29 January 2009

The Halo Effect

Handlers always have to keep an eye for the background where their boss is speaking. 

They look for potted plants, odd colours, people or anything at all in the background that would turn up in a still picture or video and detract from the image.  In well-prepared situations, there is a carefully prepared backdrop that conveys the image or message they want. 

Sometimes that doesn’t work.  There’s a famous picture of Margaret Thatcher from the early 1980s speaking at one of her party’s conventions.  A clever photographer managed to take a picture of her with only three letters from the slogan on the backdrop in the shot.  The result was a beautiful shot of Thatcher in full rhetorical flight, but with the word “WAR” over her shoulder.

Stalwart photographer Joe Gibbons may not have relished being called out to the legislature in the middle of the evening to take a shot of Danny Williams. Then again, he may be totally enamoured of the man and wanted to reflected the messianic aura of the man.

Either way, Gibbons managed to come back with a shot of Danny Williams with arms outstretched almost as if he were posing like a religious statue.  Gibbons got down low to shoot upwards at Williams so that behind Williams’ head is a light fixture from the lobby of the legislature.

Take a look;  it’s work clicking the link.

The shot made the front page of the Telegram on Wednesday in full colour atop Dave Bartlett’s story on the Tuesday night scrum.

-srbp-

7 comments:

Winston Smith said...

“You can never take principle too far," He said. No there's one to mull over. Does he know what principle means?

Saying that one holds principles says nothing about the quality of those principles. One can have stupid, wrong, or evil principles. Hitler and Stalin had plenty of principles. It sounds increasingly like DW has a W-style speaking disorder. Or perhaps he actually means what he says.

towniebastard said...

I used to view it as a personal challenge to get an interesting shot of politicians in staged settings like this. To catch an interesting facial expression, unusual backdrop, whatever. Granted, I never had to photograph Williams as much as the Telly guys do, but I bet they still prowl around, looking for something different every time.

And kudos to Joe on that shot. It was very clever. People might grumble about different aspects of the Telly, but their photographers are top notch.

Coady Bustin said...

It's more than a little disturbing, actually. I assume some people will have that picture framed and put in their living rooms or kitchens surrounded by gold leaf. Move over J.C.

WJM said...

Framed? pshaw. That's for mere mortals.

The true patriots, the proud, strong, and determined Newfoundlanders, will, and Labradorians, be buried with that picture clasped to their breast, just like popular legend has it little old ladies were with Smallwood's back in the 1950s.

Joe said...

Is it just me, or is Danny looking/dressing more like Leo Puddister?

Pray of our Dan said...

Our Danny
Who art in Town
Partened be thy hair
Thy transfers come
Thy will be done
In Ottawa is it is in sin jawns
Give us this day
Our weekly talking points
And deliver us our Equalization
In have times, as it was in have not
For thine is the pride, the strength, and determination forever and ever. Our Dan.

Trematho the True Believer said...

Sacrilege and blasphemy! You missed two lines.


Our Danny
Who art in Town
Partened be thy hair
Thy transfers come
Thy will be done
In Ottawa is it is in sin jawns
Give us this day
Our weekly talking points
And deliver us our Equalization
In have times, as it was in have not
And lead us not up the St. Lawrence
But deliver us from Confederation

For thine is the pride, the strength, and determination forever and ever. Our Dan.