Sunday, September 26, 2010

Shuttle Discovery Rollout

The Space Shuttle Discovery is sitting on the launch pad for the very last time.  My good friend Rhonda Barczak and I made our way out to Kennedy Space Center in the pre-dawn hours to photograph Discovery just after it reached pad 39A.  It looked just amazing as the sun came up and began to slowly light up the sky.  Almost on command a few clouds began rolling through the background to add some dimension.
These images are part of a project for Lightspeed Media.  There is a Facebook page you can join that will keep you up to date on what we are doing:
Space Shuttle Project on Facebook
I was up since 3:30 in the morning this day, and we began photographing before the sun came up, so I think I look pretty OK here given the circumstances. As the day began to brighten a bit and we knew that we had the great images we were looking for, Rhonda took a few photos of me-
What I didn't know is that while I photographing the shuttle, I was being photographed by someone other than Rhonda.  My silhouette appeared in USA Today.  What I'm most impressed with is that my out-of-focus blurry body is easily identifiable.  I'll have a few more photos tomorrow with a good behind-the-scenes story.

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Saturday, September 11, 2010

Last Fling - Part 1

Last year during the Last Fling Festival I was posting updates every day on my blog.  And I think I was the only person doing that.  This year everyone was posting photos back and forth on Facebook, Twitter, and such.  So I didn't feel a need to stay up all night sorting through my images.  But now that I have had some time, I thought I'd share a couple of them with you.
I was honored to emcee the Bed Races this year, but unfortunately that meant that I couldn't photograph it as well.  So, sorry, no good bed racing photos from me this time.  Next year I think I'll still be in charge of the event, but hand off the emceeing duties to someone else.  I missed being at the finish line with my camera, especially since this was a year of close calls and crashes.
Blues Legend Buddy Guy opened the show for us on Friday night.  And wow, what a show!  I think some musicians are content to coast on their 'legend' title.  But Buddy was amazing.  He even went down into the crowd at one point and was singing down there.  It was easily the best Friday night act I can remember.  And backstage he was great to work with. Everyone really liked him.  
 Seventh Heaven put on another enthusiastic performance.  I enjoyed the set that they played at Ribfest, and I'm glad we had them at the Fling.

The most notable thing about Collective Soul was their stage lighting.  It was powerful and vivid, and occasionally aimed right at the crowd.  Instead of fighting it, I would wait for the right moment to get some good lens flare.  It became less about getting good shots of the singer, but instead capturing some emotional action shots.

And how could we say goodbye to summer festivals without... PIE!
I took over 3,100 images during the four day festival.  A number of them will be in the next issue of Naperville Magazine.  And the Jaycees will use some of them to promote next year's event. 

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