Monday, July 27, 2015

Panama Prevails

"Roberto Nurse #9 of Panama celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the United States in the second half during the CONCACAF Gold Cup Third Place Match at PPL Park on July 25, 2015 in Chester, Pennsylvania."

Everyone always wants to shoot the championship and big name teams, players.

Photographers think these big time match-ups produce the best pictures, when in reality, every day matches do the same.

After two days of coverage during the CONCACAF Gold Cup, it was the third place match at PPL Park that provided one my favorite rectangles from our coverage of the last two days of the tournament.

While the championship game boasted a lot more emotion - as Mexico hoisted the trophy and scored three times - the third place game still proved to be visual.


As I roamed the upper concourse for a cleaner angle in the second half, a go-ahead goal had Panama tasting victory. It's one of the frames you hope is storytelling after the final whistle - and it was.

Looking forward to one more soccer game this week and hoping the action and emotions continue to be great.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Running, Jumping and Throwing

"Tara Davis of the USA in action during the Girls Long Jump Final on day five of the IAAF World Youth Championships, Cali 2015 on July 19, 2015 at the Pascual Guerrero Olympic Stadium in Cali, Colombia."

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There is no greater stage than that of a championship.

The Getty Images team had the great opportunity to travel to South America to document the IAAF World Youth Championships.

Over six days, we covered competitors 17-years-old and younger battling for gold medals in a range of track and field events.

For myself, I had not documented athletics like this for many years. So it was very much a challenge - especially with added pressure this was a global competition.

What made the days even more of a contest for photographers was that the backgrounds were very busy. Trying to find clean angles took a day or trail and error during the running, jumping and throwing.

But at the end of the day, the team beautifully documented these athletes giving it their all. It's always inspiring to witness youth doing something so extraordinaire early in life. I know many of these athletes will one day be in the Olympics - and it was an honor to capture was was for many their first time on a global stage.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

The Big One

"Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, is involved in an on-track incident following the checkered flag during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2015 in Daytona Beach, Florida."

Nothing can prepare anyone for the big one.

A late night, or should say morning, the Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola in Daytona started about four hours late following a rain delay.

Just before midnight, fighting to stay awake due to the time of morning, the race began. Yet it wasn't until the last lap that woke the entire venue.

As Dale Earnhardt Jr., took the checkered flag I slowed my shutter speed to get more motion in the cars, tires - then instincts took over.

When Earnhardt Jr., speed across the finish line, I caught a view of sparks and panned backwards. As I caught up with the pack of stock cars speeding near 200mph, I did my best to pick up the machine of Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet, as his car flipped over directly into the catch fence.

From more than 190mph to zero, it was a horrific, terrifying and frightening split second incident.

I continued to shoot through the sequence as his car crashed onto the front stretch, engine block breaking away from the front end and the race car eventually landing on his roof. Silence is all I heard as he was then hit by the number two car - before crews from other teams rushed to his aide.

These moments were tense. No one was sure what to expect from such a surreal incidnet, but the family support of the sport really touched a lot of people as safety was the number one concern for everyone in Daytona - competition or not.

It was gratifying to know no one, fans or drivers, were seriously injured. It shows how far the sport has come in terms of keeping everyone involved safe.

As always, a huge shout out to our team at Getty Images. A total team effort, everyone pulled their weight on an extremely late day, night and morning - especially following the aforementioned. I couldn't be more proud to be apart of the team.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Drenched After Rain

"Steven Souza Jr. #20 of the Tampa Bay Rays (center) is doused by teammate Chris Archer #22 (left) and David DeJesus #7 (back right) after defeating the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on June 17, 2015 in Washington, DC."

Weather usually makes great pictures - that is if you're in the weather to begin with.

Venturing down to Nationals Park for a regular game between the Tampa Bay Rays and Washington Nationals I blanked on needing rain gear.

Something I typically keep with me, yet a busy morning loading and unloading the car for home improvements, I totally forgot it.

So as the rest of the photographers weathered the downpour, I documented from a distance shooting the game from the concourse staying dry.

While I was being different, the entire duration of the rain I kept thinking I should just get wet and brave it out. But as hard as the rain fell, I thought it wouldn't be wise to leave gear exposed to the elements.

A brief delay in play gave me the chance to get back tp where I started field level - just in time for the final pictch and a little gatorade celebration for Steven Souza Jr., of the Tampa Bay Rays.

Between his little league style in the park home run to an overall great performance, his teammates thought it was deserving of getting wet again after the rain.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Bicycle Speed

"BMX riders race during the East Coast Nationals at Chesapeake BMX on June 13, 2015 in Severn, Maryland."

Each season there are major sports that need coverage - summer is to baseball as fall is to football.

Changing seasons means changing sports and it's easy to feel like you're only shooting one sport, even though many are happening around you.

So it's always refreshing to break away from the normal realm of sports assignments.

When I saw that the East Coast Nationals BMX races were happening close to home I knew it would be a lot of fun. It's been quite some time since I documented bicycle racing in any form, too.

I was hoping this would be a great feature as the Olympic near and BMX racing is now an official sport.

