Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Rammed Over

"Tight end Lance Kendricks #88 of the St. Louis Rams scores a third quarter touchdown past cornerback Jimmy Smith #22 of the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on November 22, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland."

When I shot one of my very first college football games many, many years ago, I remember a photographer friend say something along the lines of - you have all the time in the world once the play starts.

What he meant was that once the quarterback releases the ball, photographers have more than enough time to determine where the ball was going and what lens to use.

While true, it's not always easy.

Yet by remember that little phase, it helps keep yourself calm and collect during what could be a big play of the game.

Last week, in the second half, with the score tight, Lance Kendricks of the St. Louis Rams caught the ball and started barreling straight toward me stationed in the corner of the endzone.

While I had ample time to switch to a shorter lens, these type of close plays happen in an instant - and sometimes all you need to do is keep calm and focus, because if you get yourself overly excited, it could be the difference in nailing the shot and getting nailed yourself.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Flying Through Smoke

"Jeron Johnson #20 of the Washington Redskins and teammates are introduced before playing the New Orleans Saints at FedExField on November 15, 2015 in Landover, Maryland."

The best part about being apart of a team is leaning on one another to make great images.

The end result is always the same - what's presented to viewers as a team - not as a individual. So what holds true on the field for athletes is exactly the same for photographers.

There are days you feel like nothing came your way - or you didn't live up to your own goals to help the team. Whether that's passing for multiple touchdowns as a quarterback or capturing said touchdowns as a photographer.

But that's what teammates are for. To help motivate, inspire and carry one another along each and every week - good game or bad.

Recently the Washington Redskins have been coming out for player introductions as one team. No individual intros. And while the above is singular, I couldn't help not play with the light and smoke as they made their way onto the field.

Maybe next week I'll get more layers with a moment like this to tell that story of being one team.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Come Together

"Ryheem Malone #13 of the Southern Methodist Mustangs lifts his head toward the sky as he and teammates join hands with the Navy Midshipmen in prayer following an American Athletic Conference football game at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on November 14, 2015 in Annapolis, Maryland."

Everyone has two sides to themselves in some sense.

Whether you're acting one way to say, an elder, in comparison to a close friend or in some other form. This idea of having multiple personas is very evident in every day life - and in sports - too.

The clearest example would be the above of coming together.

Not saying players want to hurt one another, but it's clear that football is a contact sport. And these men go from running on the field full of adrenaline wanting to make a big tackle on a player to the converse at the end of the game - joining hands with said same opponent to pray.

With the deadly attacks in Paris, France hours before this football game - and whether these players were praying about others well-being or something else - it's amazing when two large group of men can set aside differences and join hands in peace.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

First and Shark

"A fan dressed as a shark cheers as the Maryland Terrapins play the Wisconsin Badgers during the first half at Byrd Stadium on November 7, 2015 in College Park, Maryland."

Looking to the crowd is always wise during sporting events.

With so much happening on the field and sidelines, it's easy to forget that there is a large gathering of fans watching the action from the bleachers.

Often it takes a lot of seeking to find a moment within the stands. Other times, television broadcast on the scoreboard display helps fish out the peculiar. And other times, it's a stark contrast of colors like seen above.

And the Wisconsin Badgers played the Maryland Terrapins, I looked up and couldn't not see the fan dressed as a shark.

It's these little moments that help tell a visual story at the end of any sporting event.

Thursday, November 05, 2015

Chaotic Pass

"Quarterback Philip Rivers #17 of the San Diego Chargers makes a pass against the Baltimore Ravens during the first half at M&T Bank Stadium on November 1, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland."

There is something about a quarterback passing that always seems one-dimensional in photographs.

Most images one will see of a quarterback during a football game is of them passing with little pressure. The opposite frame would be an image of them being sacked by multiple defenders.

Yet both of those scenes tend to be flat.

This week during football, I wanted to try and tell the story of quarterbacks being rushed to make a pass. Rarely does a viewer see opposing lines battling to protect and sack the quarterback

The layers that surround a quarterback is chaotic - and it's always remarkable when they easily find an open receiver without being touched.