8 Pictures Proving the Chicago Sun-Times Was Crazy to Cut Its Photo Department

Dear Chicago Sun-Times,

What a bummer you had to let your photo department go! Thirty paid staff photographers (even ones with Pulitzer prizes) must certainly be a financial burden that holds very little bearing to how people get their news.

Photos are for the internet, right? Or, anyone can be a photographer! Did you say that?

Listen: A picture used to be worth a thousand words.

As we move our attention over to the internet, the future of print journalism continues to consolidate itself. The big Times and Posts of the nation are working to make themselves relevant in the digital age, while we continue to split our attention with a bittersweet memory of the old-world of journalism and the face-paced, eye-catching glamour of the modern age.

But, if what Bob Dylan says, "The real truth is just a plain picture" is indeed true, then we are slowly eroding the plainest truth speakers we have out of the conversation.

The truth is that not everyone can be a photographer.

Yes, everyone can hold camera and take a picture. But, just like the words, "everyone can draw" is true, not everyone is good at drawing. Some people are just better than others. They put in the time, they have an eye, and they treat their craft like it is all they have in the world. Everyone has an art they excel at.

Well, the same goes for a photographer.

Just because any writer with a cell phone can capture an image doesn’t mean that it makes the story. A good photographer is an artist that sees the story. They listen and absorb the situation and observe to the point that they blend in. They are in the moment, not taking a picture of it.

Photographs are an integrated part of how we get our news and while the photo is often overlooked, it is important to remember just how important a good photograph and photographer are.

In a testament to the power of a single picture, I have included a series of photographs captured by the late Wayne F. Miller. Wayne F. Miller returned home from World War II to his home, Chicago, to discover a new, dynamic place he did not recognize. I have included selections from his iconic series Chicago's South Side: 1946-1948.

Miller passed away on May 25 at the age of 94.

A good picture more than speaks for itself. Photo journalism will always have a place in our society. Some people need to remember that.

1.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print

2.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print

3.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print

4.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print

5.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print

6.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print

7.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print

8.

Wayne F. Miller

Chicago's South Side

1946-1948

gelatin silver print