Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Week Four - Environmental Portrait

For this assignment I chose to capture the LBCC mail room delivery driver. Pete McDanal has worked at LBCC for many years and is almost an institution on campus. He delivers all the campus mail and packages all around Albany campus and his personality is something staff look forward to seeing every day.

Pete McDanal is the LBCC mail room delivery driver.
He handles all the Albany campus mail and packages and ensures
they arrive at their designated delivery locations timely.

Pete McDanal has worked in the LBCC Mail room for nearly ten years
and serves as the delivery driver for all on campus mail and packages.

Topic One - NPAA Code of Ethics

The National Press Photographers Association has a Code of Ethics. There are 9 different standards that they suggest all photojournalists follow. The most interesting code for me was number 5 which states: "While photographing subjects do not intentionally contribute to, alter, or seek to alter or influence events." This particular code can be a bit tricky to manage as a photographer. Often times we are met with a particularly impactful subject that pulls on our heart strings. There is the choice to just photograph the scene as is without impacting the subject(s) or to choice to render aid, change, alter the situation before taking a photo. It is important to remember that a photojournalist needs to be able to tell a truthful story as if they are a fly on the wall and not become part of the story or impact in anyway as that would only water down the end product for the viewer.

The NPAA also publishes a list that says "Ideally, photojournalists should:". The overall list was very useful but the most impactful item to me was number 7 which states, "Strive by example and influence to maintain the spirit and high standards expressed in this code. When confronted with situations in which the proper action is not clear, seek the counsel of those who exhibit the highest standards of the profession. Photojournalists should continuously study their craft and the ethics that guide it." I found this interesting because it points out that following the Code of Ethics is a daily challenge and struggle and should be considered heavily when you choose to become a photojournalist. It is important to find that mentor that will help guide future decisions as you are faced with new circumstances on a daily basis. It is important for all photojournalists whether new or in the field for 20 or 30 years to constantly remind themselves of these core values and set out to follow them and model them daily.

An example of following a specific guideline from the NPAA Code of Ethics would be if you choose to photograph an event in the local community and someone offers to pay you for your service or sends you a gift afterwards. While it might be tempting to accept such an offer it is important to remember number 8 on the list and not accept those gifts as it may influence the coverage you give to that event or subject. It is important to maintain a sense of neutrality when photographing any event/subject so that the reader is able to focus on the photograph but not be unduly influenced by your own thoughts/opinions.

Topic Two - Favorite Fellow Student Work

Looking through our students' pages in my photo journalism class I was immediately drawn to two pictures. The first picture was taken by James Dewey looking at a security camera and I thought it was a very creative and different way to take a picture. Security cameras are often overlooked and to have someone not only notice it but use it in a creative fun way I thought was really intriguing.
For more pictures by James check out his blog at:

Photo by: James Dewey
The next picture I was really drawn to was taken by David Buresh. This photo had a strong emotional impact on me. It was a photo that was captured at just that right moment and the expression on the young child's face coupled with the texture of the woman's hand and the younger child cradled by a father just left me with a happy, positive feeling.
For more pictures by David Buresh check out his blog at:

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