Friday, March 28, 2008

Details, Details

I shot a chalk art event in town today (Italian Street Painting, they like to call it), and I was a little obsessed with the detail shot. Couple that with my recent acquisition of a beat up old macro lens, and you get a lot of this:

Don't worry, I shot some overall photos as well. I still need some work on that hail mary shot, I guess.

Saturday, March 22, 2008


She's only 14. Just a fair warning.

So this photo caused a minor stir in the newsroom today. I love it. It was exactly what I was looking for when I set out to get a final Spring Break weekend photo for the newspaper. Not to talk up my own superior photography skills, but just look at it. The color, the lines, the composition- it was all working for me.

What didn't work for some was her age. I can see that, and I think if it were running six columns on the front page of the paper I would probably question whether it was appropriate. But the Spring Break package was slated for the cover of the local section, and I wanted it to run big and in color on page 1B.

The girl's father was there when I took the picture. He was a little protective and interrogated me a bit when I first approached the pair. I normally don't let people see my photos in camera, but I shared the picture with the father just to be safe. He was OK with it. After a little discussion in the newsroom and a call to the managing editor, the photo was approved as the lead for 1B. Thoughts? I'd be interested in seeing what other people think.

With all the hubbub on the above photo, probably my favorite photo of the day was quietly edited out. It really doesn't scream Spring Break like the other ones I turned in did, so I didn't push for it to get in the paper tomorrow.

It made me smile as I shot it. I thought it made a nice little moment. I suppose there was something for all ages on Padre Island today.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Military Moms

I put together a slide show today. I like it, but I'll admit I was a little disappointed in the end. It turned out better than it should have given the circumstances I suppose. What I lack in substance I make up for in style, I like to say. I just pictured it looking and sounding so much better in my head. I guess I'm disappointed I didn't have the skill to make my vision a reality.

In case you are wondering, Blue Star Mothers is a support group of mom who's children are serving in the military. They were going to take a group photo at their monthly meeting to mark the 5-year anniversary of the war, so I decided to crash their party with my own little photo session.

Post 200 on the old blog, by the way. Where has the time gone.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Spring Breakers

I was assigned to shoot the Spring Break beach action today, where I saw some visual reminders of exactly where I was.

This is definitely America
And there's no doubt I'm in Texas
My favorite person of the day, though, had to be this guy. There was a huge line of cars and probably about an hour-long wait to get to Padre Island. As I was waiting in line with everyone else, a guy riding in the truck in front of me gets out, sets up a chair in the bed and cracks open a beer. I just had to shoot it. So I told the reporter to take the wheel, jumped out of my car and hopped onto the back of the guy's pickup. He seemed unfazed and offered me a beer. He said he didn't want to wait any longer to soak up the sun and get his Spring Break started. There's only one thing I can say about that:

God Bless America

Friday, March 14, 2008

Bye, Bye Basketball

Well, the Corpus Christi basketball season officially ended Friday when the Lady Islanders fell in the second round of the Southland Conference Tournament. Too bad. Basketball is easily one of my favorite sports to shoot. I especially love basketball playoffs, and I was fortunate enough to shoot the ends of the season for all the leading teams in the area.

Friday it was the Lady Islanders. It was a one-and-done situation for me, but the team actually made it into the second round of the tournament. The Islanders were the bottom seeded team and were expected to fall to the No. 1 seed in the opening round. We didn't even send a photographer to the tournament. Well, they won, which caught a lot of people off guard. Suddenly it looked like they had a shot at winning the thing, giving them an automatic spot in the NCAA tournament. So I not-so-subtly suggested to my photo editor that they send me to Houston to shoot the action.

Before the game

During the game

After the game

Before that, the last boys basketball team left standing in the area made it to the state semifinals. The Bears of West Oso put a up a good showing, but the ball didn't bounce their way.

Before the game

During the game

And after the game

And finally, the last girls team standing also came from West Oso. They cruised through the playoffs and made it to the state tournament in Austin, but they lost in the first round. I actually thought this team was going to go all the way. They were undefeated and often beat their opponents by huge margins. But it wasn't meant to be.

Before the game

During the game

After the game

It was fun while it lasted. Better luck next year.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Mariachi Madness

I knew the traditional Mexican Mariachi was alive and well in South Texas. What I didn't know was that they have junior high and high school level mariachi bands, which compete against one another in a South Texas smack down called "Dia Del Mariachi." It was just as nerdy as a regular high school band competition, so of course I loved it.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Texas Two Step

I love election nights.

When I worked in Arkansas my days off were Tuesday and Wednesday. When elections came around I always volunteered to work, but was always told I wasn't needed. Frown. So I haven't worked an election night since my first job in Cheyenne, Wyo., where I took pictures of the Sheriff's race winner and wrote a story about the hotly contested county assessor's race. Seriously, that county assessor's race gave me nightmares.

Well, for last night's Texas Primary I was assigned to hang out at the Barack Obama watch party, where very few people actually showed up to see results. The few that eventually came out were not too energetic once it became clear Obama was losing his lead in the Lone Star State. Tear.

All the action was out at the precinct meetings, which were held after voting was over to determine where a portion of the state's delegates would go. I briefly wandered over to one just to see what all the fuss was about.

Yee-haw. The place was packed. Apparently the hardest, most confusing part about the caucus-like gathering was having to do math. So of course many of the meeting took hours. Unfortunately I couldn't stay too long. I had to head back to Barack's watch party hide away.

Sitting in the dark, watching TV and eating. Looks like my Friday nights. Sigh.