Monday, December 03, 2007
Monday, November 19, 2007
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Monday, July 02, 2007
Monday, June 25, 2007
There have been a couple injuries as of late that I want to touch on.
Alexandra Boulat of Agency VII suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm while on assignment in
Also, at the AST Dew Tour this weekend, BMX Vert champ, Chad Kagy went down hard while trying a triple tailwhip.
I am heading into my last week of Little League Baseball for 2007. No All-Stars this year, but it will give me a chance to focus more on helping my mother in her recovery from heart surgery a little more. Maybe get her back on her feet quicker. It will also give me the chance to photograph some other things I have been putting off. For the last two years I have really missed the
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
A self portrait? No, not really. I have been toying with using remotes for a while. Last year when the Globetrotters were in Anchorage I tried one with my Rebel Xt and got ok results, but this year, I have gone all out. As you can see with the above image, I have a high tech remote stand. A wheel barrow wheel from Wal-Mart, a Bogen ball head, my original 1D, and my 70-200 2.8.I am triggering it with a remote I got off of ebay. It is not the little remotes we use for strobes, but one that is really a cable release that comes with a little key chain FOB that will trigger it from about 100 feet away. Typically, I will set it up looking up at third base from behind home plate and prefocus on the area around home with a large DOF to get plays at the plate. In the above picture, I set it up to get batters at a coach pitch game so I could focus on the field action for some sportraits. It is not the best for getting hits, because, unlike Pocket Wizards, there is a major shutter release delay, but for action at the plate, when I see someone rounding third, I start mashing the shutter around the time they get half way to home. Seems to work pretty good for that. As you can see in the image below, the low angle really adds to the image.
Yes, that is me in the lower left of the image. I moved over to third base to photograph the pitcher, and did not realize I was in frame.
So, why a remote for little league? A remote is like having a second shooter with you at each game. While I am only shooting one game, and my real life second shooter is covering another game, this remote gives me the ability to capture images that just are not safe or practical for me to try to grab during the game. It also offers parents and players something that other photographers just are not doing....at least yet...
Saturday, May 05, 2007
The Opening Ceremonies were very well done. A sad moment came when I found out that Jeff, a Knik board member, coach, and umpire instructor will be moving mid season. He will be impossible to replace. The coolest thing from the Opening Ceremonies was the announcement that the Anchorage Glacier Pilots are teaming up with Anchorage area Little Leagues with fund raisers and free baseball camps. Growing up in Seattle, I got spoiled with the Seattle Mariners sponsoring both Little Leagues and Boy's and Girl's clubs, the Sonics setting up outdoor courts for the community, and so on. Coming up to Alaska, with the ABL, the ECHL and UAA, I was disappointed to see very little community outreach to the youth leagues beyond the Glacier Pilots Little League Day at the ball park. Hopefully this will push the Aces into a more active roll and when the Alaska Wild get their issues all sorted out, hopefully they will be a supporter of Pop Warner and high school football.
While I have a second shooter this year, she will only be helping me Monday through Thursday, so I was left to cover as much as I could by myself today. That was fine. The first games are usually a time for the players, managers/coaches and umpires to shake off the winter cobwebs, and it gave me a chance to get my baseball grove on. Starting next week, we will be working a specific shooting schedule that will ensure that we get each team at least twice during the season. We fully expect to photograph each team more than twice, but there are times that we may not be at the ball park. We will be floating with the T-Ballers and Coach Pitch, basically covering them off and on through out the season, but with Minors, Majors, Juniors, both baseball and softball, we will typically shoot at the minimum, 1/2 the game when we are there, unless there is not another game on another field. So, if the lower softball field has a game at the same time as the upper softball field, we will shoot 1/2 of both games. This will be the same for both baseball and softball. So, if you do not see a photographer at your game, do not worry, we will be there this season.
We also have something new this season. We can take most any action photo from this seasons games and turn it into a cut out photo on a heavy duty material that can be safely stuck to almost any wall, and moved or repositioned as many times as you want. See the main site at www.digital-eos.com under the Knik LL tab for more information and ordering instructions for this awesome new product that will be a great memento for your 2007 Little League Season.
I look forward to seeing you all at the ball park this season.
