Football Photographer MaxPrep’s Preseason Top 25

Football Photographer?

Football Photographer in April/May? Yep, that’s me 🙂 Excited to be able to share some of what I have been up to the past five weeks!

I’ve been photographing for MaxPreps for quite a while now, and they are still one of my favorite clients, so I was excited to have the opportunity to photograph four of the top twenty five high school football teams for them this year.

I started with three teams in the Ft. Lauderdale/Miami area. Just so happens there are some reasonably priced flights from here to there and my brother lives in the area, so logistically speaking things worked out well. Traveling with an entire outdoor studio setup was a bit of an issue, but thankfully between Think Tank Photo, Pelican Products, and some nifty Amazon Prime shopping I had everything I needed.

First up was #11 American Heritage in Plantation, FL. Gorgeous campus, great athletes and staff! (link to full gallery here)

4-29-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at American Heritage High School in Plantation, FL.

4-29-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at American Heritage High School in Plantation, FL.

4-29-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at American Heritage High School in Plantation, FL.

4-29-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at American Heritage High School in Plantation, FL.

Next was #16 Central in Miami, FL. Another awesome bunch of people, and you just have to love it anytime you get to use a rocket in your images, plus the clouds cooperated well! (link to full gallery here)

5-2-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at Miami Central High School in Miami, FL.

Photographer above obviously has some skills!

5-2-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at Miami Central High School in Miami, FL.

Last one for me in Florida was #1 St. Thomas Aquinas in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. As usual, great people, another amazing facility, and the clouds remained friendly to me here as well! (link to full gallery here)

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I owe my brother Michael and some other friends a huge shout out for all the help assisting me in Florida, I could not have done it without you guys!

 

Finally got home for a few weeks and got my last school, #15 Central Catholic in Pittsburgh, PA scheduled for their shoot. (link to full gallery here) More great people, and the school is located downtown with some amazing architecture. Even with a lot of construction going on, you simply have to love the place, especially after you realize that this is where Dan Marino went to school! Michael Messing (super assistant and awesome photographer himself) came along on this trip and all the “Behind The Scenes” shots are his. (Thanks Mikey!)

5-24-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh, PA.

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Laying down on the job! With all the construction going on, finding clean backgrounds was a chore.

5-24-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh, PA.

 

5-24-2016 MaxPreps Preseason Top 25 Photo Shoot at Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh, PA.

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According to my exhaustive research on Google Earth prior to this trip, that is a simply gorgeous hillside behind us 🙂

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No, your OTHER left!

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Here’s the link for the for the entire Top 25 from MaxPrep’s, looks like there is going to be some amazing high school football played this year! Big thanks to MaxPreps and especially Todd Shurtleff (Director of Photography) for this great opportunity, let’s shoot for 8 teams next year! 🙂

For all the photography minded people out there, practically everything was shot with a Canon 5DIII and the 24-105mm lens. Lighting was all Paul C. Buff White Lightning 1600’s and/or Einsteins, normally a three light setup. All power came from the Vagabond Mini Lithiums. Used an Octabox on the main light in Pittsburgh, everything else used either standard or 8.5″ reflectors. And yes, it was too windy for me to set anything on fire 🙁

 

Baseball Photography – Oxford Chargers #1

Baseball Photography in January? You Bet!

Yep, baseball photography in January. Brrrrrr…!!!

Last month (January 2016) I returned to Oxford High School in Mississippi to photograph the baseball team for MaxPreps, who I thought were going to be ranked VERY high in the MaxPrep’s preseason poll. Turns out I was right! I say returned, because I also photographed the Charger’s football team in July of 2015. It was very nice to go back to a school where I knew some of the staff and a few of the athletes.

Coach Baughman and his staff were great to work with, and gave us complete cooperation every step of the way. As usual for my shoots in this area, my pal (and super great photographer himself) Fred Brooks came along to assist…couldn’t have done it without you Fred!

I shot straight to an iPad (which the athletes had) and as always that was a HUGE hit. The guys really got into it, offering “styling” and posing suggestions to their teammates throughout the shoot.

For the photography buffs out there, everything was shot with a Canon 5D Mark III with a f/4.0 24-105mm lens. Lights were White Lightning 1600’s. Triggered using Pocket Wizard Plus III’s/Mini TT1 in HyperSync mode. And yes, that’s real fire and smoke (worn out bats and rubber cement).

Again, big thanks to Coach Baughman, his staff, and the entire athletic department. You guys are a class act and really helped to create some awesome images. Go Chargers!

Here’s a video plus a few of my favorite images. You can view the entire gallery here (as well as purchase images…hint, hint).

 

The Fred!!!

The Fred!!!

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That’s about as messed up as a football bat!

 

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His name is Tag. Yep, plays infield. You can’t make this stuff up.

 

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SMOKIN!

 

Coach Goolsby

Coach Goolsby

 

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HUGE thanks to Thomas, he helped us lug our gear around a lot!

Thanks for looking, hope everyone enjoyed!

 

 

Oak Hill Academy Basketball Photography

Just before Halloween I travelled to the Oak Hill Academy in the Mouth of Wilson, VA to once again photograph the Warriors for MaxPrep’s Early Contender program. I believe this my third year in a row, and it seems like each year is better than before (last years images are here).

Oak Hill is well known as a basketball powerhouse, and as always Coach Smith and the rest of the staff went out of their way to help me  in any way possible. We went with a bit of a different look this year with the majority of the images being shot on a small outside court. And yes, I tried the hoverboard thingy. It was not pretty 🙂

Here’s a link to the MaxPrep’s story and video, and the full gallery of images are located here.

