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Carmen Sisson (Carmen K. Sisson)
Works at Cloudybright Communications
Attended Theodore High School 1987-1991
Lives in Mobile, Alabama
942 followers|3,212,559 views


Finally getting around to uploading photos from the past two trips to St. Augustine, Florida. #SomewhereOnA1A
12 new photos · Album by Carmen Sisson (Carmen K. Sisson)
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Photos from yesterday's storm system as it approached Dauphin Island and Mobile Bay. #GulfCoast #storm #photography
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When I rescued Pumpkin from the streets in November 2014, she was just a little thing — barely a month old. Since then, she has grown to be a fiercely independent, spitfire. Today, we saw a bluebird, so spring is sure to be close behind. Right? We're keeping our paws crossed.

Pumpkin, a one-year-old calico kitten, looks out a window, January 28, 2016, in Coden, Alabama. Calico cats, also known as tricolors, are usually female. Only one in every 3,000 calico cats is male, and they are usually sterile or suffer genetic defects. Calico cats have been the subject of many legends because of their striking coat color. Japanese fishermen kept them on their boats to protect them from storms and jealous ancestors, and Irish folklore suggests that warts may be cured by rubbing the wart against a calico cat’s tail in the month of May. (Photo by Carmen K. Sisson/Cloudybright)


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#cats #animals #calico #pets
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Trying something a little different, working with slow shutter speeds to show the power of the Gulf of Mexico.
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Finally getting around to uploading photos from the past two trips to St. Augustine, Florida. #SomewhereOnA1A
12 new photos · Album by Carmen Sisson (Carmen K. Sisson)
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Dauphin island sunset. (Photo by Carmen K. Sisson/Cloudybright) #GulfCoast #sunset #beach
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Sunset at Destin... Photo from @shanasherrod 
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paisagem linda 
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Tomorrow is Joe Cain Day in Mobile, which usually finds me in downtown Mobile, shooting photos of the event. When it comes to Mardi Gras, Joe Cain Day is uniquely "Mobile," and as such, it's my favorite part of the Mardi Gras season. King cake? Not so much. I haven't tasted one yet that I liked, but I'm still looking.

A Mardi Gras King Cake with a plastic baby is pictured with purple and green Mardi Gras beads, March 12, 2014, in Mobile, Alabama. The king cake is traditionally made of fried or baked dough, topped with green, purple, and gold icing or sugar. Modern king cakes sometimes contain fillings such as raspberry, strawberry, cream cheese, or cinnamon. The king cake represents the three kings who visited the Christ child on Epiphany, and the cake usually includes a small plastic baby inside to represent the Christ child. French settlers held the first Mardi Gras in Mobile, Alabama in 1703. Mardi Gras is a season of revelry that extends from Epiphany, 12 days after Christmas, to Fat Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. (Photo by Carmen K. Sisson/Cloudybright)

#MardiGras #Mobile #Alabama #cake
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Happy to find this group. I live on the Gulf Coast and try to shoot the sunrise or sunset (or both) every day. This is the image I shot this evening in Bayou La Batre, Alabama.
On any given day, you'll find a slew of people at the Bayou La Batre State Docks in Bayou La Batre, Alabama. But sometimes, even a regular can bump into a surprise. I was actually at the docks this evening to interview some locals for a magazine story. I chit-chatted with a few, talking about what was biting (white trout) and what their futures held. A sun-bleached blond boy — he couldn't have been more than eight or nine — struggled  to lug a ...
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Carmen's Collections
Collections Carmen is following
Journalism, photojournalism, writing, photography, narrative writing, long-form journalism, feature writing, travel photography, studio photography. I specialize in writing about — and photographing — the people, places and things that make the South such a wildly beautiful, complicated region. Special interests include civil rights, social justice, poverty, racism, Southern culture, and environmental issues as they relate to Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee and the Gulf Coast.
  • Cloudybright Communications
    Writer/Photographer, 2002 - present
    • Provide photos/text for regional, national, and international publications including Christian Science Monitor, TIME Magazine, Associated Press and others. • Offer multimedia services including audio, video, and slideshows. • Photograph products in-studio for commercial clients. • Provide copy editing, line editing, and proofreading services. • Maintain a daily photoblog created in 2004 which includes nearly 1,000 entries and generates 88,000 unique visitors per year. • Designed and coded main portfolio site. • Active participant in social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Foursquare, and Pinterest.
  • The Commercial Dispatch
    News Editor, 2011 - 2013
    • Oversee the newsroom in the managing editor's absence. • Edit copy, make assignments and work closely with a staff of three reporters and two photographers to shape content and develop stories. • Line-edit and proof pages. • Assist copy editor with basic page design, as needed. • Develop self-driven, long-term and short-term enterprise projects, orchestrating the writing, photography and presentation. • Specialize in human interest features. • Covered education, economic development and military affairs while serving as a beat reporter.
  • The Northport Gazette
    Editor, 1998 - 2002
    • Assisted with founding paper, helping develop ethical standards, corporate policy, branding, design, and community relations. • Doubled circulation, receiving the 2002 Most Improved award from the Alabama Press Association. • Coordinated a five-person staff, covering a 2,751-square mile area. • Recruited and taught stringers, several of whom now hold staff jobs at daily newspapers. • Wrote 8-10 news stories, one editorial, and one personal column each week. Beats included city council, county commission, education (encompassing more than 20 public and private schools), sports, and the local arts community. • Photographed, edited, and captioned 90 percent of the paper's photo content. • Transitioned paper from 75 percent paste-up to 75 percent pagination. • Assisted with the pagination, layout, and design of full-page and double-trucked features as well as special tabloid editions, including home and garden, fall football, and graduation. • Developed and maintained website. • Fostered community relations through active involvement with the West Alabama Chamber of Commerce, Northport Merchants' Association, and other civic groups. • Earned a laurel from Columbia Journalism Review in Sept/Oct. 2002 for the ethical stance which resulted in my departure from the paper.
  • Bay Area News Network
    Reporter/Photographer, 1988 - 1991
    • Covered news, sports, and feature stories as a paid contributor for The Tillman's Corner News and Mobile County News during my sophomore through senior year in high school. • Provided two to three articles per week while working part-time as a veterinarian's assistant and maintaining a 4.16 GPA.
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Mobile, Alabama
Columbus, Mississippi - Tuscaloosa, Alabama - Northport, Alabama - Boston, Massachusetts
Contact Information
Writer. Photographer. Journalist. Storyteller. National correspondent, wannabe cowgirl, incorrigible tumbleweed. Making sense of the South, one story at a time.

