Kelley L Cox: Blog http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog en-us All content (C) Kelley L Cox kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Wed, 14 Jun 2017 20:30:00 GMT Wed, 14 Jun 2017 20:30:00 GMT http://www.kelleylcox.com/img/s7/v152/u147196319-o262367266-50.jpg Kelley L Cox: Blog http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog 115 120 ThinkTankPhoto and SKB Partnership http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/6/thinktankphoto

My friends at Think Tank Photo have just announced an exciting new partnership with hard-case manufacturer SKB.  Think Tank’s designers have created internal divider sets, organizers, and a backpack designed specifically to fit within 10 SKB hard cases.  There are times when you simply have to airline gate-check your most precious photography equipment.  At moments like these, nothing will do a better job of protection than a hard case.  But one of the downsides of hard cases is that they are basically hard shells with not a lot of other features built into them.  Think Tank’s partnership with SKB solves this problem.  The result is the best of a hard case with the best of internal organization.  Don’t forget that with my special partnership with Think Tank that you receive free gear and free shipping when you order using our special link.

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Promo ThinkTankPhoto http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/6/thinktankphoto Wed, 14 Jun 2017 20:30:17 GMT
NBA Final Warriors v Cavaliers Games 1 and 2 http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/6/nba-final-warriors-v-cavaliers NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; XXXXX during the second half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Welp, here we are again with a Warriors v Cavaliers NBA Finals

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; XXXXX during the second half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

For the (lost count) time, Pat Monahan of Train performed the National Anthem. Only reminding me of his time singing for the Super Bowl kickoff show.

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 1, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Pat Monahan performs the national anthem before the NBA Finals for the 2017 NBA Playoffs between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

And of course, Carlos Santana for game 2.

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; XXXXX during the second half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports In a very spoiled way, covering an NBA Finals now seems like a regular occurrence for the Bay Area, it seems same ol' same ol' that we might take for granted.

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors fans Jude Ezra Williams, 2 and sister Charlize Williams, 9 months, before game two of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But this time the buzz isn't just about Curry v LeBron James

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 1, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) shoots against Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) in the second half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But Warriors now have Kevin Durant, who has a bit of height compared to Curry NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 1, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) defends a shot against Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) in the first quarter of the NBA Finals for the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 1, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) dunks against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

And Draymond has managed to not get himself suspended.

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; XXXXX during the second half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

And Steve Kerr is back as of game 2!

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr questions the referee after a call against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the fourth quarter of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But on Cavs side, Kevin Love seems to be concussion free and focused.

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; XXXXX during the second half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Though Tristan Thompson is getting some flack for his relationship with Khloe Kardashian

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; XXXXX during the second half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

I'm excited to be covering every Warriors home game for this series for USA Today Sports Images with Kyle Terada, Cary Edmondson and Jerry Lai editing. It's great because I can focus on shooting and not have to be distracted by transmitting photos, but also means sometimes these images don't get transmitted, but when Kyle has floor position and is getting photos like this, it's understandable 

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 4, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) dunks the ball against the Golden State Warriors during the first quarter of game two of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But since there's a chance we won't even get a game 5, and because I'm hoping that if there is a game 5 it's for the championship and a post can be dedicated to that. But I'm really hoping there's no game 7 because I'm supposed to go to Boston. I want to be watching Tall Ships not Tall Players :P

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJun 1, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson (11) shoots against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first half of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

 I'd say I feel confident about the Warriors winning it all within 6... but I thought that last year too and we all know how that ended!

NBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsNBA: Finals-Cleveland Cavaliers at Golden State WarriorsJune 19, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) and the Cavaliers celebrate the championship victory against the Golden State Warriors following game seven of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action Basketball NBA Sports USA Today Sports Images http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/6/nba-final-warriors-v-cavaliers Sun, 04 Jun 2017 22:45:00 GMT
Hunter Strickland and Bryce Harper Basebrawl Fight http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/hunter-strickland-and-bryce-harper-basebrawl-fight MLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMay 29, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Hunter Strickland (60) and Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) in a fight after Harper was hit by the pitch of Strickland during the eighth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports Many people consider baseball boring. Others know that every game you go to is a little bit of history and has potential to be a big game. You might get a no-hitter, you might see an epic play at the play, leaping over the wall catch, or in this case, an all out brawl!

MLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMay 29, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; Teammates try to escort San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Hunter Strickland (60) off the field and out of the fight against the Washington Nationals which cleared the bench during the eighth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

In what was otherwise a relatively uneventful baseball game, in the top of the eighth, Hunter Strickland went in to face off against Bryce Harper, or rather hit a ball off Harper's hit. I'm not going to add my commentary about whether it was related to their meeting three years ago or whether either was right or wrong for the extent of the altercation. I'm just here to document the fight...and the hair, so much hair!

MLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMay 29, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; A fight ensues between the San Francisco Giants and Washington Nationals after Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) was hit by pitch during the eighth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

I was pleased to see this SB Nation article by Grant Brisbee of the 5 best photos from the brawl which listed photographer credit (thanks to Peter Symonds for pointing it out to me) and the article being a small love letter to the still photo.

MLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMay 29, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants Hunter Pence (8) and relief pitcher George Kontos (70) try to get relief pitcher Hunter Strickland (60) off the field after a fight against the Washington Nationals during the eighth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

On another note. My instagram post received over 300 likes which is pretty big for me and I suppose in a way flattering (is that the right word?), but I was more validated to receive texts and emails and in person comments from other photographers, well before I had even posted on social media. In my struggle with how to use social media it's always a good reminder that social media can be a nice echo to your work, but it doesn't replace getting your work published and noticed on other platforms.

MLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMay 29, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Hunter Strickland (60) and Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) in a fight after Harper was hit by the pitch of Strickland during the eighth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

On a secondary note, another photographer who will not be named, was unfortunately using the restroom when this happened. While you can't help when nature calls and and bragging about my bladder seems both unfair and totally bizarre, but pro tip, always go to the bathroom pregame!

MLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMay 29, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Hunter Strickland (60) punches Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) after Harper was hit by the pitch of Strickland during the eighth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

This is also another reason to try and learn the sport you are photographing. While I didn't think that the incident from 3 years ago would come up and it wasn't in the game notes, I did cover it and was able to find in my archive.

MLB: NLDS-Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: NLDS-Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsOct 7, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Washington Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper (34) celebrates after hitting a solo home run as he rounds the bases past San Francisco Giants first baseman Brandon Belt (left) during the seventh inning of game four of the 2014 NLDS baseball playoff game at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports MLB: NLDS-Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: NLDS-Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsOct 7, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Washington Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper rounds the bases after hitting a solo home run against the San Francisco Giants during the seventh inning of game four of the 2014 NLDS baseball playoff game at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports MLB: NLDS-Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: NLDS-Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsOct 7, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Washington Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper celebrates with teammates in the dugout after hitting a solo home run against the San Francisco Giants during the seventh inning of game four of the 2014 NLDS baseball playoff game at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But true baseball fans/analysts immediately recalled this previous interaction.. and could probably tell you any stat you dream of related to Harper or Strickland. Though that was three years ago the A's mascot is the elephant, it appears it's Strickland who never forgets as he had to be carried off the field by teammates.

MLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMLB: Washington Nationals at San Francisco GiantsMay 29, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; Teammates try to escort San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Hunter Strickland (60) off the field after a fight against the Washington Nationals during the eighth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action Baseball MLB Sports USA Today Sports Images http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/hunter-strickland-and-bryce-harper-basebrawl-fight Mon, 29 May 2017 22:00:00 GMT
ThinkTankPhoto: New Camera Bags Announced http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/thinktankphoto

My friends at Think Tank Photo have just released a new rolling backpack as part of its classic StreetWalker series, as well as upgraded all three of the backpacks in that series.  Now with the StreetWalker V2.0 series, you get new features such as increased depth for modern DSLR systems, and dedicated pockets for both tablets and smartphones.  The new rolling backpack’s harness system allows you to roll the bag or carry it on your back in comfort.

In addition, they’ve upgraded their popular TurnStyle sling bags.  Ideal grab-and-go bag for a casual day of shooting with a DSLR or Mirrorless system and lenses, wear a body-conforming TurnStyle bag as either a sling bag or beltpack to move and shoot freely. The new Turnstyles feature a tuck-away stabilizer strap and are available in two new colors: Charcoal and Blue Indigo.  Don’t forget that because of KLC fotos relationship with Think Tank when you click on these links you will receive free gear and free shipping!

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Affiliate Promo ThinkTankPhoto http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/thinktankphoto Thu, 25 May 2017 21:45:00 GMT
Washing Frozen Strawberry Lemonade Out of My Camera Bag http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/washing-frozen-strawberry-lemonade-out-of-my-camera-bag Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

So those that follow my feet, might have noticed my rant filled post about a kid pouring frozen strawberry lemonade into my camera bag at the A's game. It got on pretty much everything that was in my bag.

