Thursday, May 17, 2012
CNN iReport Awards: Compelling Imagery

Editor's note: The iReport Awards recognize the best in participatory journalism from around the iReport community. You can see the nominees in all of the categories and vote for the Community Choice Award at the CNN iReport Awards website.


The best images grab you and tell a story on their own. It takes creativity and skill to pair images in a way that tells a powerful narrative.


The iReports nominated in the Compelling Imagery category are all very different.


Some are heartbreaking, others are dramatic and some are whimsical and fun, but each used captivating imagery to deliver their messages:


Hundreds live on one-acre island



During a mission trip in Uganda, Charity Deane visited the island of Makusa in Lake Victory and documented the challenging conditions the villagers face. The one-acre island is home to more than 400 people. The villagers live in tiny huts with no electricity or running water.


Deane’s iReport shares a glimpse of everyday life in a place that most viewers are unlikely to ever see.


Dubai time-lapse



Richard James Bentley’s time-lapse view of Dubai captures the frantic, go-go energy of the ultramodern city. Cars zipped between skyscrapers, fountains danced and boats raced through the water.


He also filmed jellyfish and other aquatic creatures floating along at their own pace.


Occupy Wall Street: Day 23


Fourteen-year-old twins Anna Otto and her sister Rachel convinced their father to take them to New York so that they could be a part of the Occupy Wall Street protests last fall. The sisters shot video from the protests and Anna edited it into this energetic video.

The video has intensity, condensing many scenes from Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park into a story that gives a sense of what it was like to be at the protest.


Are you okay with human slavery?



Renee Hong used animation techniques to draw attention to the problem of human slavery for an art project last summer, and shared this video for Footage of a person sewing, a woman putting on make-up, and someone standing in a field, take on a sinister feel when overlayed combined with startling facts information about forced labor, prostitution and child soldiers.


Hong’s video gives the horrifying statistics about human slavery even more emotional power.


Catman of Key West



Lulis Leal says she fell in love with Dominique Lefort’s performances with felines in the 1980s on her first trip to Key West, Florida. Her fondness for the famous street performer and his cats shines through in her photographs.


The pictures also give a sense of the joy and satisfaction Lefort seems to feel as his feline co-stars perform their tricks.


Taking a stand to end slavery



Another submission for the CNN Freedom Project made the compelling imagery category this year. Sunny Yang just needed a dry erase marker and a white board to create a powerful message against human slavery. The South Korean teacher used stop-motion photography to illustrate a woman being freed from chains.


The animation was simple, sweet, and creative, and made her webcam vow to make a difference even more heartfelt.


You can vote for your pick for the Community Choice Award at the CNN iReport Awards website and you can share your story at CNN iReport.

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