I'm a "self-taught" photographer/photojournalist. As I do what I love doing best, nearly every day, mostly for several small local rags, I sometimes cover events where other photographers are shooting. We all know each other within our community so, when I show up at an event with multiple photogs, we usually make eye contact and as we're shooting we're attentive to where we are with respect to each other's shot. That is, with the exception of one photographer. While he'll go unnamed here, the point I'd like to make is that within our craft, it's inevitable that there will be circumstances where you'll have to shoot around other photographers in order to complete your assignment. That said, we all need to be respectful of each other and do what we can to help each other by getting a few shots and then moving about a little so others can get as clean a shot as possible. I feel like I'm not expressing myself particularly well here.
The photographer I'm thinking of likes to shoot "low and wide" most of the time, which typically puts him very close to the subject. That's all well and good save for the fact that he stays close to the subject through most of whatever happens to be going on, oblivious to (read: ignoring) other shooters covering the event, making it nearly impossible for them to get a frame off without him in it. The editor of a local paper, who occasionally shoots once came into his office, where I happened to be at the time, pulled out his pocket knife and said "If I had a knife bigger than this (about a 1-1/2 inch blade), I'd have stabbed him." This from a gent whom I've always know to be quiet, gentle and the perfect gentleman. I guess that sums it up.
My parents brought me up, as did your's, I'm sure, that two wrongs don't make a right. I was talking with another shooter after a recent shoot where "low and wide" was and said that I was thinking of doing the frame block thing myself. It would be easy to do as I tower over this guy. She said that would be wrong, lowering myself to his level. I had to agree, reluctantly.
So, the point of this diatribe is that we're all in the same business; trying to eek a meager living out of the earth by doing what we love, creating beautiful images. There's no need for any of us to make anyone else in our profession work harder or lose an opportunity because of our own ignorance. Be cognizant of other shooters around you and give way after you've gotten a few shots. They'll do the same for you and everyone will benefit. I even think about that in my travels. As I watch tourists stop to pose shots, I try not to walk in front of them until they're done. It's really not hard, and that little bit of courtesy goes a long way. Pay it forward and remember, what goes around comes around.
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