With inexpensive auto-focus and image-stabilization cameras now widely available â€“ and PhotoShop at hand to rescue any less-than-successful effort â€“ even reporters could be trained to take some decent shots.
Throughout my entire reporting career, I took my own photos. That was many years before digital cameras or even PhotoShop. In fact, when push came to shove, I could go into the dark room and process my own prints.
That said, I’ve come around to believing that photographers, still photographers, are going to be quite employable in the news game for a long, long time yet. There’s no innovation yet that can replace a really good photographer.
Alfred Eisenstaedt – â€œOnce the amateur’s naive approach and humble willingness to learn fades away, the creative spirit of good photography dies with it. Every professional should remain always in his heart an amateur.â€
Two links were cut off from the previous comment:
http://www.spymedia.com/ pays a small fee for people to go and shoot “assignments”.
http://www.scoopt.com/ is also an interesting citizen-photo site.
in other words, just take pictures of everything (well …) and be plesantly surprised by the real life that you capture. that’s how I do it. I’ve taken pictures my whole time as a reporter. There’s only been one I’ve worked with who could kick my ass with his eyes closed and all his fingers broken. I enjoy my camera 10 years into using it professionally. Partly that’s the instant gratification of being there, picture done assignment done, rather than being there, now write the thing (with hopefully a conflict and a lede already in mind).
Then there’s the beauty