Structure: The key to video storytelling

Structure: The key to video storytelling

Beginning, middle, end. That’s a useful way to think about story structure, especially for video, but it’s not sufficient. Lots of stories start out well and may even finish with a memorable shot or sequence, but something keeps them from being great: the middle. Knowing what you want to say isn’t enough. The order in which you […]

What can you do with a GoPro?

What can you do with a GoPro?

It’s obvious that GoPro cameras are great for shooting sports, but that’s hardly all they’re good for. Solo journalists like KUSA reporter Matt Renoux use them for daily news. “Of course, they don’t have the same quality as a $30,000 news camera,” Renoux told Steamboat Today, “but they are nice because they are small, durable and can […]

Advice for contest hopefuls

Advice for contest hopefuls

It’s that time of the year again: time to enter a journalism awards contest. NPPA’s Best of Photojournalism competition opens for submissions today; RTDNA is now accepting entries for the Murrow Awards. If you’re sending your work to any of the award competitions, give yourself the best possible chance of winning by reviewing these tips from a frequent […]

TV investigation requires multiple cameras

TV investigation requires multiple cameras

It started with a tip from a source to KNTV. It sounded crazy but it turned out to be true. The world’s biggest food distributor, Sysco, was storing raw meat, milk and other food in unrefrigerated storage units before delivering it to restaurants. NBC Bay Area eventually aired a series of reports on the scandal that let […]

Great TV storytelling tip: Connect the moments

Great TV storytelling tip: Connect the moments

You’ve probably seen the story. By now, millions of people have. Reporter Boyd Huppert of KARE-TV in Minneapolis calls it the story that broke the Internet–a feature about a little boy and his elderly neighbor that’s been viewed and shared all over the world. Plenty has already been written about why the story touched so […]

When to use hidden cameras

When to use hidden cameras

The video is black-and-white and grainy, but it makes the case. A manager at a company selling what it claims is health insurance instructs employees on what to tell prospects on the phone: “Tell them any f—ing thing,” he says. Reporter Jeremy Finley’s story for WSMV-TV in Nashville about United Benefits of America eventually put the company out of […]

Storytelling advice: Beginning, middle, end

Storytelling advice: Beginning, middle, end

How many times have you heard this advice? Make sure your story has a beginning, middle and end. Even the great Lewis Carroll shared a version of the standard counsel in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: “‘Begin at the beginning,’ the King said, very gravely, ‘and go on till you come to the end: then stop.’” Sounds […]

When photography is treated as a crime

When photography is treated as a crime

What’s the connection between photography and terrorism? Apparently, it depends on where you sit and when you ask the question. Just after the bombing at the Boston Marathon, investigators urged anyone who’d been near the finish line to share photos or video they’d taken around the time of the explosions. But the very same day, […]

How to put a TV story puzzle together

How to put a TV story puzzle together

Can you be a good TV photojournalist and a lousy storyteller? Absolutely. Fabulous images alone won’t tell a great story. Award-winning videographer Nathan Thompson thinks of each story as a puzzle with five main pieces. If any one of them is missing, he says, the story won’t hang together. Thompson shared his keys to efficient […]

Must-have equipment for video journalists

Must-have equipment for video journalists

Great photojournalists are sticklers about their gear. They check it thoroughly before and after every shoot. They supplement the standard-issue package with specialty items, from dimmers to clothespins to GoPros. They experiment and improvise, always on the hunt for new accessories that will save time or give them an edge on the competition. Jonathan Malat […]

Tips for VJs on writing fast

Tips for VJs on writing fast

Video journalist Anne Herbst firmly believes in preparation. She does research on stories before leaving the newsroom. She shows up to assignments early so she can meet people and figure out in advance who might be a strong character. And she writes fast–an essential skill when you’re working by yourself and you have to do […]

Video journalism tips from a pro

Video journalism tips from a pro

Darren Durlach left television almost two years ago to try something new. He’d won two consecutive NPPA TV Photographer of the Year awards and, unbeknownst to him, was on the verge of winning a third. He’s now senior multimedia producer at the Boston Globe, where he shoots and edits stories both alone and in collaboration […]