A Cold Mountain Day In Colorado

Photographing After a Huge Snowfall

While out in Colorado a couple of years ago the area was hit with a huge amount of snow. When people who are used to huge amounts think that they got nailed then you know that it was big. Once everything cleared I went out to make some photos. For someone who likes snow and old barns I was in heaven. It seemed as if everywhere that I looked there was another barn just waiting to be photographed. As the hot and humid end of August continues I thought back to that nice cold day in Hahn’s Peak, Colorado. You can throw on layers to deal with the cold. When you are out in the heat there is only so much that you can do. I would love to get back out west this winter for a few days.

Dealing With the Bluebird Day

In Colorado they talk a lot about the bluebird skies. A perfect day to a local is one that does not have a cloud in the sky. As a photographer you want something in the sky otherwise the photo can get boring. Here I didn’t want the boring sky to take up too much of my frame so I put as little of it as I could in the shot. I love to include a lot of sky in my photos, but if it does not add to the picture, then it has to be cut out.

Throwback Thursday: The LaPorte Slicers Win Their Regional

Coach Bob Schellinger Points the Way to Semi-State

A few years ago I was dabbling with my new dSLR. At the same time the LaPorte Slicers were on a historic run as far as program history goes. That season seemed to be one that was very lucky for me. I kept ending up in the right place at the right time. This photo for example should never have happened for me. The night of this game I had tickets to a comedy show in South Bend. A terrible storm came through delaying the game just long enough that I was able to see the second half. After the game was over and the photos had been taken with the new hardware Coach Schellinger spoke to his team. I loved the expressions on the faces of the kids as he explained what was in store for them. He turned to point at the fans who stuck it out to support the team, and I made this picture. Moments like this one helped me understand the power of a photograph, and inspired me to make more like this one. Last week I made a similar image at the West Side game after they had a huge comeback victory. I took what I learned here, and added a bit to it. The one thing that doesn’t change is the pride and emotion on the faces of the kids. That is what keeps you coming back for more.

The Re-Dedication of Kiwanis Field

Tomorrow night the Slicers play their first game on the new turf that was installed this summer. I got a chance to get a sneak peak of the turf while it was being put down. You can see some pictures of that process here. I had planned on attending the game tomorrow night, but I will be covering the volleyball tournament here at Purdue. Before this season is out though I would like to get back up to LaPorte to cover a game.  Continue reading

Land of the Marigolds

An Orange Marigold in August

This is another photo that I made while spending some time at my brother’s house in Martinsville. They have a beautiful flower garden that is a target rich environment for making photos. I had some fun with the 24-70mm lens getting up close and personal to the flowers while throwing the others out of focus. It makes for a very colorful background. With a macro lens I could get even closer,  but for now this will do.

Making Photos of Flowers

I am most comfortable making images of athletes in action. This coming weekend I will be shooting six volleyball games in two days with the Purdue season opening football game thrown in the middle of that. In all of that chaos I feel the most comfortable. Sometimes though I enjoy being outside where it is quite, and I can craft a picture. This is one of those times. It is not long before I long for the chaos again though.

Book Review: The Glory of Titletown by Vernon Biever

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Photographing the Green Bay Packers

It has been a while since I have posted a book review. With football season ready to begin I think that it is time to crank the series back up again. What better way to do so than with a book by Vernon Biever. Vernon was the photographer for the Packers from 1941 until he retired in 2006. He was still making images until his death in 2010. His images have helped document the glory years of Packer football. His legacy continues as one of his sons works for Sports Illustrated, and the other photographs the Packers with his own son.

What you have to think about when you look through a book like this is that for almost all of the images Vernon was shooting film. You really had to know your stuff to do so. Combine that with the fact that many of those years also featured manual focusing lenses, and you have a unique skill set that was required to shoot sports. Now when a big play happens you just look at the back of your camera to see if you got the shot. Back then you had to wait until it came back from the developer. With that in mind you can really appreciate what a genius Vernon really was at his craft.

Below is a great video that shows some of the work of the Biever family with comments on the pieces by the men themselves.

Sample Images

Here are a few sample images from the book

Forrest Gregg

Forrest Gregg

Jerry Kramer, Tom Moore, Fuzzy Thurston, Forrest Gregg

Jerry Kramer, Tom Moore, Fuzzy Thurston, Forrest Gregg

Ray Nitschke

Ray Nitschke

Don Majkowski, Sterling Sharpe, Brent Fullwood

Don Majkowski, Sterling Sharpe, Brent Fullwood

Brett Favre

Brett Favre

Vince Lombardi and Lambeau Field

Shooting at an Iconic Stadium

When I made it to Lambeau Field in 2009 it was part of a great weekend road trip. I saw Purdue play at Wisconsin the day before, and then the Packers play a guy named Favre in Lambeau. Neither of my teams won that weekend, but sometimes it is just about the journey. With football season back I thought that it would be fitting to post a quick picture that I made on my way into the stadium. There are a few stadiums that it would be a dream to shoot from on the field. Lambeau would have to be near the top of that list. The appearance of the stadium has changed a bit, but the history of the field remains. Guys like Lombardi, Bart Starr, Max McGee, Jerry Kramer just to name a few from the old days. Then you have players that I remember wearing the Green and Gold like Lynn Dickey, James Lofton, Brett Favre, Sterling Sharpe, and Leroy Butler. You know the current group is pretty good as well. The game day atmosphere seems like it has not changed much over the years. They have a band and cheerleaders, and a great atmosphere. I would love to get back to Lambeau for another game on the field or not.

