In my previous post on this, I covered how I adapted the formula for documenting buildings. This time, I will demonstrate it in a human interest story with an industrial twist. It's something I've also used in wedding photography (yes, I shoot the occasional wedding, with not a single factory in sight!) which really does lend itself to a storytelling approach once you get beyond the traditional group shots of bride and groom and family, etc.
I spent a full day in a small Lancashire foundry documenting the work of Keith, a foundryman who had spent nearly 50 years in foundries. The green sand casting process is a very sequential process whereby there is a definite beginning, middle and end, which in itself makes a chronological storytelling approach both easy and essential. At the end of the working day, the job of casting is complete, and the following day sees the fettling (where sprues are ground off) and any other finishing work done.
As this is a one man enterprise, there are only two elements - Keith, and the process of casting. Any incorrect photo captions are due to my faulty memory, not Keith's inaccurate description of what he was doing!
For this, I used my two Nikon bodies - a D810 with 24-70 F2.8 and a D700 with 16-35 F4 and both were generally wide open as light was at a premium. Both cameras were set to auto-ISO and the ISO ranged between 1250 and 10000. I also popped on a 70-200 F4 for a few shots.
OK, so it's not exactly Eugene Smith's 'Country Doctor' essay (https://timeline.com/life-american-country-doctor-9434632e1134), but I hope it illustrates the principles.
1] Introductory or overall - usually a wide angle or aerial shot that establishes the scene.
2] Medium - focuses on one activity or one group.
3] Close Up - zeroes in on one element, like a person's hands or an intricate detail of a building.
4] Portrait - usually either a dramatic, tight head shot or a person in his or her environmental setting.
5] Interaction - people conversing or in action.
6] Signature - summarizes the situation with all the key storytelling elements in one photo - often called the decisive moment.
7] Sequence - a how-to, before and after, or a series with a beginning, middle and end (the sequence gives the essay a sense of action).
8] Clincher - a closer that would end the story.