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

It wasn't that the spilling was particularly bad, but as the parents pretended to not notice as I moved my bag out of the puddle with some sincere, not-for-attention gasps as I realized it was in all compartments (I had my bag unzipped so I could pull out card reader and laptop easily), I felt even more upset by their lack of responsibility or teaching responsibility.

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

I feel bad for parents, kids can be terrors and you might spend the first few years of their lives apologizing for their misbehavior. I didn't need any overly emphatic apology but some empathy that my bag was now covered in one of the stickiest substances around or some sign that they were in the process of teaching their kid appropriate behavior would have been encouraging.

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

I'm not into public shaming because it doesn't seem like a sincere way to get people's behavior to change, so I didn't want to take a photo of the scene let alone the family as some suggestion, but as you see these photos are from the following day. That is not shiny from wetness but rather from stickiness.  Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

Thankfully my venting post led to Simon Pollack from Think Tank Photo offering suggestion of putting it in a basin with warm water and mild detergent (I used Dr. Bronner's). I knew their custom service was great but I didn't know it was so good that I could get unsolicited support from a post ;) Though he lives in Australia, I'm not sure anyone in the US uses the term "basin", I just went ahead and put it in the sink. ;)

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

I was pretty impressed with the weather sealing of the bag considering as I filled the laptop holding compartment, nothing leaked out until the bag actually overflowed.

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

A swish, swish, swish, and then some sun bathing.

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

Before being joined by the inserts and my Modular PPR, soaked separately.

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

My bag is back to new, and probably better for it considering I had never washed it before and there were a fair number of fig bar crumbs and stadium turf rubber pellets floating around the bottom. Maybe that kid was just trying to give me a not so subtle hint to wash my bag and the parent's "Sorry I'm not sorry" attitude was appropriate! :P

Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos Washing My Camera BagWashing My Camera BagMay 20, 2017; Washing the Think Tank Photo Urban Disguise after a child spilled frozen strawberry lemonade into ti. Photo credit: Kelley L Cox - KLC fotos

Had the bag not have been recoverable, it would have been a great excuse to update to one of the newer generations of this bag. But it's held up so well, I can't really justify a new one. But if you are looking for a new camera bag... you know where to go.

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Musings ThinkTankPhoto http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/washing-frozen-strawberry-lemonade-out-of-my-camera-bag Mon, 22 May 2017 01:45:00 GMT
Covering NCAA First Round Tennis with Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/covering-ncaa-first-round-tennis-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

My theme of doing a post each time I cover a new sport with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, I'm realizing wow, I get to cover a lot of different sports! I'm so thankful to live in the Bay Area where I get to shoot baseball, basketball, soccer, water polo all at pretty elite levels. Let's add in NCAA tennis.

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

Thanks to Cal hosting the first round, I was able to pick up an assignment from the Northwestern Wildcats to cover them in their match versus Utah State.

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

Having covered this tournament at Cal before for men and women (and all my years of covering Cal before then) I am very familiar with Hellman Tennis Center. Last year, the officials started a rule that there could only be two photographer/videographers on a court at a time. This became problematic when myself and the Kansas photographer were covering a match and their team videographer wanted to cover as well. While one extra body hovering by the officials chair between the bags and coaches and teammates who have finished their match didn't seem like an issue to me, the official sent away the videographer! This totally changed my strategy of how I would cover to make sure I never ended up being the "odd man out".

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

This year NCAA added a rule, to the day-of surprise of the staff that NO photographers were allowed on the court. Now normally I would either be gently arguing my case of why there should be an exception or just be upset, but today I took it in stride. While I was able to be down there for warm ups and national anthem, Cal recently added a wonderful bleacher section above the north side of the court.

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

While some areas were blocked off for student athletes, I basically had free roam, I could move between serves not just between sets and I got to sip on my hot tea from my keen kanteen, be under a sun shade instead of getting sunburned on a scorching court and just take a moment to enjoy the moment!

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

My favorite thing is shooting backlit where the sun is hitting the back of the subject but also the background behind them isn't bright. Not a blown out silhouette but anything where the background can get a deep blue without subject losing light. At Hellman I basically got that manufacture for me with the deep blue background.

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

It also worked out well that the Northwestern player won the point needed to advance to the next round while playing on the south side of the #3 court. Though there are bleachers surrounding the #1 court, it wouldn't have been a great angle for the #3 court, and this shot from the back wouldn't have been quite as visual.

