Out of Line: The clock’s ticking—time for a challenge.


Camryn DeVore

On Nov. 15, the newspaper staff took time out to attend the National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA) convention in Dallas, Texas. We arrived at Love Field airport late Wednesday night and got ready early the next day to explore what seemed like a new world in comparison to Columbia, our hometown. While I would love to talk about my amazing staff and the team bonding that happened throughout the weekend, that’s not what my blog posts are all about.
This week I challenge any readers, specifically those interested in photography and bettering their work, to try setting a time limit and working within those limits.
The four photographer, one model challenge, popularized by Jessica Kobeissi on YouTube, sparked my interest a while back, yet I was never able to get myself to do it. It’s not that I didn’t want to or have the time to, because I have had plenty of time. I just never wanted to push myself in that way. A time limit, or even just the thought of one, stressed me out. The reason our convention in Dallas pertains to this desire to try a new style is because I finally tried this challenge.
My competition in Dallas was on-site. I was given a piece of literature and asked to interpret that piece through a photo. I then had an hour to capture the perfect photo. I grabbed a person on my school’s yearbook staff, junior Ben Yelton, to come take photos in downtown Dallas with me. The added component of interpreting the literature piece just added to the initial stress created by the time limit.
The literature given to me talked about city life and the beauty of the colors in the sunset. I took the concept of city life as my angle for inspiration. All the included photos I took symbolize the wonder or hardship of the city to me. While I am used to working under a time limit of an hour since I frequently take senior photos, these seemed much different, as I needed to determine a creative angle rather than sticking to planned poses.
Each photo I have included represents a different interpretation I had of the piece. I am glad I got the opportunity to push myself as a photographer, in this case by setting the time limit. I hope to soon try this technique again but in a style more similar to that Jessica Kobeissi, hopefully with the photographers who are also on staff. I challenge you to find a new location and try this time limit concept. I am sure it will be an experience that, whether you enjoy it or not, will push your skills as a photographer.
Have you taken the challenge? What was it like?