Today was the start of my 17th season as the Hurricanes’ Team Photographer, and my 21st overall including my student years. Things have changed over that period of time, going from processing and printing film in my closet to digital processing and Photoshop work on a Mac. Photos that were distributed to primary clients via FedEx back then are done so via FTP today. Outside sales to editorial clients have been nearly entirely eliminated by agencies suck as Getty Images, who have largely commodified the market for stock photography, resulting in use fees at a fraction of what was realized in the past. In its place some photographers have moved to promoting themselves via websites and social media sites including Twitter and Facebook.
“Caneshooter” has become my identity and my brand online and in social media after just being a nickname hurled at me by another photographer back in the late 1990′s. I spend more time promoting my brand than I do shooting photographs. I have over 91,000 photos online, of just Hurricanes Athletics. I have this blog, a Facebook fan page and a Twitter account. I hope I post interesting stuff, and that you’ll look at my website, my blog, fan my page on Facebook or follow me on Twitter. And I really hope you’ll buy a print or a download!
ABOVE: Kenny Kadji poses earlier today during our basketball freshmen/transfer studio shoot at the School of Communication.
Hurricanes great Russell Maryland was one of 14 players and two coaches chosen for inclusion into the 2011 College Hall of Fame Class, announced by The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame this morning.
Maryland won the Outland Trophy in 1990 and was elected to the UM Sports Hall of Fame in 2001. He becomes the fifth player in school history inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame, joining quarterback Gino Torretta, safety Bennie Blades, defensive end Ted Hendricks and running back Don Bosseler. Former UM coaches Jack Harding & Andy Gustafson are also in the College Football Hall of Fame.
To many people, the term “shooting hoops” means grabbing the ball and heading down to the park for a game of pick-up basketball. To me, it’s another facet of my job. Here’s how I shoot hoops for the Miami Hurricanes.
I’m a bit of a equipment minimalist when it comes to photography. I don’t keep and cart around much more photo gear than I need on a daily basis. It is, after all, a business, and if gear isn’t working for me on a regular basis, then it’s not generating revenue. So the following is what I use while shooting men’s and women’s basketball for UM:
Camera #1 is hand-held with me on the corner of the floor. I use a Nikon D300s with a 70-200 f2.8 lens attached.
Camera #3 is usually a D300 with a 12-24 f4 in front of me on the floor looking up towards the paint. However, I recently bought a Canon G12 (a point & shoot which many pros keep in their bag) and noticed it had a remote jack, so it served as Camera #3 last night, mounted on the catwalk above the scoreboard.
My strobes and remotes are fired using Pocket Wizard radios. The strobes are Speedotron 2401SX packs with quad lampheads, permanently installed on the catwalk, one in each corner with the fifth set for down court fill.
The overheads in the BankUnited Center are a challenge. Like I stated in my previous post, there is no catwalk directly above the baskets like there were in the Miami Arena. As you can see from this image from above the scoreboard, the view has many obstacles. This may prove to be such a low percentage shot that I may abandon it altogether at some point. If I had to dedicate a $4000 camera and lens in this position, I would have abandoned it already.
Something to remember: by using strobes, I have only one shot every two and a half seconds. That’s how long it takes the Speedos to recycle to full power – no high speed motor drive here. Timing is everything. Using strobes also allows me to use the G12. Its poor drive and focus speed are not a factor here, but how I make the G12 work is another topic for another day, as is my post-game editing workflow.
Often we photographers will go to extremes to get a unique image. After recently acquiring a Canon G12 “point-and-shoot” consumer camera, I noticed it had a remote control port.
The bells went off in my head. Could I actually use a small consumer camera as a remote?
So for last night’s men’s basketball game vs. Maryland, I mounted the Canon G12 on the catwalk above the scoreboard at the BankUnited Center.
The Canon G12 is a 10mp consumer point and shoot camera with some pro features. Relevent to the image above, it has a 28-140mm f2.8-f4.5 lens, a hot shoe and the ability to manually expose and focus. But it’s main unpublicized feature is its ability to sync at a higher shutter speed than usual when using external flash due to its CCD sensor. With the right strobe and shutter speed, a photographer can overpower the sun on an outdoor shoot. That’s actually the reason I purchased one.
