Spent part of the evening at this lecture, Visual Storytelling: The Power of Photos, by James Gregg.  Gregg is a photojournalist at the Arizona Daily Star, and the lecture was part of the Cronkite Schools Must See Mondays series.

I felt a lot of Gregg’s advice, which was all fantastic, could be applied to travel as well as photography – and photography plays a huge part of travel anyway. Therefore, I’m double posting my Cronkite Conversation post, and adding the travel twist on it over here along with a photo of my own.

James Gregg was a perfect speaker for this series. Gregg started with his thoughts on incorporating video with his still photographs, which he sees as an enhancement, and pointed out that video and still photos can each do something the other can’t. Specific insights like this and broader advice on photography and journalism made the lecture a valuable experience to aspiring photographers and journalists. But Gregg himself is a valuable lesson. In a time when journalism is shifting and adapting, Gregg talks about standards and challenging himself, finding stories and constantly looking for material, and being his own advocate. Gregg described the exhilaration of “pinch yourself moments” like photographing rodeos up close and personal, to the times people have allowed him to witness intimate moments like his first piece involving illegal immigrants. I was amazed that Gregg says he’s happy if he gets one photo a month that’s up to his standards – and impressed when he said that the more he knows, the higher his standards get. In short, I left the lecture intimidated and inspired – and really ready to get into the field to start learning and practicing and seeing what stories I can find and put together.

Quotes:

“We have an opportunity from one moment to the next to enter into someone else’s world.”

“It’s really important to listen to your gut.”

“I just started asking people, ‘How can I see more?’”

“Take people where hey can’t go themselves…if that means getting on a horse, get on a horse…when you don’t have a horse, take a mule.”

2008-01-23 (46)mini