Storytelling is more than ƒ/8 and be there

Nikon D4, AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED, ISO 280, ƒ/14, 1/30

ƒ/8 Be There

The quote “ƒ/8 and be there” is attributed to Weegee who was a famous street photographer during the 1930’s, 40’s and beyond. It represents a philosophy to keep technical decisions simple and be where your vision takes you. The quote has been the mantra of photojournalists, travel photographers and even nature photographers.

This says you just need to anticipate and be technically ready to capture “the decisive moment.”

Be careful not to treat your interviews as just got microphone and recorder levels set and just hit record and I am done.


In interviewing you are not just listening and capturing what you hear with the microphone and recorder. You must listen and see if what you are hearing could be said more effectively.

Nikon D3s, Nikon 24-120mm ƒ/3.5-5.6, ISO 2000, ƒ/10, 1/250

You need to be actively listening. This is after they talk you summarize their thoughts and ask if you are tracking with them. If they agree and your summary is shorter and getting to the points very effectively then ask them if they mind saying this so you can capture it.

Your goal is to shorten their comments down so that the audience will not doze off. They will stay engaged because the subject is now more engaging because you helped them to tell their story more effectively.

Very seldom will you ever capture someone that all you need to do is rearrange their sound bites into a story. You must also help them say what they are trying to communicate better.

If you do not do this during the interview your editing in your software like Adobe Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro X will not make the content better. Get the content edited without the technology by just helping someone tell their story and then use the technology to deliver the message to the audience by putting the icing on the cake.

Bottom line your editing is done as much in the actual interview by you and the subject as later with the software.