Sunday, March 23, 2008

Rain, stayed away

"Competitors sprint and jump as they race toward the finish line during the 110 meter hurdles at the Towson Invitational at Johnny Unitas Stadium, Saturday, March 22."

Golly gee willikers, was I surprised that it actually never rained on Saturday. Not a drop fell. Not once.

Up until Saturday, no matter where, when or why I have never ever covered a track and field event when it did not rain. Seriously, every time I am scheduled to shoot one the forecast has called for of a zero percent chance of sun.

On Friday night, as I gathered my things for the morning, the classic children’s rhyme lyrics repeated itself in my head over and over, "Rain, rain, go away. Come again some other day."

The forecast showed a significant chance of rain, so all I hoped for was a brief period of dry weather during the meet.

To my dismay, as I rolled out of bed Saturday, the sky was dark and the rain was lightly drizzling. I didn't only have to shoot the track meet sometime between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., but I had to shoot a portrait downtown at 9 a.m.

As I drove to Federal Hill for the portrait of two brothers, it actually started to clear. The subject of my shoot was fairly interesting. One brother donated a kidney to the other, so the recipient sibling was putting on a concert in his benefit. Apparently you can live with only one, and I found it funny that the brother who gave up a kidney had a much longer recovery time.

Anyways, must focus. By the time I pulled up to my destination on Cross Street, the sun was out and the temperature rising. I took advantage of it and shot the portrait outside, figuring I'd be head to toe in rain gear two hours later.

All went well, and I got to start my day off with a nice outdoor assignment followed by a great breakfast at the market, which I had not done in about two years.

As I ate my scrumptious bacon, egg and cheese sandwich and fresh doughnuts, I moved the portrait images and did some work for The Towerlight.

I finally headed out to Towson for the track meet. On my way I wished upon a full stomach that it would not rain and I would finally get to shoot the steeplechase event.

Luckily, both of my wishes came true. It was amazing.

The steeplechase itself was enough to keep my happy for a week. This event, to those unfamiliar, is an eight lap race or so, where the runners have to jump over multiple fence like hurdles while trying to get over one which has the dreaded water pit on the other side.

The first lap and the last lap is always the most entertaining as the runners always bite it or get drenched. (edit: this is what I am talking about).

I had a good day shooting the event and made a lot of nice images from the steeplechase, where a crash like the video showed occured. I also shot a lot from above, in an effort to show a fresh view of the events. I know the other five photographers covering the events didn't get the same shots as me because they stayed huddled together for each event.

Most of the time, editors want the solid, go to images, but I love being forced to stay away from herds of photographers at sporting events in an effort to search for a unique vision.

Well, keeping it brief and to the point. Happy Easter to all those celebrating. Back to normal posting next week as Spring Break is over.


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