Same Game Different Client

[NIKON D5, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC-2001 2X Converter, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 8000, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 440)]

Photojournalism

I first started shooting college football when I was a student at East Carolina University.

This photo is from the October 9, 1982 at Ficklen Memorial Stadium in Greenville, NC with an attendance of 19,521. ECU defeated Richmond 35-14. 

Back then I was just trying to get a good action photo. I would shoot sports for newspapers, Associated Press, Wire Services and for Georgia Tech.

I was either looking for the play of the game, or the reaction to it.

Public Relations

Shooting for Georgia Tech is public relations and not journalism. I was essentially advertising the school for Georgia Tech.

Georgia Tech’s Ramblin’ Wreck starts every home game by leading the football team onto the field.

You look for the celebrations after the touchdowns.

TCU 42 vs Ole Miss 3 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl [NIKON D4, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC2001 2X, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 12800, 1/800, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 600)]

When I was working for a newspaper I was usually covering the hometown team mainly. When I was working for Georgia Tech I was always covering it for the school. Wire Service I was more balanced.

Commercial

Back in 2008 I started covering the event for the Sponsor of the Peach Bowl–Chick-fil-A. Now I was still looking for the same shots, but now with a twist. I needed branding.

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami [NIKON D5, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC-2001 2X Converter, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 10000, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 460)]

I am often shooting a little looser to get the logos into the shot.

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami [NIKON D5, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC-2001 2X Converter, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 10000, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 380)]

For the Kickoff Games this year the teams do not have the logo for the Kickoff on the uniform.

Alabama 35 vs Virginia Tech 10 [NIKON D4, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC2001 2X , Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 9000, 1/2000, ƒ/4, (35mm = 300)]

In 2013 you can see the patch on the uniform. This made it so much easier. I was shooting tight shots and still had the brand.

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs West Virginia [NIKON D4, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC2001 2X , Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 40637, 1/2000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 260)]

However this year when I shot a tight shot, I often had no branding.

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami [NIKON D5, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC-2001 2X Converter, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 6400, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 250)]

My job is to find the logos around the field and position myself where the action takes place between me and those logos.

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami [NIKON Z 6, 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 900, 1/100, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 125)]

Nick Saban, the head football coach for Alabama, put on the Trophy Leather Helmet which does have the logo on it.

[NIKON D5, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC2001 2X, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 5000, 1/500, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 360)]Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami

Had I tried to do this when I was just starting to shoot sports it would have been impossible for me. You need years of understanding a sport to anticipate the action.

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami [NIKON D5, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC-2001 2X Converter, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 8000, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 600)]

After a while it is no longer luck, but persistence that yields the results.

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Alabama vs Miami [NIKON D5, Sigma 120.0-300.0 mm f/2.8 Sport + TC2001 2X , Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 8000, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 340)]