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|| SportsShooter.com: News Item: Posted 2003-04-29

Leading Off: A wacky month in the photography world
By Robert Hanashiro, Sports Shooter

Photo by Robert Hanashiro / USA Today

Photo by Robert Hanashiro / USA Today

Actor Jack Nicholson cheers on the Los Angeles Lakers as Minnesota head coach Flip Saunders watches the action during the Lakers' 102 - 97 win over the Timberwolves in Game 4 of their NBA Playoff series at Staples Center.
It has been a weird and wacky month in both the sports and photography world.

We've had colleagues and friends off covering a war. Controversies involving a major photo contest and digital manipulation of a news photo. Goofy fans throwing a cellphone at baseball a player and assaulting umpires.

What does it all mean? You ask: Bert, tell me the meaning of life…

Well readers, I am here to help you help yourself.

When I was growing up, my sister and her friends would all read magazines like "Tiger Beat" and "Sixteen" and later "Cosmo". These magazines would have these self-help questionnaires that when completed, you added up your score and it would tell you something about yourself.

So here are a few questions from my upcoming self-help book, "Photographer are from Mars. Editors are from Uranus."


Question 1
You're out on news or sports assignment and filing photos back to your publication on deadline. You have one image that could use a little "Photoshop Magic" to make it just a little bit better. Do you:

1) Use "Photoshop Magic" just to see what the photo would look like.
2) Totally manipulate the image, using every trick Photoshop has to offer and transmit the photo back to your publication. Thinking: "Who would know?"
3) Beat back temptation and just crop, caption and send your best photos.
4) You have no idea what the "lasso tool" and "cloning tool" is.

Question 2
The War in Iraq is winding down. You're in Udai Hussein's mansion bedroom when you spot a huge velvet painting on a wall of 5 dogs smoking cigarettes and playing poker. Do you:

1) While no one's looking take the painting off the wall and stuff it into your bag to take home as a "war souvenir".
2) Shoot a picture of it and later using Photoshop, clone Saddam Hussein into the frame making it look like he's hiding behind it.
3) Do a Ron Taniwaki, slap a 14mm on your camera and shoot a self-portrait of yourself in front of it.
4) Do nothing because you already have a painting like that hanging in your own bedroom.

Question 3
You work for a suburban daily newspaper and the local NBA team has just had its head handed to them in an overtime loss during the playoffs. Do you:

1) Throw caution to the wind and run a huge meaningless photo on the sports front of one of the hometown players scoring in the first quarter.
2) Run a meaningless huge photo on an inside page of one of the stars of the hometown team throwing down a meaningless slam-dunk.
3) Use as many wire photos as you can, pissing off your staff.
4) Run a dejection photo of the hometown team like every other paper because it tells the story of the game.

Question 4
You're covering a baseball game and the umpires are just hammering your hometown team. Do you:

1) Get stinking drunk, run out on the field from your photo position in the 7th inning and kick the hell out of an ump.
2) Yell "YOU SUCK" at the top of your lungs like all of the other juvenile, monosyllabic fans behind you are doing.
3) Get a fan that's sitting behind you stinking drunk and tell him to run out onto the field and kick the hell out of the ump … so you can take photos of it.
4) Shoot a photo of one of the umps as he's adjusting his cup and convince a photo editor at your paper to run it.

Question 5
You're a photojournalism student and after seeing the on-line portfolio of a really famous award-winning photographer you:

1) Rip his work on a public Internet forum.
2) Say nothing because students are best seen, not heard.
3) Shamelessly praise his work hoping to score some Brownie points.
4) Study the technique and style, learning everything you can from it.

Question 6
You love to cover NBA basketball because:

1) The "NBA is Fan-tastic!"
2) You're an Ahmad Rashad fan.
3) The NBA has the best athletes in sports and it makes for great pictures.
4) You can make money doing the paparazzi-thing and just shoot the celebs courtside, forget about the game and get a cheap media meal to boot!

Add up the numbers corresponding to your answers to the five questions
Score 6 - 10:
You suck!

Score 10 - 19:
There's hope for you. Better attend the Sports Shooter Workshop & Luau and take as many classes as you can.

Score 20 - 24:
You are a photographic genius! You will be on the cover of this month's NPPA News Photographer Magazine!

(Well, maybe in the next month or two when they don't have a TV guy on the cover.)

* * *

This issue of The Sports Shooter Newsletter explores the topic of the importance of photography contests … or maybe not? I have commissioned essays from Rod Mar, David Burnett, Vincent Laforet, David Cooper and Keith Birmingham allowing them to give us their insights, ideas and opinions on whether we put too much emphasis on contests.

Also, we announce the details of the Sports Shooter Workshop & Luau 2003, freelance photographer Joey Terrill turns the tables on picture editors and David McIntyre checks in from China and gives us an up close account of the SARS scare.

So sit back, adjust the contrast on your computer screen, adjust the volume on that Poncho Sanchez CD and enjoy Sports Shooter v.54!


Related Email Addresses: 
Robert Hanashiro: bert@sportsshooter.com

Contents copyright 2018, SportsShooter.com. Do not republish without permission.
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