While mounting an overhead camera is nothing new, it’s the first time I’ve done it at the BUC. In the old Miami Arena, the catwalks were perfectly positioned above the rim on each end of the court. I often mounted a remote above one of the hoops there, as you can see from this shot of Darius Rice. In the BUC, the catwalks are farther out along the perimeter of the floor, with one climbing to a platform above the scoreboard. The view is at a slight angle, and through a hanging speaker assembly.
The next challenge was actually firing the camera. Using Pocket Wizard brand radios to trigger the shutter was easy, but the “shutter lag,” the time it takes for the camera to respond and fire the shutter, was my concern. Sure enough, it took an average of a second and a half between my pressing the button on my radio and the camera actually firing. While that may not seem like a long time to some, to me that’s the time between the ball leaving a shooter’s hands and it getting to the rim.
While I came up with six usable images, the “shutter lag” issue took some of my attention away from using my main camera. I just could not go from using my handheld setup to firing the radio in time to catch a rebound. So while this setup isn’t practical for every game use, it is workable for an occasional different look.
Image details: Canon G12, 140mm, 1/500 sec, f5.6 @ 200 ASA. Used with Speedotron 2401SX strobes, triggered via Pocket Wizard radios.
The Miami Hurricanes Women’s Basketball team is creating excitement not seen in a generation.
Nineteen years ago, the ‘Canes sandwiched 30 consecutive wins between an opening night overtime loss at FSU and a loss to Vanderbilt in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Tournament. The 2010-11 version has a chance to be just as special.
Sunday, the #16 Hurricanes were tested by #25 Georgia Tech, trailing for much of the game against the larger Yellow Jackets. The ‘Canes’ aggressiveness forced 28 Yellow Jackets’ fouls, resulting in four of the five Georgia Tech starters fouling out. Once the opponent’s size was sitting on the bench, the game was in hand.
The win was the ‘Canes’ 21st straight at home, and pushed UM’s record this season to 20-2.
Games like Sunday’s against Georgia Tech are games the ‘Canes need to win to receive a high seed come tournament time in March.
While the next test is a road matchup with #3 Duke, this team needs and deserves your support, regardless of the outcome on Thursday in Durham.
This time you don’t have to go to a glorified high school gym to see them. Despite the curtains ringing three sides of the BankUnited Center, the games have an electric air about them.
In the opening round of the WNIT Tournament last year the ‘Canes hosted Florida Gulf Coast in front of 636 fans, many of them Eagles fans from across Alligator Alley. The place resembled an echo chamber at times. Last Sunday, 1227 noisy cheering fans were at the BUC. There’s plenty of room for more. At $5 a ticket, it’s by far the best entertainment value in town.
Riquna Williams and Shenise Johnson will be in the UM Sports Hall of Fame someday. Each has surpassed 1000 career points and are #1 and #2 in scoring in the ACC this season. Morgan Stroman has led the ‘Canes in rebounding 10 times this season and has seven double-doubles. Stefanie Yderstrom has connected on 31 three-pointers this season, including twice Sunday in overtime. This success should carry over into next season as there is not one senior on the roster.
While I’m a fan of the big black curtains, photographically speaking, I’d rather they lift them in order to seat more of you. For a little more than the price of a value meal, you can be entertained for two hours and see some Hurricanes student-athletes who will be talked about for generations.
Publications Coordinator Etta Schaller of the Hurricanes Media Relations department has created dozens of computer wallpaper graphics for your downloading pleasure over at Hurricanesports.com. Images include our work from the Coach Golden press conference and men’s & women’s basketball photo day and game action through this season. You may access the wallpaper section of Hurricanesports.com directly by clicking here.
Our refurbished and expanded 11×14 gallery has arrived at Caneshooter.com.
Formerly part of the Canesport merchandise site, the expanded 11×14 gallery is a collection of over 200 our best and/or most popular images of the greatest ‘Canes of the past 20 years, spanning my time as a student and as the team photographer.
