Before joining this Beginning Journalism course I had no idea what a proper cutline was. I knew photos had captions, of course. I grew up thinking that pictures were only meant to have “captions,” and when we write those captions we can basically do it like anyone does with an Instagram picture or another picture they might post onto social media.
I have always been fascinated with photography journalism. In fact, when I was in high school I was the copy editor of our yearbook, along with head photographer. So, my responsibilities were taking pictures, and then creating a “caption” for them for the yearbook. I guess I didn’t realize there was a whole process to creating those descriptions to go under those pictures. If I had known what I knew now, I can imagine that my writing and photography would’ve looked a lot more professional.
When I did my photography project for this class, we were required to take pictures and provide a cutline on each picture we took. I decided to do mine on an art show that was being featured at a local coffee shop, that many students went to. For my photos, I thought that by simply stating what was happening in the photo was good enough for a caption, but it was not. A proper cutline needs more detail, it needs the names and as much shortened information you can put in without overwhelming the reader. You want to make yourself appear credible as a photo journalist so that’s why the facts are needed in the cutline. After reading Professor Larson’s feedback on my cutlines from the photography project, and job shadow project I know what I need to work harder on. I also am hoping to set up a meeting time with the student assistant, Sammi, to discuss more in depth what I should work on with my cutlines.