These images were shot for an EKU Football preview series in the Richmond Register. Eight player/position profiles in eight days. Register sports editor Nathan Hutchinson approached me a little over a month ago with this idea and I was on board immediately. It was different than anything we’d done before. Maybe not, revolutionary in some areas but for us it was new. We had a difficult time nailing down a time slot so close to the season… but, he kind of had to let it get close in order to have solid info on who would be playing where. Dig? Finally the coaches let us shoot right before practice last Tuesday, August 25th. Read more below photos.
I set up three lights. Two left and right 45 degrees to the front and one 45 degrees back left. I had a strip box of the left, front light and just reflectors on the two to the right side. I want the light to be punchy so I didn’t want to diffuse too much. I did go with a soft box on the left side main light because I wanted the light be be long and narrow, by the way, I left the diffuser off the box. I really had no idea how I wanted to shoot this at all. I didn’t have a lot of time to think about it. All I knew was where I wanted to shoot and the feel I wanted them to have. I knew I wanted a vignette, dramatic shadows, some glowiness, and personality. So, basically I just threw up some lights and started shooting. I tested a few times on my student worker, Dusty before the players started showing up one by one. I shot them in the order you see above. The first two were shot with a 70-200 on a 5d mark2 and the remainder were shot with a 16-35. I wish I would have started with the 16-35. I like the first shot because of his poise, the light and the deep maroon of his practice jersey. I was happy after that shot. Then I got stuck on the second. If I would have went wide on that one I would have been happy. One the third shot I knew I wanted to show some movement so, duh, I went wide. took a test… saw the shadow and told him to jump. Forth, I actually went back to the 70-200 (what?!). It didn’t work so I went back to the 16-35 (ahhh, there it is). Took a low position and shot up. This isn’t something I do very often for a portrait but, I told him to look away from the camera. I saw strength and confidence. 5 was all Derek. I just asked him what he had for me and he said “what about this?’ I said “dope.” Love this shot. On CJ’s shot I knew I wanted to show some movement so I shot all the photos full body. He took a few quick steps toward me and broke to his right. Took a few times to get that right. When I went to edit I wasn’t really feeling the full body scene so I cropped waaay in and I like it much better. worked really well in print. The seventh photo… I was lost a little. We were moving at such a fast pace and I still felt like we were running long. I was beginning to get nervous that the coaches would be like “what the heck?” Ideas were not flowing freely. I had a saftey standing in front of me and I was like “how do I shoot you?” We started taking some random pics and I wasn’t getting anything AT ALL. Crap. Then I noticed this thought creeping in… go away thought… that’s too much. Kept shooting. Nothing. Crap. There was that thought again… no, no. I don’t want to get him hurt. NO. another shot. I stop. Thought came back. Okay. “How would you feel about diving for the ball?” “Sure!” We went down to the field and stole 4 pads. I was hoping no one would realize what we were up to. Put the pads down. I tested the fall to make sure it wouldn’t break his bones. Felt good. explained what I wanted. He said “got it.” I thought we will have to do this a hundred times. Wrong. First take. No joke. Patrick nailed it the first time. I couldn’t believe it. Last shot. about 15 takes. Not by the fault of the kicker was just way off on the shutter. Way off. Logan didn’t seem to care a bit. I started shooting this scene vertically and I thought I was done at one point. Hey dummy… all the others are horizontal. I had gotten wrapped up in the individual photo and forgot that it was to have 7 other companions. So I shot horizontal… bunch more takes. Got it. Done.