Posted on September 13, 2013
As the finish line photographer, I got to see every participant’s joy in completing the event. The look of accomplishment on people’s faces was amazing, and deservedly so. Most people are on the race course anywhere between 4-10 hours, and some as long as 15 hours. These participants are some of the most fit people I’ve ever encountered. The Revolution 3 Triathlon series is totally different than the standard triathlon, with the focus not only on the event, but also on the families of the participants. Every participant is encouraged to bring their families and support network to cheer them on at the start and end of the event. Many participants crossed the finish line with their children and spouses by their side. Revolution 3 always holds their events at a family entertainment venue so the support team and families of the participants can go enjoy a day of family entertainment while waiting for their loved one to complete the race.
In case you’re not familiar with what a triathlon is, there are four different types:
(Data courtesy of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triathlon)
The Revolution 3 event I covered was running the Half, and Full. One can’t help but be inspired when surrounded by such amazing people, and I’ve started thinking about participating in an Olympic triathlon in the next year or so.
If you’d like to challenge yourself to the most demanding and rewarding event, visit http://rev3tri.com/
Or visit their Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/revolution3.triathlon
Posted on May 24, 2013
You may recall that I was hired to photograph the Color Vibe 5k in Akron a few weeks back. It was a really great time and everybody that works on the Color Vibe team was fantastic. They are all fun and well organized.
The other day, I didn’t expect to be browsing and come across one of the images I shot for them though. The girl in the glasses was what I remembered from the photo and I instantly thought “I think I shot that photo!”. I went back through my archives and sure enough, I did. It’s a little bit of a pat on my own back to be posting about this, but I’m excited about seeing some of my work being featured in an ad.
As I was shooting the photos for the event I tried to capture the fun and energetic atmosphere that was there. Nobody was having a bad time. There was loud music from a live DJ, plenty of smiling, supportive people, and more amazing color than I’ve ever seen. In front of the DJ booth, the crowd had packets of the colored powder (it’s actually just corn starch with a biodegradable pigment in it) ready for a big countdown to celebrate the run with a big group color toss into the air. I was able to position myself behind the DJ and set my camera to high-speed burst capture mode and continual focus. When the DJ finished the countdown the crowd launched the color into the air in an amazing cloud of vivid color unlike anything I’d ever witnessed before, and that’s when I shot this image.
If you want to run in the most fun 5k on the planet, take a look at the Color Vibe’s website at www.TheColorVibe.com
They’ll be holding another run in Akron next spring and have other runs around the area, including Toledo and Columbus.
Posted on May 21, 2013
I was invited to photograph one of the most fun and well put together surprise birthday parties I’ve ever been to this past weekend at Paolo’s in downtown Akron. Will, who I know through other photography work I’ve done has a very organized and thoughtful girlfriend named Riti, who put the entire event together and invited their closest friends and family.
The party began about 40 minutes ahead of Will’s expected arrival. Riti told him that he was going to be going to a friend’s surprise birthday party there, so Will had no idea the party was actually for him. The guests enjoyed mingling ahead of his arrival and they had plenty of time to catch up with old friends, shoot some pool, and get a drink or two to get in the spirit of the event. Paolo’s has a great party environment complete with free pool and one of the nicest bars in Akron, so everybody had plenty to keep themselves occupied with while waiting for his arrival.
Riti had one of the coolest birthday cakes I’ve ever seen made for the occasion. It has elements from Superman, Batman, Iron Man, and The Hulk all rolled into one very impressive (and very delicious) cake. I can honestly say that I’ve never seen anything like it and it was really the centerpiece of the room with everybody gawking over it. It was a real pleasure being able to see so many people enjoying each other’s company and everybody had a great time, with most guests staying well into the night to enjoy the occasion.
Because the party was held at night and Paolo’s lighting was low and comfortable, I had to use a flash for the event to properly expose the photographs. Thankfully the ceiling wasn’t too high and I was able to use it to help the flash be softer in the photos, and I also used a flash diffuser panel to cast softer light on the people I was photographing. I kept the ISO at around 1,000 and the shutter speed relatively low because I wanted the ambient light that Paolo’s has to show up in the photos, rather than have a black background. I also shot some photos without the flash to show the atmosphere in Paolo’s and to mix the photos up a little.
