Blog posts


Palm Springs Photo Fest

Sergii Koshelev has a unique job: cameraman for the Chernobyl Shelter Implementation Plan. He documents conditions within and around the destroyed 4th Block reactor. He recalls expeditions inside the Shelter as full of adrenalin and devoid of light. Though showered with radioactive particles, he was not scared, he says.

After facing danger, some men brag. Not Koshelev. He has faced extreme radiation for 20 years, yet remains modest about his work. “Chernobyl is in us and we are in Chernobyl,” he explains matter-of-factly.

At home, his feet get cold and he pulls on his wife’s Minnie Mouse slippers.
I was happy to hear this news today:

My After Chernobyl project is a finalist in the Palm Springs Photo Festival competition. A slideshow of my photos will be screened during the festival at the Palm Springs Art Museum. April 1, 9 pm, during the evening presentation.

Read more here.


zReportage: Chernobyl Today

I am pleased as punch to have my Chernobyl project featured in this week's zReportage, an online magazine of investigative photojournalism.

After quietly working on this project for years, I am delighted that more people are getting to see the work. There are so many important and bizarre and interesting stories to tell about the Ukrainians who continue to live near Chernobyl.

If you saw my 2009 After Chernobyl exhibit, you'll find 20 new photos in this story.

In addition: Zuma Press will now start to sell my Chernobyl (and other) stock photography.

Thanks for all the good words, everyone!


Chernobyl tourists

Tourists photograph the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, the site of the world's worst nuclear accident, on March 1. On the night of April 26, 1986, the Fourth Block reactor (visible at center) exploded during a safety test, sending radioactive particles into the atmosphere and eventually around the world. The population within 30 kilometers was permanently evacuated, including residents of Pripyat city and many villages.
As spring comes, the snow melts and the tourists start flowing into Chernobyl. The flow will peak in late April, the anniversary of the accident.

I find it bizarre that Chernobyl is now Ukraine's hottest tourist attraction. It seems almost every day a different van or busload of tourists pull up outside the Fourth Block with their cameras and gas masks while the workers are just sitting around smoking their cigarettes.

This day-long tour was organized by, a historic preservationist group founded by evacuees from Pripyat, working to save their hometown from ruin before looters and weather destroy what remains.

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