The effect our new laptops have on our workflow as photojournalists has been documented before on this blog site. I thought I’d share another specific example from last week. My assignment involved shooting exteriors of a store front for the 6pm newscast. It seems the store was burglarized and our producer wanted some video to illustrate not only the story, but for teases as well. It was 4pm when I turned my attention to the assignment because I had been delayed by a long shoot at the LBJ Library earlier in the afternoon. 4pm is usually plenty of time to “spray” some exteriors and run the video back to the station for a quick edit to make air. However, in this case, the store was in Lakeway…not really around the corner as they say. Any well-travelled photog in these parts knows a trip to Lakeway at 4pm is going to run in to extensive commuting time. I may get there by 4:45pm or 5pm and spray the video for 10 minutes with no problem, but the ride back in rush hour traffic from far southwest Austin would definitely have me cutting it close for the 6pm deadline. Turned out not to be an issue after all with our ability now to edit in the field, and FTP stories back via our upload site. I made it to the Lakeway shopping center on Hwy. 620 by 4:45pm as expected, and gathered enough video for the story by 5:05pm. Two doors down from the store in question was a coffee shop. I popped in, set up my laptop and camera, and edited about a minute’s worth of video. Exporting and uploading took an additional ten minutes, maybe less. I was done by 5:35pm…a relief and a welcome departure from what could have been a stressful drive back in rush hour traffic to get the video on for the 6pm news. Now, I could drive back stress-free, listening to my favorite tunes on the radio…which is exactly what I did.
As we enjoy this great weather of sunny, blue skies and mild temperatures in Austin, don’t forget that Spring rains can also figure in to the mix. As such, the Travis County Office of Emergency Management has released two new PSA’s that warn Central Texans of the dangers of going through a low water crossing during a flash flood event. The spots are well done and evoke emotion, causing you to think twice before putting yourself and a loved one at risk. “Turn around Don’t drown” is a phrase often repeated this time of year. To help get the word out, Natalie Stoll and I visited with Pete Baldwin, Travis County Coordinator for Emergency Management, and we stopped at some low water crossings in northwest Austin near Spicewood Springs and Hwy.360. Education is the best way to prevent a tragedy at a low water crossing in the next flash flood, and these spots grab our attention by utilizing two things near and dear to our hearts, our children and our pets. You can catch the story and watch the PSA’s at KXAN.com:
Area high school students experienced first hand what it takes to be a professional in the medical field. The Seton Clinical Education Center hosted a nursing academy to introduce students to the daily workflow of a nurse. The center shared insight with juniors and seniors about patient care, surgery, and trauma cases. The goal is to intervene early in the career path of these young individuals so that they might pick a job in the medical field in the near future. Central Texas is in need of medical personnel to fill a potential void in the industry soon. Cantenya McHenry and I spent the morning with these young people, and you can watch the report online at KXAN.com: