Video by Stella Haus Films.

Photos by Eric Kayne, Mark Greenberg, Kimberly Scott, Philip Thomas, Rachel Chaney, Shannon Gowen, Sinjin Hilaski, and Enola Gay.

Timelapse video by Stella Haus Films.

Keynote Speaker:

Dan Winters

Dan Winters is one of the most recognizable, awarded and sought-after editorial photographers in the world. His signature lighting style, the red and green tones he uses and the dramatic expressions he gets from his subjects are all part of how he shoots. Dan Winters’ images are iconic; and it’s not just because he photographs icons. The magic of a Dan Winters portrait is it’s authenticity. For over three decades he has created compelling images of the world’s most familiar faces and has amassed a list of accomplishments too long to list. His images are associated with the best in magazines, book publishing, and fine arts. 

He has won over a hundred awards for his work and is considered by many to be an icon himself. Dan Winters is a photographer well-known for his celebrity portraiture, photojournalism, and illustrations. He has won numerous awards including a first place World Press Photo Award and the Alfred Eisenstaedt Award for Magazine Photography.  His work appears in many national and international publications, including WIRED, The New York Times Magazine,The New Yorker,Vanity FairGQTIME and Rolling Stone

He has had multiple solo gallery exhibitions in New York and Los Angeles, and a solo exhibition at the Telfair Museum Jepson Center for the Arts in Savannah.  His work is in the permanent collections at the National Portrait Gallery, Museum of Fine Art, Houston and The Harry Ransom Center.  His books include Dan Winters' America: Icons and IngenuityLast LaunchPeriodical PhotographsRoad To Seeing, which chronicles his path to becoming a photographer, and his upcoming book, The Grey Ghost, which is a selection from 30 years of his New York street photography.

Long-form Documentary Workshop


Lisa Krantz is a staff photographer at the San Antonio Express-News. Lisa has received numerous awards including the POYi Community Awareness Award in 2015, World Press Photo Award in 2015 and Pulitzer finalist for feature photography in 2015. In the 2015 Pictures of the Year International (POYi) competition she was awarded third place Newspaper Photographer of the Year and second place Issue Reporting Picture Story-Newspaper for “A Life Apart: The Toll of Obesity,” the story of Hector Garcia Jr.’s struggle with obesity in the last four years of his life. “A Life Apart” was also screened at Visa pour l'Image in Perpignan, France in 2014. 

In 2014 her photographs of survivors of Military Sexual Assault received multiple awards including first place Issue Reporting Picture Story-Newspaper in POYi. Her project on Sam Houston High School, an inner-city school threatened with closure, garnered recognition including the 2010 Scripps Howard Foundation National Journalism Award for Photojournalism and third place POYi Newspaper Photographer of the Year for 2010. She also received the Scripps Howard Foundation National Journalism Award for her portfolio in 2012. She is a three-time NPPA Region 8 Photographer of the Year and her work has also been recognized by NPPA’s Best of Photojournalism, the Casey Medals for Meritorious Journalism and the National Headliner Awards. She has a psychology degree from Florida State University and a MA in photography from Syracuse University. Previously she worked at the Naples (FL) Daily News.

By the Olive Trees

A Project by Benjamin Rasmussen and Michael Friberg about the Lives of Syrian Refugees in Jordan

Artists Friberg and Rasmussen have taken their expansive editorial experience, along with a generous film sponsorship from Kodak, and travelled to Jordan, Lebanon to document the plight of Syrian refugees displaced there. Utilizing large and medium format cameras, as well as audio recorders, the friends and collaborators were able to lend their own sophisticated visual language to the crucial documentation of one of the worst humanitarian crises our world has ever seen.

Stirring imagery and poignant narratives come together inside the gallery to more intimately inform audiences of complex events taking place thousands of miles away.  By the Olive Trees is a 64-page color newsprint publication consisting of stories from those affected by the Syrian civil war.


