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Homepage of South African photographer, journalist and author Mark D Young

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About Mark D. Young

MDYoung 

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Brief Biography

Photography   Video and Film Services     Investigative Journalism            Journalism and Editing            Mentoring           Training


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PHOTOGRAPHY

traintracks 

I am a member of the South African Professional Photographers (LSAPP) and South African Freelance Association (SAFREA).

I have been active as a professional photographer for more than 3 decades. My professional career began in the late 1970s and I have covered a vast array of subject matter for various clients in numerous specialised fields which include:

MEDICINE: I produced tutorial and news material of some of the pioneering titanium hip, knee and other joint replacements in South Africa. I was also asked to document some open-heart operations and various other medical procedures using  a custom technique I developed to ensure surgical sterilisation (to the satisfaction of the theatre Matrons!) of the photographic equipment used on the shoots.

AVIATION: I have done, and still do, various air-to-air, promotional and static shoots of equipment ranging from light recreational aircraft to large jetliners for corporate clients. Aviation safety is a specialised field in which I write and I have also covered some aviation accident scenes, investigations and re-constructions.

MOTORING: As the erstwhile field photographer for the motoring editors of three national publications, I covered various races at Kyalami, Goldfields and Midvaal Raceways in fields as diverse as classic and historical racing events, formula 1, MotoGP, production motorcycles and saloon car racing. I also do editorial photography for motoring articles.

SPORTS: I am able to provide coverage of Touch rugby, football, rugby. cricket, cycling and equestrian events in KwaZulu Natal province, South Africa for various agencies.

SOCIAL: I am regularly asked to do wedding photography, anniversaries, birthdays, corporate events/golf days and marketing shoots.

PRODUCT/PACK SHOTS: I have a number of regular clients for for pack shot, product and food photography.

STUDIO/PORTFOLIO AND PORTRAITURE: I have always enjoyed working with people and I am  kept busy with portfolio and portraiture commissions for private and corporate clients. 

EDITORIAL: As the former editor of 3 different magazines, I believe I have unique insight into the requirements for editorial imaging. I regularly contribute to stock and do custom photography briefs for various publications. 

footballpractice 

School Football Practice, Hammarsdale, KZN - On assignment for Danone, 2010 Cup of Nations.

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INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM

I have contributed various articles to numerous publications both in South Africa and overseas. 

I published a full aviation accident investigative work A Firm Resolve: A History of SAA Accidents 1934-1987 in 2007 after more than 15 years of research and writing. This book is still selling regularly to enthusiasts and aviation professionals. I am currently working on another book in the same genre Perfect Storms: Notable Aviation Accidents 1994-2020.

I have undertaken consumer orientated investigative work for various media houses and was involved in documenting and publication of break-through reports regarding the Royal African Cruises fraud, the collapse of the second Sun Air operation, the hostile closure of the Twenty20 banking arm of Saambou, legal firms collecting "ghost" accounts from unsophisticated consumers and the operations of various mass e-mailing merchants operating against South African consumers.

My work in many similar areas of consumer journalism is ongoing.

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JOURNALISM AND EDITING

I assist with the editing and re-writing of copy on a consultancy basis for various web-hosting firms and corporate entities. I also undertake editing of  corporate reports, brochures, flyers, student assignments/Theses, presentations and the production of instruction manuals for new products.

MENTORING

snowday 

I have been fortunate to undertake the ground work and ab-initio planning for numerous South African professionals and companies. Among these are for a number of  professional photographers, a low cost airline, a biometric IT firm, a recording studio, two different magazines, various retail outlets and a private school.

I have (and am willing to) undertake(en) these projects gratis save for legitimate expenses incurred as a small contribution to the economy of South Africa and the empowerment of her people.

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TRAINING

springbuck

Hang on a minute...got an itch here! (On location during wildlife photography week end training, Tala Game Park)

I am currently also the chair and head tutor of the KZN Photo Academy, an institute that has trained more than 7000 people about their cameras (spread across all major brands of camera) in the past 11 years. In addition, I was, for several years, the appointed lecturer - through the KZN Photo Academy - for Nikon South Africa in the field of customer training for the province of KwaZulu Natal.

I am available for professional speaking engagements for corporate clients where the discipline and experience of aviation accident investigation is used to assist corporate clients to better plan for the vagaries of business in the second decade of the 21st century.

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BRIEF BIOGRAPHY

Born in Pretoria, South Africa in 1962.

Schooling at Rietondale Primary and Clapham High Schools. 

Served in South African Air Force in photographic reconnaisance and interpretation units.

Allied to my photographic career which has seen me travel to or work in the USA, UK, Germany, Belgium, Italy, France, Denmark, Hong Kong, Australia, South America and various African states, I have also been involved in freelance or full-time journalism and writing since the early 1980s.

PHOTOGRAPHIC IMPORT DUTY REDUCTIONS. During the mid 1990s I served as secretary for the South African Photographic and Imaging Trade Association (SAPITA). During my tenure I undertook research into the punitive import duties to which the South African photographic trade was subject. I was able to to meet with various government officials to present the collated data and motivate to government for the reduction of import duties (then in excess of 45%).

After joining forces with the Japanese Camera Industry Association, a delegation from Japan and SAPITA held a meeting with finance cluster ministers (notwithstanding nay-sayers and a bet against the likelihood of such an event involving a pricey bottle of whiskey that is yet to be collected!). All this hard work paid-off with the gradual reduction of photographic import duties in South Africa to levels comparable with European Union states. These steps undoubtedly saved the local photo industry from implosion and laid the foundation for its survival into the 2000s. For this work I was nominated for an honorary lifetime fellowship award by SAPITA.

JOURNALISM POSTS. I have written for or edited on the following publications: Pretoria News (1978-1992), Drive (1987-1989) Why Not magazine Pretoria (1988), Great Photography and Video (1990) as Editor, Great 4x4 Magazine (1990-1991), Consumer Photo (1995), SA Photo Magazine (1995-1998) Editor, Travel News Weekly (2004-2006), Digital Photo Focus (2004-20095) Editor.

TEACHING OF PHOTOGRAPHY. I have been the chair and head lecturer of the KZN Photo Academy since 2008. I am also passionate about gifted education and was involved at South Africa's only full spectrum school for gifted children during its founding years. I obtained a qualification from UNISA in the field of gifted child education in 2009.

CORPORATE EXPERIENCE. I spent some years in the corporate world rising to National Sales and Marketing Director for the Konica Photo Express, Polaroid, Durst Digital Imaging, Imacon and Mitsubishi Electronic ID systems distributors in Southern Africa. Corporate politics and the associated duplicity led me to leave corporate life in 2003 since when I have devoted my time to photography, film making/videography, investigative journalism, writing on aviation safety and training of new photographers. I am lucky enough to reside on the East Coast of South Africa in the province of KwaZulu/Natal.

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