Shooting With Your Phone

In the right conditions your phone can be used to make very usable photos. I shot this with my old Blackberry Storm. If you have read this blog for very long you will know that I had a bad relationship with that phone. On a trip like this where I was sneaking in a camera and a long lens, I would use my phone for the wider angles that I wanted to take. Here it worked quite nicely.

 

Purdue Soccer Tops Ohio 2-0

Back to Photographing Soccer

Last season I really came to love shooting soccer. I really did not understand most of the sport, and I spent a lot of time studying it so that I could learn some of what makes a good photograph. As with the dawn of every new season you see some familiar faces, and you have a few new ones to learn. Two new faces made an immediate mark on the game today. Freshmen Nicole Robertson and Erika Arkans scored both of the Purdue goals leading them to victory. Robertson also made a nice pass that set up the Arkans goal.

Bonus Photo

Sophomore midfielder Christa Szalach has a unique way of throwing the ball in play. Her flip is fun to watch, but no one frame really does it justice. I might have to come to a game at night to try a multi exposure of the flip. Of course you never know where or when they will happen, but it would have to make a good photo.

Bambi in the Meadow

Photographing Wildlife at Assateague Island

My main goal while at Assateague Island was to photograph the horses. That is why everyone goes there. I did not expect to make good bird photos with the gear that I took, but they came close enough that I was able to. On the way off of the island I spotted this deer just off the road. I grabbed my camera thinking that I only had one shot at this. I rushed the first photo before realizing that the deer was not worried. I made a photo with the deer just watching me as it fed. I am not much of a camper, but if camping at Assateague Island would allow me to see more photos of wildlife than count me in.

West Lafayette 18 – Tri-West 17

A Great Way To Start a Season

Last night I drove down the street to Gordon Straley Field to see a season opening top ten matchup. The game did not disappoint at all. Both West Lafayette and Tri-West fought hard for four quarters. Just when it seemed like Tri-West had the game in hand, West Side picked up a key fumble to give themselves a chance. West Lafayette senior Kyle Turner recovered that fumble. He already had a good game going, but I mentioned to a photographer next to me that it would only be fitting if he caught the touchdown at the other end of the field. He ended up doing that, and after a very unique two point conversion the game was over. This was a great way to start a season, and I don’t know how you could possibly try and top this game. After the game was over I tweeted that I doubt that I see a better game than that for the rest of the football season. That is kind of depressing that you have seen the best right away. If something tops this than you will for sure hear about it on this blog.

The Friday Night Lights

If you have read this blog than you know that I love football. During football season there is no place that I would rather be on a Friday night than a football field. The game is so great at the high school level. The emotion and joy is genuine. I don’t know how many high school games that I will cover this season, but I hope that it is a few. Maybe West Side will go on a run, and I can cover them all the way to Lucas Oil Stadium.

Another Photo Essay

I had so much fun at the game that as soon as I came home last night I put the photos together on an Exposure page. You can find that Exposure page here. Now that football season is here I plan on making good use of Exposure to document some of my travels. Next weekend I will be in LaPorte, IN to cover the LaPorte Slicers game against the Hobart Brickies.

A Harvest Sunset

Finding Something To Go Along With the Sunset

A few weeks ago while at my brother’s house a beautiful sunset started to form. When it started I was more concerned with the Supermoon that was coming up in the other direction. By the time I started to pay attention to this sky the sunset was going strong. I tried to find something very quickly to give the foreground some interest. This was my first option. I wanted to show the stop sign and the corn in the foreground. I quickly moved on to some other things before finally settling on the barbed wire shot that I posted the next day. I wish that I could have been a bit higher for this picture. Standing on my truck would have been the ideal situation, but I ran to the location.

The Sports Season Begins

Today the fall sports season really begins. Local high school football cranks up, and Purdue starts its fall season with the beginning of soccer. I think that the blog will once again feature sports photos more often than not. For those of you who like my landscapes I will try and find some of the beauty of sports as the light allows.

Throwback Thursday: The St. Louis Arch

Photographing the Arch With My Phone

In August of 2009 I went to St. Louis for my birthday. I had my dSLR, but I was also using my phone to make many pictures. For some reason at the time I thought that for wider shots it was just as good. I cringe to think of that now, but that was how I thought back then. I would love to take a short trip back to downtown St. Louis just to photograph a few of the sites again. It is a beautiful downtown for sure.

Using the Blackberry Storm

This photo was made with my Blackberry Storm. I really never had any luck with the Storm. It spent more time locked up than working. It was the first generation phone though, but I never really gave it a chance, and I made my move to the iPhone.