U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (R) and Indonesia's Foreign Minister Hassan Wirajuda walk into the Treaty Room of the State Department in Washington after their meeting May 19, 2006. REUTERS/Yuri GripasAnd in this corner, Associated Press' Lawrence Jackson:
The match is happening RIGHT NOW! I'm liking Gripas again, because he knows that when you've got Condi in mid-stroll, you want to get the whole body-shot, because 1. We want to see Condi's shoes, and 2. It makes her and her partner look like they're dancing the Madison. A big strong line! Hit it!
It's too early to judge this round yet, but it looks like the above shots show Condi 'n' Pal heading toward the hallowed matching armchairs in the reception room, and that's this competition's field of dreams, if you will, even if it wasn't used in yesterday's Round 2. Will Gripas play it conservative, as he did in Round 1, or do a little arty hotdogging?
Also, please note that challenger AP has tossed aside the husks of their previous entrants, and this time they've changed tactics by choosing a photographer with a safe, WASPy name. Will it help?
Stay tuned! OMG, the Iron Photo-Opographer Challenge is totally better than American Idol.
UPDATE: The Second Lap!
Alrighty, in this next segment, Condi 'n' Pal have moved inside to the Reception Room, and the contestants have shot pretty much the identical instant:
This is the best showing yet by an AP competitor. But as in the previous rounds, please note the whites in Gripas' photo... he's the All-Temperature Cheer of photographers; his whites are simply whiter.
More subtle, though, are the compositional differences. Note how both incorporate the painting on the upper-left: Jackson edges it almost, but not quite, out of the frame, creating a hard-edged border on the left side of his photo. Gripas allows more of the painting into the frame, thereby creating an expansive shape which keeps the left side open. And yet with the doorframe behind Condi we see the opposite happen, because the dark rectangle of the door creates a strongly closed shape which encompases our Princessplomat and divides the composition. Gripas wisely reinforces this by including the frame, neatly creating a closed side on the right as a complement to the open, expansive shapes and colors on the left. Wait, see, here's how it works:
Recall that Jackson closed off the left side with that frame edge. The result is that Jackson's picture is more cramped than Gripas' more dynamic capture of the identical moment.
This was a lot closer than the first two rounds, but I'm declaring Gripas 3 for 3.
Oh, and PS, I'm sure the nice Foreign Minister of Indonesia and Dr. Ferragamo talked about, oh, just loads of important things 'n' stuff.