Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Shoots vs Shoots

As a photographer, there are certain terms that I use...photoshop, flash, camera, tripod, head, crop, shot, aperture, exposure, panoramic, tours...you know all the standard terms. However there is a term and it's conjugation that photographers use all the time. Shoot and shot.

There are times when it's alright to say, however, some of the time it feels inappropriate. There is no taking this term out of our vocabulary though. So, I try to control how I'm going to use it. "Today's shoot was tough." Ok. "Are you going out and shoot today?" Ok. "I shot my grandma today." Not good. "I'm going to shoot my mom and sister today." Ooh bad. "I shot the cutest baby today." So wrong!

I've pretty much excepted our use of the word. It's not going away. I just watch who I say it to and how I use it. Around other photographers, I don't even try to change it. They know what I'm saying. My family has heard me say it for so many years, that if I stopped saying I was shooting someone or shot something, they'd think something was wrong. That being said, you'd think my loved ones would know what the hell I was talking about when I say "I shot today".

Last week, I went up to Big Bear to "shoot" some panos. I wanted to create a virtual tour of Big Bear for my marketing. When we arrived it was raining and thundering...which was wonderful. I had planned on shooting the next day. The rain cleared up that night. I was planning on the wonderful puffy clouds and amazing blue skies Big Bear usually has. The next morning delivered a nice sky, but with the dark clouds rolling back in. The thunder started up again and I waited. After a few hours, the sky cleared up enough, for me to run around and get a few nice panoramas. They weren't exactly what I wanted, but it was a great start. I called Mario later that night and told him I was able to shoot after all.

Me..."The dark clouds cleared out enough for me to go shoot"
Mario sounding a bit confused..."Oh, what'd you shoot?"
Me..."A couple of nice spots around the lake. There was a really pretty picnic area. So I shot a couple of different areas"
Mario..."Oh!! I thought you meant you shot at something."
Me..."Really! Where would I get a gun?"
Mario..."That's why I was confused!"
Me..."The whole reason we came up here was to shoot some panos! The camping was a major bonus, but I couldn't come home without having taken any shots."
Mario..."Well, I forgot."

I have my cousin to thank for this change in thinking. Ever since he took us out to shoot his guns, apparently this is all Mario thinks about when I say shoot or shot. Years of using the same words over and over, now have to be explained because of one fun outing with guns and a tin can.

The second situation happened this morning. I sent a text to my mom today, letting her know that I now had six shoots on the board this week. "When it rains, it pours. Six shoots this week!" Usually, this would illicit a happy response....but I heard nothing back.

She finally called me today at lunch. I was on a small break in between shooting model homes. After listening to her talking about the quilting show she's been at for the most part of the last week, I finally asked if she got my text.

Me..."Did you get my text this morning"
Mom..."Well, I'd have moved out by now"
Mom..."I'd have moved after the first time!"
Me..."No, I have six photo shoots this week."
Mom..."Oh! That's much better! I thought those assholes were shooting at each other again!"...laughing
Me..."Shoots as in work...that will hopefully allow us to move away from those assholes that shoot at each other"

In this instance, when I say shoot, my mother hears Drive-by. I can only thank the assholes across the street. Even more years of hearing me say shoot and shot have been screwed over by the jerks across the street and their drive-bys.

What I want to know is, when my mother read my text and thought I was telling her there were six more shots fired across the street, why didn't she call and make sure I was alive!!! Where is the love! I suppose the text told her I was alive...but still!

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