Baz Ratner

Baz Ratner

Based
Jerusalem and the West Bank
Born
London, United Kingdom
Status
Photographer
Camera
Canon 1D Mark IV
“Always be ready for what may happen next, whether it’s a war breaking out or a baby rhino being born.”

Beat

I typically cover news, politics and daily life.

One Shot

. BEIT HORON, Israel. REUTERS/Baz Ratner
A child stands at the site where ultra-Orthodox Jewish men collect water from a spring near the West Bank Jewish settlement of Beit Horon.
“One of my favourite pictures is of an ultra-Orthodox Jewish boy looking back at the camera, while standing amongst men who all have their backs to me. The light was perfect.”

Profile

My earliest memory of photography? A picture of myself at about three or four years old feeding a goat.

I took a few photography courses in high school, and studied filmmaking at university. After that, I was an assistant fashion photographer. But I feel I have learnt the most about photography from my colleagues on the job.

My first assignment was shooting a big forest fire that I happened to come across. A newspaper photographer saw me coming out of the woods and asked to publish my pictures.

During my last embed in Afghanistan’s Zharay district in Kandahar province, I spent a few days with an army unit, patrolling and spending time with them. My last photo was of U.S. soldier Nicholas Dickhut from 5-20 Infantry Regiment. Unfortunately, three days after I took the picture, I was notified he had been killed during a military operation.

I don’t have an audience in mind when I take pictures. On any shoot, I try to take a wide range of photos so that I can show a few angles of the story – that way, I believe more people can find a connection to it.

Always be prepared. Always be ready for what may happen next, whether it’s a war breaking out or a baby rhino being born.

I like the photographer Larry Burrows, who died in 1971 in Laos. He managed to take amazing war photos that capture the human side of the picture, while showing the action as well.

I respect those who don’t take the easy route, but move out of their comfort zone to do things differently and take risks.

Behind the Scenes

. PANJWAI, Afghanistan. REUTERS/Emma Graham-Harrison
Photographer Baz Ratner during a patrol by Canadian army soldiers from bulldog company 1st Battalion, 22nd Royal Regiment in the Panjwai district of Kandahar province, Afghanistan.