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Best of 2015 – Green Bay Packers

With every new year there are new clients and 2015 presented me with some great opportunities.

Most of you know that I am a team photographer for the Ravens and while I love the work that I do with them, it’s not a full time gig. I work with a variety of other editorial and commercial clients throughout the year creating work that usually is not related to football.

However, last year was a little different. Aside from having the chance to photograph the Super Bowl as a part of the NFL’s photo team I was hired by the Green Bay Packers to create marketing imagery for their 2015 season.

My availability is always first committed to the Ravens, but since I only shoot about half of their away games, I do have a few weekends off during the season. I was able to make it to Green Bay for a few practices and games and although I was shooting on field action, I was primarily focusing more on non action images.

It’s always interesting to see how other NFL teams operate and The Packers, much like the Ravens are a great organization and I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity I had to work with them.

Here are a few of my favorite images from my time with them.

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Best of 2015 – Baltimore Ravens

2015 has come and gone and it’s time to look back and reflect on the experiences I’ve had. I finished up my 9th season as one of the team photographers for the Baltimore Ravens. I share that title with the Ravens other long time team photographer Phil Hoffmann. While Phil has been around from the beginning of the Ravens franchise and has seen many ups and downs, during my time with the team I’ve experienced mostly ups. My first year with the team in 2007, the Ravens went 5-11 and since then they have won a Super Bowl and only missed the playoffs one year. That is until this past year where they once again ended up 5-11.

During the Ravens many successful years I would often think about teams that would only win a handful of games and think, “Man, I wonder what it’s like to be a photographer for THAT team. That must be terrible.”

Well, now I know what it’s like…and you know what…it’s not terrible.

It’s great actually. It’s REALLY great.

Why? Because I love what I do and I am invested in being a part of this team and telling their story, no matter what happens.

Is winning MORE fun? Absolutely. But winning or losing never changes my approach or passion for doing my job.

That being said, here are my favorite moments from a roller coaster of a season.

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Tear Sheet : GX Magazine

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A few weeks ago I was contacted by GX (Guard Experience) Magazine to make a portrait of a female officer in the National Guard.

Basically my assignment was to make a cool portrait in front of a background that helped convey the officer’s story. Seemed simple enough.

After speaking with my subject, CW2 Harringon, I learned about her amazing story as the sole female member of a Special Forces unit in Afghanistan. This type of scenario is extremely rare, however she was a welcomed and respected member of the unit because of her skill set.

In Afghanistan, Afghan women are not allowed to speak to the males. CW2 Harrington was able to communicate directly with females on both sides of the fight, to either help convince the wives of potential allies to join the Afghan Army or to retrieve sensitive information from the wives of the opposition leaders.

CW2 Harrington was stationed at Fort Meade, MD so after hearing her story I began to scratch my head a bit, trying to think how I could convey her incredible story through this location. Needless to say Fort Meade doesn’t necessarily resemble the mountains of Afghanistan.

Realizing that the power of the images were going to come from my subject and not a literal background, I made the decision to just find a simple background and let my subject shine through. After trying a few other more “military-themed” options and realizing I was trying a little to hard, I came upon some barracks with a simple, yet interesting looking wooden paneling on the outside. The wood was tinted green and was an almost identical match for CW2 Harrington’s uniform.

I had her stand right up against the wall, set up my light and let her do the rest. The textures blew me away, but what makes the images so strong is CW2 Harrington’s spirit piercing through in each photo.

In addition to the tear sheet with the image that ran in the magazine here are a few more of my favorite images.
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Super Bowl XLIX : My Take

In the last 8 years I have photographed a lot of NFL football games…all of which were shot as a team photographer for the Baltimore Ravens. A few days ago I photographed my first NFL game that did not involve the Ravens…It just so happened to be the Super Bowl. A few weeks ago I was contacted by the NFL asking if I wanted to be a part of their photo team if the Ravens didn’t make the Super Bowl. Of course I said yes. (Insert a giant thank you to Ben and the rest of the photo crew for having me along)

I was excited to be able to approach a game purely as a photojournalist, not caring who won or lost, just there to capture what happened. Although this was my first time shooting the Super Bowl for the NFL, it was not my first Super Bowl. I was with the Ravens when they won the Super Bowl two years ago. Naturally things were a little different. As a team photographer  I am allowed on the field during pre game warmups, in the locker room and inside the bench area. That was not the case in Arizona (which I expected). During a game for the Ravens I roam the entire sideline working opposite the team’s other photographer Phil Hoffmann. For the NFL I was stationed in the same corner of the field for the entire game.

My assignment? Shoot whatever happens in front of my lens. After the game, I had a more specific task. Originally I was supposed to shoot the winning coach. Just before the game things got switched around so that each photographer would just shoot the coach/QB on their sideline. I just happened to be on the Seahawks sideline. Although not as fun as shooting the winner, I made a few frames of Pete Carroll shaking hands with Bill Belichick then somberly walking off the field. After that I tried my best to work my way back into the media scrums which were already jam-packed.

All in all it was a great experience for me. Although I’d love it if the Ravens went to the Super Bowl every year, if they don’t, hopefully I’ll still make my way on to the field.

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