Capturing the Moment: Untold Stories


A video recording of this program is now available on the Explore Content section of this website.

David Guttenfelder has spent more than 20 years covering world events all over the globe. He began as a traditional photojournalist using professional camera equipment to take photos. In 2010, he bought his first smartphone and realized it was the perfect tool for capturing the moment: small, discreet, and always in his back pocket. In this discussion, Guttenfelder unpacks his journey with the smartphone and how photographing with phones has become a completely natural behavior. He discusses his take on the legitimacy of the smartphone camera and how it allows people to explore their creativity, enables them to instantly publish and capture intimate moments. This program will be moderated by Dana Atrach, assistant professor in Northwestern Qatar’s communications program.

This discussion explores how the smartphone has enabled the capturing of untold stories and whether it really has been a tool that has afforded more mobility.

[Image: courtesy of David Guttenfelder]

  • Program credits

    David Guttenfelder

    David Guttenfelder is a National Geographic photographer focusing on geopolitical conflict, conservation and culture. He has spent more than 20 years with Associated Press covering world events from bases in Japan, India, Israel, Ivory Coast and Kenya. An eight-time World Press Photo Award winner and a seven-time finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, he was named inaugural Instagram Photographer of the Year by TIME magazine in 2013. His North Korea mobile phone photography has been exhibited at Visa pour l’Image in Perpignan, France, the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, and the Cortona Photo Festival in Tuscany. He is the founder of the Instagram collectives @everydayUSA and @everydayDPRK.

    Dana Atrach

    Dana Atrach is a Palestinian screenwriter and assistant professor in the Communication program at Northwestern Qatar. In 2014, Atrach’s first feature, Heeya Howa, won Best Unproduced Script Based on a Family Drama at the St. Tropez International Film Festival. Her second feature, Alterations, is currently under development. She has also written and co-written several short films that have premiered in Doha and Los Angeles. Atrach holds a BS in Communication and Media Studies from Northwestern University in Qatar and an MFA in Screenwriting from the University of California, Los Angeles. She served as a Communication Specialist and was a member of the founding team of Teach For Qatar.