Tips for Shooting a Day in the Big Apple
Len Rapoport uses the 18-270mm VC PZD lens for his city
adventures — plus trade shows and video!
Article By Jennifer Gidman • Images by Len Rapoport – Article has been reprinted from the
Len Rapoport has had the storied life you usually read about in “Rolling Stone.” The New Jersey photographer joined the National Guard at age 17, then got his first big break as his cousin Neil Diamond’s first photographer. “I was into photography when I was 9 years old and learned how to process film and prints in the Army,” he says. “In the mid-1960s, Neil came to me and asked if I would shoot his first album cover and then do some other shots that he could use for publicity photos. They ended up using these photos for four or five album covers, sheet music, concert books, and more. These early black-and-white photos have been recognized as the iconic shots of Neil as a young singer.”
From there, Len’s career included owning an employment agency, becoming a pioneer for women’s large-sized sportswear in the women’s apparel business (where he worked side by side with Perry Ellis), and creating MovieTee’s, a business that manufactured licensed movie apparel sold to the major video distributors and video stores. Today Len is president of International Press Association, which he founded 22 years ago.
“IPA is a labor of love for me — it’s a way to utilize all of my talents, including my writing, corporate communications, marketing, and photography skills,” Len says. “If you join IPA, you have an opportunity to ‘Learn by Doing,’ the IPA mantra. Each IPA member obtains commercial and professional experience shooting events that he or she would never have access to otherwise. Each member also has a professional profile on the site and receives a complete press ID kit that identifies them as being with IPA, gives them important media access, and maybe even offers an opportunity to join the best IPA members at IMPress, the organization’s new online magazine, as part of the staff.”
Rapoport recently added the Tamron 18-270mm VC PZD lens to his shooting arsenal, which opened up a world of new photographic opportunities for him [see his full review of the 18-270 here]. “I love that the lens is lightweight, which makes it easy to carry,” he says. “I also love the huge range. I can get those great wide-angle shots at the 18mm end (the 35mm equivalent of around 28mm), then have a nice telephoto shot at the 270mm end. You can see that tremendous range in the images I took from the rooftop of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, including the photo of a building from the roof of the museum. It had to be at least a half mile away, and you can barely see the building above the tree line. Then I took the second shot at 270mm, capturing the same building. The Vibration Compensation (VC) and the quality of the lens kept the images sharp, crisp, and clear.”
Read on for Rapoport’s tips for capturing a day in Manhattan with the 18-270, as well as what else he’s using the lens for in his photographic forays.