Bum Shoulder and a 4 Our Heroes Shoot

Friday July 21, 2017 –  As you may know, I’m a television photojournalist. For twenty-three years I’ve covered news for NBC Los Angeles, not only around Southern California but also the world, loaded down with a beast of a camera–which leads to where I am now, with a bum shoulder. But hey… I’m adaptable, right?

2015 NBC’s Clear the Shelter Event

Summer of 2016, a twinge began in my right shoulder. I’d had issues before, in my left, but with rest, ice, and rehab, it eventually went away. It’s a common problem with news photogs. Our shoulders are our workhorses, so the second I started to sense trouble with my right, I began icing, stretching, and strengthening as I’d done before in hopes of preventing any down time.

Nov 2011 Flying via helicopter to Catalina for a story about Natalie Wood’s death

No such luck. By January, I could barely raise my right arm and the pain–when moved wrong–would send me through the roof, so I went to the doctor.

Truly a Bum Shoulder

Unlike the left shoulder issue seven years ago, this was more than tendonitis. A labrum tear, a curved right shoulder bone pinching the tendon, and arthritis from twenty-three years of hoisting a camera added up to one shot shoulder. It took four months of rehab and a cortisone shot before I regained my range of motion without locking up in pain, and I went back to work, shooting in a different way.

Bum Shoulder shooting with panasonic 270
2017 Bum shoulder makes me switch to “baby camera,” shown here in shoot out with reporter Hetty Chang.

The Next Chapter with my Bum Shoulder

Rather than waving goodbye and sending me on my way, my bosses found a way to keep me shooting, using a smaller, significantly lighter camera, the Panasonic AJ-PX270, and while I’m still not used to it, and the picture–thanks to the smaller image sensor–isn’t nearly as stellar as the Panasonic AJ-PX800 I’d been using, this camera has prolonged my career, and for that, I am grateful.

4 Our Heroes Segment with OCSD

Nearly three months after starting to shoot with the “baby camera” I’m finally making peace with the change and finding ways to improve the quality of the product.



Feel Good News

My favorite kind of news. I’m not an adrenaline junky thriving on breaking news. I like crafting a story with pictures and words and sound in a way that leaves the viewer smiling. Last week, I shot and edited a story for Kathy Vara’s 4 Our Heroes segment, and you know what? Thanks to the image tweaking and endless experimenting, I finally didn’t cringe when viewing the video. That’s a big step forward.

2017 Heroes segment, on the rescue of a downed motorcyclist

Take a look at the link below and see what you think. (Click the box to the right to enlarge.)

Until next time…

Later Gators!

(P.S. Still working on rebuilding the site after losing all the media, so if you click around, you may find disconnected images.)


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