Results tagged “Ventura County Star” from z_VC Star Photo Blog
The 10th Annual Piru Fest and Horseshoe Tournament was held today in triple digit heat. A young man named Dustin Henderson was there with his dog Fred. After I photographed him, his sister-in-law told me that she and Henderson were there to support a bereft family member living in Piru. They were all grieving. That information made this image sweeter to me.
I spent more time at each of the two people's homes than was scheduled, it seemed like the only way to get everyone comfortable and less conscious about my presence. I learned quickly that people with Alzheimer's disease like to gaze at the camera, such a challenge.
I really like this lede photo of Luz Bamer and her daughter-in-law, Toni Bamer. Both the Bamers and the Jolleys were extremely patient, gentle and loving with their elders, it touched my heart.
The Jolleys were in a rough spot with their late father having executed a reverse mortgage on his home. Pat Hickerson, his widow, could lose the roof over her head.
On the first day of the month before the sun was up, I had to shoot a book give away at the Bank of Books in Ventura. Without any interesting light yet I focused on finding patterns and natural geometry in the environment. Daniel Stevens was leaning up against a post flipping through the Geographic's 1990 story on his alma mater. I liked the division of the frame offered by the stairs, the post and the lines of the banisters.
Once the sun rose there were plenty of sweet patterns created by the shadows. It was a great morning of shooting. It reminded me of going to the Mountain Workshops held through Western Kentucky University for photojournalists where you get up before the sun to capture the new light and keep shooting until the sun goes down to get the golden light at the end of the day.
Marcos Alcaide, 4, has just worked his first professional camera. I remember doing the same at his age exactly. It was exciting, albeit scary because my father had specifically told me never to touch his camera. I'm so glad I took the risk to disobey and respectful that he saw the wisdom in teaching me about it.
When children show particular interest in my cameras I love letting them use one. Alciade seemed entranced by the reality through he lens. He was reluctant to hand it back when I had to leave. That was wonderful! I hope it sparked something lifelong in him, there is so much beauty in a single frame. Here is what Alcaide photographed:
My first assignment today was to cover a story on the honeybee population. Larry Pender of Jubilee Honeybee Company in Camarillo introduced me to his beekeepers, brothers Tomas and Santos Gomez and a few thousand of approximately 1,280,000 Italian honeybees contained in the spot where we stood on a blueberry farm in Camarillo. Occasionally a bee would smack into me or get in my hair, not a problem. Honeybees are pretty docile, a puff of smoke from smoldering burlap in a smoker helps that quality along.
Pender says that there has been a big decline in the honeybee population over the last five years and that while no one source can be pinpointed, systemic pesticides used in agriculture is a culprit. I asked if global warming was a factor, but he said it was not.
In this frame, Santos Gomez stands by while Larry Pender holds up a worker bee, top, and a drone. The story runs Thursday in the business section, should be cool, lots of photos on the web!
I had a hard time deciding which photo was better, the one where Liu is on her way down and we see her expression and feel the anticipation or the one where she has just hit the ground, and we see the impact of the fall and the loss but the top of Sommers' head is out of the frame. One of the images will be either in the Youth Sports section of Tuesday's newspaper and/or at www.vcstar.com. with a lot more images from the event on the website.
What would your edit have been?
The Ventura County Star is honoring Ventura High School varsity wrestler Isaac Archibeque who came in fourth place in the state championships this season. Shooting a portrait of an athlete in a sport that takes two participants is an interesting challenge. I gravitated toward an image with design using the light that came in through the wrestling room curtains and the bright yellow circles on the floor. This photo won't make it to the newspaper. The reproduction quality onto newspaper print will not hold, though it would with a magazine. The inks often blot onto the facing page and the subtle separation that you can see here between his back and the black wall might not make it. The images that will run, well, check them out, you'll see the difference.
Welcome to my first-ever blog! I'm starting my tenth year on staff here at the Ventura County Star and love my job as a photojournalist. What could be better than doing what you love and believe in for a living? I hope to use this space as a look into the photographic side of story telling, provide a solid look at my experiences on the job and convey the critical value of photography and newspapers in the world. I invite you to post feedback. Here we go....