I am a 27-year veteran journalist/photojournalist specializing in coverage of the southeastern U.S. I frequently write about Southern culture, civil rights, education, and religious trends, though I've covered everything in between, from cattle rustlers to a septuagenarian college basketball player.

Published credits include Christian Science Monitor, TIME, AP, NYT, EFE-Spain, NEA Today, and others.

My passion is the South. 

As a photographer, I work hard to capture its beauty, whether I'm standing on a beach along the Alabama Gulf Coast, roaming the backroads of Mississippi, or exploring the urban landscape in Atlanta. As a journalist, I try to capture the people and culture while making sense of the larger themes, from faith and family to progress and tradition. 

My coverage territory is the southeast — predominantly Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, and the Florida Panhandle — but I am available for travel anywhere. 

A note about images

I want you to use my images. I want you to enjoy them. I want you to imagine a world in which everything we have is everything we need. 

There was a time when I fiercely protected my work, employing all kinds of crazy methods to keep people from stealing it — Digimarc (degraded images too much), watermarks (ugly), no right click (annoying), etc. 

After a while, I realized that the more I controlled my work, the more stressful it became. So I decided to follow Trey Ratcliff and Scott Kelby's example: I decided to let go. I want my work to be seen. I want to concentrate on making new, even more beautiful images. I have no interest in being a cop or a lawyer.

I believe that, given the chance, most people will do the right thing. 

If you're running a personal blog, take what you'd like, with a link and credit. If you're seeking photographs for a media outlet or commercial entity, let's talk. 

Open season for image theft? 

Not really. I still take licensing and copyright matters seriously. This is my future, after all. Google's reverse image search has made it very easy to locate copyright infringement, and the NPPA has a really great lawyer. 

I rarely sell all rights to an image, which is a plus for clients, because the price would be too cost-prohibitive. Likewise, I require licensing for all images that are to be used editorially or commercially.

I've found over the years that great clients are always great clients. And thieves are always thieves. Watermarks and such only make things hard on the very people I want to help! And the worst part is, the methods aren't very effective. 

Licensing images

My images are protected by an "All Rights Reserved," clause. This means if you are a media outlet, business, or nonprofit and wish to use them for commercial or editorial purposes, please contact my licensing department.

Attribution — "Carmen K. Sisson/Cloudybright" must accompany the image at all times, regardless of where or how it is used, unless other arrangements are made. 

If you're lurking, say hello. And if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. 

Bragging rights
2012 Mississippi Press Association First Place Feature Story • 2012 Mississippi Press Association First Place News Story • 2012 Mississippi Press Association 2nd Place Best Planned Series • 2012 Louisiana-Mississippi Associated Press Managing Editors First Place Feature Story • 2011 Louisiana-Mississippi Associated Press Managing Editors Second Place Feature Story • 2011 Mississippi Press Association Second Place Feature story • 2010 Associated Church Press Award of Excellence for a News Story, Newspaper Division • 2006 NISH Media Reporter Award for Best Media Coverage • 2006 Photobloggies Runner-Up for Best Writing • Columbia Journalism Review Laurel Sept/October issue 2002 • 2002 Alabama Press Association Most Improved Paper (shared with staff) • Alabama Education Media Honor Roll 2001 and 2002 • 2002 Alabama Press Association Best Human Interest Story • 2002 Alabama Press Association Best News Feature Story • 2002 Alabama Press Association Third Place Feature Photo • 2001 Alabama Press Association Best News Photo • 2001 Alabama Press Association Second Place In-Depth Story
  • Theodore High School 1987-1991
  • University of Alabama
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Carmen K. Sisson