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

Tennis with the OM-D E-M1 Mark was predictably great. 

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

The key reminder for me. Having covered tennis before, I would have just brought my 70-200, or rather my 40-150 (80-300 equivalent) because shooting from the court the 300mm would have been too tight. But because the Olympus gear is so light and compact, I'm often bringing my whole set up. So when told I couldn't shoot from the court, popping on my 300mm (600mm equivalent) was the perfect lens for getting great action.

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

Though I still opted for my 40-150 for the final play knowing that I could zoom in on the action/reaction but would want to zoom out in the case of players storming the court in celebration. I made the right choice :)

Northwestern Men's TennisNorthwestern Men's TennisMay 12, 2017; Berkeley, CA, USA; Northwestern Tennis NCAA Regional at the I.W. Hellman Tennis Center. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for Northwestern Athletics

 

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action KLC fotos Sports Tennis http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/5/covering-ncaa-first-round-tennis-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii Sat, 13 May 2017 01:45:00 GMT
My First and Last Game of the 2016-2017 NHL Season http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/4/my-first-and-last-game-of-the-2016-2017-nhl-season NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; Edmonton Oilers left wing Anton Slepyshev (42) is surrounded by teammates as San Jose Sharks right wing Joel Ward (42) skates by after Slepyyshev's goal against the San Jose Sharks during the second period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

When an image doesn't just tell the story of the winners, but also the losers, and the donuts! In what would be my first and final and Sharks final game of the season, I headed down to San Jose to cover the Sharks versus the Edmonton Oilers for game six of the first round of playoffs.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; Stadium view before game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs between the Edmonton Oilers and San Jose Sharks at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Last year covering the Sharks three times in one week and dealing with the horrendous Bay Area traffic commuting from East Bay to South Bay, having to arrive hours early to be first to put my name one the shooting position list in order to get an ice level hole for at least one period, only to have the team photographer unapologetically decide he wanted to shoot there in addition to the other hole his photographer had just a minute or two before the period started, thus leaving me with no ice level position and navigating under the bleachers, up three flights and through fans to one of the elevated positions trying to not miss any action. So I told my editor, no more! Please assign it to someone else who lives closer or at least has more patience. NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; San Jose Sharks fans throw a bucket of popcorn on Edmonton Oilers players as they celebrate a goal against the San Jose Sharks in the final moments of the third period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. The Edmonton Oilers defeated the San Jose Sharks 3-1 to win the series. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

He kindly responded and I didn't see a hockey game for the rest of the season until game six of the Western Conference Finals when he couldn't find anyone else to cover and asked if I wouldn't mind. I hadn't expressed myself clearly enough, because regular season back-to-back-to-back was torture but playoffs, I am always down for playoffs! I was able to cover Sharks clinching their Stanley Cup appearance, but thanks to my request to not shoot Sharks, they had (thinking they were being nice) not put me on the list to cover Stanley Cup finals. So in my resume of NBA Finals, World Series, Super Bowl, I can't included Stanley Cup, doh! NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; Edmonton Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse (25) before the third period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. The Edmonton Oilers defeated the San Jose Sharks 3-1 to win the series. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; San Jose Sharks mascot before game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Edmonton Oilers at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

This year I made sure it was known to count me in for playoffs, and a game here or there in regular season, but unfortunately game six was my first and last NHL season. Sharks fell to the Oilers in an exciting 3-1 final. NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; San Jose Sharks center Joe Pavelski (8) extends for the puck ahead of Edmonton Oilers center Drake Caggiula (36) during the third period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. The Edmonton Oilers defeated the San Jose Sharks 3-1 to win the series. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Also, in my absence, there's been a handful of photographers to cover for USATSI, but the very clever and very friendly John Hefti, mentioned that he had worked with the team to request a guaranteed ice level position for the 1st and 2nd periods (generally save the 3rd for up top in case it's a tie-breaker you don't want to get burned on a shooting position that can't see one of the goals) listed on the sign up sheet and they kindly obliged! Good reminder that sometimes, we get so caught up following a protocol that doesn't serve us when sometimes all you have to do is ask! Thankfully Sharks were able to accommodate me as well.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; Edmonton Oilers center Mark Letestu (55) knocks over San Jose Sharks right wing Jannik Hansen (36) during the second period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

I still showed up early to try and snag an ethernet port. They have rules that you can't transmit over their wifi, but gave the room with multiple ethernet ports to TV and the photographers were left with a room with exactly two. Maybe that will have to be on my next request!

