March 2014: Telling It Like It Is
David Sutherland, Syracuse University Associate Professor, and his students talk about using Vision, Courage & Heart in his/their picture editing class:
David Sutherland -
"It's not often that I find a textbook that is easy to read, packed with information that is useful in a daily sense and is well worth the price ($18.50). Bob Lynn's Vision, Courage and Heart is all that and more. Bob's conversational writing style keeps my students interested because they enjoy reading the book.
"I used Vision, Courage and Heart in my picture editing class for the first time last year. It was so effective I am using it again this year. Bob Lynn does a great job of bringing to readers his lifetime of experience and knowledge gained from working at almost every level of newspaper visuals.
"The book advises, it counsels, and it inspires its readers to take themselves beyond merely being technically proficient and constantly encourages them to see how important it is to develop, not only their technical skills, but their interpersonal skills. Most text books tend to get so caught up in the "how-to" processes, they miss this much more important concept.
"I highly recommend this book to every photography student, but I find it especially useful for my students who have interest in becoming picture editors or other management positions."
David's students -
1. I would absolutely recommend Vision, Courage & Heart to anyone. This book has taught me a lot about how to be in charge of anything, not just about images. It has great teaching moments for being a great picture editor, and I think that's so important for this class. It is almost like being able to talk to Lynn directly because of how candid it is, and because of that I think it is a powerful teaching tool. I plan on using this for many more life lessons than just picture editing.
2. I really enjoyed Bob Lynn's easy read style and frank discussions. Lynn's writing made me feel like I was sitting in a cafe, bar or backyard barbecue talking about the subjects discussed in his book.
3. I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone looking to advance himself or herself as a photographer trying to grasp a leadership style in the professional workplace. It really clears the fog about preconceived notions of what it might be like to be a photo editor as well as a guide on how to treat our fellow photographers.
4. Lynn's method of mentoring photographers and motivating them to do better than they think they can was a large part of the reading that kept me turning pages.
A review of Vision, Courage and Heart by Bill Kuykendall
Bill Kuykendall: Retired Libra Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies and Senior Lecturer in New Media, University of
Maine; former -- Shott Professor of Journalism, West Virginia University; Associate Professor of Journalism, Director of Pictures
of the Year contest, and co-director of Missouri Photo Workshop, University of Missouri; photo director, Seattle Times.
Sunday Gazette-Mail - Charleston, WV - June 13, 2013
Photojournalist offers lessons in leadership and life
By Bill Kuykendall
for the Gazette-Mail
Bob Lynn is many things: an explorer and inventor, a teacher and counselor, a catalyst and facilitator -- in short, an articulate, visionary and courageous leader who, throughout his rich and productive career, has put doing the right thing above everything else. Indeed, Bob's life embodies the concept of change agent in all the best aspects of the term.
In "Vision, Courage & Heart," his essays on photojournalism department management comprise much more than a handbook for running a newspaper picture operation. At their most fundamental level, they are lessons in morality. In fact, with some interpolations and transpositions, these could serve as a blueprint for how to live as a constructive, collaborative member of any human society.
Bob's message is direct and simple, but never simplistic. Every principle is stated clearly and illustrated with illuminating examples that clarify and contextualize his thoughts. Moreover, his credibility could not be greater, because his text is drawn from and illustrated by hundreds of success stories at the two newspapers where he and his crews of exceptional photojournalists led a national wave of innovation in photographic reporting and storytelling in the 70s, 80s and 90s.
A book about newspaper photo management may seem highly specialized and of limited use outside the journalistic profession. Not so. It is just as relevant to general audiences as Tracy Kidder's Pulitzer Prize winning Soul of A New Machine, which detailed the creative process in computer programming years ago. Students of participatory decision-?making should take heed, too. Herein is proof that, contrary to conventional wisdom, it is indeed possible to empower frontline workers to perform at the highest levels of creativity and professionalism under tight deadlines in diverse and far-flung circumstances with or without immediate supervision.
And think about it, isn't this what great athletic coaches must do so that excellence can happen whenever their team takes the field or court? Vision, Courage and Heart is all about nurturing individuals, defining culture, and articulating a vision that can inspire independent decision--?making by every team member whatever the circumstances. Everyone who aspires to play a constructive role within an innovative organization, regardless of discipline, should read this book.