I want to let you know how much I appreciate the extraordinary stories and photographs from Afghanistan by Paul Watson and Carolyn Cole. Their work combines straight reporting, human interest and storytelling in a way that elevates journalism to a higher level. Each has a great eye for resonant detail, and I can only imagine the adventures they have each day as they search out and develop their stories.
I especially admire Cole’s photographs. They’re not sensational or sentimental, just beautiful. She gets right in the middle of things and shoots at the precise moment when reality unfolds. Nothing in her images is mere background. The texture of a wall, a gun barrel, some faces, a tangled beard and a vast landscape make a single statement about the war and its context.