Events have a schedule, and as mundane as it may seem, the most important thing for me is to show up on time! And, as the event unfolds, I must be aware of two things: 1) scheduled activities, and 2) unexpected moments. I must react quickly, and, if possible, unobtrusively.
Planning ahead is crucial — if the critical moment will be fleeting — a polar plunge, for example, or a cannon firing — my camera must be ready with the correct shutter speed and aperture set. And I must be positioned properly.
And always I think of what the photos will end up being used for: “arty” shots might be what I’d like to shoot, but if I’m being hired to shoot publicity shots, then telling the story well is my most important task.