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
Shoes. You want to be comfortable, but have shoes that will allow you to take off running to the next field if you have too. I like light weight shoes, and the best I have found, and have been wearing them for years (not the same pare), are of all things, soccer shoes. I really, really like the Adidas Samba Classic shoes. They are light, breath well, and while an indoor soccer shoe, give me the reliability on all but rain soaked grass.
Clothes. It is summer time. Shorts, tank tops, beach...of wait...baseball. I will wear shorts to about 95% of the baseball games I shoot, but weather dictates what kind of shorts. Cool days with a breeze, I will probably go with a pair of cargo pants with the zip off legs. warmer days, any number of cargo shorts. Only cargo shorts. Those extra pockets are a necessity. Shirt wise, again, weather dictates what it will be. Normally just a tshirt, but on windy days, we might go for a long sleeve tshirt, and most definitely have a wind breaker with you just in case. And lastly, a hat. something lightweight that will protect your dome from the sun. Sitting out on a baseball field for 2 or 4 or 6 games can really burn you, so protecting your head and neck is important.
Speaking of sun... Suntan lotion or sun block. You will need it. Period.
Bugs. Do not want them at all. A good, deet free, bug spray. Deet will eat into the plastics of your camera, so steer clear of them. There are also some sun blocks with bug repellent added in. So you can kill to bugs with one lotion....
Food. Long days at the ball park can make you crave snack shack dogs, or something worse for you... I will usually have a small cooler in the trunk of my car with 3 or 4 power bars and maybe a sandwich to hold me over between games. Stay away from junk food. It will just bog you down.
Water. Lots of it. Especially on hot days. When it is hot, and you are sitting in that boiling hot sunlight, you are sweating a lot. You need to replenish the water you are loosing or you really risk your health. If you are shooting with a belt pack, like a Think Tank Speed Belt, have water in one of the pouches. It will be your best friend.
Besides this type of gear, taking care of your body in other ways is a good idea. Do not sit in the same place all day long. Move around. Stretch your legs. Take a 5 or 10 minute break. Also, something that is good for the body, or at least the butt, is a bleacher seat. Nicer than sitting on dirt for 5 hours straight, and keeps your pants relatively clean...
4 days and counting til my opening day.....
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
This is a pretty good question. And in reality, you can do it pretty cheaply, to start with. Any digital SLR camera will do. Even a cheap Digital Rebel Xt or Nikon D50 will do. The kit lenses, even though they get a bad rep at times, will work fine, and you can pick up a cheap longer zoom, like a 70-300 or 70-200. A basic flash, like a new Vivitar 285 and a lot of memory and batteries will complete the camera gear. With this set up, you can cover quite a bit. And this gear should be well under $1000. If you want to do it right though, from the start, Canon 1 series bodies, and at least a 16-35, 24-70, 70-200 and 300mm set of lenses, all in 2.8 versions, along with a fast prime or two like a 50 1.2, 85 1.2, or 135 2.0, and this can run you more than 10X what the basic kit will, maybe closer to 15 or 20X.
But it is much more than just the camera gear. A laptop that you can transmit your images quickly on, meaning either you need a wifi or internet location to hook up to or a cellular phone card to connect to the internet to transfer files, software to quickly edit the images and caption them and a ftp program. And to find the news, you need to be connected with press releases, keep a police scanner near you, and create relationships with newspaper editors in your area. You could get away with spending as little as a couple thousand dollars to close to $100K on "tools of the trade".
But whether you have the Rebel or a 1D Mk III, and all the computer gear and software you need, you still have to be able to capture the news, and that means knowing your gear and understanding what makes a news photograph newsworthy. College classes on journalism and photojournalism, as will as journalism workshops help greatly here. Very few people can make a career out of photojournalism with out having some schooling in it. Starting out with a local weekly paper can give you some experience, but the knowledge is not as great as you will get with actual higher education. So, look at spending another $50K on tuition to Brooks Institute or another credible photojournalism school.
It is a very tough business, and you can make it if you work hard at it. Good luck.
Monday, April 23, 2007
I started shooting Knik in 2004. Mainly because my nephew was on a majors team and I went to just about every game. I followed him through majors and juniors, and in 2005 and 2006, I photographed the entire Knik Little League season (almost all of 2006) and all of the All-Stars and State Tournaments that Knik hosted for 2006. I even umpired in 2005 for All-Stars and had a blast doing it. I am so looking forward to getting out of the high school gyms and the Sullivan Arena for some great baseball action.
