Choate Sports: Football and Football

The football and soccer teams at my old high school played like polar opposites this weekend…football stomped all over NMH 54-7, but the boys’ soccer team lost 5-0 (I didn’t make it to the girls’ match. I’m hoping they fell on the stomping side of the spectrum).

I love how much closer you can get to the action at high school games. It makes up for only having a 70-200 to work with (regardless, most of these have been cropped).

Choate Sports: Field Hockey

I went up to my old high school today to practice some sports shooting, and had a great time roaming around all of the fields photographing whatever I felt like (such freedom!). It was a beautiful fall day, and the leaves have just reached their peak here in CT, so I tried to incorporate this into the photos whenever possible. I’ve missed New England falls…I haven’t been here during autumn for six years, and there’s really no place quite like it.

I’d never shot field hockey before (well, I’ve shot pre-season training. Not the same thing), and decided right away to stop by that game. And I can always, always use practice photographing soccer and football, so I went by those matches as well…I missed the water polo and volleyball games, unfortunately, but I’m planning to go back up to Choate later this week when they play again. Water polo should be especially fun.

Anyway, these are my field hockey photos- the field is in a little valley, so I had a great angle for shooting just by standing on top of the hill. This is a very strange sport; I don’t know how the girls don’t all break down with back problems. Plus, they’re wearing sneakers, not cleats, which I found odd (maybe it’s because they were playing on the brand-new turf field and didn’t want to mess it up? Discuss). I did find it easier to shoot than the last first-time sport I shot (lacrosse) though, which was nice.

…one of those times when you go through your take and wish you’d just stepped a foot over to the left. Argh!

I started playing a little with depth of field after a while, and I can’t decide which of these two photos I like best (I am leaning towards #2, but I think #1 definitely has merit, too). Thoughts welcome!

Aly and Elisha’s Wedding!

I photographed my first wedding ever last month- a nerve-wracking yet excellent experience if there ever was one, compounded by the fact that the reception took place in a large barn. At night. My poor 430EX flash cried (I eventually gave up on it in favor of slow shutter speeds, which I tend to like better anyway. Nobody tell Rita).

But besides the barn shenanigans, the wedding itself was fantastic—you know it’s going to be good when there are not one but THREE drum kits set up at the bandstand—and I feel so lucky that I was able to shoot it.

I shot well over 600 photos, which I edited down to about 250 that ended up being toned and uploaded to Flickr. It’s hard to choose selects from those, but these are some (well, okay, many) of the ones I liked best.

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Blinding Me With Science!

I went to the West Tisbury School last month to photograph Karl Nelson’s eighth grade science class, which had earned top scores on the MCAS (Massachusett standardized test), and was ranked as one of the highest performers in the state. The class was doing a lab to demonstrate the effects of energy consumption (test tubes and fire were involved).

I had a bear of a time color correcting these—fluorescent light combined with bright sun streaming in as backlight through all of the windows. Ugh.

A Soggy Story

After three years using a Canon Rebel XT as my only body (when I didn’t have access to the MU photo locker), I finally upgraded to a 7D (video hooray!). I’d been looking forward to testing out the 8fps feature at the first home football game of the season…and then it poured that day, which put a bit of a damper (no pun intended) on my plans.

I was still assigned to photograph the game, though, so I wrapped the body and my telephoto in two layers of garbage bag, and taped everything down with duct tape. Then I went out to shoot.

But I had to leave a little bit exposed beneath the garbage bags so I could work the dials and change settings…and after about a half an hour, enough water snuck into the camera body that it stopped working. Just like that. My two-day-old camera that I had sunk my summer savings into. The only good thing was I had managed to get enough photos that I could still turn in something to the paper.

I was trying my best not to freak out, and I did know about the rice trick, so I decided to give it a go. I put the camera body in a giant Ziploc baggie with about a pound of rice, and let it stay there for six days. I tested everything after a day, but nothing happened; after three days, though, the display flickered a little bit, like it was trying to start up (hope!). By the end of the week the rice had absorbed all of the water. And the camera works like it just came off the factory line. I’m still floored by this; I really thought it would end up being one of those tricks that works for everybody but me.

So. Here are some of the photos that almost did me in: