The eye of the Jayhawk, KU’s beloved mascot, inspired the first part of the title for this post. The photographic feature in Rock Chalk Weekly has become my great photographic challenge and love. For two years, Kansas Athletics has published the weekly online magazine during the school year that allows me creative freedom with the cover photography and the Bird’s Eye View section.
Preparations for my annual presentation at the Sports Photography Workshop, this year in Denver, started with the 2015-16 BEV’s, as Laura and I call them. From the magazine’s inception, I wanted to assure the five images in each issue depicted all of KU’s sports and athletic needs with photographs never published. Finally, the images needed to be shaped as full-frame images with minimal cropping.
It challenges us to think beyond just the games or matches all the while looking for great light and composition. It took time and planning to make the 170 images used this school year, some of which we share with you. We both are very proud of this year’s BEV’s.
From July 27 through August 2, a group of distinguished sports photographers will share their photographic work and teaching skills at the Sports Photography Workshop. While the BEV’s will be a part of my opening night presentation, it is the teaching that I love the most, as do the other staffers. Students can photograph a wide variety of sports assignments from training to competition and from youth leagues to the professional level. They can learn how to use strobes to enhance and create dynamic images. With the help of the instructors working beside the students, the knowledge gained throughout the week will last and last as will the fun and friendships.
Every year I gain new knowledge from the instructors and find inspiration from the enthusiastic students for another year’s work, my 20th at KU and 48th as a professional photographer. Students can talk with photo editors from Sports Illustrated, The Players Tribune and other national publications. Sports Illustrated photographers, nationally acclaimed freelancers and newspaper staffers are there to share their vast knowledge in classrooms and in the field. Nikon provides cases of cameras and lens for the students and representatives from the finest equipment suppliers are there to share their products.
My hope is you have enjoyed the photographs and that you will join me and the staff at the best sports workshop in the nation to see so much more. I am grateful to be asked year after year and will enjoy meeting you in Denver.