Saturday, November 15, 2008

Running around in the rain

"Despite heavy rain, Rebekah Moore, 20, of Chestertown, Md., searches for handbags and jewelry at the Kunta Kinte Heritage Festival in Annapolis, Saturday afternoon. In September 1987, the Kunta Kinte Celebration was born in Annapolis, Maryland - America's first national capital."

Candyland would be one assignment that I would think any photojournalist would never not be able to find a feature photo - assuming the weather was fair.

I covered a Kunte Kinte festival about a month ago and I knew it wouldn't be too difficult to make some images for a photo spread. That was until I got to Annapolis and realized the weather was awful.

Having covered many, many events in the past, rain is usually one thing that either cancels an outdoor assignment or makes it a pure challenge.

Sometimes it will be a light drizzle and things will still go on, but more or less if it's a steady rain, things will come to a halt.

The thing with this festival was that is was pouring. Raining cats and dogs. A continuous downpour.

So as any photojournalist would do, I grabbed my rain gear (pants and coat) and a plastic bag out of my trunk to still try and make do of this outdoor event.

My job was to spend roughly an hour there making no less than four images, no more than six, for photo only spread, before moving onto my next assignment.

But the problem was that no one was there. Literally there were maybe 20 people sitting in their stands with plastic tarps over their merchandise and roughly five or six patrons.

There was no music, no dancers and nothing that inspired me or made my eyes dance. It was a typical rainy, poorly attended festival.

After circling this tiny event time and time again, I called my editor and let him know the deal. I wasn't trying to get off the hook rather than clear my mind of the anger I had inside of me. I was completly bored. I was searching hard to make something in my short time there.

So after taking a deep breath I busted out enough detail shots to help compliment anything else I would end up making.

Finally, the rain stopped briefly and vendors removed their plastic rain covers and a more patrons began making their rounds. I had to work fast. Not only was I working against the clock, I was working against the possibly of reoccurring rain.

Overall, I was surprisingly pleased with my take on the event despite my own struggles. This is the image than ran dominant in the spread. I guess this is where the small assignments help with the difficult, rainy circumstances.


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