Reuters photojournalists work in many different scenarios. You could be working in a 2’ x 2’ assigned space on the red carpet at the Academy Awards with 1,000 other photographers – we call that a set piece event. If you’re on the sidelines of the NFL Super Bowl or the camera platform at the U.S. presidential inauguration you’re on a set piece event.
Another day you might be covering spot news, shooting a hurricane or tornado, a school shooting or a tragedy like the space shuttle crash.
Then, there’s enterprise work which can be the most difficult of all. From the story idea, to getting cooperative subjects and access, to the shooting itself: enterprise journalism is all up to you and using your imagination and creativity. My recently completed project on obesity in America was such a piece.
Last spring I started looking for an enterprise topic to shoot during the year. I considered covering the economy but we had endless images of unemployment lines, foreclosures, job fairs and poor people devastated by the financial collapse. Frankly, I couldn’t see the need for doing more.
Soon I realized there was another topic that was in nearly every newspaper, magazine and website that we didn’t have much imagery of. “The Epidemic of Obesity” – a term bandied about in the media and vilified by the fat acceptance crowd.