Artist Talk with Michelle Gabel and Bruce Strong

June 11, 2015 - 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM

Michelle Gabel
As a staff photographer for The Post-Standard newspaper in Syracuse, NY, I enjoyed 21 fulfilling years documenting a diverse array of stories, making images of people from all walks of life. During that time, I tried to cover my community with empathy, integrity and honesty, learning from my mistakes and building rich relationships along the way. I witnessed many changes in the newspaper industry. As print is being phased out in favor of digital, I left my workplace in December 2014 to pursue my master’s degree full time in photography, multi-media and design at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.

The diverse array of human interest stories I’ve covered in the US and abroad include following a breast cancer patient and her family during the year leading up to her death; the effects of environmental pollution caused by IBM in its birthplace of Endicott, NY, and the day-to-day reality of a couple raising 15 adopted children. My international work includes documenting various projects in southern Sudan started by four young Sudanese men, now living in Syracuse, NY, who are helping to rebuild their homeland; and a trip to Ghana, West Africa, to photograph a community’s efforts in furthering girls’ education.

I’ve received numerous awards from the National Press Photographers Association and AP for my work in photography and multimedia and feel lucky to be in a profession that is creative, fun and serves the community. I’m continually struck by the kindness of strangers who have opened their worlds to me. By photographing their lives I learn a lot about mine.

Bruce Strong
As both a staff and freelance photojournalist, Bruce Strong has shot in nearly 60 countries while working on assignments and personal projects. His work has been published in Time, Newsweek, US News & World Report, National Geographic and various international magazines, as well as The Orange County (Calif.) Register, where he was on staff for more than a decade.

Strong’s work has received many honors, including California Photographer of the Year, as well as recognition from the National Press Photographers Association, the Society for News Design, the Associated Press News Executives Council and Women in Communications. He also founded Photo Night®, a monthly gathering of photographers that has drawn up to 500 professional photographers as well as such renowned speakers as James Nachtwey, Arnold Newman, Antonin Kratochvil, Douglas Kirkland, Corinne Dufka, Jeff Jacobson and Sam Abell and William Albert Allard of National Geographic.

He was previously a visiting professional at Ohio University School of Visual Communication, where he mentored both the 2006 and the 2007 College Photographer of the Year recipients. He traveled twice around the world on paid assignments and was awarded the Knight Fellowship in Newsroom Graphics Management and Publication Design. He also served as the Kellogg Public Policy Fellow at the University of Michigan Journalism Fellowships Program, during which time he and his wife, Claudia, published their first book, “Armenia: The Story of a Place in Essays & Images.”