First Try: Boxing.

 Prince Tiger hyping up his fighter.

Prince Tiger hyping up his fighter.

 I love how the serious the coaches are and the fighter is all smiles.

I love how the serious the coaches are and the fighter is all smiles.

 With no knowledge of the fighters and their tendencies, it was hard to anticipate shots. I got a lot of pictures of punches just about to land or just after the punch.

With no knowledge of the fighters and their tendencies, it was hard to anticipate shots. I got a lot of pictures of punches just about to land or just after the punch.

 This bout was a brawl compared to the first. I could motor drive and be fairly certain to get a shot.

This bout was a brawl compared to the first. I could motor drive and be fairly certain to get a shot.

 Not sure how his glove bent like that and his wrist didn't break.

Not sure how his glove bent like that and his wrist didn't break.

 Sup, dude....

Sup, dude....

 Agony of defeat.

Agony of defeat.

 I was shocked this kid stayed on his feet after this punch.

I was shocked this kid stayed on his feet after this punch.

Andy's Playground

 I know Dan Severson already got this shot but fuck it. It's too good of a shot to pass up.

I know Dan Severson already got this shot but fuck it. It's too good of a shot to pass up.

 Just a classic bar-hump to tree-branch-face-slap.

Just a classic bar-hump to tree-branch-face-slap.

 The next frame would have been nothing but Andy's tire. He missed my lens by inches.

The next frame would have been nothing but Andy's tire. He missed my lens by inches.

 Back up and do it all again.

Back up and do it all again.

East Coast Randomness

Just me messing around with street photography and hockey photography during a trip to Washington D.C.

 I don't take a lot of street photos and if I do I prefer black and white. San Diego is great for landscape and portrait photography but it has very few locations that are good for street photography.

I don't take a lot of street photos and if I do I prefer black and white. San Diego is great for landscape and portrait photography but it has very few locations that are good for street photography.

The Ultimate Mat Warrior 3 Photo Dump

Thanks to Richie Martinez and the whole 10th Planet family for letting me shoot your tournament!

 When you get a little too close to the action. 

When you get a little too close to the action. 

 I couldn't decide if I like this photo more in color or in black and white. Why not both?

I couldn't decide if I like this photo more in color or in black and white. Why not both?

Southridge Winter Series Round 4

 YT Mob rollin hard in Southridge.

YT Mob rollin hard in Southridge.

 This dude looked at this section for a solid fifteen minutes. Then hiked it. Then watched other riders send it. He even turned to the peanut gallery for advice.

This dude looked at this section for a solid fifteen minutes. Then hiked it. Then watched other riders send it. He even turned to the peanut gallery for advice.

 Aaron Gwin's debuts his new bike at Southridge.

Aaron Gwin's debuts his new bike at Southridge.

 I've seen some fast riders but Gwin is on another level. I've never seen somebody charge so hard through a section but be so silky smooth.

I've seen some fast riders but Gwin is on another level. I've never seen somebody charge so hard through a section but be so silky smooth.

 Stacking clips, bro!

Stacking clips, bro!

 Homeboy taking the tight, inside line.

Homeboy taking the tight, inside line.

First Try: Lacrosse

     Hi, my name is Andrew...and I used to play lacrosse. I know, I know. Lacrosse is known as a sport that wealthy, white, douchey, frat bros play. However, if you look at the sport itself and not the type of people that stereotypically play it, it is awesome. It is fast, exciting and it's one of the only sports that encourages you to hit people with a stick. It's great.

     Fast forward a decade and lacrosse is still a big part of my life: I work for a production company that films college lacrosse games (shout out to TVX Video. 619, represent!!!) At a recent tournament, I had some time to kill in between games that I was filming so pulled out my camera and started shooting.

 This first night game was very challenging to shoot. Lacrosse is a very fast sport so I had to balance a fast enough shutter speed to freeze the action against a low enough ISO to keep the noise to a tolerable level. You can see motion blur in the goalies stick and helmet.