Once again, I am going to be shooting the Action Photos for Knik Little League, and this year, the coverage will be even bigger. I have added some great new gear to my camera bag, longer, faster lenses and two super fast cameras. On top of that, I will be playing around with some remote cameras and a brand new technique for Knik, the Pole Cam. The pole cam will debut at the opening ceremonies, and will make appearances throughout the season. Also for 2007, I will be bringing a new photographer in to help me cover all the teams. It is a tough job trying to be at 5 fields at the same time. During the 2006/7 high school basketball season, I started mentoring a high school junior at Eagle River High School and she will be assisting me during the Little League season. She will mainly be covering the softball games, but you will see her at a few of the minors and majors baseball games and she will definitely be shooting some of the T-Ballers and Coach Pitch games. She is a very talented young photographer that will go on to very big things. We are very lucky to have her on board for this season.
We are also proud to announce a new product. Well, actually a few new products this season. We will debut some new magazine covers, and special trading cards as well as Photo Tickets throughout the season. These items will all be special order, so contact me for ordering information. But the biggest addition is really exciting. I am sure that many of you have seen the commercials for FatHeads, the life size photos of professional athletes that are cut out and stick to your wall, and can be moved and re-stuck over and over again? Well, we have that this season. They are very cool and start out at under $90, not including shipping. We can take any photo from our 2007 archives for Knik Little League and make it into one of these wall cut outs. These are great for your kids rooms, or for decorating your game room or media room. And they can be moved very easily. See http://digital-eos.com/knik.html for more information.
I look forward to seeing all of you in the coming weeks.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Friday, April 06, 2007
Keith Oistad, a member of Joy Lutheran Church in Eagle River, Alaska, uses a shovel to cut through the ice in his church parking lot. Each Spring, as the warmer temperatures come, the back parking lot does not drain correctly and floods the church. Members chip away at the ice, trying to force the water to drain away from the building. The Men of Joy, at work group that meets once a month to do fix it projects around the church plan on digging up around the foundation to see where the water is coming in, and attempt to seal the leak, but currently, the church is very low on funds and is relying on weekly contributions from members just to try to pay the normal operating costs to stay open. Ideally, regrading the parking lot and adding better drainage would be the answer, but besides the leak, parts of the roof need replacing, furnaces need replacing, the building needs new carpet in a majority of the building, and the front parking lot needs to be sealed. But none of this can be completed until many bills are caught up and a reserve fund is built up. The church, a member of the ELCA and the Alaska Synod, is trying to bring in new members every week, but is finding it difficult as many new residents to the Eagle River area are either military and here for a limited time, or buying houses further and further away from Anchorage and Eagle River and going to churches closer to them.
Friday, March 16, 2007
As you all know by now, Canon has announced the Mark III version of the 1D... I encourage you to take a look at the Canon USA website for more info. It will be a great camera for any sports photographer. In my opinion, PMA was a letdown, except for the Mark III. Well, Sigma did announce a 200-500 2.8 zoom lens, which tops 35lbs and while cool, is not going to impact our business too much. I was really hoping Canon would release some new lenses like a 200 1.8 IS and a 100 - 400 f4 IS and a couple other things....but guess we will have to wait a little longer.
One of my next projects will be a total website redesign, which I hope to launch in time for football season (high school this fall).
Anyway, I will do my best to keep things coming here...expect more reviews and tips and tricks.....
Friday, January 05, 2007
On January 3rd, my mom went in to have 2 valves replaced in her heart. Surgery went very well, and she is recovering nicely so far, but needless to say, instead of hanging out at the sports arenas, my time has been mostly spent at the hospital. I may be able to swing a college basketball game in this weekend, but I am not counting on it at all. I will be shooting my second high school game come Monday, and then will have some time off to visit mom before she comes home and then again I will be quite occupied while she is on the mend. Thankfully, everything is good right now.
I am, during this off time from shooting for me, scheduling a very big shoot that will more than likely have national exposure. I will not tell you exactly what it is, but it is something that was shown on local news up here not to long ago and after viewing it, I decided this needed national coverage, and off went an email to my agency who is now shopping the idea around to some of the top publications. Once we have the details all lined up, I will share the info with you in more detail, but this could be a very big deal.
My best wishes to all of you for 2007.