THE FIRST 3 MONTHS OF THE DANIEL MALKA PHOTO PROJECT

Aside

January 26th 2012, from my usual table at Shaika Cafe where the idea came alive…to April 26th, going over the details of my first mission.

Rain shine, snow, rich, poor, with everything or nothing, I am on my way, with my heart, soul, cameras and willpower. What more does one need.
I made a commitment to all these children, and I will help them!

I have an amazing team of friends and volunteers around me, they work, call, support and believe in this as much as I do.
I have to say thank you all, I know that my passion sometimes make it tough to work with me. Thank you for your patience.
My daughter has been amazing in encouraging me and wants to be part of it as well with her photo and video abilities.

We have doors open in many countries, and great people that are involved in helping us.

We have received cameras, money and sold quite a few prints.
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to the ones that have contributed to the project.

We have had some great press coverage and there is more coming.

Of course a little help from some sponsors would be great, considering the thousands and thousands of dollars I have spent on their equipment during my career.
All we are asking for is some point and shoot cameras for the kids to use. Trust me, not only they will use them, but they will do it proudly and and the results will be impressive.

A couple of plane tickets would be great as well.

I have no issue in throwing in my money in this project to help the kids, and I am doing it.
It’s about humanism, creativity, photography, life, art therapy and mostly remind these children that the whole world can see their photographs and will help them in changing for the better.

I am amazed at life’s irony sometimes.
It turns out that it was easier for me to make $5 to $15 000 per day shooting dreams fabricated by ad agencies than it is to get $5 to help overcome the sad reality that surrounds so many children in this world. A chaos created by greed, injustice, lack of education and mostly poverty. They did not ask for this.

It is all our duty to do something and create a change, as small as it can be, but a change.
Saving one child is sure worth a 4 day hike in the mountains of South America or a 6 day journey in Sub Saharan Africa.

In three months, we have founded our project, generated thousands of visitors from every corner of the world to our site, we are growing little by little and the first photographs by the children will be up very soon.

I am calling on all activists, volunteers, fund raisers, photographers, journalists, corporations, to call, email, post, speak to people you know to get more cameras and one or two plane tickets.
A buck or two to the One Dollar campaign will go a long way as well.

We also need volunteers to help us with our social networking, and others with NGO experience.
We are still looking actively for a photographer based in Cameroon.

I will keep you updated of our progress!

Thanks to all the friends and supporters!!!

Thanks on behalf of the children!

We are on our way!
Daniel Malka

THE STORY OF THE CAN MAN BY DANIEL MALKA

© 2012 daniel malka, all rights reserved

THE STORY OF THE CAN MAN

I see him almost every morning
He goes around
looking inside garbage cans

I offered him a coffee
we shared a few cigarettes and words…

They call me Can Man
I collect cans and bottles

20 cans buy me a Coca Cola
50 cans buy me a bread

Are you getting any help?
Welfare gives me $572 a month

After I pay rent I am left with $150 to eat
I need at least $300 a moth for food
So I go to the food bank
I’m only aloud once every 6 weeks
the food they give lasts 2 weeks

I can go eat at the shelter
but I have to go by bus and back
it’s 6$

You don’t get reduced rent
No Sir

You don’t get free bus
No Sir

Are you getting the maximum on welfare
No Sir

Why?
Because I’m only mentally handicapped
not physically handicapped.

Oh no where did I leave my bag
It’s right here no worries Can Man

Thank you Sir

Please call me Daniel
I don’t call my friends Sir

What happened Can Man?

I had a shoe store
I was married and I have twins

Do you see your kids?
No
they live in Toronto

I had a brain aneurism
spent 5 months in the hospital

I lost part of my short term memory
my wife got rid of the store
It was doing badly because I wasn’t there

Then I found her cheating on me with a fireman
I caught them in the act

I went to see the fireman
and told him he is supposed to save lives
not destroy families

So she found another guy
One day I came home and found
just a table setting left on the floor
with a note
“you will never see me or your children ever again”

It was true

Only recently the twins got in touch
with some family, they’re in their twenties now

So I lived under a store
during a few months

Can you work?
No
I can’t remember what they just asked me to do
so I go around collecting cans and stealing hearts

You don’t steal them Can Man
You earn them

Can you drive?
They took away my license for life

So you are handicapped

That’s what I tell the welfare agent.
She say’s that physically I am fine,
therefore I can’t get the maximum help

But it’s ok, with the cans
I can get some food

However my welfare agent
called me in because someone told her
that I was making money collecting cans

I signed her a paper saying
that I only exchanged cans for food

Would you like something to eat?
Oh no, the coffee was just fine

You now have a new friend Can Man

You’ve been there sir haven’t you ?

