Behind the lens: The whole picture

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Elizabeth Davis
  • 81st Training Wing Public Affairs

When photography was first invented, it was used solely to document. Slowly, photographers began to use the medium for artistic purposes. They still accurately showed what was happening in a scene, but started to use lighting, angles and viewpoints to capture the whole picture.

When I pick up my camera, nearly two hundred years after photography was invented, I try to keep in mind what I can do with the tools I’ve been given. Part of my job in Public Affairs is to create a sense of urgency that will move people to action, which is essential when thinking about the future fight.

We have a chance to tell the story of our Airmen and what they do day in and day out.

Hot air shimmering on the flightline, a flag snapping in the wind, commands being called, sweat dripping - all are things that we can capture through the lens to invoke an emotional response from viewers.

But what’s so important about the whole picture?

Images can keep the memory of loved ones alive, freeze a moment in history and witness milestones in our lives. It makes me feel a little more connected to Airmen across the world and to the whole picture of what we do as a force.

Our job in Public Affairs is to shape the Air Force’s image by building relationships with the community and managing various media. We develop scripts and graphics, serve as on-camera announcers and document both ground and aerial missions to ensure information is captured for current and future generations to see.

What we do every day would not be possible without the trust of our people, both inside and outside of the gates. Transparent communication between us helps promote that trust, attract future Airmen and modernize our training for the Airmen we need.

I’m one small part of a much larger image, but my hope is that I can help push the mission forward through my lens.