Photographs by Brian L. Frank
Last fall, photographer Brian L. Frank, a California Sunday contributor, taught a photojournalism class at San Francisco State University for men and women returning from prison. Our photography director, Jacqueline Bates, was struck by the work, particularly from two photographers, Chris Shurn and Eugene Riley. Brian said: “Chris has this ability to just walk up to anybody and start shooting the shit, and then you just forget he’s there taking pictures. Eugene has this way of being really thoughtful about translating what he’s feeling into an image.” Jackie approached them about shooting a story on adult education (“You Got Your High School Diploma?”) in this month’s issue — she thought they could create a comfortable space for the subjects and bring an intimacy to the images. I spoke with Chris and Eugene about the assignment.
Backstage: On Assignment With Chris Shurn and Eugene Riley
A Q&A with two formerly incarcerated photographers.