The Royal Holloway MBA group were exposed to some out-of-the-box thinking during induction by guest speaker Jeff Widener, celebrated US photojournalist who covered numerous dangerous conflicts in South East Asia.
MBA Director Justin O'Brien has sought to introduce a number of arts based interventions in the traditionally business minded management programme to stimulate creative thinking processes and imbibe students with a strong flavour of Royal Holloway's liberal arts pedigree.
Salvador Movie Trailer
The trail of this James Woods movie 'Salvador' perhaps captures the essence of the thrills, very real mortal danger and adrenalin rush experienced by conflict photojournalists.
A guest of Royal Holloway's economic historian Dr. Emmett Sullivan, Jeff used a stunning portfolio of his work link to share reflections of a 40 year long career that took him up close and personal to life threatening assignments in Tianamen square, East Timor and Cambodia. His highly regarded professional reputation also gave him access to meet and photograph leading world figures that included Princess Diana and Margaret Thatcher. More conversation reportage with Jeff can be found here.
Iconic 'Tank Man' image in Tianamen Square
The iconic "Tank Man" photo that came to epitomise the failed attempt by the Chinese people to rise up against their Communist oppressors required Jeff to risk his life cycling through battle lines and perch in a dangerously exposed position. The difficulty of obtaining film saw this image shot using speed exposure, that lacks the fine detail of Jeff's usual work. Initially lambasted by his editors for sending grainy images 'down the line' (pre-internet telephone line data transfer) Jeff was later eulogised for placing an image that was literally plastered across the front pages around the world.
If you ever wondered where the expression 'Up Close and Personal' came from - I would point you at this Hollywood blockbuster staring Robert Redford and Michelle Pfeiffer....