Back At The Brawl House
I have been photographing roller derby longer than anything else. It really is the thing that got this whole thing moving much quicker than it would have any other way. Roller derby is one of the sports that is the most fun to cover for me. It is so unlike anything else that I cover. I know I say it a lot on here, but this team really does do it all. From the planning of the game to the training to the actual skating. This is their endeavor. It is pretty cool to be a small part of it even for just a couple of hours every now and then. This is the sixth year that I have been shooting for Lafayette, and the seventh year of shooting roller derby. What a ride that seven years has been. I did not get to have as much fun before the game as I normally do as I was coming from another job, but it was once I got there.
Up Close At The Game
A few times during the course of the night I used my 70-200mm lens to get a little closer to the skaters. I am using a shorter lens here than I have been for outdoor sports, but the access is so much better than I have at those sports during the action. I am able to get right in there to make some solid portraits of the team.
The Week In Photos
Last week was a fun sports week for me. My weekly collection of my favorite photos shows that. You can view my Exposure post with my favorite photos here. This is probably my favorite thing to do every week is to sit down and go through my images fro the week prior. It is a good way to see where you have been while you are planning where you are headed.
A Beautiful Day For A Track Meet
A couple of weeks ago I was finally able to photograph track and field again, but the weather did not cooperate. It was not a pleasant day for the racers, and I think that some were held out with that in mind. Saturday was not that kind of a day though. It was a beautiful day for a meet. At the beginning of the meet the sky was beautiful, and that made for some great pictures.
Senior Day Fun
Senior day is always a fun time for a photographer. There is added emotion because of what that means. With a big group like this one it is hard to hone in on all of the emotion. I am pretty much capturing the beginning of the line capturing pretty good moments. It is fun to see all of the personalities that come together to form a track team though.
One More Track Meet To Go
This year I have photographed more outdoor track than I have in a long time. I have one more meet before the season is over. In a couple of weeks the best athletes in the Missouri Valley Conference will gather to crown conference champions. The emotion will be something for those couple of days, and that should be a very fun meet to cover.
The Week In Photos
Last week was a really fun week to make pictures. You can view some of my favorite photos from the past week here. This week is entirely sports related. This coming week I am taking a little break from sports for some much needed family time. Next weeks edition will look much different than this week’s.
Finding New Views Of Williamsport Falls
According to the sign Williamsport Falls is the tallest waterfall in Indiana. I have visited this site a few times, and each time I try and find a new composition to show the area. For most of this trip I focused on doing that with my drone, but I did set up my tripod a few times. This was one of the more interesting views that I had that day.
Trying A New Preset
Of course now with the new profiles in Lightroom the whole preset concept may be on the way out. This is one of my presets that I called Sam’s Piano. It is a very light and easy black and white that I really like.
The View At The Top Of The Ryman Auditorium
One of the highlights of my trip to Nashville was touring the Ryman Auditorium. There is so much history there that it really is an amazing place. I nearly bought tickets to a show just to see something in there. I didn’t know the artist, but I thought anything would sound good in there. Even a seat all the way at the top would not be a bad one as you can see by the photo.
Waiting For An Empty Space
In a photo like this one you would either want the building full of people or completely empty. Of course here I tried to wait it out for an empty seating area, but after a few minutes I realized that these people were watching a nonexistent show. They were not showing any signs of moving. If I am somewhere with a tripod I will just wait until parts of the photo are clean. If you don’t move the tripod you can Frankenstein a clean image that way. Here though I was handheld with no signs of movement. With all of that said I still like the photo. I was infatuated with those windows, and I kept thinking of ways to get them in my photos.
The Week In Photos
My time in Nashville was pretty amazing. When NCAA sites were being talked about this was the site that I was rooting for. There was a reason for that. I wanted to explore a bit more than I was able to the last time that I was down there. My week in photos from that time was pretty fun to put together as it was a fun week to be a photographer. You can see my favorite photos from a fun week here on my Exposure site.