How do you know that ?

From your eyes sir

We shook hands
and Can Man left
with his bag of cans

So

when people ask me why
I want to go and help poor children

the answer is in the story of the Can Man

Enough feeding the bureacracy monster that
manufactures Can Men

I will help children
so they have the heart
and will power of the Can Man
and the talent to tell their story
so they don’t have to live
giving accounts about how many cans
they have collected

L’ENVERS ET L’ENDROIT
THE FLIP SIDE OF THE COIN

EL DESTINO Y EL AMOR SE VIVEN NO SE INTERPRETAN
ONE MUST LIVE HIS DESTINY AND HIS LOVE HE SHOULD NEVER INTERPRET IT
daniel malka

L’ENVERS ET L’ENDROIT / THE FLIP SIDE OF THE COIN

IL N’Y A QUE L’AMOUR QUI NOUS RENDE A NOUS-MEMES
ONLY LOVE CAN BRING US BACK TO OURSELVES

Albert Camus

This Photography Project is inspired and is about Love, Life, and Destiny
It is greatly inspired by Albert Camus who once said that there is a flip side to everything.
I couldn’t agree more, and add that true beauty and true love are on both sides.

THE DANIEL MALKA PHOTO PROJECT
because life is beautiful
y ya yo te amo
© 2010-2012 on all texts (except where mentioned) and photos daniel malka all rights reserved.
ANY REPRODUCTION OR DIFFUSION IN PART OR IN WHOLE IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED BY DANIEL MALKA

A PROJECT TO HELP CHILDREN IN THE PRESS

Aside

WE ARE SORRY, THIS ARTICLE IS ONLY AVAILABLE IN FRENCH FOR THE MOMENT. IT WAS PUBLISHED IN A FRENCH PHOTO MAGAZINE PHOTOSOLUTIONS

Un projet photo pour aider les enfants
Publié le 20 mars 2012 par Fannie

Une très belle initiative, le projet photo de Daniel Malka (The Daniel Malka Photo Project) a pour mission d’utiliser des méthodes innovatrices pour enseigner la photographie créative aux enfants âgés de 7 à 15 ans, vivant dans la marginalité. Ces enfants recevront des appareils photo numériques et la théorie nécessaire pour apprendre les bases de la photographie. Ce projet cherche aussi à encourager d’autres projets réalisés partout à travers le monde, en collaborant avec des ONG, des organismes de charité et d’autres organismes communautaires locaux. Cette collaboration permettra la création d’une communauté mondiale de jeunes photographes qui pourront partager leur vision du monde.

L’organisation a été créée à Montréal, par Daniel Malka, diplômé en sciences, photographe, écrivain et professeur. Après 20 ans de travail comme photographe publicitaire, éditorial et d’art, en Europe et en Amérique du Nord, Daniel prit la décision d’orienter son expérience et sa volonté vers l’aide aux enfants de tous les pays du monde, vivant en marge de la société.

THANKS TO PHOTOSOLUTIONS

DANIEL MALKA INTERVIEWED

Aside

DANIEL MALKA INTERVIEWED BY THE NDG RACOON

EXCERPTS FROMTHE ARTICLE BY THE NDG RACOON


The Daniel Malka Project

aims to create an international visual forum upon which children ages 7-15 will publish photographs they have taken of their own lives. So far there are 10 countries who have shown interest (Japan, Mexico, Peru, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Columbia, Uganda, Kenya, Spain, and Romania), an exceptional group of volunteers, and an enormous lack of digital cameras for the young shutterbugs to use. Anyone willing to part with an old (or new) digital camera should either read this article, or scroll down to the bottom to find out where you can drop it off. A buck or two would also go a long way since this worthwhile project depends on private funding.

