Today’s Archive Image – The Canadian Federal Election 2008

Election 2008 Leaders-2

It is hard for me to believe these images were shot more than four years ago. It is too cliche to say that it was another lifetime, but that is what it feels like. Nope, these images and the 2008 election fall within the time line of my career in photography. It is fair to say that career has had some ups and downs and has required some reinvention along the way, but what career conceived in the 21st Century does not? These images, shot days or a few weeks apart, though in the same room, were among the last time I found myself in a true media scrum and in looking back it is also fair to say that there is something to be missed, but a lot that is better behind me.

I enjoy picking up a rare editorial shift from time to time, and I am not ashamed to admit how much it pleases me to see my work printed as so much of my work ends up on line. This is one of ways in which the internet has changed the industry, technology has enabled a ‘deomcratization” of the medium but has also created an infinite number of outlets for the presentation, broadcast and publication of photos.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper on the right and Liberal Candidate Stephane Dion on the left revel such different messages in these photos, but by this point, the election was largely over with the outcome fairly predicted by pundits and the media. Ironically both the Prime Minister and Dion had been long accused of being soft of personalty offering little for people to get excited about, so it is interesting to look at what each of them suggest. The Prime Minister clearly secure in his predicted victory is stayed and unemotional at the podium separated from his constituents and his supporters versus Stephane Dion with closed ranks around him passionately and energetically rallying support for a losing battle. In the days following the election, I often wondered if Canada had seen the Liberal leader the way we had in that ballroom if the Liberal Party would have been more successful. Perhaps reinvention was just in the cards for Dion as it was for me.



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