What a job!

10/08/2018 Posted by admin

by Jamie Butler

What a crazy job I have.

Being a cameraman/editor for Global National, you never know how your day or night is going to go. Right now, I’m on Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s plane enroute to Paris, France. It’s a full plane: journalists, RCMP officers, military members including the Chief of Defence Staff and government officials.

I woke up this morning with no idea how my day was going to unfold. If you had told me I would wake up in Ottawa on Friday morning and not go to bed there, that possibility would always linger in the back of my mind because my job can have me scrambling at the last minute, but I never would have expected to be enroute to Paris…and to be flying home Saturday night.

During my brief stint in Paris, I didn’t sleep until I got back on the plane the next night to come back to Ottawa. My day was filled with photo-ops with Prime Minister Harper, media conferences with the various leaders and filing all of this for the television networks back in Canada.

At least I saw the Eiffel Tower.

My role on this trip, as cameraman and editor, is to shoot the events, then go back and load the material into my computer and send it back to Canada.

I’m a member of what we call a “pool” on this trip, which means a group of networks sends a representative to be part of a team who will provide all of the material to Canada. This is a cost-saving measure, but it also limits the amount of gear and number of people on the plane.

On this trip, there is a cameraman from Radio-Canada/CBC, a producer from CTV and myself from Global. All the networks or media outlets will still send their own reporters on the plane, but the pool serves all the content to the member TV agencies – this includes pictures of the events, and getting shots of the reporters talking to the camera, otherwise known as “standups.”

I should also point out each of the media members on the plane does not get a free ride from the Prime Minister’s Office. Our companies get billed for the cost of a seat on the plane.

This hectic schedule and lack of sleep is good preparation for the possible election we face, which will have us constantly travelling for five weeks. I could be flying to up to six cities in one day…thankfully all within Canada.

The fact that no two days are the same or even that you don’t know how it’ll unfold, makes this job so amazing.

What a job!!

Jamie is a Global National photojournalist, based in Ottawa. Follow him on Twitter: @coffee_obsessed.

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