The origins and political philosophy of Montreal photographer Daniel Malka

Daniel grew up in Montreal in the Côte-des-Neiges, NDG area, attended Baron Byng High School in the mile-end area, and CEGEP in St-Laurent. He studied at Concordia University, and went to grad school in Sherbrooke, and is currently a professor of photography at Dawson College. What he remembers most about his childhood in Montreal is Expo 67, never locking car doors, playing hockey and soccer, and having friends from all walks of life. He also clearly recalls The War Measures act in 71.

What shocks him about today’s Montreal is the number of homeless and untreated mentally-ill in the streets. He sees the excesses of indirect taxes and budget spent on the police force as democratic dictatorship. Citing personal experience, he considers having to pay 700$ for a 54$ unpaid ticket to be a greedy abuse of power. He considers the services offered in exchange for our tax dollars to be scarcer than when he was growing up.
“We never waited 6 hours in a hospital or had no access to a family doctor. There is far more social injustice in today’s Montreal, and less freedom. An oppressed society only means there will be more criminality. ”

Daniel still sees Montreal as a peaceful city to live in, but thinks the recent social changes are definitely not for the best, and that people’s priorities are out of synch with reality.
“I don’t believe in building a pretty, white picket-fence in front of a house just to keep up appearances while everybody in the house is starving. I mean that for households, for sure, but I’m directing that more at governmental policies.”

Daniel is a second generation photographer.
His uncle is a photographer, as well as his world famous cousin Michel Malka. During childhood, he often had a camera in his hand, and learned how images had the power to tell stories and to spark his imagination. At the age of 15, upon discovering Tri-X film, and the magic and mystery of darkroom work, Daniel developed a more serious appreciation for photography.

“The power of capturing a moment and seeing it appear on a sheet of paper a few hours later… my darkroom was the floor of my small bedroom. It was the time of Jean Loup Sieff, Hiro, Avedon, Penn, Sarah Moon and so many other great photographers. It was the time of musical giants like Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Dylan, and Cohen.”

Daniel’s influences and inspiration came from his parents, who taught him about human values, determination, charity, love and social justice. Literature and music reinforced his parent’s guidance. He especially notes the works of Albert Camus, like, The Fall, L’Etranger, The Plague, which, from a young age opened his eyes to the fact
that not everything under the sun shines, and that the plague can hit us at any time.

“Beaudelaire, Flaubert and Rinbaud taught me how to be the romantic that I am.
Losing my parents at a young age taught me that life is too short not to do what I love.
As Camus says, to die is absurd in itself, so, to live without a purpose is even more so.”
That’s why he does what he loves, and loves what he does.
He expresses both the good and the bad conditions he perceives.

“I show the good, to unveil the beauty of human kind. But there needs to be balance in photography, just as in life, so I also show the bad to expose injustice and to create a change for the better.”

Why nomad-at-heart Daniel Malka stays in Montreal

Although he grew up in Montreal, and enjoys the part of NDG where he lives because it is “so real,” Daniel is a nomad at heart.
He has lived elsewhere for almost 17 years.
He spent 10 years in Madrid, and 7 years in Toronto.
He returned to Montreal to be with his daughter, and to attend art school, and he decided to stay because of friends, family, and mainly because of his divorce.

“I had to take care of my daughter who has lived with me for the last 7 years.
There are many things I like about Montreal, as well as many I don’t. Being away for so many years makes me aware of the enormous changes this town has undergone. It’s became a more modern and active city than it was during my youth. However, from the perspective of social conditions, things have gotten much worse.”

