Follow up on class (2/20) – Quiz and Picture stories!

Don’t forget about the quiz next week. Start reviewing the handouts cited in the study sheet. You can view and download the study sheet here:

Quiz 1 study sheet

And review the class presentation on working angles and perspectives, as there was no handout but there are a couple of important concepts you need to remember:


Again, make sure your read the chapter in your textbook on “The Photo Story.”

There are good discussions on the topic and lots of things to consider as you brainstorm story ideas. There are also some really good examples of stories.

If you need to view and download the handouts from class, here are the links:

A4.Picture Story Proposal

Picture Stories (overview)

Tips for shooting and editing photo stories

And here’s the presentation from class for review and downloading: Presentation_PictureStories


For further reading, try this article: The Art & Craft Of Modern Storytelling – How to make a compelling photo essay in the Internet age.

Looking for some inspiration as you brainstorm ideas? Look at what others have done. Like I said, sometimes simple ideas can turn into a story with universal appeal. Here’s an example from Nancy Andrews from the Washington Post, who spent weeks with a single dad for a picture story which ran on Fathers Day: Fathers Day.

Try viewing the website for Western Kentucky University’s Mountain Workshop. This is one of the premiere and best-known workshops for photojournalism students and young professionals, so you’ll get to see what can happen when your college peers fan out and visually document a community over a long weekend. Of course, this project involves total emersion into the projects, but there’s no reason why you can’t produce some similar results by spending a couple of hours per week (or so) with your subjects. There are over 50 stories from last year’s workshop alone, linked right on the homepage, you can look at for inspiration.

The University of Missouri has a similar Photo Workshop. Perhaps look there, as well, for some inspiration.

If you want to see examples of some of the best work in the world, perhaps check out the links to the Pictures of the Year International, Best of Photojournalism, and World Press Photo contests linked on the side bar under the Photojournalism Sites header. Many of the winning stories are made overseas, but don’t let that discourage you. Some of the topics can be universal in nature, regardless of where the pictures were made. And some of the winners are made in small communities right here in the U.S. The main thing is to draw inspiration to find interesting subjects and see how picture stories are constructed.

I’m not going to direct you much as you work on these stories, as we have a lot of subject matter to cover during class time. Plus, I’ve found the best way to learn how to shoot picture stories is by doing it. That’s why we start early – if you mess up or miss something, you will likely have a chance to return to your subject and keep trying until you capture something that will round your stories out.

Use the materials I’ve given you to help you plan and edit. And I highly encourage you share some of your results along the way – both with me and the class right on the website. And you can always contact me for advice and feedback along the way.

Don’t be intimidated in any way. I’m not looking for expansive, epic stories of great social consequence. Remember: 5-10 photographs are what you are shooting for. The main thing is to spend some time with your subjects and learn the process of creating a visual narrative.

I’m looking forward to seeing your ideas start to roll in!

More to come …


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