Friday, March 27, 2020

Coronavirus Outbreak Halts Sports

"Sam Hess, Operations with Monumental Sports & Entertainment, skates alone prior Detroit Red Wings playing against the Washington Capitals at Capital One Arena on March 12, 2020 in Washington, DC. Today the NHL announced is has suspended their season due to the uncertainty of the coronavirus (COVID-19) with hopes of returning. The NHL currently joins the NBA, MLS, as well as, other sporting events and leagues around the world suspending play because of the coronavirus outbreak."

During the time of the this photo, there was a lot of unknown, and sadly there still is.

The day prior, the NBA abruptly postponed their season as the coronavirus outbreak reached the United States and the sporting world.

Other leagues, sports and event worldwide felt the ripple effect as nearly each and every one was postponed or canceled outright to insure safety to its players and fans alike.

These are extraordinary times we are living in. Scary, uncertain, tragic, with glimpses of hope. I can only hope as we all look back that this will be a time we all got through safely.

Monday, March 02, 2020

Blazing Bradley

"Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards drives in the lane past Cristiano Felicio #6 of the Chicago Bulls during the first half at Capital One Arena on February 11, 2020 in Washington, DC."

Often when I meet someone new, and the topic of career comes into play, they're always in someway intrigued about the profession.

It's like anything else though - many only see the great things. It's not even a matter of the grass is always greener; it's more or less seeing only the positives of a world they don't exist in.

While in no way I am saying I don't the business I am in, it's that we are often living in the same building or position for long weeks at a time. In some ways, it's like showing up to the same office space every day.

Thankfully we have the ability to try and break that mold every time we put the camera to our eyes. Sometimes it's a repeat of a prior game or year, other times it's completely new and fresh.

The above is something I try to spend a couple minutes every game doing. Some days it works, others it doesn't. But taking that risk to be different makes shooting the same teams in the same ecosystems enjoyable.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Flagrant Foul

"Davis Bertans #42 of the Washington Wizards is fouled by Markieff Morris #8 of the Detroit Pistons during the second half at Capital One Arena on January 20, 2020 in Washington, DC."

When I played sports, especially near my later stages of my short career, the beginning of the season was always the biggest mental challenge.

It wasn't because I was out of shape or grinding through what seemed like endless practices before the games began. It was something totally different.

It was scoring the first goal.

Until the ball was put into the back of the net, the limitation of scoring seems like the hardest thing on the planet to achieve. Some seasons it took seconds, some years it took multiple games.

Photography is no different.

When the clock strikes midnight and the new year begins, the first few assignments can feel like a real challenge. You're comparing an entire years worth of work to only a few assignments into the year - as you try to make a great picture.

Twenty days into 2020, I feel some elation as a flagrant foul resulted in an interesting action picture to kick off the year.

Thursday, December 05, 2019

Always Save the Beers

"While holding two Bud Light beer cans, baseball fan, Jeff Adams, is hit in the chest with the home run ball hit by Yordan Alvarez #44 of the Houston Astros (not pictured) in the second inning during Game 5 of the 2019 World Series between the Houston Astros and the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on October 27, 2019 in Washington, DC."

The saying goes "not all heroes wear capes" - and that slogan was used a lot following Game 5 of the World Series.

That's because Washington Nationals fan, Jeff Adams, decided to take one for the team. In this case, Bud Light in his attempt to 'Always Save the Beers.'

Instead of doing what any average baseball fan would do during one of the largest sporting events in the world would do - go for the World Series home run souvenir ball - he instead saved the beers.

An instant hero to many, not only did he save his double-fisted beers, but also got the ball. Well done.

Love the effort and certainly love these types of moments in sports that highlight more than just the players on the field.

Sunday, November 03, 2019

Mud Mug

"Covered in mud, offensive guard Mike Person #68 of the San Francisco 49ers looks on after making a tackle on defensive back Troy Apke #30 of the Washington Redskins (not pictured) during the third quarter at FedExField on October 20, 2019 in Landover, Maryland."

The saying is weather makes pictures.

However, the problem is that viewers never really know what it's like to play and or photograph sports in weather.

It's great to watch a 'Mud Bowl' on television, but until you're soaking wet, one doesn't know what it really means to work in the elements for hours.

Thankfully the old adage is true. Mud, rain, snow, cold, heat - you name it - does help change the environments we often frequent. In this case, heavy rains drenched the natural grass field at FedExField making it a sloppy mess.