Daniel reiterates his feelings about priorities, both at the governmental and household level, where everyone is going into debt to present the appearance of financial success at the cost of long-term security, health, and freedom. He believes that excessive debt leads to levels of intolerable stress that puts the well-being of everyone, especially our future generations, at dire risk.
“That might be a problem with North America in general – the race to compete at any cost. Sure it all looks great from the outside, but I don’t believe this is working anymore.
I’ve traveled enough to learn what corruption is. Here it is tacit – silent and underlying, because no one talks about it, or if they do, they kind of smile nervously like that’s just the way it’s supposed to be, as if just because people seem to be in the same boat, everything is normal. Sometimes people complain, but no one seems to make any important moves.”
Daniel explains that in Latin America, people know about corruption because it’s obvious and it’s part of their daily lives. However people do go to jail for it, unlike here where it is entrenched at almost every political level, and people seem to be more accepting of it as cost for our way of life.

“Heh. After all, freedom always carries a price…but it’s well worth it.
Unfortunately destiny and life sometimes tells you differently.”

Daniel Malka: professional photographer

For Daniel, photography is a way of life. He instructs his students to dream, sleep, and breathe photography. He considers it the most powerful storytelling device ever created.
“No wonder there is a belief that certain cultures think that a photograph steals a piece of your soul. In a way it’s true. You can immortalize an instant of someone’s life, and that, to me, seems to be the same thing. And with today’s technology, you can get that story out there in seconds.”
Being a freelancer all his life hasn’t been easy. However, photography has allowed him to live, and has elevated him in his darkest moments. It has been his most faithful companion (besides his dog Mona). Daniel has gotten paid substantially to play with what he refers as his “toys,” though he has never technically considered his art to be “work.”
“My first paying photos were for Les Grands Ballet Canadiens.
I was studying Science at the time, working part-time selling cameras…man, every penny I made went back into photography.
I fell in love with the power of telling a story in a fraction of a second, immortalizing time.”
He has taken award-winning photos on two continents, and has had them published on three. His most lucrative ventures have been during contracts for ad agencies, but what he loves most is being spending time with the people.

“I’ve met so many outstanding people through photography. It gives you the ability to connect with your surroundings in a very unique way. And because, as I always say, an image never lies, you know right away who is the good guy and who is the scum bag when you look through the view finder.”
Although I interrupt here to mention various visual deceptions perpetrated by the media, Daniel promptly corrects me. He is not referring to image manipulation. He is talking about photography in its purest form.
“It’s a tool that tells the truth, and should be used to share the beauty in this world whenever and wherever you find it. No, I am no surgeon. I use the tool bluntly and honestly to expose the good and the bad. I am even more passionate today than when I was a teenager. Some people hate me for it, but quite frankly I don’t care, because the ones that do are usually mediocre, maybe not always technically, but in relation to revealing raw emotion. I don’t believe in life without passion. It’s like making love by appointment.”

Daniel loves everything that has to do with photography. Teaching it has been an enlightening element in his life; sharing all of his knowledge and inspiring others is the most gratifying experience as he gets to witness people growing into photographers with his guidance.

“Photography is no different than life. There are decisive moments where you have to choose where you want to go, just like the instant when you decide to press that shutter button. I try to find the passion in my students as well as help develop their creative instincts. Photography is about people, passion, love, simplicity, humanism, and freedom of expression. Most of all, it’s about freedom itself. The professional aspect is a bonus.”

The Daniel Malka Photo Project
“The Daniel Malka Photo Project is the sum of all my experiences, emotions, and greatest beliefs about humanity’s capacity for love, compassion and sharing. Before becoming a photographer, I wanted to be a pediatrician. Children are natural fighters. They have a pure, untamed vision of their surroundings. They love and trust unconditionally…that is until they are hurt, of course. Kids are the most vulnerable in any society, and should be protected from anyone who uses them to satisfy greed or obtain power.

“The project is challenging in the sense that it is addressed to children from ages 7 to 15. We’d like to begin them at 5, but we’ll have to see about the logistics of that. The kids involved will be diverse. From the hidden and forgotten indigenous people of Latin America to the child soldiers in Africa, we want to give them all the tools to document their experiences from the inside out as opposed than the outside in. I believe that helping develop creativity in these kids would give rise to positive critical thinking skills. Also, they will have a tool to be more sensitive, united, and be seen by the rest of the world. Greater exposure would minimize their roles as targets of injustice, war, and delinquency.

