National Geographic : 2010 Feb
EDITOR'S NOTE PHOTO: STEPHANIE SINCLAIR The room darkens, and Stephanie Sinclair's photographs flash on the screen. For months she has been photographing members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, the FLDS. Its members are known to most of us because they believe in polygamy, but Stephanie's photographs tell a deeper, broader story. They are able to do so because FLDS members trust her. Stephanie has no agenda. She does not judge. There is nothing superficial or glib about her work. Her photographs are honest. They reflect her insatiable curiosity. They also reflect her compassion and sense of responsibility. The best photographers understand the obligation that comes with the privilege of access to otherwise hidden worlds and lives. Stephanie understands that others may want to pass judgment, but that is not her role. She photographs what she sees and provides the opportunity for insight. The rest is up to the reader. In a world full of shrill voices and agendas, we at National Geographic are committed to an unbiased presentation of facts. Yes, we will cover controversial topics like the FLDS, and yes, we will devote time and resources to get the story right. It's what we've been doing for more than 120 years. Our commitment is to show the world in all its complexity---and to publish the work of photographers, like Stephanie Sinclair, who can present that complexity with compassion and fairness. Office workers serve lunch during a meeting between FLDS leaders and the Utah attorney general's staff.