This first night game was very challenging to shoot. Lacrosse is a very fast sport so I had to balance a fast enough shutter speed to freeze the action against a low enough ISO to keep the noise to a tolerable level. You can see motion blur in the goalies stick and helmet.

 I actually like the motion blur in this shot. It gives the photo some life.

I actually like the motion blur in this shot. It gives the photo some life.

 All of these photos where taken with an older 300mm f/4L lens. Since my camera has a cropped sensor, the lens acted as a 480mm lens. For once I actually had trouble being far enough away to capture the images I wanted. This photo isn't cropped and was taken about 50 yards away.

All of these photos where taken with an older 300mm f/4L lens. Since my camera has a cropped sensor, the lens acted as a 480mm lens. For once I actually had trouble being far enough away to capture the images I wanted. This photo isn't cropped and was taken about 50 yards away.

 Even though the light wasn't great for the second game, it was way easier to shoot than the night game.

Even though the light wasn't great for the second game, it was way easier to shoot than the night game.

 My favorite shot out of the bunch.

My favorite shot out of the bunch.

Roseburg Travel Log #1

        Hey, y'all. This is my first post in a long time. Life got busy and the blog had to take a back seat. But in that time, I've been shooting photos so there should be more posts in the next few weeks.

     Anyway, before my life got busy, I was able to visit my home town Roseburg, Oregon. "Is that close to Portland?" That is a great question, hypothetical reader. No, it's not close to Portland. It's a small logging town in southwestern Oregon. And when I say it's a small town, I mean it's a redneck, Toby-Keith-loving, cow-tipping, I-have-never-left-this-county-in-my-life, small town.

     It's also a beautiful place to live. Nestled in a steep, tree covered valley, Roseburg is about an hour from the ocean and an hour from the Cascade mountains. To me it's still home and I love going back whenever I can.

 This is my buddy, Paddy. Trips with him almost never go to plan. On this trip we were going to driving to a trailhead and hike into a picturesque mountain lake. What we didn't plan on was getting stuck in axle deep snow. With the light fading, we moved to plan B. If we couldn't have a picturesque lake, we could at least have a picturesque waterfall. 

This is my buddy, Paddy. Trips with him almost never go to plan. On this trip we were going to driving to a trailhead and hike into a picturesque mountain lake. What we didn't plan on was getting stuck in axle deep snow. With the light fading, we moved to plan B. If we couldn't have a picturesque lake, we could at least have a picturesque waterfall. 

 This is why when people ask me if I like Southern California I say "It's pretty cool, but I really miss living in Oregon."

This is why when people ask me if I like Southern California I say "It's pretty cool, but I really miss living in Oregon."

 A twig hanging in the creek.

A twig hanging in the creek.

  Steve Harris is one of the hardest working people I know. A saddle maker, leather braider, cowboy, author, judoka, mentor, father, husband. He even know's his way around a blacksmiths forge and can make a mean cup of coffee.

 Steve Harris is one of the hardest working people I know. A saddle maker, leather braider, cowboy, author, judoka, mentor, father, husband. He even know's his way around a blacksmiths forge and can make a mean cup of coffee.

 When your saddle needs some pew pew.

When your saddle needs some pew pew.

 Steve's hands are as tough as the leather that he works.

Steve's hands are as tough as the leather that he works.

 I couldn't decide if I liked the color version or the black and white version more. So I put them both in. What do y'all like?

I couldn't decide if I liked the color version or the black and white version more. So I put them both in. What do y'all like?

 Whenever I visit Steve I always end up doing some work for him. Steve laid out a grey wool blanket and suggested that I shoot some photos of his hackamores (a bitless bridle that fits around a horses muzzle.)

Whenever I visit Steve I always end up doing some work for him. Steve laid out a grey wool blanket and suggested that I shoot some photos of his hackamores (a bitless bridle that fits around a horses muzzle.)

 These are the first product photos I've ever taken. I wanted to get a variety of shots to show the overall shape and construction as well as close up shots to highlight the detail of the braiding.

