Hard News by Russell Brown


The Snappers

The practice of news photography has seen some changes. The most obvious of those is the disappearance of the darkroom and the move to digital – although it seems worth noting that news photographers were tweaking their images long before there was Photoshop.

There has been the move to colour printing of newspapers, the advent of the weekend magazines, the ability to send pictures direct from the scene, and a revolution in the scope of picture wire services. On the other hand, digital cameras now are so cheap and simple – and budgets so tight – that we've returned to the era when any reporter might be handed a camera and told to get what they can.

We may be on the verge of another shift. The most notable feature of the New Zealand Herald's iPad application – the one the paper's website can't really match – is its orientation around photographic images. The Guardian Eyewitness app and the one from Getty Images also harness the little tablet's utility as a photo frame.

So on this week's Media7 – and to tie in with the World Press Photo 10 show, which launches on Saturday at the Smith & Caughey building ballroom – we've decided to talk to the photographers themselves.

We'll be joined by Geoff Dale, a former Herald photographer and now freelancer, who's been taking news pictures for decades; and Christine Cornege, whose work won four of the five junior categories at the 2009 Qantas Media Awards.

Also, I'll talk to Michael Field about reporting the Pacific, and his new book of stories from the job, Swimming With Sharks.

If you'd like to join us for the recording tomorrow, come to the Victoria St entrance of TVNZ from 5pm (but before 5.30). As ever, it'd be handy if you were to click Reply and let me know you're coming.

Meanwhile, I'm interested in your thoughts and links in the discussion for this post.

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