Many of the great ones are here, such as Andre Johnson holding up the Sears Trophy, Darren Krein saluting after a sack, Gino Toretta carried off the field on his teammates shoulders after the Heisman clinching San Diego State game, James Jackson flying over the opposition in the Micron Bowl, Jeremy Shockey celebrating after scoring the game-winning touchdown over FSU, Carlos Huerta and Leon Searcy during the 1991 National Championship Parade (before the car caught on fire!), Orien Harris standing over FSU’s Chris Rix in the 2003 mud bath, the “Flying ‘Canes” shot of Santana Moss and Andre King from the 2000 Gator Bowl, Sean Taylor returning an interception past a diving Gator, Taylor again nailing a Pitt receiver in mid-air, Vince Wilfork nailing FSU’s Leon Washington in the 2004 Orange Bowl and Sebastian the Ibis through the smoke with the American Flag.
There are also stock shots of Steve Walsh, Craig Erickson, Lamar Thomas, Warren Sapp, Al Blades, Antrel Rolle, Clinton Portis, Dan Morgan, Damione Lewis, Bubba Franks, Darryl Sharpton, Devin Hester, Donnell Bennett, Dwayne Johnson, Ed Reed, Edgerrin James, Frank Gore, Greg Olsen, Jarrett Payton, Jerome McDougle, Jimmy Graham, Jonathan Vilma, Joaquin Gonzalez, Kellen Winslow, Kelly Jennings, Ken Dorsey, Kennard Lang, Kenny Holmes, Michael Barrow, Najeh Davenport, Nate Brooks, Nate Webster, Ray Lewis, Reggie Wayne, Rocky McIntosh, Rohan Marley, Roscoe Parrish, Russell Maryland, Rusty Madearis, Yatil Green, Willis McGahee and others.
Both the men’s and women’s basketball season openers take place tomorrow at the BankUnited Center. The women tip off at noon and the men at 7:30pm. The women are led by juniors Shenise Johnson and Riquna Williams (below) and the men by sixth year senior Adrian Thomas (above).
Former Hurricanes running back and 2004 Orange Bowl MVP Jarrett Payton is dedicating his entire online radio show today, November 1, to the memory and stories of his father, NFL Hall of Fame running back Walter Payton. Walter passed away 11 years ago today from bile duct cancer at the age of 45. Former NFL greats such as Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders and others are scheduled to call into the show to share their stories. Tune in at www.chicagolandsportsradio.com this morning from 9am-12pm (central) and/or tonight from 7pm-10pm (central).
Above: Jarrett Payton runs on to the field with his father’s Chicago Bears jersey on Senior Day, 2003.
Where have we been?
While anticipation builds for the annual battle against FSU on the gridiron, other sports at The U are either in mid-season or gearing up to start their seasons. In fact, nearly every sport at the University of Miami will have had their “photo days” by the holidays. In the last few weeks alone, men’s and women’s basketball, women’s golf, women’s track & field, men’s tennis and women’s swimming & diving have had their marketing and head shots taken. Women’s soccer and volleyball are in mid-season. With varying degrees of commitments to the four other schools we service (FAU, Lynn, Nova Southeastern and Barry) and with our increasing presence on Twitter and Facebook, there has been little time left for us to blog.
We encourage those of you who are Hurricanes Football fans to come out and follow one or more of the other sports. The games/matches are exciting and the opposition top-notch, and admission is inexpensive or occasionally free. We also encourage you to follow us on Twitter (@caneshooter) and/or on Facebook (Caneshooter.com) for more frequent links, photos and tidbits.
Follow us on Twitter (@caneshooter) and on Facebook (caneshooter.com) for more frequent posts and updates! Don’t forget our archive on the web, http://www.caneshooter.com, with nearly 65,000 images of Hurricanes Athletics!
Ray Ray Armstrong returns an interception 22 yards for a touchdown during the 2nd quarter of the Hurricanes 45-0 victory over Florida A&M last night at Sun Life Stadium.
