All together now. . .

The Baltimore Sun

In early January I was assigned to cover the Maryland General Assembly, which meant I would spend the next several months taking pictures for what is ... well, let's just say it's considered a difficult assignment among The Sun's staff photographers. Nonetheless, I embraced the new gig optimistically and sought to make interesting pictures under the challenging circumstances - covering politicians meeting in dark committee rooms, lobbyists lobbying and the governor speaking at news conferences.

Each day, newsroom editors would target coverage to the day's agenda and request pictures from debates over proposed legislation. Sometimes a reporter and I would wait for hours in a committee room for a debate to begin on whatever bill was the big news of the day.

Often, I'd find myself passing the time looking through the lens of my cameras, experimenting with alternative compositions and timing as people came and went to testify. I ended up with some odd pictures that speak more to the sociology of people in these settings than to the story I was assigned to cover. These pictures rarely ran in the paper, understandably so.

This photo of several county police chiefs is one example of my experiments with timing. Obviously, it's not the moment that they were actually testifying to the House Environmental Matters Committee on a bill to allow speed cameras around Maryland. And I am sure many would think it's a strange picture.

But to me - and perhaps only me - there is an element of poetry in the body language of the police chiefs as they step away from the table after delivering their testimony, almost as though they're rehearsing a dance together.

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