"Those who have experienced Paris have advantage over those who have not. We are the ones who have glimpsed a little bit of heaven, down here on earth." - Deirdre Kelly

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

from rue Cler to the Gridiron

"I wish I could go to Paris right now." - Emily Proctor

Since 2009, the months of September or October have been mes Paris mois - 8 weeks, 2 of which I annually reserve to pack up my family and Coco and visit our beloved city. Sadly my and Mr. G's careers, coupled with 2 teens and one tweener's school and sports schedules, have necessitated a Paris-hiatus :-{ But there's a silver lining. My camera lens have moved from the streets of Paris to the Gridiron...

"Anyone who's just driven 90 yards against huge men trying to kill them has earned the right to do Jazz hands." 
- Craig Ferguson

Photographing youth sports was never an aspiration. One early fall afternoon, 7 years ago, Mr. G had a business meeting that ran late and asked me to take our eldest to football practice. Five minutes in, I was forever hooked. I was fascinated by the movement, rhythm, color and emotion of the game. Next practice I brought my cameras and asked the coaches if they'd mind if I wandered the field. They said yes. Next thing I knew I was roaming up and down the sidelines, at every game, snapping away...

The first thing I learned is: photographing 11 bodies, simultaneously moving in 11 directions - fast - while I'm moving at the same time and shooting through a telephoto lens, is incredibly difficult. Through observation, trial and error I learned that the players (as a group and individually) have their own distinct rhythm. The challenge is to sync with it. But when you do...

The Black, White & Gold  
Glenbard North High School 
Freshman Football Team (Fall, 2016)

"To me a photograph is a page from life, 
and that being the case, it must be real." 
- Weegee

My favorite part is that I get to photograph my son...

#4 Rory Hills - Wide Receiver & Corner
Glenbard North High School Freshman Football

What I love most about photography is that a photo (or series of photos) tell(s) a story, conveys a mood,  an emotion, the innate beauty of a moment (and that innate beauty comes in all sizes, shapes, colors, ages and situations). I've found this to be is true whether I'm shooting the gardens of the Tuileries, a model walking the runway, or a group of 14 year old footballers. Photography feeds my creative soul in ways I could never have imagined when I first walked onto the gridiron all those years ago. While I was composing this post, I learned/realized another thing. Shooting football perfectly prepared me to photograph Paris. Prepared me to look for the unexpected in a sensory sea of images, trust my gut to see the thread of a visual story, point my camera at it and...shoot.

Vivre! Rire! Aimer!


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