Posted on 25. Mar, 2009 by Joe Duty
Inspiration can come from just about anywhere, this especially applies to stories that we run in the Wise County Messenger. I want to try relate the best that I can, through one story in particular. That would be one about Zachary Koa, titled; love’s long journey. (And here is part 2.)
I was working on another story with the writer from the newsroom, (Travis Measley), when we heard about Zachary from a bystander that knew we were from the paper. We obtained the contact information, and Travis started inquiring, after a couple of phone calls, he set up an appointment to meet Zachary, and the family.
Never knowing quite what to expect in story of this nature, you just have to feel your way out. For the most part the first meeting is generally just to get to know your subject, or in this case, the family, to try to figure out which direction you want to take the story, if there is one. As a photographer, my job is to create the visual interest for the story, so the initial visit is just about gathering that information myself, and for the writer as well. Sometimes I don’t even carry my camera on the first visit, so I’m a not distracting and can can get to know a subject.
On this particular day I did carry my camera in, which was a good thing because as it turned out Zachery and Malaki both loved the camera and it set a instant bond in motion. The look for inspiration was over, as I looked toward Travis we both knew that this was a story that we wanted to do, for no other reason than the sheer openness and love of this family, their willingness let us in to their life, and share their story.
After our first meeting in on the ride home, we were both truly inspired to do something great with this story.