Here’s a few of my favorites…

MaxPrep’s Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot

October turned out to be a VERY busy month for me, felt like I was home for just a day or two 🙂 Toward the end of the month I travelled back to the Mouth of Wilson, VA to photograph the Oak Hill Academy’s basketball team for the MaxPrep’s Preseason Top 10 Rankings. I absolutely love the drive to Oak Hill (and the campus), and also have a tremendous amount of respect for Head Coach Steve Smith and his amazing basketball program. The Academy was founded in 1878. Here’s a slideshow from MaxPreps…

As I said, I love the drive to Oak Hill Academy. Some of the most gorgeous country around! (plus it’s like the Christmas Tree capital of the world, there were hundreds of tractor trailers loaded with trees heading out).

2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA

2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA

 

As usual, Coach Smith and his athletes were nothing short of amazing to work with! They allowed me plenty of time and full access to the facilities. As I was shooting, I transferred the images straight to an iPad which quickly wound up in the hands of the athletes and was a huge hit with them. 🙂

 

2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA 2014 MaxPrep's Preseason Top 10 Basketball Photo Shoot at Oak Hill, VA

 

Huge Thanks to Coach Smith and his wife Lisa for all the help, and I hope to be back next year!

The full gallery is here on MaxPreps, enjoy!

Kenysha Coulson, 4 Sport High School Athlete

Last week I had the chance to travel to Huntsville, AL to photograph an athlete for MaxPreps. A high school football kicker. Say what? Oh yeah, SHE also plays 3 other sports…

Not only is Kenysha an AMAZING athlete, both her and Mom Kristi are some of the nicest people around. We about wore Kenysha out, it was a long shoot and she had to change uniforms a gazillion times 🙂

Michael came down with me from Knoxville to assist me and he wound up shooting a bunch of video, which of course I just had to play with a little bit. We also met our long lost friend Tammy in Huntsville and she did an amazing job shuffling gear around for us.

Video comes first, followed by a few of my favorite images. You can read the story on MaxPreps here, and the full gallery is located here. Enjoy!

 

 

Photojournalism and Photoshop Classes at UT Kids U

I am super excited to announce that I will be teaching two classes at the University of  Tennessee’s Kids U program here in Knoxville this summer! This is an excellent program, and yep I’m stoked about it! 🙂

The first class is “Photojournalism for Kids”, Grades 9-12 and runs from 9AM to Noon, June 25-29. This is going to introduce kids to the super cool world of photojournalism and we will cover a bit of everything from history and ethics to capturing decisive moments with your camera to how to caption an image. We will have a few mini assignments/field trips during the class (within walking distance of the classroom) and I’ll also discuss possible career and education paths after high school. You will need a digital camera (a DSLR would be best, point and shoots are OK, and film is a no-no) to participate, and if that’s a big issue I can probably help out with a loaner. Best $99 you’ll spend on your kid this summer 🙂  CLICK HERE for more info on the Photojournalism for Kids class.

The second class is “Introduction to Photoshop”, Grades 8-12 and runs from 1PM to 4PM, June 25-29. Photoshop is one of those programs that you can spend years mastering and still not know half of it, but after I go through some basic techniques we are going to learn how to enhance images (including those bad cell phone images), do some cool/funky effects, and how to use and apply different styles to photographs. It’s going to be AWESOME!!! Students will need a decent sized USB drive so we can shuttle images around. CLICK HERE for more info on the Introduction to Photoshop class.

Both classes are being held at the UT Conference Center Computer Lab on the 4th floor, run 3 hours per day for 5 consecutive days, and feel free to call/text/email me if you have any questions. Please share this post (just click on the “Share the knowledge” tabs directly below this line to share it on Facebook, Twitter, etc.) with your friends, but I do expect these both to fill up quickly (class sizes are limited), so register EARLY!

Knoxville Catholic Pilot Tournament (and 400 wins!)

Last week I covered the Knoxville Catholic Pilot Basketball Tournament, and as usual the staff there put on another awesome event. I swear it’s the only tournament I cover that I actually gain weight at, they really treat everyone VERY well! There was some awesome basketball, images are available here, but the highlight for me was Coach Hutchens from Catholic getting his 400th victory by winning the final game of the tournament.

Luckily, I found out at halftime that he was at 399 wins, so with the victory pretty much in hand I decided to get a few images of Coach H doing his thing. Turned those into this nice 30″ by 20″ poster…

Coach Hutchens

And sure enough, athletic director Jason Surlas had something in mind for Coach H 🙂  The next game, the poster and a signed game ball was presented to him…many, many thanks to Jamie Dahl for being there for that (and everything else he does with Catholic).

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Again, the folks at Catholic put on a first class tournament, can’t wait for next year’s!

 

Halls at Anderson County Basketball

Yeah I know, Randy’s been a bad blogger lately 🙂 In between UT Basketball games (13 so far this season), a ton of youth sports, and quite a bit of Studio work I have managed to photograph a few High School Basketball games this year. I plan on covering a bunch of high school games in the Knoxville area for CBS Maxpreps starting with the Pilot Basketball Tournament at Catholic just after Christmas. I pretty much self-assign my own games and tournaments, so if you have a basketball game or tournament in the Knoxville area you would like to have photographed, just let me know and I will see if I can work it in.

Here are a few of my favorites from Thursday’s Halls at Anderson County matchup (Lady Mavs won 55 to 52, Halls Men won 68 to 52). The complete galleries are at CBS MaxPreps and if you hurry, you can still have prints by Christmas 🙂