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A photo essay is a series of photographs that tell a story about a person, place, event, or trend. In this course, photojournalist Paul Taggart takes us on assignment as he photographs Kevin Carman, an artist in Ventura, California.
Paul, whose work has appeared in publications such the New York Times and National Geographic, shares insights into how he prepares for an assignment, how he engages his subject, and how he takes advantage of unpredictable and unforeseen situations. The course concludes with a look at how the final essay might be sequenced and distributed.
Photography is about capturing the moment, and sometimes those moments are really loud and energetic. And other times, they're really quiet. right now, my photo essay is feeling a little bit quiet, so we've got this incredible artist who's spending lots of quiet moments alone in his studio, working on angelic sculptures. but I want to amp it up a little bit. So I just took some photographs of Kevin on his bicycle with his surfboard. And I decided to really add some motion to that by getting in the back of a truck and traveling along with him and shooting with him making the background more blurry.
See if this works. So the key for us is to stay at the same speed and we'll try to be consistent and you too. (SOUND) And we'll just go all the way to the end. So it's whenever you're ready to go. >> Ready to go. (SOUND). >> To do something like this, you gotta actually orchestrate it, though. because I've gotta get Kevin at a place (SOUND) at a certain time. So you gotta schedule it. And then, I've also gotta have a car ready if I'm going to do a shot where I'm in the back of a truck, and he's there. So those are two elements.
(NOISE) And then you have to, there's safety issues that are a huge concern too. You gotta talk to your driver and figure that out (SOUND) and then you actually have to find the street and tell your subject how to ride. And, and this one, (SOUND) he had to keep the same pace as my truck was. and all these elements are things that, you know maybe you're thinking about pictures a lot of time you go out there and you're thinking you just taking pictures and you're taking, taking, taking, and then you're going to edit. But a lot of times you just gotta slow it down and realize you're actually making images. And that's what we're doing today as we orchestrated something and we made an image, which requires a bit of planning. And if you've got, you know, people like Kevin, they're willing to play ball, then hopefully at the end of the day, you've got a great image to take home. We'll just try it again the other direction.
(SOUND). >> (INAUDIBLE). >> So I think we got it when we were right next to each other running parallel, there wasn't enough motion in the background. because I didn't have enough ND on here, to bring down that exposure. But once the car was in front of the bicycle, it changed the vantage point which made a little more motion in the background. I'm going to try it one more time with me standing and the bicycle going by and I'm just going to do a quick pan (SOUND) that'll, a secondary motion there to get a little bit more blur. So we'll see what happens, but we've got something in the can that we know that will work.
>> Oh, there's the other bike. (SOUND) Slow down. (SOUND) (INAUDIBLE) (SOUND). >> Slow down. Oh, we were just trying to get shots of me. >> You want to try this? (INAUDIBLE) (SOUND) >> you're good. (SOUND) Let's do it one time this way.
(SOUND) Yeah, we're good. So we've got two different options here. One with the truck and then, one with me standing. And I think me standing and panning is a little better. So, gets options in editing which is what I always like. So, this is cool. >> Done with the board? >> Yeah, it's good. No, it's good. Thanks >> (INAUDIBLE) >> The other great thing is (LAUGH), you know, we shot that. his surf board. It's like I wanted the shot for the motion but now I've got this dilemma that's like I think them interacting with their surf boards is so much cooler, way more interesting.
So now, we have to actually make a decision on, like, what do we want here? so, again, cool character, you get cool material. So, awesome stuff.
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