I don’t shoot as much as I used to when I was teaching photography and shooting special events for commercial clients but ever since I picked up a camera I’ve always shot as much as I could for non-profits and charitable groups.
If you’re a commercial photographer or an amateur photographer who wants to improve their images then I recommend volunteering as a way of helping out while helping yourself.
(In photo: That’s Rachel Williams one of the organizers for Power of 10 and a very good road cyclist encouraging the crowd at a fund-raiser at Lighthouse to get involved.)
The secret ABCs to special event photography are (a) shoot lots. Don’t get caught up in the event and end up talking with the participants but keep shooting all the time. Edit your images in your digital darkroom and not in your camera.
Next (b) don’t hesitate to step in when you see something you want to shoot and when you do don’t hesitate to organize the shot the way you want it. Be quick, be friendly and be gone is my motto. If there are a bunch of participants shooting with their cellphone cameras help them get their shots first then organize the shot the way you want it.
If it’s a group shot I will yell “eyes to me” so as to avoid those group shots where everyone is looking in a different direction and nobody is looking into your camera.
Finally, (c) edit the heck out of your images once you get back home. While it’s not uncommon for me to shoot 1500 plus separate images at a day-long event I pick the best 250 or so for my client to use to promote future events. Even then, I usually provide the organizers with an executive portfolio of just 15 to 20 of the very best for them to show around immediately. Too many photos can be confusing for some clients.
BTW I never watermark my images that I give away as I do give away all rights to the client as my personal gift to them. If they don’t have their own online gallery, with their permission, I’ll post the images (full resolution and downloadable) on my SmugMug gallery and send them the link.
So again I’m grateful to have been asked to help an organization of fellow cyclists who have created this fund-raising event called the Power of 10.
Take a moment to read the story of this wonderful group of athletes and then go over to the page for LightHouse and see what these great folks do for grieving children, youth and their families.
This year the event will be held at Mattamy National Cycling Centre in Milton on Saturday, October 13. Why not get a team together and join in the fun?
This is why I donate my time and service. it might not be much but it’s something I can do to help out.