The Photo Staff Survival Guide

Molly Zwiebel '13

I'm Praying That You Don't Even Need This

Everything I know, you know, because I've shared it all with you. I hope that if you're referencing this, it's just out of curiosity - you really don't need this. I mean it.


  • Using your camera
  • Using your mind
  • Organization
  • Leadership
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Camera Usage

  • But if you're really stuck, call me, we'll figure it out.
  • Don't be afraid to reference "Nikon For Dummies"

Always Choose a Manual Exposure Mode or Semi Manual Exposure Mode

  • P (programmed autoexposure): The camera selects the aperture and shutter speed necessary to ensure a good exposure. But you can choose from different combinations of the two to vary the creative results.

  • S (shutter-priority autoexposure): You select the shutter speed, and the camera selects the proper aperture to properly expose the image. This mode is ideal for capturing sports or other moving subjects because it gives you direct control over shutter speed.

  • A (aperture-priority autoexposure): In this mode, you choose the aperture, and the camera automatically chooses a shutter speed to properly expose the image.

  • Manual: In this mode, represented by the letter M on the Mode dial, you select both the aperture and shutter speed. But the camera still offers an assist by displaying an exposure meter to help you dial in the right settings.


  • Outside during the day - no more than 300
  • Auditorium = adjust constantly

Be Creative

  • Always be innovative - just because this is photojournalism, doesn't mean you need to be boring. No Excuses.
  • Try different angles, positions, and play with lighting to dramatize a photo.
  • Be different and brave.

Leadership and Organization

Leadership and Organization go hand in hand.

Here's some tips for both:

  • maintain a workflow
  • keep up with your portfolio
  • keep rules for the server
  • hold meetings weekly - biweekly
  • communication is key

"You don't need to be helped any longer. You've always had the power."

"Dorothy: Oh, will you help me? Can you help me?
Glinda, the Good Witch: You don’t need to be helped any longer. You’ve always had the power to go back to Kansas.
Dorothy: I have?
Scarecrow: Then why didn’t you tell her before?
Glinda, the Good Witch: Because she wouldn’t have believed me. She had to learn it for herself."