John Marsden Writing Topic #416

Write about a memorable photograph that you took or that you have**

PM Visits Illawarra for Summit

This photograph is of Former (and first female) Prime Minister, Julia Gillard. I took this at the Novotel Wollongong Northbeach on October 18, 2011. Gillard was giving the keynote speech at the third annual State of the Illawarra Summit.

At that time I was in my second year of uni and I was taking a photojournalism class. My lecturer told our class about Gillard being in town and the opportunity to take photographs of her being there. At the last minute I got media permission. I got to the Summit about two-and-a-half hours before she arrived because I didn’t know what time she would be there. When she finally arrived, I stood among the press pack with the “real” or qualified and working journalists taking photographs. This photograph is the first one I took and is my favourite, my lecturer liked it too and called it “The West Wing shot”.

My lecturer also told me that taking photographs of the first female Prime Minister would be a good story to tell my grandchildren one day.


**Reference: Marsden J 1998, Everything I Know About Writing, Pan Macmillan, Australia.

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