crops can suppress the germination of troublesome weed species. Yet another group of students laid the groundwork for the development of an automated roadside spray truck capable of identifying and treating weeds and tracking environmental conditions as it goes.“We’re talking about a challenge of having to triple food supply, not just double it, and can we do it?” Senseman asked. “Of course. We’ve got environmental issues all over the place, we have a lot of trade issues, we have all kinds of challenges facing us, but we will do it, because we have to.”A BRAVE, BUT WEEDY, NEW WORLDThe WSSA had its first formal meeting more than six decades ago in 1956 in New York City, Senseman noted. The chemical 2,4-D had been registered for commercial use just 10 years earlier, and dicamba wouldn’t be registered for another decade. Newspapers, TV and radio brought information to the public, and the world population was hovering around 2.8 billion people.Now, in 2019, crops tolerant to new formulations of those same chemicals, 2,4-D and dicamba, are rapidly expanding. But we’re facing a very different world. The public gets its information from social media and a sprawling digital information landscape. The world population is pushing 8 billion people, and scientists continuously fret over how to feed them in the face of a changing climate.Many of the presentations at WSSA tackle the problems generated by our modern approach to weed control, namely the herbicide-tolerant crop system, and the new difficulties of communicating with the public.In the days to come at the WSSA meeting, some scientists will unveil discoveries of new herbicide-resistant weed populations. Others have detailed the economic costs these troublesome populations bring to producers and the industry. A number of sessions dwell on how and why herbicides like dicamba are moving off target, beyond crop fields where they are applied.Other presentations highlight how scientists, with their rigid scientific method and dry, technical language, are battling rising anti-science movements among the public, in the form of anti-GMO campaigns and calls to ban some agricultural chemicals completely, such as glyphosate.“The decisions to ban or restrict glyphosate are not supported by the evidence,” said Keith Solomon, director of the Centre for Toxicology at the University of Guelph in Guelph, Ontario. “Politics and their perception-based agendas appear to be the drivers of the bans and restrictions of glyphosate.”In Europe, where glyphosate use is already heavily restricted, weed scientists worry that additional restrictions or bans will push farmers to older selective herbicides and allow resistant weed populations to spread, said Solvejg Mathiassen, a crop ecologist from Aarhus University in Denmark.“How do we translate weed science for public consumption?” wondered Carol Mallory-Smith, a weed scientist from Oregon State University. “As scientists, we’re talking about apples — we use all our technology and all our jargon — when the public is looking for oranges. How do we bridge that so we’re all using the same language?”“If you just Google a topic like this, what comes up is not going to be something from the Weed Science Society,” she added. “That’s a problem.”LOOKING BEYOND THE OLD SOLUTIONSThe solutions to many modern weed problems might be closer than some realize.Just down the hall from where Solomon, Mathiassen and Mallory-Smith were worrying aloud about glyphosate’s survival, graduate students and scientists were presenting the possible future of agriculture: drones, automation and non-chemical solutions to weeds.Students and scientists from Texas A&M presented their research on using drones, or UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles), as well as automated vehicles to control weeds. One project examined how well UAVs can identify broadleaf and grass weeds in corn, soybean, cotton and sorghum fields from the air. Another project analyzed how well UAVs can disperse herbicide droplets on key weeds, laying the groundwork for remote, spot-spraying drones of the future.In a third Texas A&M project, students mounted ultrasonic sensors on the side of a truck to identify and treat weeds automatically as it drives along, while also tracking application parameters like wind speed, temperature and humidity.A group of Australian scientists are looking even further into the future and working to develop a robot that stalks crop rows and zaps weeds individually with a laser.More immediately, University of Tennessee students are unlocking the allelopathic power of some cover crops to reduce pigweed’s ability to germinate and grow roots. And at Auburn University, students are helping farmers actually integrate these practices into their farming systems by studying which herbicides peanut and cotton growers can use without harming a following cover crop.In his opening speech, Senseman likened the search for novel weed control approaches like these to past breakthroughs, such as landing a man on the moon or breaking the 4-minute-mile record.“We can and will need to do better,” he said. “After all, these things were the great challenges of their time and their world, but by combining intelligence and committed people, they were able to attain incredible accomplishments.”You can find more information on the presentations at WSSA’s annual meeting here: http://wssa.net/….Emily Unglesbee can be reached at [email protected] her on Twitter @Emily_Unglesbee(PS/AG)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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first_imgThe perfect silhouette can immerse audiences into a story without ever revealing too much information.Top image: Sicario via LionsgateSilhouettes have been a huge part of cinema, but telling stories with shadows is nothing new. You can go all the way back to the Han Dynasty of China (between 206 B.C. and 220 A.D.) to find some of the earliest records of shadow puppets. This ancient form of storytelling