Indiana State Wins A Great Game At Alexander Field
This is a series where the visiting team always seems to have the edge. I was not able to be at the game in Terre Haute Tuesday night, but I was able to make this game in West Lafayette. With the recent trend it seemed like the best opportunity to make winning game photos. The Sycamores did not disappoint, and I was able to get my winning photos.
More In Game Portraits
I have been having some fun making these portraits during the games. I have people tell me all of the time that baseball is boring. I don’t see it. Something is happening all of the time somewhere on the field. These little moments on the bench are fun to capture.
Back At Alexander Field
This was my first time at Alexander Field this year, and it is nearly the end of April. That is hard for me to believe. This is the sixth season of baseball at the field, and I probably had shot more games there than anyone until recently. Things just have not worked out this year. Take Sunday for example. I have a little time and the Boilers have a home game. Of course the weather steps in to get the game cancelled. I know for sure that I will be at one more game at Alexander this season.
Finding Another Angle
I moved around more last night than I normally do. Part of that you might say is to find another angle, but most of it was to stay warm. It was so cold out there at the end of the game that I was moving a lot just to get the blood flowing. I think that I ended up at most of my shooting spots at Alexander before the night was over. My favorite is low on the first base side. There is a spot where you can get right down at almost field level that I love. The spot is killer on the knees, but the photos are totally worth it.
Putting It All Together
Maybe I listen to too many audiobooks on my car trips, but I liked to tie things together. These last couple of days have done that for me. The four teams involved in my games have all meant something to me at one time or another. I grew up a huge Notre Dame fan so it was fun to shoot for them Tuesday night. I went to Indiana for a year followed by too many years at Purdue. Finally we come to where I am now at Indiana State. The four schools that I have been a part of all come together in two days. Whoever planned that deserves an award.
By Any Means Necessary
Yup I did it. I made Jake Means last name into a title here. I will go on record though and say that his play on a ball during a stolen base attempt in the 9th inning saved this game for Indiana State. Had he not gotten that ball a run would have scored to tie the game, and the momentum was on the side of the Boilers. It was a big time play for sure. These things happen so quickly that I hoped that I had captured the moment. It was a snap throw to the bag, and my guy tried to jump out of the frame. Luckily for me I captured the moment.
Notre Dame and Indiana Face Off At Victory Field
This is the fourth year in a row that I have covered this game, and the third time for Notre Dame. I love the backdrop of Victory Field for a college game. In a couple of weeks I will be back there again as Indiana State takes on Butler inside the confines on Victory Field. Hopefully I will be back inside sooner though as I would love to shoot a couple of the minor league games there this weekend. My schedule is pretty full though so it would take some doing to get there.
A Little History With The Two Schools
I have some history with these two schools. As I said a couple of days ago I was a huge Notre Dame fan growing up. In fact ten years ago I had Notre Dame baseball season tickets. Things have really changed since then, but it is nice to shoot for the school. A much lesser known fact is that I actually went to Indiana for a year. I wanted to be a writer so I planned on going through their journalism program. As you can tell by this blog I was not meant to be a writer so I ended up at Purdue. The rest is history, but for a short time I was a Hoosier. It is always pretty cool to see both of these teams play.
Setting The Scene
Games like this are fun to shoot because the action is nearly secondary. You want to show the setting of the game of a bit. A place like Victory Field allows you to do that very well. I carried more gear than I am used to with that in mind. The field is part of the story on a day like today. Sometimes you need to keep that in mind in this age where everyone wants everything cropped tighter.
The Gear In The Field
For the past couple of games I have just carried my 400mm on a full frame body and my 24-105 on a full frame body. With the venue being part of the show last night I changed things up a little. For most of the game my 400mm lens was attached to my Canon 1DX camera body. Then I had my 70-200mm lens attached to my Canon 7D Mark II body. What that does is effectively give me a lens that is 112mm-320mm. On my third body I had my trusty Canon 24-105mm v2 with my Canon 5D Mark IV. In my pouch on my belt system I had the 11-24mm lens ready to go for most of the game as well. Basically I had from 11-400mm covered, and if I wanted to I could have switched up the 7DII onto the 400mm lens to get something around 640mm. For some action in good light that is an option. If I carried all of this around every day it would probably put me in the hospital with all of the stairs that you do at a stadium like this. For a few games here and there though I like to bring it all out.