The staff at Paolo’s was first-rate. I’ve rarely seen such amazing food served at a birthday party and they made sure that everything was cleaned up throughout the night and that nobody lacked for anything. The facility was spotless and has a wonderful atmosphere for any event to be held there. With lots of gorgeous woodwork and artwork throughout the building, it has an elegant, but relaxed vibe that anybody can be comfortable in. If you’re in the Akron area and planning an event or party, I’d highly recommend checking them out at paolosakron.com
Congratulations to Will for his epic 30th birthday party and to Riti for her amazing planning, organization, vision, and execution of such a great birthday party. Few people could have pulled it off like she did.
Posted on May 3, 2013
A friend of mine found this cute baby bunny last night and I wanted to photograph it because it was just too adorable. Apparently his cats were toying with the poor defenseless creature, and the bunny didn’t have the speed needed to outrun them, so he rescued the poor little things from the claws of his felines and brought it inside. After my initial gush of “Awwww! Its soooo cute!” my next thought was “I need to photograph this incredibly cute little creature! Fast!”. My children were all over the rabbit and it was torture for them not to be able to hold it and cuddle with the bunny, but we didn’t know if it has fleas, lice, etc, so they could only lightly pet the poor terrified rabbit then immediately wash their hands.
I ran upstairs and grabbed my camera and decided to use my 55-200 lens so I could keep some distance between me and the bunny I because I was going to have to use my hot shoe flash to properly illuminate things properly and I didn’t want the flash to be to close to it (the 55-200 lens was also already on my camera, which made the choice even easier). To avoid the harsh light of a flash shot directly at the bunny, I angled and tilted the flash head to reflect off of the wall and ceiling in my kitchen, which makes the light softer and more appealing. My concern was that the bunny would jump out of her hand before I was able to get a decent photograph, so I had to work quickly.
After the photos and the round of goodbye petting by all the kids, my friend decided to let the bunny go in a different yard than the one where his cats were, but when he did, the rabbit acted like it had a hurt leg. At the beckoning of Jill, his girlfriend, he decided to let the bunny stay the night in a box so it would have the opportunity to rest and recover it’s strength. After he let the bunny go, his cats found it again! Now they’re going to turn it over to a wildlife rescue organization for care, which it it’s best opportunity for a full life.
***Editor’s note: This is a little bit different than I normally post, and the photos aren’t a result of intensive work (they were quite rushed and impromptu). However, I think the subject matter is so adorable (and the photos did turn out pretty well too) that I hope my readers can look past that***
Posted on April 29, 2013
Recently I worked with the organizers of the 2013 Brodyn’s Friends Golfing for a Cure to be held on Monday, July 15th at the Ridgewood Country Club. Brodyn is a super sweet boy who was born with Nonketotic Hyperglycinemia (NKH) and has been bravely battling it along with his supportive family and a wonderful group of friends. Founded by his loving parents, Heidi and Dan, Brodyn’s Friends has raised tens of thousands of dollars to help find a cure for Nonketotic Hyperglycinemia (NKH). The annual Golfing for a Cure is the group’s largest fundraiser of the year and promises to be a great time for all those involved.
I volunteered to take portraits of Brodyn for use on event marketing material. Being such a sweet boy, Brodyn was all smiles and fun, which made my job easy. His parents made him laugh and kept his spirits high throughout the entire photo shoot. After an hour of me taking photos of him he was still as high-spirited and fun-loving (something that many adults aren’t able to pull off). I primarily used an on-camera hotshoe flash set to TTL -2, because I didn’t want to blow the photo out with a lot of flash light. Using the walls and ceiling, I tried to simulate the look of a large softbox, rather than on-camera lighting.
Take a look at the event at brodynsfriends.com and consider attending the golfing event. There are few causes in the area that are truly locally-based and will have such a positive and direct impact on the life of a local child living with a disease. For more information about Golfing for a Cure, please call Heidi Leslie at 330-414-9949 or email her at Heidi@BrodynsFriends.com.
Here’s the flyer for Golfing For a Cure: Golfing For A Cure Flyer
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