Sunday, March 17, 2013

Pics of the Week

A study in blue shadows as Atlanta's David Hale pitches to
the Mets' Wilfredo Tovar.

One of the minor aspects of this "pic of the week" feature has been that it's a springboard to talking photojournalism with colleagues Pat Christman and John Cross — particularly with Christman, who pulls in the bulk of the sports assignments.

The back foot of St. Louis batter Allen Craig,
the glove hand of Washington catcher
Kurt Suzuki.
I ran these two photos by PCphoto last week. He loved the top one and was at best puzzled that the second one had been designated by The Associated Press as an "aptopix" — a designation intended to call editorial attention to the photo.

Such images always leave me wondering what newspapers are using them, and how. If the intent of photojournalism is to tell a story with an image, what is the story told by a hitter's cleats and a catcher's glove hand?

Both these photos are more artsy than journalistic. And in the context of spring training, that's a useful approach. The story of a given Grapefruit League game, as an athletic contest, isn't that compelling.

If a photographer wants to play with shadows and lines and angles, spring training's a good time to do it. And I say that as one who has a better grasp of journalism than of abstract art.

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