It’s been five years since I joined the photo staff at The Oklahoman. I scanned through Merlin and looked at the 8,572 pictures I’ve turned in since Nov. 1, 2005. I enjoy looking through the archives, but I hadn’t done it in awhile, a walk down memory lane. There were photographs from stories and projects that I remember fondly, and there were a few that I wished I’d handled differently. There were pictures I’d forgotten about and pictures from events that I’ll never forget. People whose lives I’ve invaded for 20 minutes or less and people I spent months getting to know so I could tell their story. I was reminded of the wonderful moments I’ve been a part of but also of the people who invited me in at the lowest points in their lives. Photojournalism is about people and about the moments they share with each other. It’s about storytelling. Sharing all those moments, the beautiful moments and the sad moments in the hope that the stories touch someone else’s life.
When I take pictures, I always keep my eye out for those moments that readers can relate to. Those fleeting moments that we’ve all felt and that we always remember. Comforting a child, a hug, a helping hand, a moment of resignation or a moment of resolve.
I picked out two pictures from each year that I’ve been at The Oklahoman. Some of these would be in my portfolio, if I had one, and some are pictures that I enjoyed taking or they’re from events that I have a fond memory of. Hopefully, when you click on the pictures, both of you will see common threads. You’ll see those moments that tell the story.