What's better than watching the best Slam Dunk Contest of all-time, again? Watching it at 400 FPS!
What's better than watching the best Slam Dunk Contest of all-time, again? Watching it at 400 FPS!
It's been a while since I've posted. I need to do more. I know. I'll start with this trailer for 'Soundtrack: The Story of the DJ'. Music is life. I will be seeing this.
"...present it to the world, and the world will tell you if it's worth their time or not".
I used to blog all of the time. I loved it. I would use it to show projects I was working on, show various things I found interesting online (or in the world) or just put some of my thoughts out there. Somewhere along the way, I lost the desire. When I was hired by the Atlanta Falcons I thought, 'Man, I'm going to blog every week. How cool would it be to show everyone what it's like to work in the NFL?'. I didn't. When I got to Alabama I said, 'Ok, seriously, this time I'm going to blog as much as I possibly can. I have a son now. I want him to know what I do. I want to have an archive. I want to share with my family that lives long distances from here, what I've accomplished. Show my grandfather what it is that I really do'. Once again, I didn't. I don't know what's happened to me, really. I used to photograph everything. I don't anymore. Not even my son, unless it's with my phone. My very expensive camera now just lives in the bag. My photo lighting adaptor broke around 2011. It's still broken. I got a cool notebook from my friend Keely, while I lived in Atlanta. One day I decided that would be a journal that I would fill out and pass on to my son one day, documenting his life as he grew. I filled out the first page, to him...then stopped. Then I went through an entire year at Alabama. I documented rarely, and nothing to really want to show. In the end, my grandfather passed away 2 days after the season ended. It was a great opportunity that I wasted. It's gone and I can never have that back. He is gone as well. What's happened to me? Is it work? Am I caught up in the day to day grind that is having a high pressure job? I don't really know. But I know I don't like it. So I'm making a conscious effort to get it back. I need the spark. The photos need to begin again. The journal can be salvaged for Judson, with memories and upkeep. And the blog can be done as well. This post took me 10 minutes. That should never feel like a burden. So I'm sorry.
More to come.
One of those moments...
More often than not, people who work in sports become jaded by their surroundings. They forget the reason we are working this industry to begin with, our love of the game and being fans. I have never forgotten this, so when I am around these humans with abilities far superior to my own, I am in awe. Saturday was no exception.
Saturday, we (Alabama) welcomed Texas A&M to Tuscaloosa, with a 59-0 beating. Needless to say, it was pretty exciting. One of the things that sticks out in my mind from the game, was another person who was in awe of the game. New York Yankee third baseman, Alex Rodriguez, was in attendance. This was exciting for me, and luckily I had the chance to meet him prior to kickoff. But what really stands out to me was the end of the game, when this photo was snapped. It's not the best photo I've ever taken but it captures something. This is A-Rod, superstar athlete, and he was breaking his neck to watch our guys. He was glued to the action, sort of seeming like a child watching heroes. A moment I'm glad I captured. Post-game he was in the tunnel to watch the guys walk by. He had the same demeanor.
It's moments like this that remind me why I do what I do. Why I want to be around what I'm around. I'm a fan of the game, the players and the moments. Everyday I try to find something I can tell my son, and future children/grand children, in the future. Always be a fan.
A fascinating look at how Def Jam came to be. I love hip-hop. I love the history of hip-hop. This is fantastic.
Legally deaf since the age of three, Seattle Seahawks running back Derrick Coleman has spent his life proving people wrong. Check out his powerful story in this Duracell commercial.
Most of you may know, but for those of you who don't, I know longer am a member of the Atlanta Falcons organization. I am now the Assistant Director of Design/Head Football Designer for the Alabama Crimson Tide. I have been working with them for about a month but I wanted to get nice and settled in before I posted anything about it. My time with the Falcons was amazing and enlightening. I have memories from them that I will never forget. Amazing memories.
But now my time is Alabama time. It's amazing to think of this journey I've been on. I've been more than outspoken about my layoff while I was in Ruston, LA. Since then I went from grinding it out for a year, to the NFL to this. I'm so humbled. So far this job/move has been amazing. One of the best decisions I have ever made. Yes, I grew up a lifelong LSU fan. But it's just like it was when I went from a Saints fan to a Falcons employee. You just have to be loyal to those who are loyal to you, in the words of my friend Josh McDaniel. I couldn't have asked for better coworkers and resources that they have provided me. I hope to be able to blog more now and post some really great work as I have nearly complete creative freedom. So stay tuned. Should be a great ride.
