Wednesday, 29 April 2015

the weather shot

Rain pours down on pedestrians walking around King's Square. Nov. 27, 2013 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

Ahh.. the dreaded weather shot. When everyone else (for the most part) gets to sit in their cozy offices all day, photographers, vj's, reporters everywhere have to go outside and stand in the rain, the wind, the snow, and try to take pictures of the awful mess. It's something I would stress about, more so on the severely cold days, or during the many blizzards we experienced this past winter. When the police are advising people to stay off the roads, we are out there, trying to find the poor chap whose car is stuck in the street. Or freezing the f**k out of our fingers holding onto a metal camera in -30ºC to try and get a nice backlit cloud of steamy breath from someone walking by.

I swear, I've taken enough pictures of people shoveling that.. I don't even know how to end that sentence. What I'm trying to say is that it's too many. By the time February comes around, I'm so over it. The soaking wet gear, the car full of used tissues (used to dry off said gear) (also used to blow my runny nose), the cold feet. I've lost my shit many times. MANY TIMES. Somewhere, there is a city plow driver who saw me get out of my car, screaming while jumping up and down on the bumper, and kicking the wheels repeatedly because I was stuck in the street. He didn't come to my aid. He backed up his plow and went on to clear some other street. I don't blame him. I know how crazy I looked.

I'm mostly lamenting about winter, cause it's the WORST, but I have to say that the job RULES in the summertime. Oh, you need a weather shot today? Sweet, I'll just head over to the beach for a couple hours and see what I can find.

The sun finally came out just in time for the weekend in Saint John. Here, some people take advantage of it, and play some beach volleyball near the boardwalk uptown on Sunday. July 6, 2008 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Seven-year-old Nicolas Doucette, right, and his brother, JP Briggs, 3, play in the mud at the beach at the bottom of Sea Street on Monday morning. July 26, 2011 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

Isaiah Smith, 10, Cedric Schofield, 9, and Ethan Walker, 10, jump off the pier at Renforth Wharf on Friday afternoon. July 20, 2012 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Charlotte Payne, 5, goes face down in a stream of water at the splash pad in Rainbow Park. She was there to cool down with her parents and twin sister, Emily, left. Aug. 31, 2011 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Craig Lang and Alison Rodger kicked off their shoes to wade around the flooded dock at Renforth Wharf on Tuesday afternoon. April 30, 2013 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
A couple of girls fight against strong winds yesterday as they make their way across Carmarthan Street. April 18, 2006 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

 Ok, this next photo wasn't technically a 'weather shot' but I had to include it, because it's pretty great.

Kim McCumber laughs as her husband, Eric's hat flies off in a gust of wind. They are members of the Kingston Peninsula Heritage Choir, and sang at the 225th Anniversary of Mount Hope Farm in Grand Bay-Westfield Sunday. June 10, 2012 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
People fight with their umbrellas while walking around King's Square during a downpour on Friday. May 24, 2013 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
A lady splashes through an alleyway uptown, armed with an umbrella during a downpour. Sept. 5, 2012 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
People walk around in ponchos and armed with umbrellas uptown Wednesday during a downpour. Sept. 5, 2012 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Saint John received mostly warmer temperatures and rain on Wednesday. Dec. 3, 2014 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Arctic fog rolls over the harbour on Monday morning, which occurs when the air is a colder temperature then the water. Jan. 24, 2011 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Snow covered bushes and vines cover the castle on the corner of Sydney and Mecklenburg Streets. March 15, 2012 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
A broken tree hangs over the road in Latimer Lake. Dec. 24, 2013 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
A woman lifts a small child over a snow bank before jumping into a taxi uptown Monday. Saint John received another dumping of snow over the weekend. Feb. 18, 2013 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Jim Michaud shovels off the steps of the New Brunswick Museum on Douglas Avenue after a dumping of snow. Nov. 24, 2011 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Snow begins to fall Wednesday evening uptown. Nov. 26, 2014 Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

Sharing my bummer situations on Instagram helps lighten the mood. A bit.

Well, thanks for reading. I'm going to be blogging again on a regular basis. Though I'm not sure yet where I'll go with it, for now, I'll be writing about my past experiences on jobs in the field.

Ciao for now.

