Tuesday, September 18, 2012

These Wheels Are Walking Wheels: Disabled Teen

When Laterence was just three days old, his mother realized that because of his disability she could not care for him, and straight from the hospital placed him in state custody. Now a teenager, he has been living in Florida's foster care system all his life, with families and in group homes, all the while hoping he would be permanently adopted by a loving family.

This multimedia piece incorporates video, still photos, interview and field-recorded natural sound. iPhone & iPad friendly link.

Four years running his photograph has been in the Heart Gallery of Broward County (FL), a traveling photo exhibit of foster children available for adoption. Hoping to spark frank discussions around adopting children with disabilities, the Heart Gallery commissioned this multimedia audio slide show. The show will be utilized by social service agencies charged with recruiting and training adoptive parents.

Laterence - he prefers LT - is now a very articulate 15-year-old, and in this three minute story he narrates his emotional journey and has advise for prospective adoptive parents.

Does LT ever find his "forever family"?

 From left, LT gets to know Jennifer and Brad during visit to South Florida in July.

This multimedia piece could not of been created without collaboration with colleagues, as there are just to many moving parts for one photographer to keep track of when video is incorporated into narrative story telling.

My hands were more than full with recording the audio while conducting the interview, so Paul Morris helped me by recording the A roll on two video cameras, then picking up B roll afterward. Heart Gallery Executive Director Barbara Schechter helped me plan the coverage, conduct the interview and shape the editing of the piece. Miami video journalist Chuck Fadely gave me invaluable feedback. And of course we would be unable to tell this story without LT, Brad and Jennifer.

Notes for still photographers beginning to work with motion capture ... it’s not rocket science nor do you need a ton of expensive gear. First, you need a great story, and then you must shape a compelling narrative arch that captivates your audience.

- Video cameras, Canon 5DMarkII & Canon 7D (no rigs, EVFs, focus assist)
- Video camera rolling wheels in mall, Canon s100 point ‘n shoot
- Still cameras, Nikon D300
- Interview Mics, Tram 50 lavalier & Sennheiser ME 64 cardioid; wild sound, Giant Squid
- Sound Devices MixPre D field mixer & Tascam DR 100 recorder
- Adobe CS 5.5 Premier Pro, Audition & touch of After Effects

 Please visit my Miami commercial photography portfolio.