Benjamin Rasmussen is a freelance photographer based in Denver, Colorado. He spent his childhood with an indigenous people group on an island in the southern Philippines, his university years with evangelicals in a small town in northern Arkansas, and a year with the descendants of Vikings in the Faroe Islands, a nation of 45,000 residents in the middle of the North Atlantic. In 2014, Benjamin was chosen as one of PDN’s 30 New and Emerging Photographers to Watch. His work has been selected for the American Photography Annual, shortlisted for the Leica Oskar Barnac Award, and awarded in the 2010 POYi awards. He has been chosen as one of Photolucida’s 2010 Critical Mass Top 50 and included in the Magenta Foundation's Flash Forward - Emerging Photographers 2011 and 2012 lists.

Michael Friberg attended Westminister College and works as an editorial and documentary photographer. In 2013 Michael Friberg was chosen as PDN’s 30 under 30 New and Emerging Photographers to Watch. His clients include: GQ, Esquire, Fast Company, The New York Times Magazine, Google, ESPN the Magazine, Bloomberg Businessweek, Bloomberg Markets, Wall Street Journal Magazine, TIME Magazine, The New Republic Inc, Apple, Wired, Stern (Germany), M Le magazine Du Monde (Le Monde), Men's Journal, Runner's World, AARP, Outside Magazine, Variety and Rolling Stone.

Emerging Photographers: Defining A Unique Style 


Photographers share their most valuable lessons learned as they were launching their careers, and explain how they got their work noticed and supported. The panel discussed successful strategies for building a supportive network, gaining exposure, honing and sharpening their artistic voices, getting practical help on business issues, and describing challenges of starting a photography career in a competitive market. Moderated by Mark Menjivar.

Mark Menjivar is an Assistant Professor at Texas State University and his work explores diverse subjects through photography, stories and found objects while emphasizing dialogue and collaboration. Mark is a member of Borderland Collective. His work has been shown at venues across the country including The Houston Center for Photography, The San Antonio Museum of Art, The Wignall Museum of Art, The University of Wisconsin-­Milwaukee, Baylor University, The Southwest School of Art and Central Michigan University. His work has been featured by National Geographic, Artforum, TED, NPR, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Village Voice, Gastronomica, Orion Magazine, GUP Magazine and dozens more. His work, The Luck Archive is a collection of objects, photographs and stories that use luck as a starting point to explore belief, culture, superstition and tradition and was made into a book last year and published by Trinity University Press.

After studying photography at Southwestern University, Nick Simonite developed his photographic style while on sabbatical in Kunming, China. There, he captured rich bucolic landscapes and portraits of individuals from every facet of life.  Since then, Simonite has combined years of photojournalism expertise with an esoteric skill set uniquely tuned for editorial and creative commercial photography. While fully embracing absurdity, Simonite’s style is best characterized as clean, naturalistic and lucid. Having worked substantially in all aspects of commercial photography (lighting, retouching, compositing, etc.), Simonite is able to see productions from shoot to delivery while maintaining his distinct aesthetic and detail-oriented focus on quality.

Carolyn Van Houten is a staff photographer at the San Antonio Express-News and a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  She grew up on a farm in rural North Carolina and studied astrophysics before finding her way to photojournalism. In college, Carolyn interned at The Chicago Tribune, The Tampa Bay Times, The Herald (Jasper, IN), and The White House.  After starting at the Express-News, she was awarded an internship with National Geographic Magazine, which took her to Argentina, Antarctica, and the bayous of Louisiana.  She was named the College Photographer of the Year in 2015 and Pictures of the Year International’s Newspaper Photographer of the Year in 2016.  However, she would much rather talk about her horse named Spike, her newfound love of Texas, or the many people who have been kind enough to allow her to tell their stories.

Kathy Vargas is an artist/photographer from San Antonio, Texas.  She has had one person exhibits at Sala Uno in Rome, Galeria Juan Martin in Mexico City, Centro Recoleta in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and retrospectives at the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio and Universitat Erlangen in Germany.  Group shows include "Hospice: A Photographic Inquiry" a national traveling exhibit commissioned by the Corcoran Gallery, Washington D.C., and “Chicano Art: Resistance and Affirmation (CARA)”.  She is in the collections of the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum, the Toledo Art Museum, the National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago, the Houston Museum of Fine Arts, and the Sprint Collection.  Named 2005 Texas Two-Dimensional Artist of the Year by the Texas Commission on the Arts, her papers will be house at the Archives of American Art.  She is currently associate professor of art/photography in the Art Department at the University of the Incarnate Word. 

