To get truly memorable pictures, photographers at living history events have to combine the different skills for weddings, sports, and portraits all in one day. Court is often poorly lit, with people moving around and talking, not to mention difficulty in getting the right shooting angle, and the photographer has to try to capture those brief moments of stillness to prevent blurring—so it's like shooting a wedding. Battles aren't just "like" sports photography, they are sports photography, with all the challenges of getting the shot in the middle of fast-paced action, without getting squashed or whacked in the process. And fancy garb presents an opportunity for stunning portrait work.
Informal discussions led to the idea of a venue where the art and science of photography, specifically related to living history events, can flourish, and thus was born the Shutterbugs list.
The list is co-moderated by Maistor Iustinos Tekton called Justin (SCAtoday.net's Publisher) and THL Robert Marchet. Robert lives in the Kingdom of Outlands, in modern-day Colorado, and is "about 30 minutes from the Rocky Mountains, where amazing pictures all but throw themselves at you daily." He is a self-described computer geek and the son of a former National Geographic magazine photographer, which explains his interest in this hobby. Robert has been taking pictures since high school. Justin lives in the Middle Kingdom, in the modern-day state of Ohio, and is also a computer professional. He used a Pentax K1000 for nature photography for years prior to joining the SCA, where he turned his lens toward human subjects.
Both Robert and Justin held out as 35mm film photographers until very recently, when the lure of the new digital SLR cameras persuaded them that it was time to go digital.
Justin and Robert hope that the new Shutterbugs list will stimulate discussion of photographic techniques, equipment (film, digital, and even video), and post-processing tools and tips, as well as topics specific to the living history context, such as how to take good pictures without disrupting the authenticity of an event. Although the list is not for overtly-commercial posts, offers to buy, sell, or swap used equipment as a private individual are welcome.
The list is open to all skill levels, from the seasoned professional to the first-time beginner, and everywhere in between. All that is required is a strong interest in photography as an art and a science, and an interest in going beyond simple snapshots toward photographs that capture the magic of our events. Learn, teach, or do a little of both.