Tashe's Blog


Chapter 8 Reading Notes
April 27, 2010, 11:06 pm
Filed under: PRCA 3330 Reading Notes

Chapter 8 Selecting Publicity Photos and Graphics found in Dennis Wilcox’s Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques is one of my favorite chapters in the entire book. I enjoyed this chapter the most because I am highly interested in photography and the photography that accompanies a news story.

Chapter 8 discusses topics such as how to work with photographers, how to write captions for the photos, and most importantly how to take a good news worthy photo.

The book says that “More people ‘read’ photographs than read articles.” This means that capturing and publishing a great picture is extremely important. A photographer must chose a relevant subject matter that shows what the story is reporting and is clear enough for readers to understand what  is in the photo.

A few tips about composition of a photograph

  • Concentrate on what you want the reader to get from the picture, have minimal background.
  • Emphasize details rather than whole scenes. (Take multiple pictures to capture different scenes and this will help readers understand the pictures while multiplying the coverage).
  • Try to frame the picture. (not a literal frame)
  • Avoid wasted space. For example, if you are taking a photo of a group of people, the people should stand close together.
  • Sunglasses are a no-no. Ask subjects to remove sunglasses, hats, or anything that takes away from the image.

Action shots are valuable because it lets the reader see the event happening in the present. Showing pictures to scale allows viewers to understand the tiny-ness or magnitude of the object. Also, camera angle ads “spice” to a picture by showing the image through a rare perspective. Another tip to remember is lighting and timing. Always have a flash for indoor pictures and for outdoor pictures you should be aware of the direction of the sun.

Lastly, always get permission or a contract when taking pictures and distributing them to avoid legal hassles.

This information can be found in Wilcox’s Public Relations Writing and Media Techniques Sixth Edition

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