Upstate buff/Freelance Photographers

W1CRN

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 3, 2009
Messages
275
Location
Liberty, SC
Are there any buff or freelance guys in the upstate? I have buffed a few fire and not seen a buff or freelance photographer. I have also tried to contact some of the news agencies to give them photos and video but they don't return emails, so I am guessing that there isn't a market down here for stuff like this.
 

JimD56

KO9JAD/Fire Lieutenant/Paramedic
Feed Provider
Joined
Nov 18, 2004
Messages
211
Location
Davie, FL (Miami/Fort Lauderdale Metro)
I owed a freelance agency back in the late 90s-early 2000's here in Miami. Great gear and coverage. However, the proliferation of cellphone video makes everyone a freelancer now. The big Markets of NYC, LA, Chicago, Miami, Dallas, etc. are the only places you can see real freelancers.
Remember, "If it Bleeds it Leads" no matter where you are, and of course any fire with little kids rescued and pets are also good for the newsies.
 

W1CRN

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 3, 2009
Messages
275
Location
Liberty, SC
I owed a freelance agency back in the late 90s-early 2000's here in Miami. Great gear and coverage. However, the proliferation of cellphone video makes everyone a freelancer now. The big Markets of NYC, LA, Chicago, Miami, Dallas, etc. are the only places you can see real freelancers.
Remember, "If it Bleeds it Leads" no matter where you are, and of course any fire with little kids rescued and pets are also good for the newsies.
Yeah you are right it is hard with all the cell phone cameramen now. But I would lie I use that more then my DLSR now.
 

trentbob

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2007
Messages
2,101
Location
Bristol, Pa.
So I started as a freelance news photographer in the early 70s when I got out of high school and I was in college. Always had police monitors as a kid and at that time Crystal control scanners.

Long story short ended up working for a large seven-day-a-week newspaper full time as a staff photographer, also ended up working as a reporter. Became a department editor and in addition to other duties I was in charge of our photo department. Inner City in New Jersey.

Retired now, we would have freelance photographers bringing photos all the time. I had a budget to pay Freelancers. Sometimes we would get just a great photo and we would publish it.

I always said with photography, you either have it or you don't. I had professional photojournalists with master's degrees that were mediocre at best and I had 17 year old kids with a student camera that were world-class.

Most of my freelance budget went to covering Sports like high school baseball or something. We got spot news all day long. There's bad car wrecks everyday, all day. Now if an SUV is overturned and there's a baby strapped in the car seat upside down and safe and you happen to catch that photo before the baby is removed, that's a winner.

As newspapers get phased out and there's less and less room, we had to budget space more carefully. We also had staff photos to fit in. Kind of edged Freelancers out unless again, they would do that Friday Night Football game.

I assume you guys are talking TV video. Maybe you're talking about still photography.

Experience and skill is what makes you stand out over the average cell phone Warrior. Try to establish a relationship with the Associated Press, keep your website and YouTube channel going with good stuff whether it's published or not, also, have those professional business cards, give them to the cops and get your name on the police report as a witness with photos. Lawyers pay good money for that kind of photography.

Make sure you're a paying member of the National Press Photographers Association and get their ID. Those are the kind of things I looked for with a freelancer.

Stay at it and market yourself.
 

W1CRN

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Dec 3, 2009
Messages
275
Location
Liberty, SC
So I started as a freelance news photographer in the early 70s when I got out of high school and I was in college. Always had police monitors as a kid and at that time Crystal control scanners.

Long story short ended up working for a large seven-day-a-week newspaper full time as a staff photographer, also ended up working as a reporter. Became a department editor and in addition to other duties I was in charge of our photo department. Inner City in New Jersey.

Retired now, we would have freelance photographers bringing photos all the time. I had a budget to pay Freelancers. Sometimes we would get just a great photo and we would publish it.

I always said with photography, you either have it or you don't. I had professional photojournalists with master's degrees that were mediocre at best and I had 17 year old kids with a student camera that were world-class.

Most of my freelance budget went to covering Sports like high school baseball or something. We got spot news all day long. There's bad car wrecks everyday, all day. Now if an SUV is overturned and there's a baby strapped in the car seat upside down and safe and you happen to catch that photo before the baby is removed, that's a winner.

As newspapers get phased out and there's less and less room, we had to budget space more carefully. We also had staff photos to fit in. Kind of edged Freelancers out unless again, they would do that Friday Night Football game.

I assume you guys are talking TV video. Maybe you're talking about still photography.

Experience and skill is what makes you stand out over the average cell phone Warrior. Try to establish a relationship with the Associated Press, keep your website and YouTube channel going with good stuff whether it's published or not, also, have those professional business cards, give them to the cops and get your name on the police report as a witness with photos. Lawyers pay good money for that kind of photography.