A Fun Filled Week
This game was the start of a very packed week for me. Tomorrow night I shoot Indiana State baseball again, but this time in my town. It will be nice to make a short trip over to Alexander Field to cover the Sycamores. From there the rest of the week is already a blur and it hasn’t even started yet. It will all be fun though as I try and fit as much as I can into a few days.
What A Difference A Year Makes
Last year I shot this game as part of a bad deal that I made just to get some money flowing in. This whole photography thing was really on the ropes. It was part of the reason I was coming up with my exit plan. It is hard to believe that I was thinking that a year ago. I love what I do, but nobody was calling for me to do it. Since then things have gone in a vastly different direction. At this time last year I had nothing on the schedule in the fall. This year I am already turning down jobs because I am already booked. That is a good problem to have, and just another reason to keep your head down and to keep going.
The Moon Rises Over The Neil Armstrong Statue At Purdue University
A couple of weeks ago while waiting for the ISS flyover I made some images of the campus during the blue hour. The last of those places that I visited was the Neil Armstrong statue and the Armstrong Hall of Engineering. The stars had just come out, and the clouds were moving quickly, but it still was a fun little shoot. No matter how you photograph it this is a very cool building.
Finally Getting To The Purdue Campus
In 2017 I set a goal to photograph the campus of Purdue more. For some reason that did not carry over into 2018. This was my first chance to get out and photograph anything on campus, and it was at the end of March. My photography has taken me away from Purdue, and I guess I just haven’t made the time to visit in my spare time.
The Ball That Never Came To Be
You can blame a lot of things on Charlie Finley. Late starts in the World Series, the designated hitter are a couple of his ideas that are still in use. One that never took off was the orange baseball. About 45 years ago Charlie Finley came up with this idea that the orange ball would be more visible. The only problem was that the ball was super slick which the pitchers did not like. The red seams did not pop off of orange ball like they do the white ball so the hitters couldn’t pick up the spin. The ball never really took off.
My Orange Ball
About fifteen years after the orange ball idea failed I picked my first one up. Being from Charlie’s hometown of LaPorte we always heard stories about this baseball pioneer. Driving on the highway you could still see the hedge shaped in the A’s logo at his former house. I used to play street hockey on his tennis courts because they were so large. When the orange baseballs showed up at the sports store we bought a couple of them. The one in the photo above is the only one that survived. I bet this ball was part of 100’s of games of catch with my dad. It is scuffed, it is beat up, the writing has long since come off the ball, but it is still pretty distinct. This was one of the items that showed up in a box when I finally picked up my childhood effects from my parents house.
The Sycamore Baseball Team Travels To Bloomington To Take On Indiana
Last night I was back at Bart Kaufman Field again to photograph another baseball game. I finally made it there a few years ago photographing for the Cincinnati Bearcats. Last year I was lucky enough to photograph some games there for Purdue as they returned to the Big Ten Tournament. Last night my team the Sycamores came to town. It seems like no matter where I shoot it is two hours away. Bloomington is just that for me.
One of the fun things about the ballpark at Indiana is the heat lights in the dugouts. They give off a beautiful orange glow that is fun to work with. On a day like yesterday the players were hanging out near them all of the time so they were the places to be for sure. Here is one of my favorites from pregame.
One of the cool things about baseball is all of the quirks that come with it. One of those quirks is the knuckleball. It is the great equalizer. When it is working it is tough to hit. It can make good teams look bad. It was fun to try and capture the knuckleball from a few different angles last night.
More Indiana State Athletics
Today Indiana State comes to me! I will start my commute exactly the same as I always do, but it ends about ten minutes into my trip. It will be nice to shoot close to home tonight. I have not gotten many chances to photograph the Indiana State softball team this year so two in my hometown sounds good to me.
Up Next For Indiana State Baseball
This weekend the Sycamores are back home with Illinois State coming to town. Of course that also means that rain is in the forecast. With warmer temperatures finally here hopefully the rain stays away.