What’s Your Clipboard?

This is a stretch, I’m going to tell you that right up front … Skip Cohen, over at GoingPro, writes about the Key Traits of the Photographic Icons. He talks about how you need to build confidence, but not let people know that your confidence is a little shaky.

It reminded me of this great scene from The Paper, a Ron Howard film from the mid-1990s. Michael Keaton and Randy Quaid need to get a quote from a cop, but the desk sergeant won’t let another reporter in. The pair, wielding just a clipboard, walk through the front door of the station, wave the clipboard at the desk sergeant and continue in. Keaton turns to Quaid and says, “A clipboard and a confident wave will get you into any building in the world.”

My students are young, they’re unsure of themselves – but they still have to tell stories. They don’t lack talent or skill, they lack confidence. If I tell them to go shoot something new or different, they’re very hesitant. But when I take them to the Petit Le Mans in October, when the racing series credentials them as working photographers, when I tell them they have to go shoot because the client is depending on them? Most of the queasiness just disappears. They have a purpose, they have a reason.

They have a clipboard.

Mark E. Johnson

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