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; Edmonton Oilers left wing Milan Lucic (27) ahead of San Jose Sharks defenseman Paul Martin (7) during the first period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports Though it's probably my last time covering Joe Pavelski. NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton (19) between plays against the Edmonton Oilers during the second period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

And possibly Patrick Marleau, at least in a Sharks uniform.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; San Jose Sharks center Patrick Marleau (12) celebrates with the bench after scoring a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during the third period in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. The Edmonton Oilers defeated the San Jose Sharks 3-1 to win the series. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Since this was my only game of the season, I'm not focusing on how I covered it with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, but in the spirit of previous posts, since it was technically my first hockey game with the camera, can add that I was again very pleased! It handled color balance very well (you CANNOT shoot hockey on auto white balance let alone auto exposure, that bright blue-tinted ice will throw you off every time!) and the 40-150 with an extender was perfect. AP photographer Tony Avelar who didn't know I had switched to Olympus looked at me curiously "what happened to your 300?" and then was fairly impressed when I said "this effectively is my 300... but with an extender so 420" It was better than the 300 fixed because I could zoom out for a team celebration photo. NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; The Edmonton Oilers celebrate after the win against the San Jose Sharks in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. The Edmonton Oilers defeated the San Jose Sharks 3-1 to win the series. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But then also zoom in when popcorn was being thrown onto the celebrating Oilers by Sharks fans. Yikes! NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksNHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksApr 22, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl (29) celebrates with goalie Cam Talbot (33) after the win against the San Jose Sharks in game six of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center at San Jose. The Edmonton Oilers defeated the San Jose Sharks 3-1 to win the series. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Though for some reason while PhotoMechanic reads it as 210mm (it's true focal length) zenfolio exif reads it as as 35mm equivalent of 421 instead of 420... anyone know why this is?

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action Hockey NHL OM-D E-M1 Mark II Olympus Sports Sports Photography USA Today Sports Images http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/4/my-first-and-last-game-of-the-2016-2017-nhl-season Sun, 23 Apr 2017 06:59:00 GMT
ThinkTankPhoto: Signature Series http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/ttp-signature-series

The newly released Signature Series from Think Tank Photo is a modernized version of the classic shoulder bag. Hand sewn, advanced fabrics blend weather protection and durability with the classic feel of fine wool. Genuine leather detailing and metal hardware add character and stand up to the rigors of daily use. In addition, the zippered flap provides full closure and security to the main compartment, or tucks away when not in use.  The Signature 10 fits a 10” tablet; the Signature 13 fits a 13” laptop. With my special relationship with Think Tank, by clicking on this URL you will be able to add free gear and receive free shipping on your orders of the Signature bags and all of their other gear. See the full press release from Think Tank Photo below.


Think Tank Photo’s New “Signature” Camera Bag Series Features Advanced Fabrics

For A Modernized Classic Shoulder Bag

Santa Rosa, Calif. – The Signature Series from Think Tank is a modernized version of the

classic shoulder bag. Whether one is a young urban professional or corporate photographer,

the Signature shoulder bag is as fashionable as it is functional. Hand sewn, advanced

fabrics blend weather protection and durability with the classic feel of fine wool. Genuine

leather detailing and metal hardware add character and stand up to the rigors of daily use.

“The new Signature Series features a modern fabric that is soft to the touch and yet

is durable,” said Doug Murdoch, Think Tank Photo’s CEO and lead designer. “In addition,

the zippered flap provides full closure and security to the main compartment, or tucks away

when not in use. It is a next generation design for today’s discerning photographer.”

www.thinktankphoto.com

1105 N. Dutton Avenue

Santa Rosa, CA 95401 USA

ph: 001.707.527.0101

fax: 001.707.527.0808

 

KEY FEATURES

 Dedicated laptop/tablet compartment: Signature 10 fits a 10” tablet; Signature 13

fits a 13” laptop

 Secure clasps on front flap with one-handed operation

 Dedicated phone pocket fits up to an iPhone 6s+ or S7 Edge

 Wide handle pass-through for attaching to rolling luggage

 Large front pocket for an extra strobe, rain cover or small book

 Long, cushioned neoprene shoulder pad positions easily when worn cross-body

 Zippered front pocket provides security for small items and includes a built-in

organizer for pens and business cards

 Quilted velex dividers can be customized to fit gear

 Shorter dividers can be made into shelves to stack short lenses and primes

 Dividers and bottom foam can be removed for a completely collapsible bag

 Although the bag’s outer fabric is treated with water resistant coating, a seam-

sealed rain cover is included for downpour conditions

GEAR CAPACITY

Signature  10

 1 standard size DSLR with 3–4 prime lenses and accessories

 A complete Mirrorless camera system with 3–4 lenses and accessories

 10” tablet fits inside a dedicated compartment

Signature 13

 1 standard-size DSLR with mid-range zoom attached plus 2–3 additional lenses

 13” laptop fits inside a dedicated compartment

MATERIALS

Exterior: All fabric exterior treated with durable water resistant coating while fabric

