Martin Draughton greeting his mother, Visiting Room, Texas Death Row, 1994
"I remember meeting Jocelyne at the New York office, behind her cluttered desk, her cape wrapped around her just so, incessantly smoking, yelling orders, picking up the phone with short conversations, a frantic energy around her. I was a photographer long before we met, having already published three books and completed many projects, and it was actually by accident that we did. I had been in my own world of long-term documentary projects and did few assignments; I hadn't really thought about being in an agency. I was in town on other business and had joined one of her photographers, my girl friend at that time, on a visit to the office. I was immediately drawn to her, and we clicked. She asked if she could sell my Delta Time project, which was about to be published, and I said yes.
And so I became a JB Photographer; it had a nice ring. It was enough to know a photographer was in the agency or had been in the past, to know that they had a special talent, and commitment to seeing the world. She had created a home and community for many photographers, and took them under her wings.
After my Delta Time project I began to photograph Texas Death Row, and she stood back and watched. Halfway through my project she arranged a three-way call with Paris Match who wanted to buy the story. I explained that I wasn't finished yet and we couldn't sell, fearing that I would jeopardize the access. She wanted to make a sale, but supported my decision. When I had finished, she syndicated the work all over the world and we were both proud that this story had found a huge audience.
For a long time we spoke on the telephone every day, 3000 miles away, just to say hello, and check in and I guess support each other. She would send funny e-mails after a triumph. Like "Go buy Newsweek Mr. Light...J". It meant she had a good sale and was happy that we had done something positive.
When the dot-com revolution started I had just completed a story on Netscape and we joked about buying stock when it went public...she e-mailed me, "I wish we had bought shares in Netscape...I could be on easy street...a women of leisure...which is what I was meant to be...somehow it didn't happen..."
When she decided to sell the agency to Liaison she called me almost every day, fretting that we would be swallowed up, and that she could not handle the politics inside the agency. She asked that I send them a letter pleading her case and independence with us. I wrote them, that I saw her genius as a savvy editor and aggressive advocate, and I did.
When she closed the agency, not being able to face the new environment, she e-mailed me. "We shared mutual visions of the world and managed to find a photo market with our ideas. It was very rewarding. It is sad to be at JB and returning all these beautiful pictures. I can't wait to start my new chapter, whatever it is????" And a new chapter did open; a little while later she called and asked if I would send her work for her Gallery, a new venture that blossomed for a few years. We remained friends and supporters.
She often said "Pictures Move People," and she used to tell me, "I am still your fan." And so dear J, so am I."