And I'm so greatful for it. Especially with hits like this.
Football season is back. I couldn't be more excited, as this is the time of year when I get to be around the 'team' again. Game day is one of the greatest times that I can think of. Nothing like being steps away from the some of the highest caliber athletes on earth. It was great to be able to break the camera out, shake off some rust and get back to taking photos of the sport I love. I wanted to capture the game a little differently. I wanted to shoot tighter, use crops and get a lot of elements that people normally miss. Only problem was that I had a pretty strict assignment to cover our new players and rookies. That's fine, except it didn't leave me much room to break out. I will next game for sure. But for now I wanted to share some of the images that stuck out to me, from our first preseason game.
Also, the highlight of the night for me, was my back and forth with Adam 'Pacman' Jones, making sure I got a good photo of him. He was a surprisingly nice guy.
Each year the Atlanta Falcons hold one of their practices at a local high school, and fans can come out to watch, completely free of charge. This year's event was held in the town that I live in, Gainesville, GA. Worked out great for me. The stadium was great and the crowd was even better. I was told that we had over 14,000 fans show up. Not bad for a practice at a small town high school stadium. Here are my favorite shots from the evening.
Some of you may or may not know, that my base for creative work is actually video and video fx. I also used to have a weekly post called 'Tuesday Inspiration' on a former blog, because I dislike Tuesday so much. I try to do this to get over that hump, and get people's creative mind rolling. I digress.
I came across this VFX breakdown from the Gatsby movie and it's fantastic. Enjoy.
Every year, the Atlanta Falcons hold an event, properly titled "Friday Night Lights". The event is sponsored by Kia Motors. It's a great concept, in that fans from all over can come see the Atlanta Falcons in a full on practice, at a high school stadium in that Atlanta area. Along with watching the team, the cheerleaders perform and players sign autographs after the practice has ended. The best part, it's all free. I hesitate to call it a challenge, but the 'challenge' in designing the art for it, is making it seem larger than life yet keeping the up close and small time feel. It is in fact a larger than life event for fans, but the idea is for it to be personal. So the idea was simple, showcase a high school football stadium, with Falcons' red lighting. The players need to be the larger than life element. So I decided to give them an almost 'god' like feel as they tower over the field with a sort of atmospheric glow. In the end, I think it was a success. I hope that this year's event is a huge hit. Last year's was my first real chance to be around the team as a whole and in front of fans. I guess I'm sort of a veteran now, so it will be more fun and less nervous. If you're in the Atlanta area, come on out. And tune in to www.atlantafalcons.com for more information.
I feel like it's wrong to say that there are certain things that I work on for the Falcons that are more important than others. I feel guilty about singling some things out. But the reality of my job is, it's true. There are projects and events that trump others. I don't think that they trump them in importance, however, just in the amount of pressure my role is and the amount of attention the project bring upon itself. The span of days from April 25th through the 27th is one of those times. This is the NFL Draft. The draft is interesting for me, as it is one of the craziest times that I actually experience through the entire season (outside of a game day). The reason for this is that I have to create a graphic, or graphic package, for each player that the Atlanta Falcons select. No big deal right? Well I have to create that graphic within 5 to 10 minutes of the selection being made.
So what does that entail?
Well, before the draft, it's a must to have a sort of template or roadmap created. If you don't have this, you're dead in the water. After the template is created and approved, you wait for the draft (calm before the storm). Once a pick is made the first step in the process is to find images (in our case 2 images) of that player. This is slightly tricky. For starters, most of these guys don't have Sports Illustrated cover quality images online. You have to also make sure that the images are compelling and exciting. After all, these graphics are the very first graphics that fans will get to see of this player. You have to draw them right in. The next step is to edit the images, clip out an action image and then apply all of the effects you might need. Followed by saving out the graphic and making sure that graphics get to the person who needs them.
Here is a look at what this all looks like, to me:
5 to 10 minutes.
In the end, This year was a success. Not only did the Falcons draft some absolutely outstanding players, but the graphics conveyed the quality of the athlete. Success.
Everything, except the video, was created on the flly, during the draft.