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Live Without a Camera

by Kimb

Posted on February 13, 2007 at 5:06 PM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 4 at 2:39 PM

by Vince Patton

If you just watched the top of the 5pm news you might wonder why the camera shot of me looked a bit odd.

You can chalk it up to traffic delays and a last minute bit of technological improvisation.

Station managers like us to report live from the scene. In this case, the video was back at the station so early we opted to edit there and then return to the Gresham Police Department to present the story.

Who would ever think it would take more than an hour to drive back out?

I left 10 minutes before my photographer and got to the police station in time.
But minutes before the show, I was still there alone with the live truck engineer.

The clock ticked.
My photographer was miles away.
And the producer depended on us to lead the show.

What do you do with no camera and a deadline minutes away?

We just looked 52 feet in the air. At the top of the mast that beams the live microwave signal back to station also sits an "eagle eye" camera.

Pan it around, tilt it down and yank out another 100 feet of microphone cable and voila! A live, albeit awkward looking picture.

It may have looked strange with me craning my neck to look at the camera.

But now you know how we thought fast to save the report.

Oh. And that photographer?
He pulled up 1 minute after I got off the air.

The 6pm report will look much more polished.
I promise!