Learning about photography thanks to COVID-19

Nothing like doing something over and over and over again to improve your skills. In my case, I am getting lots of practice photographing one type of event, press conferences, in one venue, the press theatre at the B.C. Legislature, with largely the same cast.

At the time of writing, I have photographed 54 COVID-related press conferences since February 24. That number continues to climb on a daily basis.

While the importance of documenting this period is reason enough to keep me motivated, I will admit there have been times when I didn’t think there was any way to keep it interesting. There have been some moments when I simply couldn’t think of a different approach or angle to shoot.

However, there is almost always a new way to look at and capture the proceedings.

That is not to say that I can deliver whatever I want for my work. No. It’s still government and there are still requirements for what shots I share on government channels. But after that is accomplished, I do try to find new ways to see the press conference, every day.

After a recent presser, as my colleague and I returned to our office to edit and deliver photo and video content, I realized what an incredible opportunity this has been to develop my photography skills. When I try something different, I may not get the results I hoped for at first. But, I can try it again the next day or for days on end. I can try the same shot with different focal lengths or perspectives. This has been a rare opportunity to refine skills while attempting to keep myself open to seeing in new ways. Or to reexamine older techniques that I haven’t used in too long.

As long as this situation continues, I will attempt to keep testing and learning and seeing in new ways. That’s not to say, that I won’t be happy to end the string of press conferences that I have photographed related to COVID-19 long before it hits triple digits. Here’s hoping…

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NB: All images captured with Fujifilm X-cameras, fronted with Fujinon XF-lenses. Double exposures captured in camera.

3 Replies to “Pandemic lessons”

  1. I like all the photographs! I would never have thought of taking image overlay photographs of a speaker, but they are wonderful. They provide a sense of actually being there because when listening to a speaker my eyes wander taking in what is in the room and what other people are doing. Great idea!!!

    1. Thanks Robin. As you know, I have shot multiple exposures for years. The venue is particularly good for this, because of the dramatic light and dark areas in the room. Always good to put the subject of the second exposure in the dark area of the first exposure. Of course, it doesn’t always work out.

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