In October, I received an e-mail from an editor looking for an image of a crane operator to support a story they were doing on operator training. Usually, in the assignments I have shot, the crane is the subject and due to the size of the crane the operator is a very tiny part of the image…if he/she can be seen at all. I had till the next morning to get back to the editor so that evening I filtered my images and from 10,000 plus finished images of cranes I had two featuring crane operators where I had releases. I found them in about 5 minutes and had them off to the editor that night. Four weeks later, the image was published. I never would have found those two images from 10,000 plus shot over the past decade had it not been that I had attached some basic keywords to those images. If you keyword when you input your images from your cards, it soon becomes a habit. A habit that just got reenforced by this experience.
In shooting the cover for the August issue of American Crane and Transport, I had what I thought was a slam dunk idea for a cover. Literally outside my 16th floor office was a 51 story building going up. I started shooting the building from the time the tower crane was assembled. What a unique shot I thought. Straight down on a Tower Crane, a perspective most people don’t see or get to shoot. Up 2,3,8,12 stories and I shot all the way, along with the conventional from the ground up shot. When it came time to submit, in went the “unique perspective shots” along with the traditional. Then the call came from the editor. “We are really struggling to select one from several we like, would you like to be the tie-breaker?” So I selected my favorites and had a couple of hours to get back to them. In the end, I picked the traditional shot. Why not the “unique perspective”. The image was to highlight the magazine’s lead story, key word “story”. The more I looked at the tower crane below me in the “unique perspective” shots, the more I realized that they just didn’t have the impact of standing under a 12 story tower crane in operation – that’s what your mind expects to see and if it doesn’t see that it doesn’t scream Tower Crane. So in supporting the magazine’s lead story, we needed to make the reader’s mind identify quickly that this was the tower crane issue, not struggle to figure out why we were looking down on the crane. It was an important lesson for me and a reminder that its about telling the story, not just about capturing what was a unique perspective. In the end the story won out, as it should have.
On the way to Bordeaux, quick stop in Paris for the first time. Did a walk around at night with my friend, Bob. Starting at the Place du Trocadero, shot the Eiffel Tower at dusk and then moved closer down the steps, trying a bunch of vantage points. At the base of the Tower, near the ticket entrance, I went horizontal to try a different perspective. Was one of my favorites from the night. Simple B&W in Camera Raw or Lightroom.
I was pleased to discover that the May/June edition of the Canadian publication, Service Truck, featured 16 of my images in a double truck ( a pair of facing pages in a magazine) article written by Dan Anderson for their column Spec My Truck. The idea for the article began over a year ago when I met the editor at the ConExpo trade show in Germany and pitched the idea of the article to him. While this regular column normally features an individual and describes how they have customized their service truck to fit their specific job, Dan interviewed the head of product support and wrote about how a company approaches customizing their entire fleet to meet the tasks required to service cranes. The editor requested a lot of images with specific vehicle details and it was fun spending a few hours with several fleet vehicles to come up with a fresh approach to capturing the story.
Excited to see one of my images from ConExpo be selected for the cover of the April issue of American Crane and Transport.
ConExpo is the largest construction equipment show in North America and occurs in Las Vegas every three years.
Here is link to the magazine: American Cranes and Transport
Morale of this story is be ready. Shooting with the Df and an 80-400mm during a round of golf in Western Florida, I came over a knoll to this wood stork. Camera was all set to go, so it was a straight forward click. Critters near golf courses are used to people so they tend to stay put. The fact that he had just caught breakfast was also occupying his attention….