Covering the Democratic National Convention alongside the Tribune’s Nancy Stone is a close-up look at the work of today’s multi-media photographers. I am in awe.
The convention is a particularly challenging assignment logistically, and it’s a very long day, starting with the 6 a.m. drive from our hotel, 24 miles from the convention center.
Tuesday was typical: Nancy attended the Illinois delegation breakfast to shoot still photos for the online gallery and candid portraits of people she knew were the subjects of planned news stories and the “5 Questions” feature. The wireless wasn’t working in the hotel that hosted the breakfast, so Nancy grabbed a bagel at Panera Bread and filed her first round of photos from there.
Then she hiked to the convention center where she reported and shot a video feature about campaign buttons sold by the Obama campaign. She filed that from the media workspace in the convention center basement before dashing to a Planned Parenthood rally outside the NASCAR Hall of Fame, then back to the basement to file again.
Then it was off to Time Warner Cable Arena, scene of the convention speeches -- dragging a wheeled bag full of gear and toting a backpack, with two cameras slung over her shoulder-- stopping to shoot anything that caught her eye. She hauled it all through security, set up in the arena’s digital darkroom, then spent the next six hours elbowing through crowds and jockeying with hundreds of other photogs to capture the awesome shots that appear in the paper, on our web sites and in our sister publications. Constantly on deadline, Nancy filed throughout the night, sometimes from the digital darkroom, sometimes straight from the camera.
She finished working and left the arena a full hour after the convention recessed for the night. (Sleep for three hours. Repeat.)
I wanted to know: What did she think of the speeches? SHE DIDN’T HEAR ANY OF THEM.
-- Marie Dillon
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