Make sure you're a paying member of the National Press Photographers Association and get their ID. Those are the kind of things I looked for with a freelancer.

Stay at it and market yourself.
Never thought about the business cards and handing them out. Yes I am talking about still photography. I enjoy still photography very much. Been out of it for a little while because I moved down here, then had my second child. Its just been crazy and now I would like to get back into taking photos of incidents and maybe even spots now that say that.
 

trentbob

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2007
Messages
2,101
Location
Bristol, Pa.
Never thought about the business cards and handing them out. Yes I am talking about still photography. I enjoy still photography very much. Been out of it for a little while because I moved down here, then had my second child. Its just been crazy and now I would like to get back into taking photos of incidents and maybe even spots now that say that.
Yep, if you want the Associated Press or a newspaper to buy a photo it's important to get all of the information on a notepad that you can so it's less work for them to write a caption or story. Get names first and last get spelling's correct. Get times that it happened, get circumstances, get the phone number of the officer assigned to the incident.

Anything you can do to make it easier for the newspaper or news service, the better. Make sure there's cops or people in the picture, try to get IDs. Try to get artsy-fartsy LOL. Think about deadlines which is going to be about 8 or 9. If it's a big event they can change things around up to about 11.
 

Firebuff880

Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2006
Messages
354
Location
Boynton Beach, FL
So I started as a freelance news photographer in the early 70s when I got out of high school and I was in college. Always had police monitors as a kid and at that time Crystal control scanners.

Stay at it and market yourself.
Wow, someone as old as me.. Started in High school once I had my license and Regency Act-R scanners as a way to pay for Gas and Scanners..
 

trentbob

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2007
Messages
2,101
Location
Bristol, Pa.
Wow, someone as old as me.. Started in High school once I had my license and Regency Act-R scanners as a way to pay for Gas and Scanners..
Yeah I was lucky that my dad, uncle and older brother were all hams, I was into swl, CB and tunable police monitors in the mid sixties when I was 11 and 12.

Had my own darkroom and professional equipment when I was 16 and once I got the driver's license I was off and running.

Started a great career all because of listening to scanners. :)
 

Firebuff880

Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2006
Messages
354
Location
Boynton Beach, FL
Had my own darkroom and professional equipment when I was 16 and once I got the driver's license I was off and running.
I miss mine, built it in 10th grade, gave all the parts lens including my Beseler 4x5 enlarger away when I moved to Fl a few years ago.. Still have most of my Cannon SLRs some where. One of the best assignments I had was for AP covering Jimmy Carter in NH when he was first starting out as I was the low man on the pole.
 

K4RBT

Member
Joined
May 12, 2011
Messages
89
I was thinking about going back to it, even video. Forget newspapers, as Egon said in Ghostbusters, "Print is dead". Video to TV stations works well if you can send the video in to them early enough. I do digital still and have a pro-consumer Cannon HD like our public tv station uses.
My son did a lot of weather stills. His business was wedding photography. He used snapping lightening to relax.
My biggest problem is my diabetes has caused me to have nightvision blindness. bright lights and I am blind for up to five minutes. New headlights cause it every time.
 

trentbob

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Feb 22, 2007
Messages
2,101
Location
Bristol, Pa.
I was thinking about going back to it, even video. Forget newspapers, as Egon said in Ghostbusters, "Print is dead". Video to TV stations works well if you can send the video in to them early enough. I do digital still and have a pro-consumer Cannon HD like our public tv station uses.
My son did a lot of weather stills. His business was wedding photography. He used snapping lightening to relax.
My biggest problem is my diabetes has caused me to have nightvision blindness. bright lights and I am blind for up to five minutes. New headlights cause it every time.
Yes in my latter years, I also had problems with my eyes at night.

Actually newspapers started to force the staff photographers to shoot video even though photos were used in the newspaper. Newspapers started having online editions to try to bolster business with a subscription services and they wanted video for the online sites including the still photos. For professional photojournalist used to shooting still photos it was quite the extra burden but you weren't talking about the same skillset exerted by the photographers. They would do there still shots and then just grab some video for the website.

The awards were won for the still shots on the front page the next day but the video came in handy on the website an hour after the event happened. I guess what I'm saying is... Do both LOL.
 

K4RBT

Member
Joined
May 12, 2011
Messages
89
There is a web site, I think it was SC Fire, that wanted fire buffs to submit videos and stills, Has a pretty good size patronage.
I used to really be in to helicopter photography, but after 9-11, you are not allowed on the flight line unless escorted by the pilot. He cannot fly if he is with me. Some med helicopter operations will watch you, but not be in your back pocket. Static shots are ok but do not match a hovering 3/4 frontal with the shutter to properly blur the main rotors. Two of my helicopter photographs are in restaurants at two small airports.
I cringe when I see a video taken by a cellphone and the op has the shakes. Looks like and earthquake.
 
Top