Building Relationships in the Editorial World


Ready to get your foot in the door and begin shooting for your dream clients? In this panel, we learned from successful editorial photographers about how to carve a space for yourself within the industry, how to successfully land clients, and the tricky business of negotiating even on tight editorial budgets. Attendees got answers straight from the award-winning photo editors at publications including Texas Monthly, San Antonio Magazine, Austin Monthly, Variety, and the Houstonian about how they find talent, what they look for when hiring a new photographer, and more. Moderated by Jeff Wilson.

After graduating from St. Edwards University, Jeff Wilson worked for the Texas House of Representatives on a documentary project photographing lawmakers during the legislative session. He traveled the state for six years as a Forensic Photographer. Jeff received a nomination for a National Magazine Award on a photo essay for Texas Monthly Magazine and was later expanded into a book entitled "Home Fields" published by the University of Texas Press. Another piece on Texas dancehalls, was a National Magazine Award finalist. Jeff was featured in the PDN Photo Annual and American Photography, and his photographs are included in the permanent collections of the National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C. and the Wittliff Collection at Texas State University, among others.

Leslie Baldwin studied fine arts at the University of Texas and got her start in the photography world when she moved to New York City in 1995. While there she worked as studio manager for photographer and illustrator Matt Mahurin and then as cover coordinator for Time magazine creative director Arthur Hochstein.  Leslie Baldwin has been the photography editor for Texas Monthly, a 13-time National Magazine Award-winning regional magazine, for 12+ years. Leslie handles most photo assignments and photo research for the printed version of the Texas Monthly magazine.

Jenn Hair lives and (mostly) works in Austin, TX except for the 1-2 days a week when she heads south to San Antonio. As Creative Director of San Antonio Magazine, her job involves working with photographers in both San Antonio and Austin, as well as spending plenty of time on the I-35 corridor between the two cities. On top of the magazine’s design and art direction, she utilizes her background in photography to shoot food, restaurants and the occasional Alamo historical reenactment for the magazine. She was previously Deputy Design Director of Austin Monthly magazine and still works out of their offices. 

Chuck Kerr is an art director, illustrator, and musician living in Los Angeles. The native Texan is currently art director at  Variety  Magazine, and was previously AD at SagaCity Media in Seattle, designing publicationsVisit SeattleTravel Tacoma + Pierce CountyVisit Bellevue, and Homeport Seattle. He was also a contributing designer to Seattle Met magazine and Washington State Visitors Guide. From 2006-2012 he was art director of the San Antonio Current, gaining accolades from the  Society of Publication Designers, Society of News Design and Coverjunkie.com. When not behind his Mac, Chuck is behind the drums or piano for his musical project, Bad Breaks.

Chris Skiles is the Senior Art Director of Brand for retail giant Academy Sports + Outdoors where he is working with a small internal design team on the future of the core brand, as well as Academy’s exclusive brands. Before his jump into the world of retail, Chris was the founding Design Director of Houstonia magazine where he led a small art department in the launch of the city’s first paid-circulation regional city publication. Chris was the Associate Art Director at Seattle Met magazine in Seattle, Washington where he worked as one of only two designers for the highly-respected regional city publication. He was also the Art Director of Maui Time Weekly in Hawaii, Art Director at Marion Montgomery Inc., ENVY Houston & Dallas magazines and Graphic Designer for Regency Publishing. 

Four X Five Photo Fest Emcee


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Suhail Arastu was raised in San Antonio and studied Neurobiology & Classics at The University of California, Berkeley where he competed as an NCAA gymnast. In Philadelphia he continued research and began graduate studies before moving to a small Japanese mountain village for a year of contemplation, deep sea fishing, hiking, skiing and teaching. He then travelled the world by ship under the auspices of the United Nations Economic & Social Council before returning home in 2008. Suhail now serves as a Trustee of The Mind Science Foundation and works as the Development Director for Musical Bridges Around the World. He is the Arts & Culture Chair for Anuja San Antonio, the organization which manages our Sister City Relations with Chennai, India. Suhail is the Mayor's appointee to the Public Art Commission and enjoys serving on the Board of Directors of Gemini Ink, Constitution Cafe & The Lone Star Art Alliance. He presented a collection of his photographs from seven continents at PechaKucha Volume 5.