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Assignment

I Love You

This assignment ran from Aug 18 to Sep 7, 2017.

For this assignment, I invite you to share photos and stories of love. Now more than ever we must find a way to connect with each other, to show empathy and the strength of our global community.

Show us the ways we love one another. Make us feel your love for someone important to you. It doesn’t have to be romantic love, or even love for a person—you can reveal why you love a place, activity, an animal or a vision of what loving one another truly means. Use your captions to explain why your photo illustrates love. Maybe tell us a story that helps us further understand your love. Show us how we can connect with other across this vast planet. During these troubling times, the passion and need to find our commonality has never been stronger.

And because Your Shot is a global community featuring photographers from 195 countries, this assignment will become a beautiful library of photos and stories of love from around the world. Take a minute and reflect on how meaningful that will be. Photography and storytelling are powerful mediums when you have a purpose, and I hope we inspire each other through this assignment.

As you think through your photographs before submitting them, use the discussion board to ask each other for advice and feedback. Help each other, encourage each other, and love one another as you would like to be loved yourself.

I love Your Shot because the possibilities are endless. Together, I truly believe we can make a positive impact for the future, one photo and story at a time. It is time to give to each other in a higher level of understanding and consciousness. I hope for us as people to move towards the one truth that will unite all living things on this planet we call home.

SUBMISSION Deadline is September 7th at 12PM EST.

Curated by:

John Stanmeyer
National Geographic Contributing Photographer
Assignment Status
  • Open

    Everyone’s welcome to contribute their best shot to open assignments. Learn more.
  • Closed

    Completed assignments—with our favorite photos included—will be published online. Learn more.
  • Published

    Once the submission period is over, we'll review all contributions and select our favorite images to be included in the story. Learn more.
Published Sep 20, 2017.
Thank you for your contributions!

Facebook Live

Posted aug 31, 2017

In case you missed the Facebook live with NG Photographer John Stanmeyer and curator of the I Love You assignment earlier today, here is the full video.

Editor's Update #2

Posted aug 30, 2017

Hello all,

Tomorrow we'll be having a LIVE! Facebook chat with National Geographic photographer and editor of this assignment John Stanmeyer. John will be sharing some of his favorite images from this assignment and will be pointing out what makes them such strong images. 

The Facebook Live will be taking place at 10am EST on the National Geographic Magazine Facebook page

Tune in tomorrow for a direct link to the chat. 

Thanks!

Editor's Update #1

Posted aug 28, 2017

As we enter our first week creating images about love, many of you are truly seeing, and beautifully stretching the narrative in layered ways.

When I was asked to guest edit this important, beautiful assignment theme, it connected to an assignment I am working on for National Geographic magazine—a story on why we do not accept each other for who we are, the Us and Them. Why today — especially today — we need greater understanding, acceptance of who we are, collectively, as sister and brothers. Why we need love. Kindness.

Sometimes the kindest of love is sharing ideas, allowing each of us to take our purpose and vision even further by challenging our conventions and taking us deeper into being and seeing.

The love I want to share with each of you is this: as you work on this project, look beyond the surface of love. While they are touching moments, try going beyond images of people holding hands or kissing, animals gently clutching each other, or pretty moments of kind yet simple seeing. These images are lovely and are about love, but they are often too simple.

I would like each of you to delve deep into the narrative of our collective humanity for what love really means. To yourself, your community, our earth. This love is not on the surface. It is not even the word “love” because it is so deep.

Just over a week ago I was in Charlottesville, a saddening time for everyone, and a mirror of what all too often takes place all our planet. I’ve covered more wars, poverty, and forced migration than my heart and mind can absorb. But this assignment touches upon the overlooked narratives of why we divide ourselves when through love, we can unite. We humans often fail to connect to our fragility and commonality, which in turn leads to indifference, hatred, and yes, a lack of love.

This is where I would want to see each of you take this assignment, into the realm of the unexpected. Even into dark shadows, because even in darkness, there is light. A light that needs to be brighter, shared for the betterment of all.

John Stanmeyer

John Stanmeyer

John Stanmeyer

National Geographic Contributing Photographer
John Stanmeyer is a humanist, photojournalist, Emmy nominated filmmaker and field recordist dedicated to social and political issues that define our times. Over the last decade, John has worked nearly exclusively with National Geographic magazine, producing over 14 stories for the magazine and resulting in 10 covers. Between 1998 and 2008, John was a contract photographer for Time magazine, during which time he photographed hundreds of stories for the magazine including the war in Afghanistan, the fight for independence in East Timor, the fall of Suharto in Indonesia, and other significant world news events. His years with Time resulted in 18 covers of the magazine. In January 2015, Stanmeyer joined National Geographic Creative, bringing his ten years of stories with National Geographic to the Society for representation. Prior to joining National Geographic Creative, in 2001, he cofound with six of the world’s leading photojournalists the VII Photo agency. By 2005 VII was listed in third position in American Photo’s “100 Most Important People in Photography.” He remains a Distinguished Member and Emeritus with his historic archive of war and conflict at VII.