Thursday, February 25, 2016

Enterprise feature pictures are the bright, happy, candid moments of life

This photo is an enterprise feature I took with my new Fujifilm X-E2 mirrorless camera. I was on the hunt for a feature photo for the paper, as well as practice with my new camera. I initially stopped by the museum to document the grounds crew clearing off the steps, but then a school bus pulled up and I got this instead! (Screen grab from Toledo Blade)

Typical umbrella on the street shot. Couldn't find him to get his name, so he's nameless. It happens. Shot Feb. 25.
Northwood resident Daniel Diaz flies his self-constructed model plane at the Lark Elementary soccer field in Northwood, Ohio. Diaz has been building his own model plans for nearly two years, and has about 12 in his collection.   
Photos by Lori King  ©Toledo Blade
   Feature pictures.
   They are the bright to the dark. Happy to the sad. Feature pictures are the behind-the-scenes to the main action.
   The feature picture category is so broad that you can’t contain the definition into a single category. Features are everywhere!
   This week began our lesson into feature photography. I’ve provided lots of links to view on Blackboard. You have your textbook chapter to read. So, on this blog post I’m demonstrating feature photos I’ve taken in just the past few weeks.
                 On Enterprise Features
   Enterprise features are unplanned, candid moments. We Blade photographers call them rovers, because we rove around and search for anybody doing anything even remotely interesting. I enjoy rovers because we are on our own, with no direction from editors or reporters (no offense!)
   Basically, roving is driving around and finding something that will fit a hole in the paper or, say, go with a weather story.
   The key to successful enterprise features is capturing the spontaneous moment. Camera controls and composition are certainly important, of course, but it’s the moment that counts. To get moment, you need patience, perceptiveness and a curious nature to what just might happen in front of your lens!
     I’m writing about enterprise features because today, Feb. 25, is a snow day for most schools in Metro Detroit and Toledo. It’s a perfect day to capture one!
Clarice Nelson loses control of her umbrella as daughter Tamaro Jones watches. 

Take this photo of an umbrella gone wild, shot yesterday as I was trolling through Downtown Toledo searching for a weather rover. To make a long story short, I was actually shooting the girl on the right (because the mother didn’t want to be photographed), when all of a sudden the mom’s umbrella succumbed to the wind. There was no way I wasn’t going to shoot that! Once the mom saw the photo on the back of my camera, she graciously gave me

permission, and her name.
   The next example is another weather rover from last week.  Again, I was instructed to get a photo that demonstrated weather, this time for unseasonably warm weather. So, where to go? An ice cream stand, of course! I sat in my car and waited for customers who would fit the bill. These two teens walked up to the window, so I got out of my car, approached them, told them who I was, and to just ignore me. Using a long lens, I backed off and just let them do their thing. The rest, they say, is published!
   The final example (above) is a feature I just shot a few days ago. I like to drive through neighborhoods, looking for people out and about. I spotted this guy flying his model airplane in a soccer field. I turned around and approached him. I got a shot of him getting his plane ready - a nice reflection off of his car. Then I shot him launching his plan, but moments later the plan crashed to the ground. Moment over. But I shot everything I could. Even though I wanted the plane in the air, you have to shoot everything leading up to the moment you anticipated. In this case, I'm glad I did because when his plane crashed, my hopes of what I first envisioned was dashed. But at least I had something.
   I hope this is enough inspiration to get out there and shoot something! 
  • Charge your camera batteries
  • Put on your snowsuit
  • Pack your pencil (best in wet weather) and notebook. 
  • Go! 
  • Then post it on Twitter, and please don’t forget about your AP style caption information.

   How enterprising can you be?
Springfield High School students Mallory Phillips keeps her hair from blowing around
while her friend Trey Pontious samples her ice cream cone after school at Mr G's Barn. in
Holland, Ohio. This enterprise feature made the front page of the Toledo Blade, below the fold.

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