Through the Window

Riding in a campaign motorcade is an experience which is hard to quickly summarize. There is a constant din of horns, the cars swerve constantly and whenever they stop there is a flurry of activity as the security personnel jump out to form a perimeter around the candidate’s car. So many things are happening at any one time that I never stop being fascinated.
But all of this exists for one reason- to make the candidate’s journey as quick and undisturbed as possible. He is free, then, to work, read, sleep or stare out of the window. I have been doing a similar thing recently, just staring out of the window and watching the faces of citizens as they see this honking mass passing. Some are elated as they catch a glimpse of their candidate, others are confused or irritated by the din. Children love the campaigns and get very excited by them.
I started shooting images out of the car window whenever the space was clear (usually there is a policeman obscuring the left side window, and framing using the right side is tough). All of this was with more than a nod to Ben Lowy, whose Iraq images are both visually stunning and deep observations on the connections between people.
So I shot out through the window, using it as a frame and trying to imagine that being my view of the world. The images went up and down in quality, but yesterday evening I struck lucky. The light was perfect, the policeman was out of the car for a while, and the crowds were numerous. This was our return to Kampala, to campaign in Nakawa, and along the narrow roads as we headed to the rally ground I could finally see the images I had been looking for.
So with apologies to Ben Lowy, I’ve put a few of my favourites in a new page which you can access from the top of this blog. It’s titled ‘Ballot Box‘, and I’d love to hear what you think.

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About Muzungu

I’m a Uganda-based freelance photographer (and occasional writer) working for a broad range of clients including NGOs, newspapers and magazines and development agencies. My work has taken me across East Africa, South America and Europe, and previous clients include USAID, the World Bank and the East African. I also work on personal documentary projects in my spare time. If you’d like to hire me or to know more, please feel free to get in touch.
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