You read that right. Jedi training has begun. Well, it has been going on for a few months now at this point. I’m interning for Kaitlin Newman from the Baltimore Business Journal. When I applied to be a journalism student at Towson University I told her I wanted to pursue a similar path that she took which lead both of us to photojournalism.
Over the past few months I have been interning for Kaitlin and she has been showing me all of the ropes. From e-commerce to social media, rallies, sporting events, festivals, protests, and even corporate events. Nothing was off the table; I was going to learn how to shoot everything I could.
Artscape was one of my favorites. I had never been before and was pleasantly surprised when I got to the festival.
Large groups make for some amazing candid portraits. When shooting an event make sure to try to get tight, normal, and wide/group shots to help tell a visual story of the event you attended.
Another event we covered was a corporate event at Strategic Factory for their yearly company party.
This was my first time shooting a corporate event and admittedly I was nervous. But, Kaitlin took me under her wing, showed me the ropes, and set me loose. Once I found my groove it was much easier to get some portraits.
My absolute favorite assignment we went on was to Trillectro Festival. I had never been to a concert before and I get anxious in crowds so needless to say I was scared beyond belief. But, yet again, Kaitlin showed me the ropes, gave me some tips on how to get the best shots, and set me loose. She likes to wind me up like the Energizer bunny and watches me zip all over the place.
Another thing to remember is that when you go to music festivals normally people dress up and go all out for the event. So I had to make sure to snap some portraits of some snazzy dressers.
We started at the front gate and photographed people as they entered the venue. We saw some amazing outfits and everyone was more than happy to pose for us. The main challenge was trying to make sure that you get candid and posed photos as well as any brands that the company that hired us wanted us to get.
We also do regular fashion shoots as well. I had the privilege of working with a wonderful group of women on a shoot not too long ago.
The theme was diversity and it was an amazing shoot.
The challenge for this shoot was deciding how to shoot in locations that I had never seen before and had to style and pose the models on the fly.
However, it was an amazing day and I have some amazing portraits to show for it.
Then we shot the Pride festival. This was my most anticipated event because being a member of the LGBT+ community it was refreshing to be around others in my community.
The challenge for me during this particular shoot was getting captions. Which is not fun. At all. But, it is a necessary evil that all photojournalists must do. I was responsible for getting 5 peoples information and names for captions and I think in the end I wound up with 10.
Another good thing to remember is that you want a mix of posed and candid portraits. The posed portraits really help you connect with your subject and makes the portrait feel more personal and direct.
Also, make sure to look out for people in interesting outfits and garb. Try mixing and matching the colors of their outfits with different colored walls in the area. It makes for some amazing color portraits.
One of my favorite things to photograph are protests and rallies. The energy in the crowd is electric and you’re forced to get the shot. You have no other choice than to just get it. It forces you to keep your eyes peeled for anything interesting that may happen and it helps if you can anticipate what someone is going to do.
The most challenging protest/rally I went to was at BWI to protest Trump’s immigration ban. The lighting was dim, the crow was on fire, and my camera was just clicking away.
Then I started a personal project called “Motherhood.” I wanted to (and still want to) interview mothers and to get their story and perspective on motherhood in its entirety.
Susan Garczynski was the first person I interviewed. It went so well and I had an amazing time talking with Susan. She is an amazing and strong woman and I admire her so much. The challenge here was trying to keep a conversation going while trying to get a variety of portraits both posed and candid. I also learned that humor is the best way to broach a subject. Once we got to chatting and laughing a bit the questions just started flowing and we had an amazing discussion.
I also had the opportunity to shoot the Flotilla in the Inner Harbor earlier in 2018 too. This time I relied on a zoom lens because our subjects were on the water and I was stuck on land (thankfully.)
When you’re at rallies and protests it’s always good to get photos of the signs people are holding up. This one in particular still is my favorite sign I’ve seen so far.
But, this event made for some amazing candid portraits.
Speaking of portraits, I also have been venturing out on my own assignments too. The baby bird is leaving the nest.
I recently shot family portraits for my friend Amanda.
The challenge here was working with a location that I had not really photographed too often before and also wrangling together a group of people to get some group shots. It’s harder than it sounds but these guys were real troopers and we had a fantastic time.
So that was my year summed up in a few images. I’ve learned so much over the past year(ish) interning for Kaitlin. Go check out her Instagram and give it a follow you won’t be disappointed. I hope y’all have had an amazing 2018 and I hope you have an even better 2019!