Language of the Image

St. Petersburg, Forida is known for their sunny beaches, tan locals, and sun burned tourists – but – St. Pete just so happens to be filled with a bunch of other gems as well.  One particular “gem” is the Poynter Institute.  The Poynter institute is a journalism institute that specializes in multiple parts of journalism.  Poynter has an online course program called NewsU.  This is available for anyone to set up an account and take free courses about how to be a better journalist.

One particular course that has stuck out to me, is “Language of the Image“.  This course is focused on photography and photo journalism.

What I learned during this course is that there are three primary types of photos:

1. Informational

2. Passive

3. Active

An informational photo is a little more than a visual record of a person, place, or event.  It offers nothing more than identification  value.  A passive photo is used in a situation where photos are only taken for publication, and active photos are photos that show real people involved in real events in real time

What suprised me in this course is that photography is SO much more than snapping a shot of something – you have to think about multiple elements and the tone and if your focus is actually the focus – so much to think about!

I would like to learn more about how to have one focus, amongst multiple items in a photo – how to make that one item “pop”.

So, as you can see, NewsU is not just about writing – journalism is changing into more a visual field, rather than a “wordy” or technical one.  People would rather look at pictures than read something, and News U is teaching you how to better those visuals.  No one wants to look a “picture” – people want to be told a story through a picture – and that is where News U comes in.


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