Friday, September 07, 2007

The luck button

"Towson University president Robert L. Caret delivers his annual fall address in Stephens Hall Auditorium, Thursday, Sept. 6."

On a typical assignment I always carry two bodies; one with a telephoto and one with wide angle. This setup generally makes my images 99 percent of the time. However, my work is always one percent short. To fill the void I use a remote camera.

Remotes are nothing new for shooters in the industry, nor myself. Mostly used in sporting events, they can also be used in any situation imaginable. From catwalks at hockey game to underwater at a swim meet. If you never seen remote work before, you can find loads on SportsShooter.

I don't make it a habit to have a remote setup on every assignment, but lately I've had a strong urge to use mine. I've been trying hard to incorporate it into my daily assignments, whether or not I'll think it will be successful.

Today's assignment was a good chance to run a remote. This afternoon was Towson University president Robert L. Caret's annual fall address. I knew a remote setup would help me get break from the typical "try and make it look different" podium shot or wide angle image of the long speech.

Although president Caret did move away from the podium a couple times, making a better then normal image, I still like my remote shot better. Had I known he would be moving around I would have changed the location of my remote. But you live and learn, right?

Remotes are in my eyes are a creative failure. I'd be lying if I didn't say there is a bit of luck involved either. They have to be set up meticulously and fired at decisive moments. So if I think of a place to put a remote that I can fire off while shooting normally that's good news. I must note, I would never rely solely on my remote to make the image for the front page, but when you make a sub par or better remote image it feels good.

Now the only problem will be fighting the editors to use the remote image before they stoop to the least common visual denominator with respect to the assignment subject matter. Otherwise known as choosing the typical, comfortable image over the creative image.


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