The Amateur vs. The Pro – can you tell which is which?
Poynter, the professional journalism site based in Florida puts out a highly respected blog and website.
Yesterday, they posted the video above, along with this comment by Al Tompkins:
Over Veterans Day weekend I spotted a story shot and edited by my old friend Ali Ghanbari, a photojournalist at WJW-TV Cleveland. The piece is loaded with crisp sound and video sequences that you would expect from a pro. But there was one Wthing in the piece I could not figure out. How did he capture that closing shot?
Yes, the closing shot is nice, but I was more captured by the previous sentence:
The piece is loaded with crisp sound and video sequences that you would expect from a pro
What, exactly would you expect from a pro?
Well, crisp sound and video sequences.
And I am sure that Ali Ghanbari is a great cameraman.
Here’s the bio on Ali Ghanbari:
From 1982 to 1994 he was at WKEF-TV, NBC in Dayton, Ohio. He has been recognized with over 400 awards from professional journalism organizations. Ghanbari won National Press Photographers Association 1996 national award for general news] He was named NPPA Region 4 POY runner-up in 2000 and 2003.
He is only six-time Ohio News Photographers Association POY  as well as three-time state Associated Press Best TV Photographer, three-time Society of Professional Journalist (Ohio) Best TV Photographer. Ghanbari has been awarded nine local Emmys and honored for the best video and national sound packages. He served as a national speaker for the NPPA Airborne TV seminar in 1994. He was also a featured speaker for the NPPA 1995 Flying Short Course in Detroit, MI, the 1998 FSC in Cleveland, the 1998 National Short Course in Baltimore, MD. He was an NPPA 2001 national judge in St. Petersburg, Florida. and the Eyes of History 2006 White House News Photographers Association in Washington, DC.
So far, so good.
But I could not help but be intrigued by the piece he shot.
The tomb of the unknown soldier.
I have one of those in the files.
This one was shot and cut and produced and voiced and reported by Pat Lafferty.
Pat Lafferty is a high-ranking executive at McCann Erickson Worldgroup, the global ad agency.
Pat took one of our 4-day bootcamps.
Pat had never touched a camera or an edit before he took the 4-day course.
Here’s the very first piece he ever made.
Now, you tell me.
Ali Ghanbari, thirty year veteran, multiple award winner.
Pat Lafferty.Â First timer.
Is there that much difference?
Is there any?
(And Pat wrote and reported and tracked and edited the piece as well.)