Week four

This week we went through all the different cameras and where they may or may not come in useful. For instance, digital SLRs are great for professional shots, but during a riot they would put you at a real disadvantage. The shots wouldn’t fit with the story, the camera would make you stand out and possibly a target. It is also very unlikely you will have one to hand. This is where the smartphone comes into its own.

Over the week, the group had taken a variety of photographs to accompany news stories. We got the chance to sit down, look at all the images, what could be improved, what was good and why it worked?

A lot of the group had some really good photography embedded in their posts. But not just news photography. Some of the shots on show would have fit really well in a magazine. This is a hard type of photography to achieve but some had clearly made the effort.

With my photography, a few things could have been done differently. With the image of one person, I made it portrait but it would have worked better as a landscape. Landscape always works better for online photography because you can make it almost into a banner.

However, I had a landscape photograph at the top so thought two would have been a bit much. It turns out it wouldn’t have been. I’ll know for next time.

Some top tips include:
– Choose a picture which packs a punch. Look for emotion in a photo – or the height of the action.
– The most powerful images are often the simplest ones.
– Maintain quality at all times – sharp, clear and tightly framed pictures work best
– Homepages use large high resolution images that are quite tightly cropped. Every pixel should work hard.
– Take care with captioning – it’s often overlooked, rushed at the last minute and prone to errors
– Stick to a practical and appealing description of the picture. If your picture has named people in, and there aren’t too many, say who they are (usually left to right). Name buildings, locations etc

We did a short task where we had to identify certain stories just from their picture. This worked really well with some images and we managed to get the story straight away. However, some were not so good. It really put across the point of how important photography is.

A final point. It is really important that you choose the pictures you use vary carefully. If you are talking about a generic police man making mistakes on the job, do not use a photo of a different or random officer. This will create confuse and be classed as liable.

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