Friday, 10 April 2015

a look back

The Tinker known as 'Bear' at his small cabin in the woods in Southern New Brunswick. He was also known to many as the Blacksmith at Kings Landing near Fredericton, where he worked for many years. Bear passed away in 2014. This photo was taken in 2003, shot with TMAX 400 B&W film. It was part of a gallery show with the rest of the photography department at the Telegraph-Journal in 2008.  Photo: Kâté Braydon

It's hard to believe it's been three years since my last blog post. I know we all feel this way because we ask each other and ourselves this often, but, how does time go by so fast?

How is it that I've lived in Saint John for almost 10 years? It's cliché, but it really feels like it was just yesterday that I moved into an adorable, tiny apartment on Germain Street. I was feeling that wonderful sense of anticipation. A new city and a new job. A career, even! A career in my not-so-common, its-a-nice-hobby, field of study, in my home province.

I was excited to go to work every day. I remember that too. Sadly, I haven't felt that in a long time.

I gotta say, I really love my life in this city. I met my husband here, and I have the most thoughtful friends. I get to live next to the ocean. I can get anywhere in 15 minutes. There's always music on the weekends and festivals in the summer. I even like the fog. I've loved taking pictures of this city, and getting to know everyone in it.

All this to say, I'm feeling nostalgic. My job at the Telegraph-Journal was taken away from me one month ago. I worked there as a Photojournalist for just over nine years. It's been such a huge part of my identity for so long, that I'm struggling a bit.

I'm trying to decided what my next move will be. Should I go back to school? Freelance? Stay in Saint John, but look for a different career path? Or move on to a city where I can get work in the industry that I've dedicated half of my life to.

Unfortunately, this is a growing trend in the news business. Quality is being sacrificed everyday. The photography staff at many newspapers is being slashed, or eliminated all together, putting extra responsibility on reporters, who are already struggling to produce an extreme amount of copy. I understand that it's an enterprise that needs to make money, but the 'it's good enough' attitude is a slippery slope. Readers will lose respect.

I wanted to post this because I needed to remember that we used to have a lot of fun. I wanted that on the record. These are just a few pictures from a gallery show we called 'Pixels to Print: The Art of Photojournalism'. It opened at the Saint John Arts Centre in 2008. At that time, we had a nice, full photography staff of four. Now, there are none. Now, there are reporters who take pictures. And they'll do their best, and I'm sure they'll get some great stuff. Practice makes perfect, right? I wish them well.

A horse makes funny faces at five-year-old Lataya Hamilton (back) and four-year-old Jessica Wheaton, who sticks her tongue back out at him. They were at Rockwood Park visiting the stables with their babysitter. April 10, 2006.  Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

A group of workers rake cement around the foundation of the structure where a new Shoppers Drug Mart will be on Crown Street. April 26, 2006.  Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal
Darin Sullivan raises his arms in the air and gets emotional as missionary evangelist, Peter McDonald says a prayer for him. McDonald was visiting from Ontario, and only planned to stay in Fredericton for a few weeks. But when more and more people were coming to see him for healing, he ended up staying for months.  Photo: Kâté Braydon/Daily Gleaner
A young girl and a man watch as flames engulf a building on the corner of Duke and Sydney Streets on Dec. 7, 2005. Three fatalities were reported, and many more were left homeless.  Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

Lindsey Reinhart wanted to give birth to her second child with the help of a midwife. Living in Nova Scotia at the time, this option wasn't available. Reinhart decided to move her family to Frederic ton, NB, where she could have Hannah delivered by a midwife. On the right is her eldest son, Ira, 2. April 11, 2007.  Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

World War II veteran Sam Bowland turned 93 on Remembrance Day in 2007. Known for his sharp memory, he tells a reporter stories of his time in the service, with much detail.  Photo: Kâté Braydon/Telegraph-Journal

"Photojournalists work in images to paint the portrait of our times. The talented photographers of the Telegraph-Journal capture the essence of life in New Brunswick by training their cameras on the sights that define us as a community. Their artistry is in the seeing as well as the creation of fine photography. Through their lenses, we are offered a daily slideshow of the beauty, bravery, and brutality of modern life."  
                                                                                        - Kathryn McCarroll, (former) Director, Saint John Arts Centre (2008)

                                           Noel Chenier, Cindy Wilson, Peter Walsh and me. XO