Storytelling in the Field
How many of you shoot like weddings or jobs or portraits or something like that? Anybody? Okay, so those of you who are shooting a wedding, you shoot 3000, 4000 images on a wedding, and that's great. The question is, how many do you show? And that's what we really need to talk about today because most people are showing way too many images. So, if we are out collecting images, whether it's documentary, travel, portraits, weddings, doesn't matter what we're shooting, if we're out collecting images, collect as many as you can, and collect them in the best way possible. Think like an editor while you're doing it, though. So, make sure that, when you're looking for photographs, that you're looking for them in a way where you're telling stories. Like, for instance, here we're telling a story of someone giving a really important gift to the mom, and you get the surprise. You've got to think about the stories themselves, but you also need to think about place and where you are. So, as you're ...
photographing, you need to think, okay, I'm photographing like, for instance, here we're photographing a walk. So, we photograph down at the bottom of the cliff. We photograph the overall cliff and the water itself. We photograph them walking along the edge of the cliff. We photograph the lighthouses. We photograph big, overarching shots of clouds and landscape, and then we show the cliff with the lighthouse at the bottom. And then we get the minute details of the flowers, but we're thinking on a scale of large and small, moments and portraits. So, we're looking to try and describe the whole thing. So, you gotta, while you're photographing and thinking like an editor in the field, you have to be thinking, what pieces of the story do I need to tell? And make sure that you're getting plenty of long shots. And think about it like a movie. Every time you start a movie, say in New York City, what happens? You get a flyover of New York City, that's the first thing. Because they gotta show you, I'm in New York City. So, they show you a wide shot of New York City, or they show you the Statue of Liberty, or they show you something like that. And then they do the mid-shot, which takes you down to the street level where you are. So, you're in SoHo or you're wherever. And then it cuts to the close, where you're talking to someone, or someone's walking, or they've lost something. Now we're up on the character. So, we're always thinking in wide establishment shots. We're thinking in mid-shots to show where we are and what the interactions are of the characters. And then we show the closeups of the conversations, the details of what they're doing, fumbling with their keys, et cetera. So, always think those three different types of shots, and there's more but think of those three as you're photographing. What do I need to get to establish where we are and what we're doing. Then, how do I establish the relationships, getting closer on them. And then, how do I establish the details that really liven up the story, like the flowers or the whatever, holding hands, and things like that. Okay, so we have to think like an editor in the field so that we have all those photographs. And you can photograph as many as you want while you're out there. But, once you get into Lightroom and you start looking at your images, so like, for instance here. This is Neuschwanstein Castle. I was in Europe this year, and this is, you go across this bridge, and you're over this gorge, and this is what you see. There's a castle, and, most of the time, you see pictures of it, and it's really a bright sunny day, and it looks like Cinderella's castle and all that kind of stuff. But, I was fortunate enough to be there when it looked spooky. So I was super excited about it, so what did I do? I spent a long time photographing that, watching the clouds move around. And, remember, now I'm not only looking at wide shots and different compositions of it, but I'm also looking at the composition that's created by clouds. So, as the fog moves around, it changes the overall composition, shows me what, I see some things, I don't see other things, so, I'm looking around. But, once I get back to Lightroom, now I need to start selecting, and I need to think like an editor.