These are the first product photos I've ever taken. I wanted to get a variety of shots to show the overall shape and construction as well as close up shots to highlight the detail of the braiding.

 I also tried a little freelensing to show some of the detail.

I also tried a little freelensing to show some of the detail.

  I got pretty lucky with the lighting. The door was about three feet away from my set up. I opened it up and had nice, diffused sunlight. A few of the shots needed some fill light so I used a bendy desk lamp. The color temperatures of the two light sources don't match up but I don't think that It takes anything away from the pictures.

 I got pretty lucky with the lighting. The door was about three feet away from my set up. I opened it up and had nice, diffused sunlight. A few of the shots needed some fill light so I used a bendy desk lamp. The color temperatures of the two light sources don't match up but I don't think that It takes anything away from the pictures.

 Nothing like spending a cold morning in the saddle shop.

Nothing like spending a cold morning in the saddle shop.

First Try: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu

A few weeks ago my buddy invited me to shoot a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) tournament . I'm always down to try something new and I have a casual interest in BJJ and MMA. Yeah, why not shoot it.

It was a very different experience than what I'm used to shooting. I usually photograph action sports which take place outside with a decent amount of light, the action is relatively fast and the actions of the athletes are predictable (they are going to hit a jump, go over an obstacle or do a trick roughly the same way). The BJJ tournament was inside with bad light, the action was slow relative to action sports and it is much harder to predict what the athletes where going to do. It was definitely a challenge that pushed me outside of my comfort zone. 

 I was shooting with my Canon T3i with the 28-135 f/3.5-5.6 lens. I wasn't sure how much motion blur I was going to get when the athletes were moving so I didn't shoot slower than 1/250th for the majority of the tournament. Unfortunately this meant that I had to push the ISO to 6400 because the lighting at the venues was so weak. The ISO controls how sensitive the camera is to light. A high ISO means that the shot is brighter but it also introduces a lot of grain and you lose color quality.

I was shooting with my Canon T3i with the 28-135 f/3.5-5.6 lens. I wasn't sure how much motion blur I was going to get when the athletes were moving so I didn't shoot slower than 1/250th for the majority of the tournament. Unfortunately this meant that I had to push the ISO to 6400 because the lighting at the venues was so weak. The ISO controls how sensitive the camera is to light. A high ISO means that the shot is brighter but it also introduces a lot of grain and you lose color quality.

 Even with a super high ISO the images came out a stop or two under exposed. I corrected the pictures as much as I could in Lightroom but this brought out the grain and color noise even more. I used as much noise reduction in as I could. Converting the pictures to black and white took care of the color issues and the grain gives it a gritty look.

Even with a super high ISO the images came out a stop or two under exposed. I corrected the pictures as much as I could in Lightroom but this brought out the grain and color noise even more. I used as much noise reduction in as I could. Converting the pictures to black and white took care of the color issues and the grain gives it a gritty look.

 Half the time the athletes are just wrestling for better position or you can't see their faces. I got better at predicting when and where they would move but it depended on each athlete's strategy. Some were very dynamic trying to get a quick victory others were content with grinding it out for 30 minutes. 

Half the time the athletes are just wrestling for better position or you can't see their faces. I got better at predicting when and where they would move but it depended on each athlete's strategy. Some were very dynamic trying to get a quick victory others were content with grinding it out for 30 minutes. 

 PJ and coach Boogie repping 10th Planet San Diego

PJ and coach Boogie repping 10th Planet San Diego

 One of the hardest thing about photographing BJJ is capturing the action with out making it look super awkward. There are a couple of shots where somebody's ballsack is in the other guys face...

One of the hardest thing about photographing BJJ is capturing the action with out making it look super awkward. There are a couple of shots where somebody's ballsack is in the other guys face...

 The most feared BJJ move of all: the jaw grab.

The most feared BJJ move of all: the jaw grab.

 PJ literally sweeping the leg. 

PJ literally sweeping the leg. 

 1/250th froze the action most of the time. I like that PJ (bottom) is in focus but his opponent is blurred a little.

