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Posts Tagged ‘photojournalism’

As a business major and a fairly sociable person, I’m big on networking. I understand it’s necessary in any industry and I rarely throw away a business card I get. That said, after two weeks of using Twitter, I’m convinced it’s the best networking tool on the web now.

And here are two examples of how Twitter rocks the networking scene:

Someone searched “Romania” on Twitter and found one of my tweets. This led to the beginning of a mini-conversation about the country. I found out that this person’s parents fled to the U.S. during communist dictator Ceauşescu’s reign and that he joined them after the revolution. Can you say potential story? And this person came to me unsolicited.

Then, last night, I’m glancing through the lists of people that my friends are following. I click on anyone that has a photo that looks like they might be a photographer. Interestingly enough, I run across a press photog that is stationed in Romania right now working on a long-term project. Something tells me that he might be helpful if we get into a bind over there.

And what was the one thing that was heavily emphasized in my breakout session at the ASMP Business Practices Seminar? Networking.

Why aren’t you on Twitter again?

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My National Press Photographers Association’s News Photographer magazine came in the mail today. I always love looking through it, but this month’s issue is especially relevant. The cover story, written by Alisa Booze Troetschel, is about shooting for NGOs (non-governmental agencies).

Troetschel interviews a few photogs that have worked extensively with NGOs. The article was informative, but I especially like the teaser on the first page that reads, “Many photojournalists want to use their talents as storytellers to make a difference in people’s lives. But opportunities to delve into an issue sometimes sink to the bottom of priority lists in the current ‘do more with less’ newspaper environment, and it’s a challenge to devise a financially viable project while working as a freelancer.”

I think this perfectly sums up one of the many conflicts that journalists face today. I know that one of the reasons I decided to pursue photojournalism instead of commercial photography is because I wanted to use my skill to shine light on societal issues. If my photos bring attention to a problem, my work has more meaning.

And Troetschel hits the nail on the head when she talks about how hard it is to make these projects financially feasible for freelancers. Sommer and I are struggling to put together enough money for our two-week trip. That said, I’m so glad that we are able to do a project of this magnitude with the assistance of our grant from SMU that was made possible after a sizable donation from the Meadows Foundation. Without the grant, none of this would even be possible.

-lindsey

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