A Balancing Act – Other Duties As Assigned

Before accepting my current job, I was handed the job description. Reading through my objectives and tasks, I reached an odd phrase at the end: “..and other duties as assigned.” Jokingly, I asked my fellow colleague about what that entails and he laughed saying, “Welcome to the job!” In this blog series, I will describe to you some of the weirdest tasks I was assigned to in, “Other Duties As Assigned”


I had the opportunity to be the event photographer for our alumni weekend at our university that I work at. We were celebrating the 50th reunion of the class of 1968.


One of the things in particular that I was assigned to do was to take a class photo of the class of 1968, It was the biggest class that has ever attended in the span of five years of our alumni weekends.


One of the things I had in mind was I wanted to make sure I got their clock that they fundraised enough money for it to be put on campus in dedication to one of their fellow classmates who passed away.


So, I was thinking, “How do I get to the clock? How do I get everyone in the shot?” At the end of the class’s lunch they all came outside towards the clock and I said, “Okay, here’s what we’re

going to do…stand in front of the clock, and I’ll think of something.”


As the class of 1968 was lining up, I remember there was a bench far enough to hopefully get the shot, but would elevate me enough to get the entire class in.


I first stood on the part of the bench you sat, no luck. Flipped my camera to live-view and held my hands up, still not enough. I knew I had to go higher. The only way to go higher was the back-rest.


I went for it. My vice-president luckily was there to initially help me up without falling, but my balance was lacking. I had two colleagues support my left and right leg. An alumna’s husband from the class of ’68 took initiative to hold the back of my belt to prevent me from falling backwards. The ladies of the class were laughing and hopefully scared for my safety when I was attempting to get the shot.


Overall, I knew it was crazy, some classmates you could not see their faces, but it turned out to be a nice photo to commemorate the weekend.


Next time, I’m getting a drone. No exceptions.


Does The Price of a Camera Really Matter?

A camera is a powerful tool. It can tell a story, capture a moment, or is just put in your closet in a box.

What’s crazy to me is a camera has become so advanced that sometimes, you don’t need the most expensive camera to get great photos. I put a poll below for those who are interested in participating.

Which photo do you like more? Photo 1 or Photo 2?

[poll id=”2″]

It’s now time for the big reveal. . .

Photo 1:

Camera: 2017 iPhone 8 Plus 12MP Camera; ƒ/1.8 aperture; Portrait mode.

Photo 2:

Canon 80D EOS 80D 24MP Camera; 45-point AF system with all cross-type points. / Lens: Canon EF 50mm ƒ/1.8 STM

Are you surprised?

Now wouldn’t an iPhone that has half the megapixels not even be comparable to a Canon 80D? I would argue that the iPhone is competitive to the Canon.

Some people are always under the impression that to take the best pictures, you need to buy the most expensive camera. Yes, if you looked up the price of the Canon 80D you would complain saying that it is not a cheap camera. I understand that. What cringes me the most is when people have a Canon 5D Mark iv‘s around their neck or having a Sony Alpha a7R III taking photos of their kid at their little league baseball game. I know I sound very harsh when I am stating my case, but it is almost like driving a Bugatti 35 mph on a highway. Bugatti’s are meant to be used to their fullest potential (yet I do not condone speeding)!

Anyone has the freedom to purchase a camera, but I would suggest finding ways to get the most out of your camera. Even if it is just an iPhone, be able to use it to it’s fullest potential. Did you know if you have portrait mode you are able to toggle it on and off? What about if you push to focus and see a “sun” you can swipe up or down to adjust the exposure? Get your money’s worth when investing in something of this price.

See Mike’s Photography Portfolio