1/250th froze the action most of the time. I like that PJ (bottom) is in focus but his opponent is blurred a little.

 My boy Ronnie (left) going head to head in his first bout.

My boy Ronnie (left) going head to head in his first bout.

 The ref really didn't want Ronnie to throw up the one and zero. Can't stop, won't stop.

The ref really didn't want Ronnie to throw up the one and zero. Can't stop, won't stop.

 I wish I could have used my flash but I didn't want to interfere with the athletes. In this case I want more light on the guy's face on top.

I wish I could have used my flash but I didn't want to interfere with the athletes. In this case I want more light on the guy's face on top.

 Ronnie was trying to hit the heel hook all bout but his opponent toughed it out.

Ronnie was trying to hit the heel hook all bout but his opponent toughed it out.

 Ronnie rolled his ankle in training and was fighting hurt. His opponent caught his bum ankle and Ronnie had to tap. Wipe off the blood, get back in the gym and take the gold next tourney, Ronnie!

Ronnie rolled his ankle in training and was fighting hurt. His opponent caught his bum ankle and Ronnie had to tap. Wipe off the blood, get back in the gym and take the gold next tourney, Ronnie!

 Another obstacle was the refs. A lot of the time they would stand directly behind the athletes, cluttering the background, or they were between me and the athletes. I saw this shot between the ref's legs and fired off a few frames.

Another obstacle was the refs. A lot of the time they would stand directly behind the athletes, cluttering the background, or they were between me and the athletes. I saw this shot between the ref's legs and fired off a few frames.

 Sometimes you have to work hard to get the shot. Sometimes the shot comes to you. This is an example of the latter.

Sometimes you have to work hard to get the shot. Sometimes the shot comes to you. This is an example of the latter.

 The second most feared move in BJJ: face touching.

The second most feared move in BJJ: face touching.

 This tournament was held at a fitness expo so no matter the angle, there was a lot of clutter in the background.

This tournament was held at a fitness expo so no matter the angle, there was a lot of clutter in the background.

 Towards the end of the tournament I lowered my ISO to 1600 and kept my shutter speed at 1/80th or 1/60th, hence the motion blur.

Towards the end of the tournament I lowered my ISO to 1600 and kept my shutter speed at 1/80th or 1/60th, hence the motion blur.

 This is probably my favorite shot I took. The coach unintentionally said something funny. I love how one dude is smiling and in focus, and the other dude is blurred and angry.

This is probably my favorite shot I took. The coach unintentionally said something funny. I love how one dude is smiling and in focus, and the other dude is blurred and angry.

 If you're that red, you're going to tap or you're going to sleep.

If you're that red, you're going to tap or you're going to sleep.

2016 Southridge Winter Series: Round 1

 Ronnie Renner: tearing shit up on all two wheeled devices.

Ronnie Renner: tearing shit up on all two wheeled devices.

 Trevor Boldi with the eye of tiger.

Trevor Boldi with the eye of tiger.

 Michael Borja

Michael Borja

 The fastest man of the day was Logan Binggeli, winner of the 2015 Southridge Winter Series.

The fastest man of the day was Logan Binggeli, winner of the 2015 Southridge Winter Series.

 Troy D'Eila

Troy D'Eila

 National Jr. Champion, Charlie Harrison, started the series off with a solid second place run.

National Jr. Champion, Charlie Harrison, started the series off with a solid second place run.

 Jarod Hansen

Jarod Hansen

 Bruce Klein

Bruce Klein

 Quinton Spaulding

Quinton Spaulding

 If you race at Southridge expect to get heckled. Even If you do have X Games medals

If you race at Southridge expect to get heckled. Even If you do have X Games medals

 Nik Nestoroff rolling into first place in the Jr. category.

Nik Nestoroff rolling into first place in the Jr. category.

 Steven Walton 

Steven Walton 

 Blake Motley

Blake Motley

 Prepare ship...for LUDICROUS SPEED!  

Prepare ship...for LUDICROUS SPEED!  

