Football is funny. Photographers both for newspapers and TV gather on sidelines and often we stop and chat about things. A lot of time its to complain about poor assignment planning or horrendous crops to our pictures or not using the best picture at all. Sometimes its more philosophical in nature and sometimes its about gear. During the EUP/Slippery Rock game it seems we ran the gamut. Erie Times photo chief Christ Millette was filling in for Janet Campbell and it was the first time in quite awhile we'd seen each other. We talked a little about our jobs and style of shooting. We talked about capturing moments and timing. I believe it is what I look for more than composition and light - though those do play a big role in my thinking. I didn't really know if I had this frame or not. I wasn't terribly excited by anything I thought I captures. I had one frame of the QB handing off to the runner that was a little different than usual given the way it was layered and the sharpness of QB's eyes. But this was the best of those moments we talk about--it has action, face, ball....and yes it was poorly cropped in the paper the next day. Meadville Tribune photograph by Richard Sayer
I was asked recently about how to photograph soccer. I do a great deal of thinking about photographing different things, events, games etc.... But I'm always taken aback when asked how I do something. I guess its because I generally push myself to do something different--not always naturally, but a lot. After being asked this question I began thinking about how I'd like to do things and then decided why not try for some of those types of shots. I'm experienced enough now that I can get some sort of picture that will be fine for the newspaper no matter what I try...and if things aren't looking too well after a fashion, I'll make sure I do what is needed to ensure I have something for the paper. This soccer game I shot the entire thing lying on my belly right next to the goal. I liked this picture when I shot it and I didn't even know the bee had flown into the frame. Had it been the actual goal keeper it would've been an even better play on words.
Meadville Tribune photograph by Richard Sayer
Oh yeah I forgot to mention, apparently the coach of the team was upset since he asked my buddy Jim Stefanucci not to shoot from there - but no explanation was offered. Jim's a great soccer shooter and had no intention of doing what I did anyway.
I took this photograph at the Crawford County Fair. I thought it was a pretty cool thing watching this duo try to coax this cow to a place it just didn't want to go. I felt I had a pretty neat picture for the next day's paper. But the kid got pissed. I stopped and asked if I would just not take any pictures and he was visibly upset with my presence. I had the right to photograph this and to even put the photo in the newspaper the next day, but chose not to. Its a difficult thing sometimes to understand the thoughts and feelings of the people we photograph. I often miss subtle things as I focus on the bigger things and I'm never sure what is documentation of what is, and what is my interpretation of what is. Ultimately the interpretation will sink in there despite how hard I try to not allow it to. Meadville Tribune photograph by Richard Sayer
This artist dressed as a super-hero to make his art at the 8-hour projects at Allegheny College. Sort of unusual and it did draw my attention for awhile. This picture falls into one of those ethical discussions we often have with ourselves and our colleagues. As I was photographing this artist another artist came by and I joked with that artist that I was just waiting for him to leap over a tall...... and the next thing I know he was doing this and I took his picture. The interesting question then becomes, does it run in the newspaper since it was something that probably wouldn't have happened without my joking around. We did use it as a secondary photo, but it has sort of bothered me since--even though I smile when I look at it--it perhaps isn't an ethical depictin of events at the 8-hour projects. Meadville Tribune photo b
This was my favorite photograph from the Taste of Meadville. It doesn't come close to telling a story, but I loved the light and the man's hand as he walked in front of me as I tried to find a graphic picture using the tent patterns and the Market House. I never did find a picture, but snapped this one and liked the result. I'm going to guess that had I been on my game last night and found pictures easily I would've missed this shot, it was out of sheer struggle. Meadville Tribune photograph by Richard Sayer
I walked around and around Tuesday night during the Taste of Meadville trying to find a photo. I struggled. There just wasn't a photo that was showing itself to me. I saw a bunch of friends and acquaintances and stopped to chat. This probably prevented me from looking further. Its hard covering the people you know, sounds funny, but its true. The separation factor in covering strangers is actually comforting. Going into an assignment void knowledge, allows me to fully explore a subject and make a photo based on learning fresh and reacting. Knowing some of my subjects history means I'm not completely learning new, my questions are tainted because of familiarity. Being naive and unknowledgeable is a good thing in reportage somehow. I guess having knowledge of a subject has its benefits too, but sometimes it does pose problems, especially when the event involves people stuffing their faces with food. Meadville Tribune photograph by Richard Sayer
Tractor pulls are not my favorite to photograph. This is one of those assignments I get where I wonder how good am I as a photojournalist. A good journalist seeks out the story, digs deep beyond the obvious to look for the story that is hidden. When I got to a tractor pull I seem to forget this and just shoot a picture. I like the tractor pulls where the tractors are open and you cn see the driver, but these trucks and big rigs--to me that just machinery and I'm not a machinery person. I like the human connection and to see faces. I let myself down each year at the tractor pulls by not really seeking out a story to tell. I've, on occasion remembered this, but more times than not I let myself down. There are good pictures to be taken. That is what I was thinking when I made this self portrait at a recent tractor pull I covered. Meadville Tribune photograph by Richard S
Photos By: Harmony Motter
I photographed Shannon and Evie in 1995 when I was in photography school. Evie was only a couple months old then and Shannon was 18. This photograph always held a special place in my heart. I made the photograph on the right in September of 2009. Evie is 14 years-old now and I won't say how old Shannon is.
This is a piece put out by the Denver Post. Its quite the story and storytelling. Its what good journalism is. The photographer for the project is an old friend of Rich. They went to photography school together. He has won numerous awards regionally and nationally. This project took him over two years to complete. His name is Craig Walker.
Click on this link to take you to the story. www.denverpost.com/americansoldier
There are multiple parts including the stories, Craig's photograph and video and more importantly, Ian, his friends and family in an honest depiction of life right out of high school and right into the military. This is a very good piece of work.