I have to be there at what time?

"The gate will be open from 5:15 to 5:30 a.m."

So if I'm late I get to run or miss the boat, right?




I guess it was a worthy morning to get out of bed at 4:30 a.m. and shoot some photos on the water. Let's just not make it a habit.


Trying to find some momentum


Been having a turbulent couple of weeks since returning from Scotland. My car was totaled in an accident when a guy ran a red light at 40mph and took off the front end of my car. I'm still bitter about it I guess, considering it's been 10 days or more and I'm still bringing it up. So now I'm in the hunt for a new-to-me car. The catch is I have to get something soon. The rental car coverage is running out. Then work has been somewhat difficult. The continual burden of feeding the beast with the limited resources (when a position is vacated it is essentially eliminated) is starting to present more hurdles and difficulties as the weeks go forward.

And that will only continue to get worse. The web editor will be leaving the paper in mid-August. So her duties will undoubtedly be divvied up among the skeleton crew of a newsroom. Meaning that more video and content management for the Photo Department. Then around the beginning of September I will be leaving the paper. I finally came to a decision to not continue to work at the paper while I return to graduate school at the University of Denver. My boss wasn't excited by any means at the news. There is a chance that my position will not be filled, but I hope for the paper and public's sake it does get filled.

The difficulty of chasing breaking news while continuing to produce the everyday content with those limited resources is beginning to wear everyone thin. I'm a "quality first" kind of creator. The notion of doing something "just good enough" doesn't sit well with my work ethic and personal style. Another term bestowed upon me is perfectionist. With all that being said, I'm really struggling to find balance with producing content, be it stills or video, that arrives at a middle ground between perfectionism and the other. Throw in lots of video troubleshooting and training of others in the newsroom and you have a guy struggling to find momentum to get to the end of August.

I love being a photojournalist. It is the best job on the planet and probably one of the few things I'm fairly capable of. But the tension of opposites between perfectionism and "something" is difficult to swallow. I feel like I haven't been able to use any of my skills to their potential, resulting in mediocre work. There just isn't time to "work a situation" as I tell students. It's more about shooting the "for sure" photos and video and bailing in order to get on to the next thing. That is if there is a situation that even presents an opportunity to make photos and video. Seems like everyone in the newsroom is so rushed and crushed for time that everything is decided on at the last minute. Meaning there have been a lot of portraits lately. The running joke in photojournalism was that it's 75 percent portraiture, 15 percent waiting, and 10 percent photojournalism. Anymore it seems you can erase the waiting number and add it to the portraiture number.

Now it may appear that I'm complaining and whining. Sure. I am. I'm also bitching, complaining, crying and whatever else you would like to call it. I'm an artist and a creator who sees potential to make an impact and inform with the craft. The problem is that I don't feel I'm able to do it in an effective manner with how the newsroom is run anymore. These conditions and constant cutbacks have effectively made some of the best in the business quit and go on to something else. The craft will suffer even more for it as the quality of the product continues to slide. Some have told me to let it go because I'm a "short-timer now." That's not conducive of a perfectionist if you happen to know one. I'm still staying hours after I'm told to leave in order to help produce and post another photog's video.

So here I am, trying to find some momentum to enjoy the last weeks of working one of the most interesting and important crafts in this democracy. Because, from the looks of it, the industry will have either collapsed or gone through a complete rebirth by the time I graduate in 2010.


Simply put

It's been a busy week or so since my return from Scotland. Lots of video troubleshooting at work on other people's productions. Not too many interesting frames from me the last week either. Must not be working hard enough. But here's a few that I felt like were fun and somewhat interesting. More soon....after I replace my car!!
Click on a photo to get the details.