Each year I find I grow as a photographer and I’m looking forward to what 2016 will bring.
Here are my favorite photos from 2015. Thanks for all the likes/follows/shares this past season. It really is appreciated.
Click to see all the images.
Every so often during the Minnesota Wild games I’ll get assigned to photograph between the benches. It doesn’t happen that often because I’m usually 4th or 5th on the totem pole when it comes to getting assigned and since theres only 3 periods, I’m usually out of luck. But lucky me on Saturday night, there were only 4 photographers at the game against the Avalanche and the TV crew wasn’t assigned the box (wait, what?). Do to space restriction, there’s usually one photographer and one member of the TV crew assigned, so tonight we could get 2 photogs in…a rarity. So that night I was assigned 2 periods between the benches. Its still kinda new to me so I enjoy photographing there.
Here’s what I got along with some excessive editing in Lightroom…enjoy and share!
Over the years I’ve learned that every photographer has their own workflow. Some are different..some the same and it’s based on your own personal preference. I’ve tried a couple different methods but here’s what I found works best for me. Is it right? No. Is it wrong? Nope. It’s just what I prefer. Here’s a step by step process of how I incorporate Lightroom and PhotoMechanic when photographing a sporting event.
I’ll make a folder on my desktop for the game I’m photographing. In this case I’ll use the last game I worked (Pittsburgh Penguins vs the Minnesota Wild) and I’ll call it “vs Pittsburgh 11-4” (fig. 1). Why? It’s just the way I have my Lightroom catalog set up (I break my folders down by sport, then year, then by opponent).
I make my team code replacement files for PhotoMechanic. You can use the http://www.codereplacements.com/ website and pay for the service but I’m cheap and I don’t find it hard to do it yourself. This is probably a separate blog post but it’s a combination of the team data from ESPN, then using Excel and Word to create the text files. Unless it’s the first game of the season, the home team is already done so it’s really just making one for the visiting team and it takes me about 5-10 minutes. I’ll then load the code replacement files into PhotoMechanic. It usually consists of 3 different text files:
That’s it for pre-game. Let’s go eat!
For hockey, you shoot the entire period, then run back to the photo editing room during intermission and work as fast as you can. This is 18 minutes which sounds like a lot, but it flies by and there’s a lot to do.
Then I go into PhotoMechanic and hit refresh and my newly editing folder USA1 will appear. Open it, select all, and then apply stationary pad to all the images. Now every image has the generic caption for all the images and I just need to fill in the “XXXXXX” for each image using the code replacement files (home, away, and hockey terms) that are already loaded. (fig. 3)
Now hopefully this was all done in 18 minutes so I can run out to the next location for the next period. On occasion you don’t quite get it done in 18 and you’ll miss the start of the next period. Oh well, all you can do is try.
The only thing slightly different in the post-game transmission is I’ll look through all 3 periods flagged photos and find other pictures that may have been game relevant that occurred during the 1st and 2nd periods. Things like stock photos of goal scorers or other photos that were good but didn’t have the time to send. Since I’ve “colored” the photos by period, I know which ones I’ve sent already.
My PhotoMechanic by default is set to organize the pictures by capture time. This will also help when figuring out what period the action happened.
I’ve also got more time so I can relax a little. In the end I’m hoping to send about 30-35 end of game images and the others that I flagged will go to the stock folders another day.
VERY IMPORTANT: If you export your folders into separate sub-folders (like described), after you’re done shooting you’ll have to copy all the saved images with captions back into Lightroom.
So from Photomechanic:
Then in Lightroom right click on the folder and “synchronize the folder”. It’ll then import all the new jpegs you just captioned and transmitted and all the metadata in the caption field. So now if I need to find any Charlie Coyle pictures, my library is up to date. *Side note* – If your images look all out of whack, it’s because you’ve applied the “MNWild” import settings again on the already corrected jpegs. Just select all, right click, develop settings, and “reset”.
It sounds like a lot and it is. You’ll eventually get into your own rhythm and it’ll seem like a snap in no time.
Over the last two weeks Minneapolis has been a busy three sport city with the Timberwolves, Wild, and Twins all playing at the same time. Over the last 12 days I’ve covered 11 events including; 2 Wild, 3 Wolves, and 6 Twins games and I’ve also thrown in a home office remodel project (why not right, pics are on Twitter and Instagram if you really want to see).
So here it is, my top 11 pics from 11 events. Enjoy and Share!
As much as I like photographing the Wild (or any of the home teams), its always fun to see some fresh faces and teams come into town and change things up. Last night was Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins. Surprisingly out of the last three plus years I’ve been photographing the NHL, this is the first time I’ve had the Pens. So here’s a quick gallery of my favorite 9 images from the game…enjoy (and share too)!