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... is a freelance photographer working in Middle Georgia

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Photographing The Prez

The first American president I ever photographed was Richard Nixon. The only one since Nixon that I have not photographed was Gerald Ford. Before Reagan was shot, access was a bit more free. For a while after John Hinckley, everyone was kept at a distance.

The best pictures to me are always the ones shot with a wide angle following the prez through the crowd while he is shaking hands with the local folks. With Carter and before the shooting with Reagan, you could start out in the press area(which was usually a decent place to shoot from) and after the speeches follow into the crowd for pictures mingling with local folks.

The last time I photographed Clinton, I passed up the press area completely and just went early and hung out with local folks up close in front of the platform. When he came down to shake hands I got some nice images of him with the regular people, not just the VIP's onstage.

The times with Dubya, seemed like control was the key. No walking through the crowd in advance of the presidential arrival talking to folks and getting pictures. In Perry we were confined to the press area, and anyone who appeared to be with the press and came in with the average joe's got tossed. Photographing his dad was not much fun either. Maybe it's just a Republican thing.

It will be interesting to see what the next administration brings.

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