 Swag

Swag

 Charles Legg

Charles Legg

 Randy Graham

Randy Graham

 Drae Jones

Drae Jones

 Jayden Farley

Jayden Farley

 Jake Hubbard....I think.

Jake Hubbard....I think.

 Nicholas Slama

Nicholas Slama

 Colin Mann

Colin Mann

 Fact: wearing flannel can save you up to three seconds.

Fact: wearing flannel can save you up to three seconds.

 Merrick Otto

Merrick Otto

 Everette Otto

Everette Otto

 Kabyn Scott getting some coaching on the way down.

Kabyn Scott getting some coaching on the way down.

 Jacob Gomez

Jacob Gomez

 Nate Janis

Nate Janis

 In the immortal words of Big Daddy Kane, "Gooning ain't easy." Jacob Haddox.

In the immortal words of Big Daddy Kane, "Gooning ain't easy." Jacob Haddox.

 Goons galore. Sullivon Van Way

Goons galore. Sullivon Van Way

 George Makaneole

George Makaneole

 John Oloughlin

John Oloughlin

First Try! Snowboarding Photography

The apocalypse has begun. All of Southern California is either underwater, under a landslide, washed out to sea or sinking into the depths of the Earth. This is a sign from God. It is the End Times. We. Are. Doomed. But...

...snow is dumping in the mountains right now. As of this writing, Bear Mountain and Snow Summit resorts have received thirty inches of powder in the last forty eight hours and it is still coming down. Even the smaller resorts are benefiting from this biblical amount of precipitation. In light of these historic storms, I thought it was the perfect time to share my first attempts at snowboard and ski photography.

My primary reason for getting on the slopes was to actually snowboard, not to take pictures. I only shot for about 30 minutes at the end of the day. I had a few ideas for different jumps and jibs (log, rails, walls, boxes) but as the day turned into evening, fewer and fewer riders where hitting the park. So I only shot at one jump.

Note: My camera and lighting set up was my Canon T3i with a Rokinon 8mm fisheye and a speedlight being triggered by a radio slave on a tripod. My shutter speed was 1/250. If I shot any faster my camera and my flash would be out of sync. I also curated and edited these photos as I normally would and I threw in a few extra pictures of the drive up and the bros. It's not always about shredding the gnar.

 Not a horrible way to start your day.

Not a horrible way to start your day.

 Pizza, beer and staches: the three keys to success.

Pizza, beer and staches: the three keys to success.

 Stephen would have made a great dirtbag in another life. Here he's pulling out his ground pad and sleeping bag to take a parking lot nap.

Stephen would have made a great dirtbag in another life. Here he's pulling out his ground pad and sleeping bag to take a parking lot nap.

 I exposed the shot for the sky and was relying on my flash to expose the rider and to freeze the motion. Unfortunately, my flash isn't the most powerful and it throws a very narrow beam of light. It's great in controlled environments but it's hard to use for sports. I think the flash fired underneath the rider. Because of this I had to brighten the entire photo and paint in exposure on the rider himself. In the original, unedited picture the sky and the background was darker and showed more detail but the rider was too dark.

I exposed the shot for the sky and was relying on my flash to expose the rider and to freeze the motion. Unfortunately, my flash isn't the most powerful and it throws a very narrow beam of light. It's great in controlled environments but it's hard to use for sports. I think the flash fired underneath the rider. Because of this I had to brighten the entire photo and paint in exposure on the rider himself. In the original, unedited picture the sky and the background was darker and showed more detail but the rider was too dark.

 You can see in the bottom right corner where the flash is firing. The light is landing on him a little better but if I had taken the picture a little later he would have been even more illuminated and he would be at the height of his trick. You can see on the bottom edge of his board a halo effect. This is caused by me having to bring up the exposure and the shadows on the rider. Looking back I wish I had another light to provide a rim light on the rider and to give the landing some definition.

You can see in the bottom right corner where the flash is firing. The light is landing on him a little better but if I had taken the picture a little later he would have been even more illuminated and he would be at the height of his trick. You can see on the bottom edge of his board a halo effect. This is caused by me having to bring up the exposure and the shadows on the rider. Looking back I wish I had another light to provide a rim light on the rider and to give the landing some definition.