Since a lot of the racing was of those younger than the Olympics typically allows (though some could compete in other Olympic sports), I had fun shooting a majority of the races are very slow shutter speeds to create an universal feel.

This was one of my favorite pans from the many, many races.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Same Team

"Starting pitcher Michael Pineda #35 of the New York Yankees collides with teammate third baseman Chase Headley #12 as he tries to throw out Jimmy Paredes #38 of the Baltimore Orioles in the third inning at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on June 12, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland."

Baseball is a game odds.

To start, there are at any given time ten players on diamond - nine defensive players and a batter. Add a couple base runners and there can be up to thirteen.

The problem with that, is one can only focus one place at any given time. To shoot the pitcher throwing, then the batter hitting and then the diving catch at shortstop all in one play is near impossible.

One must decide where to focus the lens during each at bat - rolling the dice - playing the odds.

The game is also one of solidarity. Lots of action of one player doing one thing - throwing, hitting, pitching, catching, sliding, or reacting to a play.

So when there are two or more players in any given rectangle of space, where a photographer is correctly gambling to be, it's a nice surprise.

When pitcher Michael Pineda #35 of the New York Yankees collided with a teammate after a bunt, I knew it would be a compelling picture and glad I had decided to stick with the pitcher as three players merged on the ball.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Indy

"Scott Dixon of New Zealand, driver of the #9 Energizer Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway on June 6, 2015 in Fort Worth, Texas."

Whenever I hear IndyCar, I automatically think of famous Indianapolis 500.

So when I got the opportunity to join the Getty Images team for the weekend in Texas for the IndyCar Series Firestone 600 - I was beyond excited.

At Texas Motor Speedway, we documented three days of action. A new style of racing, I enjoyed every second at a track I love.

Open-wheeled racing isn't anything I've ever documented - and it's always a great feeling to capture a something fresh.

There is nothing like race cars screaming past at more than 200mph, and there is nothing like feeling an athlete's energy and joy after winning a big race.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Try Seven

"Garrett Smith #7 of Navy scores a try on Benjamin Burmester #12 of Air Force during Day 1 of the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championships at PPL Park on May 30, 2015 in Chester, Pennsylvania."

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I love trying something new - and rugby certainly wasn't something I thought I'd ever try. 

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to document the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championships.

Until the matches begun, the only thing I knew of rugby was playing it on a Sega Genesis as a kid - with zero understanding of what I was doing while glued to the television.

As any other assignment, I spent the days leading up to the weekend doing my homework and learning the rules. The only issue was that I hadn't looked closely that it was sevens rugby - only seven men aside with seven minute halves.

Otherwise the same game, I shot matches from sun up to sun down as 20 teams battled for the top spot.

I couldn't have had a better venue to work, as access was limitless. Locker rooms, tunnels, catwalks and more.

After lots of action and witnessing the blood and bruises first hand, I now have a new found respect and love for the fast paced, physical sport.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Walk Off to Chocolateville

"Ryan Zimmerman #11 of the Washington Nationals has chocolate sauce dumped on him by teammate Max Scherzer #31 after hitting a two run walk-off home run in the tenth inning against the New York Yankees at Nationals Park on May 19, 2015 in Washington, DC."

Walk-offs are so sweet in baseball - and even sweeter when you're a Washington National.

Let's face it, there is nothing better than celebrating a big win or heroic comeback. Whether it's pre or, post season, and even somewhere in the middle, it feels great to celebrate.

The classic way to do such a thing, is with a Gatorade bath. Always a popular staple in the world of sports.

However, said sports drink has seemed to gone missing in Washington, DC.

Now following any big performance, in this case, a walk-off home run to win the game, the new treat is chocolate sauce. All that is missing is a cherry on top.

It's a new twist to an old moment and I don't think anyone is complaining about it.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Behind The Desk

"Victor R. Carrasco #3 jockey of Picko's Pride sits at a desk following being weighed in prior to The Maryland Sprint Handicap at Pimlico Race Course on May 16, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland."

Each and every year I'm typically in Baltimore covering the Preakness Stakes.

If I can think back correctly, this was probably my ninth or tenth I've covered, and my fifth in a row with Getty Images.

I've grown to really love horse racing. My grandfather was major supporter and fan and I think that keeps my interests peaked when on the rail.

The challenge thought is that the Preakness occurs at the same venue where the same events happen each year. It's an early morning with lots of preparation before the main event per say.

It's no different than driving to the same office building each day for work. You see the same things in passing and as hard as you search for something new to look at, you don't always see it.

So there are many factors that make Preakness different each year, yet finding a new, fresh image from the event can be a major challenge. Especially when one of my favorite images was shot behind the scenes there a couple years ago.

Nonetheless, we had an amazing team as always and tackled the event from every angle. While not nearly as telling as the main race, or a picture of the horse who will possibly become a triple crown winner, it was this moment behind the scenes, and behind the desk, that I thought was a new scene.

The image doesn't smack you in the face, but it makes you ask questions and look around the frame. To my eye, these types of images are often the most complex and visual at the end of the day even if they don't directly relate to the big picture.