Photographers get new incentive to take more photos in the studio
By Sarah Binder The Associated PressWASHINGTON — The number of photos taken in the front row at the Republican National Convention this summer is soaring, and it’s driven by photographers who prefer the light-hearted atmosphere.
The Associated Press surveyed about 500 photographers at the convention and found that more than half of them have started taking more photos at the party.
Many of the photographers said they wanted to be more spontaneous and enjoy the event.
Some said they were motivated by the fact that the Republican presidential nomination process is being held in front of the cameras, which can be a tricky subject.
“It’s a little bit more stressful, but you’re just making sure people have a good time, that everyone is smiling, that people have fun,” said Mark Smith, a photojournalist and president of the National Photographers Association.
“I think it was pretty cool for the people at the event to see how well we were doing.
I think it’s really cool to have a little fun with that.”
The AP’s survey also found that the convention is being viewed more by millennials than previous conventions.
About 80 percent of respondents said they had been at or near the convention at least once, compared with 67 percent of people ages 18 to 29 and 49 percent of those 50 and older.
The AP found that millennials are the fastest-growing group in the U.S. workforce, with the average age of a photographer at the start of this year approaching 30.
They are also more likely to live in urban areas and have more access to technology than other demographics.
The average cost of a photo shot in the convention hall this year was $9,637, up from $8,566 last year.
That includes the cost of equipment, supplies and a professional crew.
The convention has been criticized by Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus for being too expensive.
The RNC has pledged to spend $2 million to help photographers cover the convention.
The RNC has said it will use $10 million of the money to pay for food, lodging and a video camera.
A few photographers said the convention had helped them develop their skills.
“The first time I ever got in the booth was at the beginning of the convention, so I had a lot of experience in the industry and it was a really great experience for me,” said Scott Roush, a photographer and owner of The Photography Studio in Chicago.
“The fact that I was able to go there and really take advantage of the venue, it was an eye opener for me.”