Election Day | 2012


Photo Editor's note: Election Day was bound to be a scheduling nightmare. A few things here and there didn't quite go according to plan, but in the end everything fell together and we managed to get everything in on time. Not sure how. Gripes aside, the photographers that made themselves available today did some of the most comprehensive work I have seen in my time working for The Daily Texan. I didn't think it would happen, and yet suddenly photographers would float in, upload some photos, and filter back out, an editors dream. Shooting when they can, sacrificing, getting good art in the time they could. I even saw staff photographer Chelsea Purgahn on television getting right in the thick of a fist-fight between a masked Obama and Romney outside of the co-op, she didn't even flinch. Those who shot later on waited hours for their photos, perusing around watch parties across downtown Austin, sticking with tough situations that, in the case of senior photographer Fanny Trang, may have included just one person sitting at a cafe, waiting for the news.

Enough talk. I was, still am, very impressed. Chelsea Purgahn and Marisa Vasquez found the time to photograph the aformentioned masked marauders and voters lined up outside the FAC, Marisa choosing the wider approach and Chelsea the linear angle. Emily Ng not only shot day-time stills of voters at the Capitol from a number of different angles but also went downtown and got two striking photos of Senator Kirk Watson, one with him talking to the media and the other a historical shot of him with his arms outstretched as he addresses supporters at the Driskill. Marisa then managed to get inside a voting station to grab a great overhead shot of voters at the booths with some strong details before heading back outside to find a woman holding a Love Austin sign that illuminated her face in an ethereal way, all that before then going downtown to photograph the Proposition 3 watch party. Fanny Trang captured Don Zimmerman, founder and treasurer of Travis County Taxpayers Union, looking sombre as Proposition 1, which he opposed, went through. Fanny then went to the Driskill as well to photograph the University Democrats watch-party, snapping a nice wide shot of ecstatic supporters after Obama's victory was projected. Even Rebecca Gamache found a poignant moment, as celebrators cheered at Cuatros, and Pu Huang added a complex image of a student holding a sign instructing people on where they can receive voting advice. A bunch of contributors at a number of events. 

I'm still smiling. Solid work.  -Lawrence Peart