Fine Art Photography Daily

The 2020 Lenscratch Staff Favorite Things


©Aline Smithson, The End of Winning

Today, the Lenscratch staff shares some of their favorite things of 2020. This isn’t a BEST OF list – (defining something artistic as the best is totally subjective) – but instead, we want to share art forms that excited and inspired us, from books to photographs to music to television.


ALINE SMITHSON, Founder and Editor-in-Chief

Favorite Book of 2020: Predicting the Past, Zohar Studios: The Lost Years, by Stephen Berkman, published by Hat & Beard Press.


Favorite Lenscratch Post of 2020: Raymond Thompson Jr: The 2020 Lenscratch Student Prize: 1st Place Winner

It’s always a special day when we announce the Lenscratch Student Prize Winner and I so appreciated Raymond’s multi-approaches to visual storytelling and the reconsiderations of histories through a Black lens.


©Raymond Thompson Jr.

Favorite Photo (that I didn’t take): Oh so so many, some featured below: Jon Henry’s work blows me away, Eva Woolridge’s stunning imagery, but this year, more than any other, I was inspired by so many image makers.


©Jon Henry, Untitled 33, Jersey City, NJ


Denial © Eva Woolridge

Favorite Artist: Tierra Whack
What can I say, her songs and visuals just speak to me.

Favorite Dance Music: Dua Lipa, Don’t Start Now

Favorite Producer: RL Grime’s Halloween IX

Favorite Binge Watching:

Early Covid: Married at First Sight, Tiger King, Queer Eye, We’re Here

Middle Covid: CNN and MSNBC

Late Covid: Queen’s Gambit, The Crown, Schitt’s Creek, Euphoria


BRENNAN BOOKER, Director of Special Programs

Favorite Book of 2020: Heaven is a prison – Mark McKnight
Screen Shot 2020-12-13 at 2.24.29 PM
Favorite Lenscratch post of 2020: Lenscratch Top 25 to Watch

Damn, I Can’t Go On This Side of the Park? 2020 © William Camargo

Favorite photo (that you didn’t take) from 2020: Megan thee Stallion by Dana Scruggs
 Favorite artist/song in 2020: Chloe x Halle – Ungodly Hour

Favorite Binge Watching in 2020 (favorite tv show): Rupaul’s Drag Race of course!

BARBARA CIUREJ and LINDSAY LOCHMAN, Collaborations Editors

Favorite book of 2020:
Barbara: This book made me laugh: The Wonderful World of Ladybird Books for GrownUps by Jason Hazely & Joel Morris

DsuQJk8XcAEKfmuLindsay: Entangled Life by Merlin Sheldrake

f5dd34a9-2420-4667-8739-a269873117db.__CR364,445,3640,2252_PT0_SX970_V1___Favorite Lenscratch post of 2020:
Lindsay and I agree that the overview of both the jurying process and this moment in photography was sensitively covered in this post on the 2020 International Juried Show at the Center of Photographic Arts

bunny riot's eyelashes 35mm film

©Norma Cordova, 1179_30A

Favorite photo that you didn’t take from 2020:

Barbara: this poignant image by Jon Henry

©Jon Henry, Untitled 55, Little Rock, AR

©Jon Henry, Untitled 55, Little Rock, AR

Lindsay: Paula Gillen’s Exploring The Origin of the Milky Way


©Paula Gillen, Exploring The Origin of the Milky Way

Favorite artist/song in 2020:
Barbara: not really of this time, but Hildegard of Bingen’s Hymns and Songs from the 12th century have transported me away from the hellish news.

Lindsay: Not favorites, but random encounters with very amazing song/artist combos.
They made me think a lot about American History.
The Ballad Of Davy Crocket (Album Version) – Louis Armstrong

Johnny Cash – Got Rhythm

Favorite Binge Watching in 2020 (favorite tv show):
Barbara: Ozark
Lindsay: Waldemar Januszczak’ art history videos on Amazon Prime


LINDA ALTERWITZ, Art and Science Editor

Favorite Book of 2020: David MaiselProving Ground


Cover of Proving Ground by David Maisel

Favorite Lenscratch post of 2020 Alex Turner: Blind River

©Alex Turner

 Favorite photo that you didn’t take from 2020:  Ecdysis by Elizabeth Stone

©Elizabeth Stone, Ecdysis

 Favorite artist/song in 2020  “Wait for Me” from the musical Hadestown

 Favorite Binge Watching in 2020 (favorite tv show): The Good Doctor


KELLYE EISWORTH, Managing Director

Favorite book in 2020: Hope in the Dark by Rebecca Solnit

Favorite (photo) book of 2020Keeper of the Hearth: Picturing Roland Barthes’ Unseen Photograph, Editor Odette England

Screen Shot 2020-11-24 at 12.50.50 PM

Cover of Keeper of the Hearth

Favorite Lenscratch post of 2020Mare Kapajeva: Dream is Wonderful, Yet Unclear


©Dream is Wonderful, Yet Unclear by Maria Kapajeva, Published by Milda Books

Favorite photo that you didn’t take from 2020: Jeremiah Ariaz,  Presidential Cutouts, Republican Campaign Office, McAllen, TX, 2020


©Jeremiah Ariaz- Presidential Cutouts, Republican Campaign Office, McAllen, TX, 2020

Favorite artist/song in 2020: Lizzo

Favorite Binge Watching in 2020 (favorite tv show): Grace and Frankie


MICHAEL HONEGGER, European Content Editor (based in Nice, France)

Favorite photo book of 2020:Brenton Hamilton’s, A Blue Idyll

For a brilliant stroll through the artifacts of history, immerse yourself in the brilliant hues of Brenton Hamilton’s love affair with alternative photographic processes. It is a photographic dream world that should not be missed.


