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Category : Sports portraits

Boy Wonder

My cousin, Amon (pictured), may be one of the funniest people on the planet.  He doesn’t stand that tall and he doesn’t weigh that much, but he’s loaded with talent.  He can tear up the dance floor, manage to hit, throw,  or bounce any ball in the neighbors yard, and he’s never learned meaning of the word shy.  I got this shot of him after one his games.  It still amazes me how someone small could hit the ball so far.  He’s proof that confidence can take you a very long way.  Trust me when I tell you he has superstar potential.  The only mystery is what exactly he will become superstar in.  Only time will tell.   Look out for him.

Like a shoe ad…

Amanda, pictured, approached me about doing a shoot with a track and field theme. Of course I jumped at the opportunity. Nothing tells the stories of triumph or the agony of defeat as well as sports. When I approach these shots I like to show the athlete in their environment perched like a king or queen sitting on their throne. Because we are creating the shot, I tend to tell the story of triumph and heroism, versus defeat. At the end to me this picture looks like a shoe ad. Nike are looking? If so go to the contact page, I’m only a phone call away.

On the move…

When asked to shoot portraits for “On the Move Fitness”, Manny Alexander ask me if I could shoot him some shots that were dynamic, showed movement, and had a mood different from regular pictures.  Manny’s training style is very extraordinary.  While he uses many of the same equipment many other trainers use, he does so in away much different than I’ve seen.  Here he’s doing push-up’s balanced on three medicine balls.  In creating the shots I went through extraordinary means to capture the looks he desired.  Instead clearing out space for the shoot, I shot around the equipment to get the perspective of dumbbells on the floor.  I wanted the lighting to be high contrast to show the grit of the gym.  We shot with the air condition off to make the shoot as uncomfortable as a workout.  I tried to take shots from angles to show the difficulty of the exercises.  As you can see below, these training sessions aren’t for the weak at heart.  It’s called a work out for a reason.  I wanted the photos to come across with the same edge and intensity.

Back in stride…

Sometimes with shooting so many genres I get a little lost in my way. In my effort to not copy myself and others sometimes I wonder off and lose my rhythm. As a photographer you have so many tools at your disposal: lights, lens, time, theme, and photoshop. At times it’s hard to decide which directions you want to go. Eventually you end up stopping and just looking around. From there the challenge is to start again and find your rhythm.
One of my favorite artist Bootsy Collins always spoke of doing it on the one. A concept he got from James Brown where they would always emphasize the first beat of the rhythm. When Bootsy joined Parliament Funkadelic the concept then moved on to meaning all the people coming together as one. While I am not a musician, for me, the one is the theme. When I am out of rhythm I start with a good theme and just go from there. I don’t go any with any plan, expectations, or anything. Sometimes just looking and feeling is better than talking or even listening.
This shot came about as Chelene was watching me shoot Amanda. We were just starting out and didn’t really know exactly where we going with the shoot when I turned my head and saw her siting in this pose. I told not to move a muscle, adjusted my light and then turned my camera towards her, and like that this shot was created. From there the rhythm was back. Because when I pointed my camera back to Amanda this is how she was posed.
Amanda Manez

A slight return…

I got a lot of great shots from this shoot. This one reminds me of an Muhammad Ali pic. The effects in the pic and intensity on the boxer’s face makes this a really great to me. You can almost smell the gym and feel the pain he has had to endure as he trained.

King of the ring…

boxing , originally uploaded by

I’ve always loved the sport of boxing. No matter if it is the live event or in the movies I’ve always been drawn to the sport. When given an opportunity to shoot in an actual boxing gym I jumped at the chance. The boxer shown, is an up and coming fighter only 15years old. Yet inside the ring he posses a maturity beyond his years. Five days a week he comes in a trains for hours. The gym is by no means glamourous. There’s no air conditioner, no nautilous machines. There’s just a few heavy bags, speed bags, jump ropes, a ring and a timer that goes off every three minutes. But it is in this land of guts and sweat the he shall hone his skills to one day be the King of the Ring.

Daisy focused, determined, and driven

This was a senior portrait I did for a friend’s daughter. I wanted to make it like a Gatorade ad. I wanted it to tell the story of a track runner. Is this the raw determination and preparation before the race or the anguish of a bitter defeat?