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Panpa Bulletin : July 2010
www.panpa.org.au Visit websend.com.au to download the new and improved FREE iQChaser application or call 1300 798 949 for a demonstration. amline your ad workflow process with one simple application aser is simple, multi-user platform software that streamlines and complements the day-to-day ad production environment. FREE TO ALL PUBLISHERS Movie makers PHOTOGRAPHERS have seen many technological changes over the years from black and white to colour, from analogue to digital, and then the mobile transfer of photos. The latest change in camera tech- nology -- the addition of video capa- bilities to stills cameras -- is resulting in the convergence of two previously separate roles -- photographers shoot- ing video. Andrew Meares, a photographer with Fairfax Media's Canberra bureau, is one of the few Australian photographers shooting video with digital SLRs (single lens reflex cam- eras). He has produced a number of high-definition videos for Fairfax websites, as well as shooting photos for the mastheads. "Photographers have always been at the forefront of technology," he says. "For me, it has created oppor- tunity." Mr Meares believes the demand for online video is "taking off ", citing the new video project from Google, Google TV, and mobile devices such as the iPad that are ideal for video consumption. His own employer has just signed a deal with Sydney-based TV station Channel 10 to put news bulletins online -- another example of how newspaper publishers are increasingly convinced of the power of video on their websites. Mr Meares says that despite the growing popularity of online video, it has traditionally had low production values. "But the (Canon) Mark IV has given me the opportunity to bring high production values to what peo- ple think is usually low production value," he continues. It's this difference in production values that he believes can distinguish photographers-turned-videographers from others, and make for quality news publications. "We need a visual product that stands up well in the global market- place," Mr Meares continues. "We could be trying to bring the vibrant photography of the Herald to the widescreen of the TV . . . These cameras help us tremendously to do something like this." Dan Chung, an award winning photographer at The Guardian, has been shooting video on dSLRs since the Canon 5D MK II was released. He has also set up the website, www.dslrnewsshooter.com to share techniques, tips, and discussion by photographers and videographers using the new tools. He agrees with Mr Meares's com- ments: "If you're going to do video, and come from a photography back- ground, you have to ask the question: why would anyone use you over a conventional video guy who came in through conventional video training, or used to work for a TV station?" "You've got to bring something else to the party, and quite often that is a vision-related thing, some way of looking at the world that is different and interesting and makes people want to look at it," he says. Mr Chung, who is based in Beijing, emphasises the need for quality over quantity. "I don't think it's about creating 30 videos a day from any given town," he says. "It's about creating a few videos that do very well indeed. "And what you quantify as 'very well' is relative to your audience, to your expectation and whatever else you feel is a reasonable measure. "This might not mean you need to achieve millions of hits, but it might be everyone in the locale that your newspaper serves might have heard about it or watched it." Mr Meares says a barrier to pho- tographers filing video is not one of training but the infrastructure hurdles that exist within publishers through the lack of integration between various departments and teams, even though they have similar goals. "I'm confident photographers will pick up the skills pretty quickly but it's the business model to support it that is needed," he says. "Where there is a lack of a business model, people are nervous to make a wrong decision." Mr Chung says newspapers are still trying to work out the best way of monetising videos but that doesn't necessarily mean you need huge infrastructure to start shooting and filing video to your website. "You just need a way of getting your message out there," he says in an effort to encourage both large and small newspapers. "In a very small community, that might be just as simple as going out and telling everyone that you've done the video and then telling their friends that they should go and look at it. "I don't think you need a massive video department with lots of com- puters and a huge editorial team, with distribution channels like YouTube and Vimeo." Mr Chung says editorial oversight is needed. Mr Chung holds workshops on vid- eography, as well as holding down a role for The Guardian, one of Britain's most respected national daily papers. Picking out a few photographers with the aptitude for video, then giv- ing them some initial training and tools is a good approach. "When The Guardian started doing video, it was just me. The editor said, 'please go and shoot some video for us and learn how it's all done.' Steve Grove, Photographic Man- ager for Nationwide News, says he took a similar approach. "We took delivery of some Canon 5D Mk IIs about 12 months ago and identified six of our top shooters across our mastheads," Mr Grove recalls. "We then went to AFTRS (the Aus- tralian Film, Television and Radio School) and constructed a training course, then went through the train- ing course with our photographers." Mr Grove sees video as "a growing part of the normal press photogra- pher's arsenal of abilities". He believes it's a good candidate for "premium" material for news sites that choose to go down some sort of paid model, either through pay-walls or applications on mobile devices. However, there are still a few hurdles before photographers can file video as easily as stills. "Video files are massive in size, and if we follow the same sort of platform we operate now with our still photog- raphers where we file from the field, then we need to look at our strategy," he says. Mr Meares says video "empowers photographers". Despite any changes in the techni- cal side of the job, good photogra- phers will always be needed. "We still need people to go out, get sunburnt, spat upon, punched, kicked, and get cold running up the sideline of a footy match," he laughs. Dan Chung joins PANPA speakers The latest press cameras now feature the capacity to shoot high-quality video, and photographers are lining up to make their mark in this new eld 6 | The PANPA Bulletin | JULY 2010 Nick Evershed NPA WORLD leading videographer, Dan Chung of The Guardian, will hold a workshop at the PANPA con- ference in Sydney on August 27. Entry to the workshop is free for photogra- phers who are full-time employees of news or- ganisations that are members of the association. However, spaces are limited. Photographers who want to make the most of this rare opportunity must register their place via the association's website. It will be first in, best dressed. PANPA chief executive Mark Hollands said: "Videography will be huge over the next two years. The iPad, and other tablet computers, will simply drive this demand even harder. "I am delighted Dan has agreed to come to Sydney and share his experience and knowledge. "I know some of the biggest news organisa- tions -- News Ltd, Fairfax and AAP -- are really interested in this 4-hour session. "It will not be designed for the photography elite. I would really like to see some of the re- gional photographers making an effort to join us. This is a professional opportunity that just doesn't come around too often." The workshop will be held at the SMC Centre in Goulburn St, on the morning of August 27. Tips from Dan Chung THE most significant differences to stills photography are sound and movement. Audio: Audio is half of video, and I think it is the hardest thing. When I run my training workshops, I tell all the photographers to spend as much time as possible getting to know audio, to go and spend time just recording with audio. Movement : When photographers start shooting video, they tend to forget a lot of the things they know about photography. Don't ignore the rules of composition. They apply slightly dif- ferently, especially when you're moving, but rules of thirds and everything else still apply. Plus, you don't move the camera unless there's a reason. You see a lot of deliberately moved video that has no point, and doesn't move the story on. Great links to dSLR-shot videos Chinese National Day parade Dan Chung, The Guardian http://vimeocom/6853452 I don't think it's about creating 30 videos a day from any given town" Dan Chung " We still need people to go out, get sunburnt, spat upon, punched, kicked' Andrew Meares " Obama's Burden Christopher Morris, Time Magazine http://vimeo.com/7588576 The Swordmaker and the Swordsman Matthew Allard, Al Jazeera http://vimeo.com/8646010 Hong Kong women shrug off tattoo taboo, Ed Jones, AFP http://vimeo.com/8380596 Proudly presented by