Wednesday, August 25, 2010
No, no. These pictures are NOT Sports Illustrated covers, but like I said to one of the kids photographed for this project, "dude, this is most likely the closest you'll be to being featured on a SI cover, and probably the closest I'll be to shooting something similar to an SI cover; so, let's take some pictures that may have the feel of it" (like a good and polite Alabamian teenager, all he said was, "Yes, Sir!").
Like last year, I was asked to do the portraits for the cover of my newspaper's high school 2010-2011 season football preview special edition. The theme for this year was Alabama's football blue collar tradition. The players featured both on the cover and inside would be hardworking footballers. So, I came up with this idea of photographing them with blue collar job props. I love it when you can control your portrait shoots, decide the time, the location and how you're gonna do it. Besides borrowing the tools and props (big thanks to Decatur Utilities, the Fire Station #2 and Mike Weems, the maintenance manager at the apartments where I live), I also got permission to shoot in an impressive location: an old warehouse with lots of really cool backgrounds and amazing light. It would also have made things much easier to have all the kids at the same time in the same place, as opposed to spending a couple of weeks traveling to different towns to get the job done. But guess what? The building was condemned and shut down by the city the day before the shoot! Eventually, I had to look for 4 different locations and the day of the shoot, there was this procession of cars (photographer, kids and some parents and grandparents) going from one spot to the next...
But hey, after all, I did feel like an SI photographer: between the kids and their family members, I worked with 8 assistants!