Introduction: Photography in Critical Situation (Earthquake)
Taking photos in critical situations
A freelance photographer needs to make some preparations before travelling to the crisis area. If you have never experienced such situations and now it is your first time, pay attention to the points that I will mention bellow:
• Before doing anything, follow the latest News.
• Check the weather status in order to prepare the appropriate equipment.
• Pick up your work stuff (a camera body; normal, wide-angle and telephoto lenses; compact flashes; an external hard drive; a memory card reader; a battery and an extra one; a battery charger; a flashlight; a laptop; a portable access point; a suitable backpack; a notebook and a pen), some canned and dried food, some warm clothes and basic medical supplies.
• If it is possible, coordinate your travelling with aid organizations like The Red Crescent so as to arrive quicker, make connection with local photographers and find a suitable driver.
• Try to take an assignment from a photo agency or publication.
• Look at the experienced photographers’ photos before starting the travelling.
• Go to the crisis area as soon as possible, preferably along with practiced photographers.
• Find local photographers to go to the crisis area.
• Put aside your feelings, your very first job is taking photos; but it does not mean that if there is anything essential for the victim that you could do, you withhold it.
• Pay attention to cover all the details; photography of the corpses are not the only important things in a critical situation.
• Take note of all the details of the situation in order to write complete and correct captions for the photos.
• Get ready for any accommodation condition.
• Send the photos with complete captions to your media in time.
The text following is a sample:
Iran, Azarbaijan 2012. On Saturday afternoon, August 11, two earthquakes, measuring 6.2 and 6.3 on the Richter scale shook the North-Western Iranian province of East-Azerbaijan. Having their epicenters in the province they destroyed more than 100 villages, killied more than 300 locals and devastated homes to approximately 10000 people. The Red Crescent immediately then started to search for survivors and help building an improvised infrastructure. Nonetheless thousands of people were injured and thousands lost their relatives, housing and belongings and are still in severe need of humanitarian aid as the cold season is approaching.
Photos : Ali Kaveh