and entertainment has captured audiences for centuries.Many directors and cinematographers have made legendary film sequences using silhouettes. Here’s a look at how silhouettes can be used to create suspense, a feeling of isolation, or a romanticized view of the world.The Suspenseful Silhouettes of Alfred HitchcockPerhaps the most prominent use of silhouettes come from the noir films of the 1940s and 50s. The French term film noir literally translates to black film or dark movie. Those Hollywood noir films were actually heavily influenced by the German Expressionism of the 1910s to 1930s. German silent cinema of that era was decades ahead of Hollywood.The Babelsberg Studio, located just outside of Berlin, is one of the oldest film studios in the world. The studio began producing films in 1912, and was home to countless projects like Fritz Lang’s classic Metropolis. In 1924, Babelsberg collaborated with the UK studio Gainsborough Pictures on the film The Blackguard. That film was the first by Gainsborough to be produced abroad. To work on the film, they sent over assistant director and art director Alfred Hitchcock.I acquired a strong German influence by working [in] Berlin. – BBC TelevisionImage: Alfred Hitchcock Presents via CBSGerman expressionism would be a huge part of Hitchcock’s signature style on countless films. The director’s use of silhouettes helped him earn the moniker The Master of Suspense. He frequently used the technique to focus the audience on a threat. In 1941’s Suspicion, Hitchcock used a silhouette of actor Cary Grant carrying a glass of milk.Image: Suspicion via RKO PicturesCinematographer Harry Stradling Sr. worked with Hitchcock to create this eerie image, which makes the audience wonder if the glass of milk is poisoned. This sequences cuts to a scene of Grant pressuring his co-star Joan Fontaine to drink the milk. Without the silhouette, the scene wouldn’t be nearly as ominous.This particular Hitchcock silhouette pays homage to the 1922 German film Nosferatu, which featured the vampire Count Orlock creeping up a staircase.Image: Nosferatu via Jofa-Atelier Berlin-JohannisthalYou can’t mention Hitchcock’s use of the silhouette without mentioning the legendary shower scene in Psycho. The entire sequence disguises the murderer in silhouette, failing to give the audience a real glimpse of the attacker.The shower sequence was storyboarded by Saul Bass, who was tasked with capturing screenwriter Joseph Stefano’s notes that stated the scene should give:…an impression of a knife slashing, as if tearing at the very screen, ripping the film. – TCM Image: Psycho via Paramount PicturesThe Isolated Silhouettes of Roger DeakinsImage: The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford via Warner Bros.Cinematographer Roger Deakins could have an entire masterclass written just on his use of silhouettes. Many of his films feature at least one silhouette. When it comes to choosing when to use a silhouette, Deakins admits it comes down to instincts.Most of he choices I make are instinctive, so I can’t really give you a reason for when I shoot a silhouette shot. Obviously, it comes from the script and the scene, but a silhouette can be used for a romantic moment as much as it can be used for something more sinister. – Roger DeakinsImage: Skyfall via Sony PicturesDeciding on the shot also comes down to the the circumstances of a character’s situation. More often that not, isolation is a key factor in Deakins’ silhouettes.A silhouette could signify isolation and loneliness or it could signify a threat. Context is key. – Roger DeakinsIsolation doesn’t only mean that the character is alone. The feeling of loneliness can be portrayed with the right framing. In the below still from Jarhead, notice there are actually several Marines in the shot, but only one stands out by himself.Image: Jarhead via Universal PicturesDeakins pulled off a similar shot in Sicario, however this time the audiences feels the isolation as they walk alongside Emily Blunt. Blunt plays an outside agent caught up in an operation against a drug cartel — an operation that the others want her being no part of.Image: Sicario via LionsgateThe Romantic Silhouettes of Steven SpielbergLike Deakins mentioned before, silhouettes can also be used to romanticize a moment. This isn’t merely referring to romantic relationships, but as a way a presenting images in an idealized way.Steven Spielberg is a director known for using silhouettes in a variety of situations. The blockbuster master used silhouettes to terrify people out of the water in Jaws.Image: Jaws via Universal PicturesSpielberg whisked audiences to magical heights with his famous lunar flyby in E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. The silhouette was so instantly iconic, it became the director’s signature; the image now represents his production company, Amblin Entertainment.Image: E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial via Universal PicturesHe made us feel the brutal heat of the desert sun in Raiders of the Lost Ark.Image: Raiders of the Lost Ark via Paramount PicturesSpielberg even took audiences far across enemy lines in Saving Private Ryan, accentuating the impossible task of finding one unknown man among many armies.Image: Saving Private Ryan via DreamworksAn examination of Spielberg’s work alone showcases the silhouette’s ability to transcend storytelling. His silhouettes evoke so much more than the image presents on screen. So many of his silhouettes have become iconic film images in their own right, proving the silhouette can not only set a mood — but define an entire film.As a cinematographer, you have many options when using a silhouette. You can easily use the technique to romanticize a moment or accentuate action. You can terrify audiences by building suspense or feel the isolation of a character. How do you like to use silhouettes? Let us know in the comments below.last_img read more

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