Monday, November 5, 2007

An Update

Well I am back. I know you all missed me. Right?

I just looked at one of my invoices for last month and I was pretty damn busy. Which is always great. I was getting nervous there for awhile after being told that three of my 'clients' who are now owned by the same company were told by said company that they cannot use freelancers for the entire month of September. When did said big company announce this? August 28th. Real nice of them to give us notice like that. I got the call as I was moving into a nicer (read: more expensive) apartment.

I knew that this one month off that they were trying out would most likely last longer than a month. I knew it was just a test to see if they could get by without freelancers. Turns out I was right....partly. They have slightly lifted the ban, but only slightly. Work from them is very sparse.

But things have turned out okay so far. Well, I do have established relationships with the editors and certainly liked working for them, I have been able to find other work.

For starters I have been working a bit for a company in Providence that publishes a business newspaper every week. They have been fairly consistent.

Then things with UPI started to pick up. I have been covering the Patriots this season and of course the Red Sox. UPI usually has a hard time getting me into Sox games but they make room for a lot more shooters during the playoffs and series.

I have also started freelancing for the Boston Herald. One of their regular freelancers got hired full time and they needed some people to fill her shoes. It's been great working for them, I have learned a lot in a short period of time, and everyone has been very cool. The stress factor is a bit high because it is a daily with an early deadline and I am filing from my car or wherever I can but all part of the job.

For photos, I guess I will start with the Red Sox. So I had known that the Sox had been doing well but really hadn't planned on covering any of their playoff games. As I had said, the Red Sox credentialing process can be strict and I was rejected for quite a few games during the regular season. But for the playoffs they add a ton of space for photographers. The regular photo pits are just past the home dugout and just past the away dugout. For big games it gets very very cozy in there. For the playoffs and ALCS and World Series they add auxiliary spots that are literally on the field. One on each side of the field on the inside of the dugouts down towards home plate and one further out on the left field side past the regular photo pit. When I say on the field, I mean you are sitting in the dirt. This is the only photo I have from what I believe was the ALCS. I was sitting in the aux spot for the first inning so that I could get clean photos of the two starting pitchers, then run back to the third base well and transmit them and shoot the rest of the game from there. I dont know why the photo is backwards or why I didn't smile. Think its because I couldn't figure out how to work my stupid cellphone camera.

Anyway it was pretty great to be able to watch the games from these spots. For the World Series I got to sit in the third base line auxiliary pit next to the Rockies on deck circle for both games. I shared the 4 foot by 4 foot space with one of the Boston Globe photographers and in the next space was a guy I know from US Presswire. Both of them had at least three photographers there along with an editor. I was flying solo. Not the only one I am sure, but having at least one other photographer there would have been nice. Oh yeah and I guess I had a bit of face time on Fox because of my spot. I have heard about it from quite a few folks, which has been very weird.

Oh I forgot to mention one other thing....THE FRICKIN WORLD SERIES!!!!! W...T...F????

Seriously, two and a half years ago I was working my first newspaper assignment shooting a basketball game for the Holbrook Sun. I left my office job right at 5 ran to my car, drove to Hollbrook as fast as I could and shot the heck out of the game. The next week when it was published I drove down to Holbrook and bought 5 copies when I had some time off. I still have them all.
My first published pic. I remember seeing this on the LCD of my 10D
during the game and thinking "Wow". Still love this one.

I never in my life thought I would end up doing something like this. For the first 6 months when I went freelance full time I would leave an assignment and drive to the next one and every now and then just burst out laughing in the car. I couldn't believe I was getting paid to shoot photos. It was surreal. I have kind of lost that feeling a bit, gotten a bit more settled down, its become a regular job now, not regular in the traditional sense, but the dream has settled into reality. I don't or rather didn't view the World Series games as anything other than work. Chance and luck had a lot to do with how I ended up there, as well as help from really good friends and family. You know who you are.

Okay I have to admit, that when I walked into Fenway for the first game and saw the absolute media zoo that was in front of me it kind of hit me that this just wasn't a regular game. Oh and did I mention that the press dining hall had free lobster rolls, sushi, and beer? Yeah cause it did. I only went once though.

Anyway, here are some photos. We all like photos right? Trying for diversity here.

Some guy from Baltimore that was at the game with his son.


One of the first pitches of game one of the World Series.


Hi Papi!


Lugo


Pedroia.

I dont have much from the Patriots on this computer right now. But will put some of those up when I get a chance.

I will leave with a shot from an assignment for the Patriot Ledger. A guy named Domenic Yaniero from New Jersey who impersonates a once very famous professional wrestler 'Ultimate Warrior' who was huge when I was a kid. Now this guy dresses like him and bills himself as 'Warrior' and wrestles at semi pro matches held all over the place. They never actually mention that he is an impersonator at these shows just that 'Warrior' will be there. So people come from all over to see 'Warrior' thinking it is the 'Ultimate Warrior'. Some of them know it may not be the real thing, but don't care, others don't have a clue and hound him for his autograph and a Polaroid photo for a price. It was a great assignment. Seriously.

I photographed 'Warrior' behind the scenes walking through the upcoming match with his opponent. Another wrestler saw me do this and told the manager of the show. The manager asked me about it and I played dumb. He wanted me to delete the photos of them walking through the upcoming match because his opponent is a 'bad guy' and people will see them working together and may think that they are not really enemies. I was later told by the reporter that the manager follows old school pro wrestling rules and that no one pretends that whole bad guy good guy thing is real except during the actual matches.
QUINCY, Mass. - October 19, 2007: Domenic Yaniero, left, AKA 'Warrior' to wrestling fans, prepares for his match behind the curtain at the Quincy Armory while his opponent 'Prince Alad' watches the current match through an opening in the curtain. Yaniero who lives in New Jersey wrestles on weekends as his 'Warrior' persona.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bigcat!!!!

Matt H said...

Whoa Nelly!

Anonymous said...

STP!!!!!! Best Band Ever!!!!

Matt H said...

Hell yeah motha effa'!