It was an amazing opportunity to be able to see first hand the operations inside such institutions as the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, Bloomberg, TIME, MediaStorm, and Mashable, among others. Throughout the week common themes came up with most every place my classmates and I visited. Here I will share them in no particular order:
The most important thing I took from everyplace I visited was the tool of networking. It is important to not burn bridges in this profession because of how small the community is. The trip wouldn’t have been possible without the relationships my professor, William Snyder, has built through his career. When talking about networking not one person said talent was a way to keep strong relationships, instead being humble, having integrity, and working well with others was said over and over again. Basically, as Brian Storm stated, “don’t be an asshole.”
None of the publications produce work with a one-man show. Flexibility and the ability to work with others is key in this industry. Brian Storm of MediaStorm stated that you should place the best people around you who can do the job. But that does not mean you shouldn’t know as much as you possibly can. The best content will come when collaboration is at its best. Jonathan Woods of TIME showed the importance of teamwork and collaboration in his work on One World Trade Center. The project couldn’t have been completed without a strong team behind it, which meant people were flexible, egos were put aside, and outside of the box thinking took place.
"If we want to be in this industry we will be" is something I heard over and over again during my time in New York. But this takes sacrifice and dedication. Leslye Davis of the New York Times is a great example of this. She told us how she was told she wasn’t good enough in college and that she would redo projects over and over again to produce the best work that she was capable of. If I put in the time and consistently produce excellent work I feel confident that there is a place for me in this industry.
Ability to Communicate
Time and time again my class and I were told the importance of communication. Whether its communication between photo editor and photographer or being able to articulate why a story is important, the need for good communication is important in this industry. At Open Society Foundations we were told to, “be a journalist, write captions, and report” and to “go one-step beyond what the editor wants.” Also an important part of this industry is being able to communicate why photography works. Pancho Bernasconi of Getty told my class to “learn why a picture is great and explain it and articulate the value to someone who doesn’t know about photography.”