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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.
So, I just finished up a portrait shoot with Kevin. And while I'm shooting the portrait, I'm noticing that the light is going. And inevitably in any day of shooting, and my schedule's sort of dictated by the light that I have. And being aware the light that I have now and the light that's going to be disappearing quickly. Which gets me thinking about schedules. and while I'm shooting all day, I keep track of the shots I've taken and also sort of my dream shots that I want to get. just like today, walking around, I notice they have a kitchen here that's outside. I really want to shoot there. I noticed some halogen light that were sitting on stands, and I'm thinking man, that's going to be a great shot to get at night.
earlier today, I saw Kevin. He ended up sending something to the post office, and he hopped on his bicycle to go to the post office. then I was like that's a great shot too. So, those are three shots, that I already know that I want. And some of those are determined what by, what the light is that we have available to us. so what I need to do now is go have a chit-chat with Kevin, and sit down with my shot list, and figure out what we can get done in the time that we have. Because I've only got him for 36 hours. So I'm just going to go find Kevin and we're going to get to it. (SOUND) so I just wanted to pull you aside here, and chit chat for a minute. basically, the light's kind of going.
>> Mm hm. >> And it's got me thinking about what it is I need to get done. And what sort of shots I might want to do tomorrow. (SOUND) so let me just run through this. And see what we can do tonight, and what we can do tomorrow. Since we've only got you for like, 36 more hours. >> Okay. >> today, I really want to get a shot of you doing a little bit of work at night. >> Okay. >> I know maybe tonight, you're not doing a lot of work. But you do work at night. >> Yeah, yeah. >> and so maybe you put some lights up in your outdoor studio space. >> Do that right after this. >> Yeah, and I think it'll be dark in about 30 minutes. >> Yeah.
>> Yep. let's do that. I think for this evening I think we'll be good. And then tomorrow morning, I want something that sort of gives us a time of day, because that will be the end shot of this story basically is you working at night, but I need something to start out with in the morning. and so I know we talked about doing the coffee shop, but I saw the kitchen, I didn't know about the kitchen til just now, and I think that kitchen's really cool. Do you ever make coffee here? >> Sure, yeah- >> You do. >> I drink coffee right here. >> But do you ever make coffee? >> Oh yeah, I do but I it, typically not this time of year, because it's cool and I like to. >> huh. >> You know, make the coffee and >> Do you make breakfast? Do you do anything in the kitchen in the morning? >> Yeah, yeah I don't, I don't eat much breakfast, it would be making the coffee.
>> Okay how about I swing by kind of early tomorrow morning? >> Okay. >> And I'll get you making your coffee and having your morning coffee in the outdoor kitchen. I think that's so cool. >> Yeah, sounds good. >> I like to keep it kind of cool and (CROSSTALK) every morning. >> Yeah, we can do that. >> Alright, so we'll definitely do that. I'll call you later to figure out what is a good time for us to come by. >> It doesn't have to be six either, we can do it later. >> We can do it later. We'll figure out what the light is and stuff. >> But we want to have any later than seven and the lighting is going to be different. >> It's not going to look like morning. >> You'll have this nice cool angle coming through. >> So seven's better? >> Seven's better. >> Okay.
>> Or even 7:30 is probably going to be best. because then it'll be light enough. >> Alright maybe we'll come over at 7:15 to set up and then shoot at 7:00 >> Yeah, yeah. >> Okay cool. >> and then I want to get you installing the jellyfish. So, is that something that's later in the day, the afternoon? >> Well we'll talk to Elizabeth and Tim, and we intend to be there, but I'm thinking it will probably be an afternoon thing, you know, like 1 o'clock kind of thing. >> Okay, hold on, seven coffee (INAUDIBLE). you're going to think this is funny, but I want to get a shot of you riding your bike tomorrow.
And we can do that any time of day is good for me. But the way I want to do it it's going to be little be squarely, is I want you to actually be riding your bike. And then I'm going to be in a car and I'm going to get somebody to drive the car. I'm going to be in the back seat with the window down and I'm actually going to be tracking with you. >>Sure, sure. >> It's going to be cool. You're going to be in focus and everything else is going to be out of focus. So, maybe we do the coffee, and then just do that right after. so let's say like 9. You know, and for me, right now, like that's the stuff that I want to get. >> Okay >> So, it's those four shots. And I'm sure, it's not even a good or bad move adding this stuff. I'm going to think of some other things and we'll just go over it tomorrow morning.
>> Okay >> So, for now, let's just go go back to your outdoor studio, and we'll set up some lights, and we'll get cranking. So, that when the sun goes down we can shoot. >> Yeah. >> Cool? Thanks.
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