There's no arguing that Bernie Sanders' rise has been one of the most remarkable grassroots campaigns in the history of the U.S. His photographer, Arun Chaudhary, recently gave a fascinating interview on what it's like to photograph Sanders and what he's trying to accomplish in doing so.
Arun Chaudhary has quite the resume. Under President Obama, he was the first official White House videographer, and now, he is the creative director and official photographer for the Bernie Sanders campaign. He recently sat down with TIME Magazine and spoke about his approach. It offers a fascinating look at how creative decisions factor into political influence.
Particularly noteworthy is the fact that Chaudhary shoots in an intentionally raw fashion meant to augment Sanders' image as the people's candidate:
While we’re shooting, we shoot directly into lights to get lens flare; we don’t mind having digital noise if it’s dark. We even put things out that are a little out of focus from time to time. And I think all of this helps differentiate what our work is... Gritty is the new glossy... The most important thing, especially in the beginning of this movement, was to manifest the idea of Bernie Sanders as president in peoples’ minds.
To hear a former White House videographer talk of intentionally creating photos of a presidential candidate that are out of focus and against the prevailing technical grain is fascinating and really illustrates both the thought and uniqueness behind Chaudhary's vision and how intimately it ties into the image of Sanders and his campaign. The entire interview is an incredibly instructive example in connecting the process of creating images with the message we want to send, as well as a great look into the life and work of a top-level political photographer. Check out the full interview here.
Images used with permission of Arun Chaudhary.