©Brenton Hamilton, A Blue Idyll Book Cover

Favorite Lenscratch post of 2020: Reveal: Cig Harvey, Andrea Modica and Debbie Fleming Caffery
Three of my favorite photographers in one post…what more could one ask for? Their styles are diverse but somehow the team approach is brilliant.


©Cig Harvey

Favorite artist/song in 2020:

Laura Pausini, Lo sì

Laura Pausini’s soaring anthem is a lovely way to end a film starring Sophia Loren in a dazzling performance. Watch the film (The Life Ahead) then rejoice in Pausini.

Favorite Binge Watching 2020: A Suitable Boy directed by Mira Nair. I devoured the book when it first came out many years ago so I was so ready to binge the series. Having done so, I loved the cinematography and acting but felt they rushed the courses in trying to cram a 1000 page book into 6 episodes. Nonetheless, I loved it!

Favorite photo that I did not take: Magritte had a point!


ERICA CHEUNG, Content Editor

Favorite book of 2020: Just Us: An American Conversation by Claudia Rankine. I would recommend any one of her books in a heartbeat.

Screen Shot 2020-12-15 at 5.18.21 PMFavorite Lenscratch post of 2020: I really love Lenscratch’s ‘Photographers on Photographers’ series—who better to interview artists than other artists? In particular, I admire the post Photographers on Photographers: Zarita Zevallos in Conversation with Eva Woolridge. I keep returning to the images from Woolridge’s series “The Size of a Grapefruit”—they are so rich and vulnerable and memorable and stunning.
Screen Shot 2020-12-15 at 5.20.42 PM

Inspection © Eva Woolridge

Favorite photo that you didn’t take from 2020: Not quite a photo, but I’ve been thinking a lot about the short film No Crying at the Dinner Table by Carol Nguyen. Children of the Asian diaspora—this one’s for you. Let’s talk.

No Crying at the Dinner Table from Carol Nguyen on Vimeo.

Favorite artist/song in 2020: Jessie Reyez—her voice is mesmerizing.

Favorite Binge Watching in 2020:Kim’s Convenience is an absolute treasure. And if I’m being painfully and completely 100% honest, I’d also have to say Love Is Blind.


YAZMEEN P. LOAIZA: Latin American Content Editor (Based in Ecuador)

Favorite book of 2020:Historia de la Leche” by Monica Ojeda

Historia_de_la_LecheFavorite Lenscratch post of 2020:Photographers on Photographers: Andrew K. Thompson in Conversations with Joseph Minek


© Joseph Minek, 1705 kpempp e61dcdb rm, 2019

Favorite photo that you didn’t take from 2020:Star Dusk Woman by Karen Miranda-Rivadeneira


©Karen Miranda-Rivadeneira

Favorite artist/song in 2020: Perotá Chingó

Favorite Binge Watching in 2020 (favorite tv show): The Politician



Favorite Book of 2020:Summer Sublet by Ward Long

Summer SubletFavorite Lenscratch Post:Photographers On Photographers: Andre Ramos-Woodard In Conversation With Clifford Prince King


© Clifford Prince King, communion

Favorite Photo: Mylia at the River, GuadeloupeGregory Halpern

Mylia at the River, Guadalupe

©Gregory Halpern, Mylia at the River, Guadalupe

Favorite Artist/song: Julianna Barwick – Healing is a Miracle

Favorite TV show: Fargo


CLAY LIPSKY, Art Director:

Favorite book of 2020: Aeroglyphs & Other Nocturnes by Reuben Wu (published by Kris Graves Projects)

After a tumultuous year this catalogue provides a much needed cosmic escape, far from human woes.


Favorite Lenscratch post of 2020:
Stephen Berkman: Predicting the Past: Zohar Studios: The Lost Years


©Stephen Berkman, A Wandering Jewess

I enjoy it when an old technique finds new life. I found these images inspiring and give the mind something to chew on.

Favorite photo that you didn’t take from 2020: America burns. Julio Cortez (AP Photo)


© Julio Cortez (AP Photo), America burns

Favorite artist/song in 2020:

An upbeat lullaby to float away with.

Favorite Binge Watching in 2020:
None! No tv, just art & music for me this year as reality is all the dystopian entertainment I need. (Ok, maybe I did see baby Yoda)


Here’s a toast to a NEW YEAR filled with health, connectivity, love, laughter, art making, and feeling Good As Hell!

Posts on Lenscratch may not be reproduced without the permission of the Lenscratch staff and the photographer.

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