OSHA Approved Working Conditions

© Matthew Jonas 2010/Evergreen Newspapers 2010

These signs were everywhere this weekend at the 2010 CHSAA State Cross Country Championships at the Arapahoe County Fairgrounds. I got a kick out watching just about every photographer I know getting their photo taken next to one of these. I’ll admit I couldn’t resist the urge either. The address was Aurora but from the looks of the surroundings I think I was closer to Kansas. This was probably one of the worst cross country races I have ever covered. With the exception of one school, most of our teams were buried in the pack finishing outside the top 10. It was windy, dusty and to top it off, the finish line was 100% backlit and filled with “CHSAA Personnel”. Apparently 12 people in red shirts standing on the finish line, blocking the line of sight of just about every member of the media is good for exposure. Next year I’m bringing a step ladder.

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What Happens When a Photographer Takes a Vacation

© Matthew Jonas 2010

It’s extremely rare but I do occasionally get to take some vacation. If you want to know the truth I actually had to take some vacation or it would expire at the end of the year.  That is pretty much how I imagine most staff photographers do it. When most people go on vacation they start off by packing clothes. Not me. I usually start by packing cameras. After I am satisfied by the variety of equipment I have packed I move on to clothing. This year I took 3 cameras (only 3!?!): a Seagull TLR, a Leica CL and a Canon G10. I left all of my DSLRs at home. The camera that saw the most “action” was my TLR. I ran a couple of rolls of film through it while visiting the Cabrillo National Monument in California. The photos attached to this post were all shot with the TLR and then scanned. I suppose that kind of defeats the purpose of shooting film but I don’t have access to a darkroom anymore.

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Light happens

© Matthew Jonas 2010

I was editing wedding photos from last weekend and saw the light from my laptop screen reflecting off of my Leica CL. I thought it was worth a picture. That is all.

Top 10 things a small town photojournalist can depend on

  1. At least 1 assignment a week featuring a kid or a dog, sometimes 1 with both
  2. Having too many assignments one week and not enough the next week
  3. Getting asked what TV station I work for while on assignment
  4. Shooting high school sports with my 5 year old camera next to a parent with a EOS 1D Mark IV
  5. A 1200 square mile coverage area with one staff photographer/photo editor/videographer/rented mule
  6. Shooting a business profile portrait of someone who doesn’t want to be photographed
  7. Explaining to a reader why we don’t cover Junior Varsity teams
  8. Being first to cover breaking news but having no way to transmit
  9. Publishing a week old assignment on the front page
  10. Answering, “yes, we actually have a website.”