Reportage is the use of photography as a medium for telling stories visually whether that be sports, breaking news or just lifestyle stories.
Reportage is the preferred term in Europe while here in the US, it’s photojournalism.
I recently got a complimentary ebook from Italian photographer Enzo Dal Verme entitled “How to Shoot a Reportage–brutally practical tips and tricks”
This 68-page ebook is chock full of valuable information.
If I were an aspiring photojournalist, I would definitely get a copy of it.
There is a good balance between anecdotes, background information which is very pertinent and tips on actual photography.
I know the value of this because as a former news photographer, I appreciate what is being shared by Enzo.
Most beginners aspiring to be professionals already have camera handling down.
What they lack is the imagination or the reason one would choose to shoot a certain picture utilizing a certain technique.
For example, Enzo illustrates beautifully why he chose to pan a martial artist running in a gym with an intentional tilt of the horizon in the chapter “A Few Tips For Your Clicks.”
While I don’t use tilts in my horizons very often, it doesn’t mean I’m opposed to that. There is a time and place for that.
In my case, I usually tilt my horizons as a last resort like when the situation is so boring and I’ve exhausted every possibility to make it more interesting.
Other notable sections which are important but often overlooked is the chapter on “The Delivery.”
Enzo points out a very critical element here which is the rapport that you need to establish between the editor or client and you.
“My enthusiasm is part of the package, the little episodes that I tell the editor off the record help ensure my work is aptly interpreted.–Enzo Dal Verme”
I enjoyed reading his perspective not just because it’s a European one but also because we speak the same language– our love for communicating through our photos.