One of the biggest stories in the sports world over the past couple of weeks has been the hoax involving star football player Manti Te’o and a girlfriend that never existed. After the news spiraled into the national spotlight, Te’o agreed to an exclusive off-camera interview with ESPN’s Jeremy Schaap to explain his side of the story.
Although no footage was to be recorded at the interview, ESPN was allowed to capture the interview with a single still photographer. That photographer turned out to be University of Florida photojournalism student Ryan Jones.
You know that feeling of extreme excitement when an Internet package arrives in the mail? That’s what a guy named Jalal felt recently after ordering a Canon 5D Mark III and 24-105mm f/4L kit from Dell.com. Unfortunately for him, what he received wasn’t quite what he had expected.
When Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast, an iPhone photo by photographer Nick Cope was one of the first to go viral and attract the attention of news organizations. American Photo has an interesting interview with Cope in which he shares what it was like to have the world pounce on his photo:
I suppose the way the news cycle moves so quickly today, I think there’s a race to get content out as quickly as possible. Anyone can be a content creator—I took an iPhone photo literally in my bathrobe, and within a couple of hours, it had been viewed thousands, hundreds of thousands of times [...]
Maybe the most bizarre and amusing part of the whole thing was that I did get contacted from various news agencies that wanted [eyewitness accounts]. I was interviewed multiple times throughout the day—people would call who were working on stories and would ask, “What do you see? What is it like now?” It was just so interesting to me—I’m just a person who has an iPhone who took one photo, and then all of a sudden I’m this credible person who’s being called by the BBC and CNN to ask for on-the-ground information on national cable television.
Aside from a handful of big news agencies and TV stations, no one else asked to publish the photo that soon spread across the web.
The Story Behind Hurricane Sandy’s First Viral Photo [American Photo]
In 2008, I had this kooky idea to take my then 4-year-old son out to an abandoned road and throw him into the air, since it seemed most fathers like to do this with their kids. There was this long, abandoned road near my house, so we set up there. After getting my Nikon D200, self-timer, and tripod ready, my son decided that he didn’t want to be thrown into the air, so I just held him up instead. I then took another photo of myself looking up with my arms extended.
Bellamy Hunt over at Japan Camera Hunter has a fascinating account of what it’s like to attend a photography workshop taught by famed street photographer Bruce Gilden, a “famously outspoken photographer who does not mince his words”:
[Gilden] has no love for camera geeks and when he was told I am one he was not overly impressed, as he said “it is merely a tool, a box” [...] Gilden tests you, and when he asked me a question that I was unsure of the answer and tried to bluff my way through to he called me out as a bullsh*tter (true though, my fault really). Gilden likes to ask direct questions, and one of his first was “Do you want to be a photographer?” I replied in the affirmative, to which he said “why?” I was not really able to explain why in a direct manner and he pounced! “So why did you bother coming?” [...] He then told me that if I was looking for inspiration or a kick up the ass then I was in the wrong place as I would not get it from him, it must come from me (which is actually a fair point).
At this point Gilden asked to see my work [...] I had not really been able to put together a coherent selection of my work and Gilden pointed out that fact. In fact I think his words were something to the tune of “Sh*t, sh*t, sh*t. What were you thinking? This is no connection. You are lazy”. At first I was hurt and offended, but after a few minutes of thinking about this (while he tore into someone else) I realised that he was right. I have been lazy and I have not thought out my work properly in the past. I have been coasting along and not putting the effort into it that I could be [...] So after tearing myself and the other students a new one I was set a task by Gilden.
Bruce Gilden photography workshop in Tokyo [Japan Camera Hunter]
Editor’s note: “Tenzing Norgay” is the penname used by the author of this article. He is not related to the famous mountaineer.
This entire story is about black-and-white film shooting, but I hope there are good lessons in this for you youngsters shooting digital. Hopefully, you won’t take this as being arrogant, condescending, or hectoring. I offer this in the spirit of something I’ve found to be fascinating for some four decades.
Not too long ago, I was approached by a newspaper (Journal Le Droit, a large daily newspaper distributing print in the Ottawa-Hull area) asking if I would allow them to print a few of my pictures in an upcoming special feature on a nearby town, Rockland, Ontario. Having photographed much of Rockland in the past three years, I gladly accepted and figured that I could somewhat benefit from some exposure.
Just to make sure, I asked if they were offering monetary compensation. They responded that a photo-credit would be placed at the bottom of the image in lieu of payment. Why not?
Sports photographers sitting close to the action occasionally take a beating when athletes leave their field of play. This happened yesterday to Reuters photographer Mike Segar while he was shooting the Olympic basketball game between Spain and Australia. While trying to dive for a loose ball, Spain’s Rudy Fernandez slammed into Segar and injured his head. Segar has written up an interesting post on what it was like to suddenly find the cameras pointed at him:
As the smoke cleared and I looked up, Fernandez was basically lying in my lap head down eyes closed. He rolled forward slightly, moved his hands to his head, moaned loudly and stopped moving. He was in my lap, clearly injured on his head. I could see blood on his fingers on top of his head and apparently he was now unconscious for a few seconds, or nearly so. At this point I was not a photographer. I suppose I just kind of instinctively rubbed his arm and shoulder, kept my hands on his back and held him a bit and said “stay still, stay still man… You’re all right.” I didn’t actually know if he WAS all right at all, but all I could do was to try to comfort him for the 20 or 30 seconds it took the Spain trainers, players and staff to rush to his aid. Anyone would do the same for anyone else injured in their lap, right?
I looked up and realized that fellow photographers and TV crews were shooting the incident from all possible angles. I was in the center of this wreckage but I was not really hurt. A camera with a wide angle lens was somewhere in the strewn mess of my equipment at my side and for a moment I thought to try to find it and take pictures, but with Fernandez lying bleeding on my feet and me the only one trying to help a bit, that wasn’t going to happen.
Photographer in focus with courtside crash [Reuters]
Image credits: Photographs by Christian Petersen/Getty Images, Richard Mackson/USA TODAY, Richard Mackson/USA TODAY, and Eric Gay/Associated Press (clockwise from top left)
I have been taking pictures for almost twenty years now and so much has changed over those years. Back in the beginning gas used to cost $1.00, Bill Clinton was president, and I was picking up a camera for the first time. I started out in high school playing with my father’s Nikon FM2 and taking pictures for the school newspaper. Today, I work with a medium format digital back shooting national ad campaigns, magazine articles, and catalogs. Some aspects of how I photograph have stayed unchanged, but a great deal has changed considerably.
Someone finds your work on Flickr. They contact Getty Images to buy it. Getty Images contacts you for permission to sell it to their buyer. Do you do it?