Monday, January 23, 2017

Women's March on Washington

I just got home from the Women's March on Washington where I photographed a part of the Canadian contingent marching in the Women's March on Washington in DC for the Canadian Press.

I arrived Friday night after the inauguration and was staying in a hotel right in the heart of the balls in Washington. The hotel lobby showed me just how divided the US was. Visually, you could see exactly which "side" people were on - Trump supporters in fur, ballgowns, tuxedoes or red "Make America Great Again" hats and people who opposed Trump wearing pink pussy hats. Since I wasn't dressed in either, people asked me, "Are you with all this protest nonsense?" (how Trump supporters asked) or "Are you marching tomorrow?" (how Women's March people asked). What everyone was really asking is, "Are you with us or against?"

The march itself was incredible. It was amazing how many women showed up. It was so inspiring and I only hope that it's just the start of something big. I spent the majority of the time just trying to keep up with the Canadians I was shooting (then filing). It was crowded and at every turn there were endless streams of marchers. After leaving the Canadians to file it was impossible to track them down again in the sea of people so I took a few photos of the march for myself but mainly tried to take it in as it wrapped up.

Big shoutouts to two fellow Canadian badass photographers that I was so proud to shoot alongside: Sarah Palmer who was down there photographing for the Walrus and Maclean's and Jennifer Roberts who shot an amazing series of portraits that ran on the front page and throughout today's Globe and Mail. These guys were amazing to travel with, text to share information and excitement with and to take in the craziness of it all. It's certainly an experience I will never forget.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Trump

I actually photographed this Trump rally back in the spring when it looked like he might not even win the Republican nomination. I drove down to Syracuse with photographer Sarah Palmer who was working on a project called Drunk on Trump.

In the spring, Trump's candidacy still seemed like a joke. Trump seemed to stand for pretty much the opposite of all my personal and political beliefs but I wanted to see what it would be like to go to a rally - to see the voters who loved him and to hear what he said in-person.

The event was scarier than I thought it would be. Outside the conference hall people had been standing in line for hours for a spot inside. Once inside, they were tired and a little cranky. It was hot and space was tight. An announcement reminded rally attendees not to physically assault protesters if they appeared during the rally. Trump was late and as time wore on the crowd was restless.

Eventually Trump took the stage and the crowd erupted. He ranted the entire rally without notes - promising to bring all the jobs back to Syracuse immediately after being elected ("that's how good I am"), asking the crowd to turn around and look at the lying and incompetent press who were at the back in a small pen area and from time-to-time whipping up the crowd to chant "Build the Wall!" He bragged about how smart his voters were. He didn't talk about any real policy or issues. The crowd loved it. After it was over I couldn't believe what I'd heard. I left thinking Trump was scarier - and even less credible a candidate - than I had thought before I'd seen him in-person.

Once home people seemed to find it interesting that I'd been to a Trump rally. At the time it seemed a little funny to describe the event. I spoke about it the way you might recount the time you saw a waterskiing squirrel - it was amusing and disorienting but nothing serious. I firmly expected Clinton to win the Presidency. I couldn't believe how anyone could take Trump seriously, especially after seeing him speak.

I held off posting these images because I'd had a different post in mind for when Clinton won the election. Today Trump becomes President of the United States. I'm still in shock.


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

CFB Trenton and Syrian Refugees

Last week I went to CFB Trenton along with Maclean's writer Meagan Campbell to see how the base and the city of Trenton were preparing for the arrival of refugees.

This isn't the final stop for refugees, instead it's just the start of their trip to Canada. Driving into the base, with its imposing airplane hangers, strong-wordeded military signage and barb-wire fences, I tried to imagine what arriving in this strange place is going to feel like - relief, fear?

When Meagan spoke with people in town, the reaction was mixed and it was interesting to see how people are responding to the idea of refugees coming to Canada. Generally people seemed to want to help but were a little fearful and upset at the money being spent. I know that I'm incredibly proud of our country for bringing the refugees here and I can't wait to see them start to arrive in Trenton and then onto their final destinations scattered across Canada.

You can read the Maclean's piece here.

About Della

I'm Della. I take pictures.

I'm a freelance photojournalist based in Toronto. My work has appeared in The Globe and Mail, The National Post, Toronto Life, Hello! Magazine, The Calgary Herald and Sun Media publications. I have also shot for a number of corporate clients, including the Government of Canada, the Law Society of Upper Canada, ING, Accenture, Pfizer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Takeda, Amgen and Merck Frosst.

Likes: Snoopy Sno-Cone makers, dinosaurs, sharks, hot chocolate, ice cream, This American Life, CBC Radio, asparagus, zebras, travel, photography, grape soda, ice cream, naps, hoodies, the library, good e-mails, duvets, new books, mittens and lists.

Dislikes: Unicorns, ponies, glitter, tomato, wet cat food.

Check out my website at www.dellarollins.com
Contact me at: drollinsphoto (at) gmail.com

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