Here’s the morning roundup of local coverage of last night’s game:
The Hurricanes take on FAMU tonight at 7:30pm at Sun Life Stadium (Jacory’s House) and will be broadcast on ESPN3.
UM’s Jacory Harris is on the preseason watch list for the Davey O’Brien Award, presented annually to the nation’s top quarterback by the Davey O’Brien Foundation, is a preseason candidate for the Manning Quarterback Award, presented annually to the nation’s top quarterback by the Sugar Bowl Committee, and the Maxwell Award, awarded to the best collegiate player by the Maxwell Football Club in Philadelphia.
The junior from Northwestern High School in Miami was selected as the ACC Offensive Back of the Week four times last season, and was the first ‘Canes quarterback to pass for 3000 yards in a season since Ken Dorsey did it in 2002.
UM’s Leonard Hankerson is a preseason candidate for the Belitnikoff Award, presented annually to the best collegiate receiver.
The senior from St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Ft. Lauderdale led the Hurricanes in receiving last season with 45 receptions for 801 yards and six touchdowns.
UM’s Brandon Harris is on the preseason watch list for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, presented annually to the nation’s top defensive player by the Charlotte Touchdown Club, and is a preseason candidate for the Jim Thorpe Trophy, presented annually to the best defensive back.
The junior from Booker T. Washington High School in Miami was a first team All-ACC selection last season and is a 2010 Sporting News Preseason All-America selection.
UM’s defensive lineman Allen Bailey was added to the watch list for the Rotary Lombardi Award (down linemen) on Friday.
The senior from Sapelo, Georgia is also up for the Bednarik Award (best defensive player), Ted
Hendricks Defensive End of the Year Award and Bronko Nagurski Trophy (also best defensive player).
UM’s Colin McCarthy is on the preseason watch list for the Dick Butkus Award, presented annually to the nation’s top linebacker. The senior from Clearwater Catholic High School was a second team All-ACC selection last season and joins fellow ‘Cane linebacker Sean Spence on the list.
McCarthy is also on the Bednarik Award list (best defensive player in college) and the Bronko Nagurski Trophy list (best defensive player).
UM’s Matt Bosher is on the preseason watch list for the Lou Groza Award, presented annually to the nation’s top placekicker. The senior kicker from Jupiter, Florida is also a candidate for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS award, which recognizes seniors who excel in the areas of community, classroom, character and competition.
Read AP reporter Tim Reynold’s recent story on Bosher here.
Miami Arena? Yeah, I miss it.
With its small capacity and lack of suites a beancounter’s nightmare, they did get one thing right.
The catwalks. Rafters. Whatever you want to call them. Most of you never looked up there, let alone walked on them. But with their placement, they were perfect for us photographers. For basketball, they crossed right above the rim on both ends. Another pair even lined up perfectly over goal for the Florida Panthers’ first five seasons.
I often mounted a remote over the basket in those days, as evidenced by the shot of James Jones against Providence College in 2000. This image is one of 290 images from the 2000 season I recently uploaded to the Caneshooter Archive. The ‘Canes won the Big East regular season championship that year and advanced to the Sweet 16 in the tournament.
When the ‘Canes moved to the BankUnited Center on campus, our perfect overhead remotes were history. The new building’s catwalks span the outside perimeter of the floor, and only one crosses the court, right above the scoreboard. There is one location for an off-center view of the hoop, and I may try it out this upcoming season.
So despite the inch thick layer of dust, chalk marks of how many bolts were loose and occasional rat, I kind of liked the “old” place. I’m likely the only one.
A story in today’s Miami Herald describes ‘Canes OL Orlando Franklin as “all business” and that he is “a scowler.”
Except after wins over Oklahoma, that is:
Winn has tested out a statistical method of identifying breakout sophomores based on a Basketball Prospectus study of players’ possession usage over their first three seasons.
Nebraska forward Christian Standhardinger, Texas forward Jordan Hamilton, Villanova guard Maalik Wayns and UCLA forward Reeves Nelson also made Winn’s list.
Read more at Sports Illustrated’s web site.