Strange things happen around tripods.
I have read many articles & posting on the internet, the latest being another article in DT ~ "Risky shot...", on being forbidden to use tripods in certain areas. I have always thought, how can that be? How can anyone disallow the setting up of tripod for a photo shoot, If photography is not forbidden? If photography is allowed, then why should tripod be disallowed?
I found out sooner then later, one of the many reasons, and to my bemused on my first & only encounter with the authority during one of my photo shoot session. This happen at a horse race track.
I bought an entry ticket and specifically checked to see whether photography is forbidden, no such thing. Then when I pass through the gate, I asked the ticketing officer, whether photography is forbidden. The answer is no. As I passed through a the stand, a security guard question me about the load of equipment I am carrying, and I politely told them that they were my camera. So everyone when about minding their own business as I moved to the upper tier of the stand which is quieter to set up my tripod & camera.
In a flash, three security officer surround me and asked me to remove the equipment or leave. I told them that I have an entry ticket and have done nothing wrong. A small argument broke out and I told them that I have asked the ticketing officer and no one said that photography is not allowed. By this time, the security officer lost his cool and snatch my tripod and attempt to snap it in two. A struggle ensued, I got hit on the head twice and ended up in the security office.
There I met the Security chief, which appears to be more sensible, until he told me that by setting up my camera tripod, I may be a security threat, as I could be setting up a laser equipment to blind the racing horse.
So you see, photographers, do get to experience some of the most strangest things in the world, usually with their tripod.
Sadly, I got no shots of the race, the guards or the episode. But its alright, I believe it would be rejected anyway for "Lack of composition, this is not what we are looking for". :)
Photo credits: Gwoeii.
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