(Savannah) Two Savannah State University students are sharing the fruit of a a recent travel lesson. The pair went to Washington D.C. to cover the 2015 Congressional Black Caucus. Junior ShaDasha Poe and Senior Cattony Brown says they were prepared to face one of the toughest real-world situations as a photojournalist: Any time you’re tasked to get photographs of the President of the United States.
Brown and Poe say they learned valuable lesson at Savannah State, thanks to the expertise and experience of visiting Photography Instructor, Jason Miccolo Johnson. He brings 25 years of photography experience, in Washington covering the Capital, to to the classrooms Savannah State. Johnson says he knew his students had a tough assignment. ” It’s rare that you can get, uh, more than two or three great shots in any one event, and throughout the entire caucus legislative weekend, they shot in the neighborhood of twenty-four to thirty-four hundred images.” Johnson said.
Preparations for the Presidential photo-op started in the classroom weeks earlier, but the last three hours leading up to the gala at the caucus, where President Barrak Obama and First Lady Michelle were to take center stage, were spent reviewing the game plan to get the best position for good photographs of the Commander-in-Chief. Brown and Poe say they eventually made it to within an arms reach of Obama as he made his way across the receiving line following his remarks. ” We got the chance to actually feel the tension, the um, the desire that a photographer has to have to want to get those shots.” said Brown. Poe says it was the lesson of a lifetime. ” Everybody don’t get that opportunity and I’m grateful that I did ge the opportunity.” Poe said.
Johnson says their pictures are worth more than a thousand words of praise because they show his students paid attention to his advice, capitalizing his experience and applying it. Johnson two words sum up his feelings about his student’s performance. ” Very proud, because, when I looked at the images, they had shots that even I didn’t get.” said Johnson. The students were elated with their work. ” I was shocked. I was not expecting the pictures to be so great and to just get that image of the President. It was amazing for me.” Poe said. Brown says it’s a moment that she will cherish for a lifetime because of Obama’s singular distinction in Presidential history in this country. ” It was surreal..um..never did I think that I would be in the same room as the first African American President, let alone to see him speak… To witness it.” Brown said. Johnson says Brown & Poe took between 2,400 – 3,400 photographs during their trip to Washington last month.