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Photojournalism for beginners

Definition
What is photojournalism?
Basically it is a style of photography. There are several styles of photography namely: landscape, portrait, wildlife, fashion, abstract/conceptual and war/photojournalism.

Photojournalism is a term which was coined several years ago. It is a combination of the words photography and journalism. In other words it means telling news using photos.




Styles of Photography
In order to specialize in a certain style one needs to learn the basics of the broader subject which in this case is photography.

History
To learn photography we start with its history. One needs to study the camera obscure and how it evolved into the cameras we see today. We can not talk of cameras without mentioning the actual images be it in print form or digital form.  In 1827 the first permanent photo was developed using the deguerro type method.

Types of Cameras
From the history of photography we move on to camera types and components (lens, mirror, viewfinder, shutter, image sensor etc). Then we talk of composition which is what a photojournalist should master.

Composition
Rule of thirds, selective focus, point of view, depth of field, framing, leading lines, boke etc

Laws and Ethics
Journalism laws and ethics is an important topic in Photojournalism. There is also the issue of equipment (types of lenses, use of a tripod, data storage, etc).  Types of news- hard or soft- is another topic which needs to be studied and it brings us to safety, how to be safe when covering a volatile event. The camera strap and telephoto lenses are discussed.

Career Options
The last topic is career advancement. One can start as a photographer and then choose to specialize in a single style of photography for example photojournalism or one can learn photojournalism and later study more about photography while some venture into journalism. We can also have scenario whereby one studies journalism at university specializing in phototojournalism. Therefore the field of photojournalism can be considered as either a specialization or an entry point.  Additional qualifications are important for those who would like to seek employment while a basic course in Photojournalism is enough for a freelancer.

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