 This is probably the most success I had. One thing that all of these photos have in common is motion blur. This is due to the relativity slow shutter speed and the flash missing the riders.

This is probably the most success I had. One thing that all of these photos have in common is motion blur. This is due to the relativity slow shutter speed and the flash missing the riders.

 I messed around with a higher angle, which I'm not thrilled with. It wouldn't be too bad if the rider was higher and I was a little closer. I really needed a rim light on this shot to separate the rider from the background.

I messed around with a higher angle, which I'm not thrilled with. It wouldn't be too bad if the rider was higher and I was a little closer. I really needed a rim light on this shot to separate the rider from the background.

The biggest variable in all of this was the riders. Because my flash is very narrow, I had to guess where they were going to be in the air. The problem is that all of them took different trajectories so aiming the flash was almost useless. They also did different tricks so taking the picture at the height of the trick was a challenge. In hindsight, I should have chosen a rail or box to shoot instead of the jump. That way I could have a better idea of where the riders where going to be in the frame.

These are photos ok for my first time and I learned a lot. I am definitely stoked to get back up to the mountain and get some killer shots.

Sunday Fun-Day at Teds

 I didn't catch this kid's name. He used to race BMX and this was his first time on hitting jumps on a mountain bike. Not too shabby for a newbie...

I didn't catch this kid's name. He used to race BMX and this was his first time on hitting jumps on a mountain bike. Not too shabby for a newbie...

 I barely missed this shot. I had a flash mounted on my camera that helped freeze the movement but I think I was panning a little too fast.

I barely missed this shot. I had a flash mounted on my camera that helped freeze the movement but I think I was panning a little too fast.

 Again, a little too much motion blur. Again, tried to freeze the biker with the flash. Even at full power, my flash was too weak. The Mystery Rider kept sending it too far on this jump. He almost ate his handle bars on this one. Time for a full face helmet, kid.

Again, a little too much motion blur. Again, tried to freeze the biker with the flash. Even at full power, my flash was too weak. The Mystery Rider kept sending it too far on this jump. He almost ate his handle bars on this one. Time for a full face helmet, kid.

 This jump is about twenty feet, hips to the left, the landing is blind and there is a gully to the right of the landing. In summary, it is scary. This guy hit it once before with style but I was at another set of jumps and couldn't capture it. One of the other riders yelled that he was coming down the trail again. I ran to my spot, guessed on my settings and took the shot all within about fifteen seconds. I almost got the shot but my flash was pointed just to the right of the rider. Next time I guess.

This jump is about twenty feet, hips to the left, the landing is blind and there is a gully to the right of the landing. In summary, it is scary. This guy hit it once before with style but I was at another set of jumps and couldn't capture it. One of the other riders yelled that he was coming down the trail again. I ran to my spot, guessed on my settings and took the shot all within about fifteen seconds. I almost got the shot but my flash was pointed just to the right of the rider. Next time I guess.

 Andy decided to see how close he could get is tire to my lens.

Andy decided to see how close he could get is tire to my lens.

 Penny has hit this steep once before but she wasn't feeling it that day.

Penny has hit this steep once before but she wasn't feeling it that day.

 Ryan and penny taking in the sunset.

Ryan and penny taking in the sunset.

Random Macro Shoot

Very rarely do I shoot macro photography. Honestly, I know very little about the "rules" of macro photography. I usually find something that I think is interesting and shoot. All of these photos were shot with an old Minolta 50mm lens held in front of my camera body until the focal plane is where I wanted it to be.

Random Session at Teds. A Photo Dump.

Fun evening session at Ted's. My buddy Joe and I met with some other riders and had a good time. We also learned how the infamous bunker jumps (R.I.P.) came to be. No, it wasn't built by a pro team. No, some dude didn't hire immigrants to build them. It was one guy with a shovel, some sandbags and a ton of ambition.