While play seemed slow because of mother nature, as the game progressed, conditions worsened.

That's when Mike Person of the San Francisco 49ers risked it all to make a tackle on a turnover - resulting in a warrior like mud mug.

Have to love the commitment of athletes willing to give it their all.

Monday, October 21, 2019

Defeated and Down

"Harrison Bader #48 of the St. Louis Cardinals reacts losing in game four of the National League Championship Series to the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on October 15, 2019 in Washington, DC."

One of the hardest things to do is to remember to turn around - literally.

In sport there is winning and losing. And everyone knows the latter will never be easy, nor fun. So when Washington Nationals won the National League Championship Series to advance to the World Series, everyone knew it was historic.

The story was on the diamond and at the pitching mound. Pure excitement and jubilation. Conversely, news for the St. Louis Cardinals meant elimination.

Any, and every, photographer wants to point their lens toward victory. It's an innate reaction. But reality is that with every winner, there is a loser, and that story needs to be told, too.

For our clients, and for history, that loss is just a historic and telling as the win. Often that window of reaction happens much faster than the winners. So it was only a few frames before the moment was over, but sometimes that's all you need.

Best to everyone next season and those still playing.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Run, Jump, Throw...and Fans

"Fans in thawbs look on during day seven of 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019 at Khalifa International Stadium on October 03, 2019 in Doha, Qatar."

Sport is so often focused on the athletes. Their actions on and off the field. The big moments that define history.

But we often forget that fans play an important role in sport - and visually documenting them is imperative, too.

What I like is when a picture can give a sense of place. A lot of time images can feel repetitive. Golf is an example where play is in beautiful sunny weather - and everything is lush and green. Pictures can sometimes feel like 'anywhere in the world' without context.

During the halfway point of the 17th IAAF World Athletics Championships, I wanted to try and show viewers where the running, jumping and throwing was occurring.

That was both difficult and easy. Simple in the sense that fans wearing the traditional thawb was easy to spot. But how to photograph them inside the venue was tough.

After finding a large group of men entering a portal, I followed them until I found the above.

A great sense of place for Doha, Qatar - during yet another thrilling world champs.

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Go Figure

"Sara Campanini and Francesco Riva of Italy perform in the Junior Ice Dance - Rhythm Dance during Day 2 of the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating at Herb Brooks Arena on August 30, 2019 in Lake Placid, New York."

Being patient is one of the most difficult things about photography.

In the world of photojournalism, there is no controlling a scene. Once it happens, it cannot be recreated. In other words, if you miss it, the opportunity is over.

This means, what you see is what you get. When you find the right composition, and decide to camp there for any certain period of time, it's a gamble.

The internal struggle is a challenge. At what point to do bail and move on? If you get what you were seeing, can it get better? Is the picture even worth the time? It's a continual juggle of time, energy and mental planning that never gets easier with time.

In this case, I had seen this shot the day before and knew I had a chance to one up myself with a better picture.

It was a matter of time management, and a little luck with colors and athletes positioning, that ultimately made this image worth it for the day.

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Pan Am

"Team Chile competes in the Team Pursuit Women Qualification at the Velodrome of Villa Deportiva Nacional on Day 6 of the Lima 2019 Pan American Games on August 01, 2019 in Lima, Peru."

When you're asked to be a part of the team cover the Lima 2019 Pan American Games the answer is always: Yes.

What you don't know is that your response will be met by winter in the southern hemisphere which produces cloudy overcast days literally every single hour for months.

Thankfully despite only seeing the sun a total of a couple hours in about a month, the games were filled with colorful teams and backdrops. Much like at the veoldrome.

Our small Getty Images team of photographers (and editor) had an amazing games - and I'm proud of the images we all documented.

Looking forward to the big games next year in Tokyo - and if given the opportunity again - the next Pan American Games in four years.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Trea Time

"Trea Turner #7 of the Washington Nationals is dunked with water by teammates after hitting a game-winning RBI double against the Miami Marlins during the bottom of the ninth inning at Nationals Park on July 02, 2019 in Washington, DC."

Everyone loves a good battle - and sometimes that seesaw game goes to the very end of regulation.

Overtime elevates the game play to another level. But I'm willing to take a guess that players don't always want the extra innings.

In baseball, every pitch and swing becomes important in the bottom of the ninth inning and beyond.

Just when everyone in the ballpark envisions 'free baseball' or extra innings - a hero emerges and ends the game.

In this case, it was Trea Turner of the Washington Nationals knocking a game-winning RBI.