The Political Event
2016 Presidential Election arrived in Knox County, Ohio
In Septmber, I transitioned over to the news department at the Mount Vernon News. I still do my web editing, but I share those responsibilities. I’m photographing more and more and even doing video work, when it comes along.
On Thursday, October 27, I was assigned to photograph the Tim Kaine visit at Kenyon College. It is my first big national news event. The vice presidential candidate was in Gambier for a campaign stop.
The credentialing process involved a few hoops, mostly waiting on the campaign to give the green light. It came via an email the night before. I was a little worried and fretting over where and how I could take photos. I knew that security would be an issue.
I arrived with a reporter and we walked through the media entrance on the back of the Kenyon Athletic Center. There we were greeted by security. As a photographer, I had to empty my pockets and my bug-out bag needed to be checked by a bomb-sniffing dog. Once we were clear, we got our badges and we had access to the media area and the wi-fi.
We arrived an hour and half before the event. I took a spot on the media platforms in the back of the hall. There were places marked off for Columbus media, as well as state and national media. I found an unmarked spot next to the stairs. I brought a monopod with me, mostly for the extra support. I decided to use my Nikon 80–200 2.8 lens. It’s older, but it’s sturdy and would help give me the photos I wanted. I brought another camera, with a 85mm 1.8 lens for just a security blanket and another option. I also packed a 17–50mm 2.8 and a 40 mm 1.8, mostly for grins and giggles.
I met with the various campaign handlers. They were very courteous and helpful offering an options and locations that we would be going to during the speech, if we wanted. I did. We were granted access to the area in front of the stage, in the balconies and a platform off the right of the main stage.
For an hour long speech, it felt like were kept moving.
I tried to soak in as much as possible. These events only come around once every four years, so it was important for me to take an interest into how this big political machine moves and works smoothly.