“The project will stay alive thanks to photographers who will get on-site training to continue the project. Our team of photographic journalists wants to help change these children’s lives by providing their voices a visual forum. We’re all volunteers who have agreed that every penny raised must be spent directly on the kids.
“The idea is to teach photography, and to design specific assignments based on their needs and problems. They will document and photograph their lives and gain exposure in galleries around the world, and online. This should generate more awareness about the often overlooked conditions of these children, and generate more support for all NGOs. Of course there is a lot to do in Canada as well, and our team will start work here soon.

THE DANIEL MALKA PHOTO PROJECT LAUNCH

Aside

THE DANIEL MALKA PHOTO PROJECT LAUNCH

A great evening and beginning for many more successful ones to follow

As the evening progressed, more and more people came to see the photo exhibition and support the project.

© 2012 the daniel malka photo project, all rights reserved

Old friends, students, visitors, photographers, foundations, people of all trades that believe that creative thinking and photo-documenting from the inside out, from the children’s point of view can help.

© 2012 the daniel malka photo project, all rights reserved

People gave cameras, funds and good wishes, some purchased prints, others donated in kind.

© 2012 the daniel malka photo project, all rights reserved

All with one vision, one goal, make a difference in a kid’s life.

© 2012 the daniel malka photo project, all rights reserved

One of our many projects HOW THEY SEE was unveiled.
It will happen in Peru.

Our goal is to visit three communities, starting with one of 35 children that are in need of clothing, shoes, antibiotics, education and mostly be remembered by the rest of us so other ONGs help them as well. These communities are isolated and far from towns. They are only accessible by foot and by donkey ride.
We are asking you to plesae continue helping The Daniel Malka Photo Project by donating digital cameras, funds, even a dollar or two make a difference.

In the name of the whole team and the children we are going to help, we would like to thank all the ones that came to the launch, and all the ones that keep on supporting us, as well as the ones that will support us in many ways.

BEHIND THE DANIEL MALKA PHOTO PROJECT

THE DANIEL MALKA PHOTO PROJECT

© 2012 THE DANIEL MALKA PHOTO PROJECT, all rights reserved

I have lived and quite a few things in my life.
As I said in my book VOYAGE, some call it my crazy life, I simply call it my life.

The Daniel Malka Photo Project is the sum of all my dreams, friendships, smiles, tears, laughs, losses, visions, every day’s realities so often forgotten, and all the love and compassion that I have to and can offer.

Life has offered me the chance to be able to see, feel and tell stories.
Destiny has given me the chance to travel and understand that not all under the sun shines.
It has also given me a child, and a great one. I always loved children, their sincerity, their sensitivity and their ability to be amazed.
My daughter always wanted a brother or a sister, I wanted to have 5 or 6 children. Destiny gave me one.

Merging my teaching skills, my experience and vision as a photographer my love for life and humanity, my desire to make a small change in a child’s life as I did for my own, has led me to the creation of this dream and project.

I have decided to dedicate the rest of my life and all my passion in helping as much as I can in bringing as small as it is a social change to the condition of the forgotten thousands of children victims of social injustice, inhuman conditions, wars, greed and remind the world that we all share responsability for the suffering of each child on this planet, simply because we can all help one way or another.

The Daniel Malka Photo Project’s principal goal is to teach these children skills to remind us who they are and that they deserve the same as our own children.
Thy will express the beauty, their love, their smiles their griefs and share their values with the rest of us as thousands of other children around the globe.

We can all help them by supporting in many ways the project. It might carry my name, but this project is not mind, it belongs to all these children that we will be able to help.

I want to thank life and destiny, for bringing me to this point in my life.

I need to thank from the bottom of my heart to all the volunteers and dear friends working day in and day out for this project to become a success, and that soon we are able to buy shoes, medication and so many things that these kids need.

This project is a dream come true not only for me but for all the children we will be able to reach and help smile back at life.

 

A big part of the inspiration to the project is the music from The National.

I’ll go braving everything
With you swallowing the shine of the summer
I’ll go braving everything
Through the shine of the sun

But I won’t be no runaway
Cause I won’t run
No I won’t be no runaway
Cause I won’t run

The theme song of The Daniel Malka Photo Project is: The Runway by The National

 

THE RUNWAY