9 Sacramento St.
Boston Public Library gardens, October 2019, photo by Shola Friedensohn--Click image for enlargement
Self portrait, 2016—Click for enlargement
Photographing in the Lawrence Massachusetts mills with the WhiteLight photography group, summer 2018, photo by Bob Moss—Click photo for enlargement.
Participatory photographer, socially engaged.
A participatory photographer, photographing while engaging in struggles for justice, peace, right treatment of the environment, and enlightenment, Skip Schiel makes photos for publications, exhibits, slide shows, and individual use. His main current projects include a photographic examination of conditions in Palestine and Israel ("The Ongoing Nakba") & actions to address the climate emergency, mainly in league with Extinction Rebellion. During the COVID pandemic, he explores Boston area rivers, coastal areas, and urban districts by bicycle, photographing what strikes his eye—"A Chronicle of My Life During the COVID Crisis."
Earlier projects include searching for the seeds of the new Detroit miracle. retracing the Transatlantic African slave trade journey (A Spirit People), the earth (Scent of Earth), prisons (Imprisoned Massachusetts), and a Buddhist-led pilgrimage from Auschwitz to Hiroshima (Passing Through).
He's also photographed environmental desecration, racism and racial justice, South Africa, poverty, American Indians, the US South, and resistance to oppressive regimes in the US and abroad. He is exploring digital technology, curious about its influence on photography—producing, consuming, and thinking about the photograph. He has joined the Boston-based Extinction Rebellion media team and photographs and videos numerous local events with Jewish Voice for Peace, addressing the injustices in Palestine-Israel.
Now retired from teaching, since 1990 he taught at the Cambridge Center of Adult Education, ranging from basic photography to digital darkroom and photographic field workshops concentrating on light in photography. He's also taught photography at the Landscape Institute based at Harvard University, and the American Friends Service Committee's young adult programs in Gaza and the West Bank of Palestine, filmmaking at Boston College, and various other topics in workshops at Quaker gatherings. He is an active member and presenter at Whitelight, a Boston-area photography group meeting monthly for presentations and programs by its members, while also participating with Social Documentary Network.
He joins with others in various campaigns for peace, justice, reconciliation, & truth-telling. He plays, experiments, & contemplates—might get arrested and imprisoned periodically. Maybe he joins a pilgrimage, a vigil, a rally or a talk or an outing along a river; maybe he simply stays home and absorbs the afternoon light.
He photographs: he is a socially engaged photographer.
He makes photographs for you a viewer, for his family and friends that you and they might know him more intimately, for himself to remember where and when he existed, and for you not yet born.
He invites you to examine what he's made & see what you think.
—Skip Schiel, February 2021
In South Africa, 1999, photo by Louise Dunlap
Teaching at Ipswich Massachusetts Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary, summer 2011, photo by John Edmondson—Click photo for enlargement
Fall Light Photographic Workshop, Gloucester Massachusetts, 2018, photo by Vickie Choit—Click photo for enlargement.
the Cambridge Center for Adult Education, 2004,
Teaching Winter Light, Photographing Boston's Cemeteries, 2012, photo by Eladi Bermudez—Click photo for enlargement
West Bank, Occupied Palestine, 2015, photo by Fidaa Ataya
Self portrait, Harvard Square, Cambridge, July 2010—Click photo for enlargement
Photo by Sy Fiedland, 2013--Click for enlargement
Gaza, 2009, photo