digital stories and photographs

newspaper photographer

Enough already

It snowed today. Again.

The value of professional photojournalism

It’s nice to see Boston Globe photographer John Tlumacki featured in this video that is part of a research project by the National Press Photographer’s Association:

from NPPA on Vimeo.

A Maine winter

When I woke up Tuesday, the world had turned white. Wind gusts of 30 and 40mph made the walking and shooting a challenge at best. I edited this video, which combines clips shot around southern Maine by staff photographers Derek Davis, Shawn Ouellette, Gregory Rec and Carl Walsh.

Maine’s meth problem continues to grow

Tabbatha Osnoe describes how she lost everything to her addiction to methamphetamines. Maine is seeking to combat meth and the small do-it-yourself manufacturing operations that pose their own dangers, as arrest numbers grow and addiction takes its toll. I photographed and edited this video with Press Herald video reporter Susan Kimball, while our crime reporter Dave Hench wrote the print story.

City remembers 35 who died in 2014

Thirty-five is the highest number of deaths of homeless residents recorded in 20 years. Dr. Ann Lemire, medical director for Portland’s Public Health Division, addresses the crowd.

A witness to Pearl Harbor

“All the sudden you could feel the vibrations. And that’s when they screamed on the loudspeaker, ‘Air raid! Air raid!’ ” recalls Jim Watson, 95, who was below deck on the USS Phoenix when Japan attacked on Dec. 7, 1941.

Mother of accused arsonist, victim’s sister speak out

As reporter Scott Dolan wrote the story for the Maine Sunday TelegramNov. 30, 2014, I edited the accompanying video about the recent fire in Biddeford that killed two young men. My co-workers Shawn Ouellette and Gregory Rec shot interviews with the mother of the accused arsonist and a sister of one of the victims. I shot b-roll of the scene, still eerie two months after the fire.

Diptychs help tell a story of division

In the recent election, hotly contested races fueled heavy voter turnout in Maine. As Democrats and Republicans garnered nearly equal numbers of votes, this state mirrored the nation – painfully divided and lacking much room or willingness for compromise. Two days after the election, co-worker Whitney Hayward and I visited two contrasting towns whose voting patterns help illustrate this trend – Greene, which voted 69.1 percent for Republican incumbent Gov. Paul LePage, and Hallowell, which voted 65 percent for Democrat Mike Michaud. Our photos were published in the Press Herald as diptychs, with Whitney’s images of Republican Greene on the right and my images of Democratic Hallowell on the left.

Democracy takes time

It was a long Election Day on Nov. 4, with the winner of the hotly contested governors race not known until after midnight. (Incumbent Paul LePage, a Republican, beat Democrat Mike Michaud, who had served 12 years in Congress and, before that, 20 years in the state legislature.) I edited this glimpse of voters shot by Portland Press Herald staff photographers at several polling places in southern Maine.

Maine State Prison guard says he was hazed

The turnover rate among rookie guards in the Maine state prison system is 80 percent. Some of the reasons why become clear when watching one of those guards tell what happened to him on May 11, 2014. The hazing he endured included being handcuffed and threatened with pepper spray, says Cory Peaslee, 20, a former guard at Maine State Prison in Warren. The story prompted the Press Herald to write an editorial on the topic.

Miniature goats deliver creamy yield at Buxton farm

Marie and Tim Clements started raising Nigerian dwarf goats as a retirement hobby. They didn’t plan to fall in love with the animals and make a ton of goat cheese in a year.

Woman sues GM over burns that scarred her for life

Emma Verrill, a Yarmouth resident who became a paraplegic in high school, is now suing General Motors over an SUV seat heater malfunction that left her bed-ridden for 10 weeks and scarred for life.

Maine man remembers the Navajo code talkers

John McLeod, 91, worked side by side with Navajo code talkers during the Battle of Okinawa in 1945. Story published on Aug. 14, 2014, National Navajo Code Talkers Day. It is also the 69th anniversary of Victory over Japan Day, or V-J Day, which marked the end of World War II.

A hands-free dog leash

Bill Feldman of Portland, Maine has invented a device to make walking the dog an easier undertaking.

Baby seal beached in Portland’s Back Cove

Animal care workers eventually removed the seal from the cove, which is very close to the I-295 highway, so that it could be examined.

Coming Aug. 2: The 17th annual Beach to Beacon 10K

Sheri Piers and Kristin Barry, among Maine’s top women competitors, share their views on this race that has become a favorite for many runners.

Vietnam Vet receives Silver Star 44 years after battle

On Oct. 15, 1970, Rob Jackson, who was then 22, did something most soldiers wouldn’t do. He ran into the middle of a ferocious firefight – unarmed. He was a conscientious objector, and an Army medic, in Vietnam. He was willing to serve but he didn’t want to kill anyone. Forty-four years later, he is ready to receive the Silver Star that he once refused.

Full Circle from kunhardt photo on Vimeo.

Idol aspirations

On July 9, more than a thousand would-be singing stars stood in line for five hours or longer to sing just a snippet of a song for producers of the TV show American Idol. It was the first time in the 12-year history of the star-making Fox TV show that auditions were held in Portland, Maine. As men and women of all ages waited, the Portland Press Herald asked the television hopefuls to sing the pop song “Let it Go.”

Blind young Mainer lives one day at a time

Jacob Allen, 20, has bilateral anophthalmia. He was born without eyes. A recent graduate of the Perkins School for the Blind in Massachusetts, he now faces the transition to life after school. Portland Press Herald video reporter Susan Kimball narrates.

Recovering from a brain injury

Life changed in an instant for Meredith Bell, when she slipped in an icy parking lot and hit her head. She suffered a traumatic brain injury and now is recovering from a frightening physical deterioration. Portland Press Herald video reporter Susan Kimball wrote and narrated this story.

Taking the risk to read

Literacy students at the Harrison Elementary School in Maine gain practice reading aloud – to a Dalmation named Ghost. Portland Press Herald video reporter Susan Kimball wrote and narrated this story.

Maine woman joined French Resistance during WWII

To the Nazis, Eugenie Ceklarz Prescott was a teenage girl scouring the French countryside for food to feed her starving family during World War II. What they didn’t know was that the 14-year-old girl was smuggling notes for the Resistance.

Zombies arrive in Portland

The filming of a low-budget zombie comedy called “Night of the Living Deb” began at the corner of India and Newbury streets Monday morning. The film is being made by Maine native Kyle Rankin. The film has a $160,000 budget, extremely meager by Hollywood standards, so free props, supplies and locations were a key for Rankin and his crew. Rankin, a native of York who made indie films in Portland in the 1990s, said he has tried to persuade studios to back a film project in Maine for years. He said the biggest reason studios resist is the lack of competitive tax incentives for filmmakers. So, Rankin raised money on his own through the fundraising website Kickstarter. Rankin, 41, is best known for winning Matt Damon and Ben Affleck’s Project Greenlight, a contest for aspiring young filmmakers. – Ray Routhier, staff writer, Portland Press Herald

Boston/New England Emmy awards 2014

From the Portland Press Herald:
BOSTON – JUNE 7: Amelia Kunhardt, video editor for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram, won a Boston/New England Emmy Award on Saturday night for a documentary she produced on the shooting of an 18-year-old by a Maine state trooper in West Paris last June.

Kunhardt won the award for “Three Shots on Roy Road” in the category Societal Concerns.

The award was presented at the organization’s annual ceremony in Boston.

The Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram was nominated for five of the regional Emmy awards this year.

The Maine Public Broadcasting Network also took home an Emmy for “The Commodore” in the category for Outstanding Interstitial (short video).