Sunday, June 28, 2009

Joe McNally...


I spent saturday at Joe McNally's one day lighting workshop is Dobbs Ferry, NY. Lots of lights, lots of gear, lots of setups. Other than seeing how he works through each lighting setup the best part was getting to split up into small groups and set up our own shots in the basement of the building the workshop was held in.


Micheal, Seshu, and I ended up with Aaron. Above, you can set two of my setups, both shot with 2 small flashes and one tri-grip diffuser.


This one (above) is from a little later in the day when we got to shoot Joe's setup with Aaron. In this shot, in addition to the lights inside, there are two gelled sb-900s at full zoomed to 200mm on a 30' lightstand (we're on the 2nd floor here) outside the windows throwing the shadows on the back wall.

We each got to shoot the lights that Joe (and his team of great assistants) set up for each set, but there were a couple of setups late in the day where there wasn't time for us to shoot, so hopefully we'll see a blog post soon with Joe's shots from those (and the rest of the day) soon.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

the decider has decided?

quick one here, for the folks that aren't on twitter or facebook... (the dc edition of the onion's av club site) picked the bakers dozen portraits as one of their top 5 for artomatic...

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


Matt, Post-XXC

Went down to Harrisonburg this weekend for the Hoo-Ha! Matt, Evan, and I rolled into the venue around 5:30 on saturday evening as the Super-D was finishing, hung out for a couple of minutes to say some Hellos and check out the Team IMBA tent, then hit the course for a quick pre-ride. We had some mechanicals and I had a contact lens issue that made the ride a little longer than expected, so even with cutting out everything past the first downhill we didn't get back down to the base until almost 8.

Since we got back so late, all the food was gone so we drove into down, dropped our stuff off at Chris's place and then walked over to Dave's with another guy who was staying with Chris for some food and a few beers. The pizza was good and a few rounds of beers showed up before Chris showed up and we walked over to another bar for one last round. All of this lead to a later night than expected and a few minor regrets from some the next morning.

Sunday morning rolled around and Evan was trying to fix some major brake issues on his bike, so Matt and I left him with Chris and made a dash for the venue to try and get him in to the XXC, which started at 9. Since i wasn't racing until 11 i was able to help him get his bike & gear together while he registered and he made the start on time. Evan did eventually get his brakes sorted out and lined up with the experts for the regular cross country race, but more mechanicals kept him from finishing.

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Three Generations

I knew that I definitely wasn't up for the 35-40 mile XXC, but I was going back & forth in my head about which class i should enter. I made the move from sport to expert a couple of years ago, though my expert results were never very good, usually within 2 or 3 places of DFL (or just plain old DFL), and i've not done any realy training this year. More importantly, this wasn't a course to play lightly with (it starts with a 1000'+ vertical climb) and the difference between 1 & 2 laps could be the difference between a race that i enjoyed and helped get me back in the saddle and a race that left me miserable and wallowing in my loss of fitness.

I was a hard decision to make, a bitter pill best swallowed quickly than lingered over, and one that no doubt I'll get some flak for. In the end i registered for sport and settled into a nice spot near the front of the starting grid of the 30-39s as the whistle neared.

The start was chaotic and faster than i'd expected. it was something i hadn't seen for a while, since the only straight XC races I did last year where the wednesday races, and those were almost a year ago. We started on a long prologue loop that gradually climbed on fireroads and then returned down some paralell singletrack. After a little push at the start i dialed it back, knowing the climb was coming, and watched a lot of the sport fields pass me by. My legs were very quickly filling with lactic acid (no warmup of course) and feeling the burn so i was worried how I'd do on the big climb to come.

A New Dad Who's Kept His Fitness -- Monavie/Cannondale's Jeremiah Bishop

To call this climb tough is an understatement, it's a beast. Around a 1000', now almost all singletrack, straight up to the top of Massenutten Mountain. The climb kept throwing new challenges at you -- rocks, wet roots and mud, tight switchbacks -- so I was glad I'd seen it the day before. It didn't take too long to settle into a rythym and find the pace i could keep, and before too long i was starting to pull back some places, eventually finding myself riding between a couple of friends. I traded places back and forth with Charles a couple of times on the climb, but Mike Bender stayed just out of reach. The climb now ends with a new section of singletrack that starts with 6 switchbacks and then ends with some giant slabs of rock before you cross the road for one last time and start heading across the ridge knowing that the worst is behind you and best riding of the day is dead ahead.

the ridge ride is short and sweet. rocky, but mostly rideable, at least it was the day before. the race my oxygen deprived brain and lactic acid filled legs were still recovering from the beast and combined to make for a few bobbles. a quick hike a bike across some rocks i'd only attempt with a bigger bike and some armour and then onto the main event, upper ravine trail.

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Mike Carpenter (l) and Rich Edwards (r)

really, there aren't many words to describe this downhill... there are some nice insloped turns to start off the ride down the mountain and then you get into super flowy bench cut trail. constant grade reversals and turn cur just right so that you can almost stay entirely off the brakes and just let the bike run. with the pre-ride having left an imprint of the trail i ripped this downhill, getting air of the grade reversals built into the trail (for sustainability reasons, of course).

from there the course continued on through the lower reaches of the ridge, some short steep climbs, some rocky twisty singletrack, a couple of short fast downhills, and some fireroads thrown in for good measure before you pop out into a field and make a big right hand turn into the finish. still can't find results online, so i'm not sure where i finished, or how long it took. doesn't really matter as far as i can see though, since the idea was to have some fun (and raise some money for IMBA and MORE).

Post race i broke out the camera gear while i was waiting for Matt to finish and shot some portraits. Didn't get quite as cohesive a result from them as i did from the Baker's Dozen shots, but i like 'em anyway. See them all over on flickr

Thomas Jenkins

Monday, June 08, 2009

rogues gallery?

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thomas jenkins, chris scott, and mike carpenter

just 3 of the many who've made harrisonburg a great place to ride, race, and just hang out. made some more portraits this weekend after the hoo-ha. different look this time. these are a very preliminary take on a couple of them. crops still need to be fixed, processing needs to be finalized. there are more coming, this is just a sneak peak.

Monday, June 01, 2009

details, details, details

shot the dcmtb group pic tonight and once again have reminded myself that i need to do a better job of paying attention to the details... a few to many overlapping heads and shaded faces for my liking.

dcmtb 2009-2