underside is coated with polyurethane for superior water resistance. The bag also has 240D

wool-like 195G nylon/poly blend, full-grain leather, antique-plated metal hardware, highest

quality YKK® RC-Fuse zippers, 550D polyspun, nylon seatbelt webbing, neoprene, 3-ply

bonded nylon thread.

Interior: 210D silver-toned nylon lining, polyurethane-backed quilted Velex liner and

dividers, high-density closed-cell foam dividers, 2x polyurethane coated nylon 210T seam-

sealed taffeta rain cover, nylon binding, 3-ply bonded nylon thread.

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS

Signature 10

 Internal Dimensions: 11.8” W x 7.8” H x 5.1” D (30 x 20 x 13 cm)

 Exterior Dimensions: 13” W x 9.1” H x 5.9” D (33 x 23 x 15 cm)

 Tablet Compartment: 11.4” W x 7.8” H x 0.8” D (29 x 20 x 2 cm)

 Weight: 2.8 lbs. (1.3 kg)

3

Signature 13

 Internal Dimensions: 13.3” W x 9.1” H x 5.1” D (34 x 23 x 13 cm)

 Exterior Dimensions: 14.6” W x 10.4” H x 6.3” D (37 x 26.5 x 16 cm)

 Laptop/Tablet Compartment: 13” W x 9.1” H x 1.2” D (33 x 23 x 3 cm)

 Weight: 3.1 lbs. (1.4 kg)

ABOUT THINK TANK PHOTO

Headquartered in Santa Rosa, California, Think Tank Photo is a group of designers and

professional photographers focused on studying how photographers work and developing

inventive new carrying solutions that meet their needs. They are dedicated to using only the

highest quality materials and design principles, and employing materials that are

environmentally benign.

 

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Promo ThinkTankPhoto http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/ttp-signature-series Wed, 22 Mar 2017 20:05:03 GMT
M + J Engagement http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/m-j-engagement Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

After covering his sister's wedding last year, I was so pleased to be called back to cover Matt and Jessica's wedding this year, which will be one day shy of a year from his sister's wedding! But first, engagement photos!

Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Just as his sister and her husband had wanted to focus on his guitar playing because music played a big part in their relationship, Matt and Jessica wanted to poke fun on their relationship starting when he, self-described "gringo" spoke little Spanish and she, a visiting au pair, pretended to not speak English. So they came up with him holding a "Spanish for Dummies" book as a playful addition to their engagement photos. Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

As the story goes, he tried to talk to her at bar, she pretended to not understand English so that he wouldn't talk to (read: bother) her. But as the bar was closing he asked her to allow him to show her his salsa moves (read: he had none) and when she obliged (with an eye roll) he gave her a twirl, went down on a knee and kissed her hand (he may have had some liquid courage). As silly as she thought he was, it was endearing enough that she gave him her phone number and as they say, the rest is history.

Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

He has since enrolled in Spanish classes and salsa classes to try and woo her and she seemed quite pleased with his progress.

Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Oh the things we do to get the person we love!

Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

I'm so looking forward to covering their wedding!

Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

And at this rate, I'm also looking forward to covering the remaining two brothers weddings maybe in 2018 and 2019 and the next Mrs. Banks! ;)

Matt and JessicaMatt and JessicaMarch 12, 2017; Matthew Banks and Jessica Posada engagement. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Engagement Love http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/m-j-engagement Sun, 12 Mar 2017 22:00:00 GMT
Covering Golf with Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/covering-golf-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutGolf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutFebruary 24, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout men's golf tournament at Hiddenbrooke Country Club. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

You've been waiting for the #1 problem I have with the E-M1 Mark II? Here it is, it's the PERFECT camera system for golf. Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutGolf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutFebruary 24, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout men's golf tournament at Hiddenbrooke Country Club. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

And Mark Twain (though there's evidence he never actually wrote or said this) best described how I feel about golf: "Golf is a good walk spoiled" Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutGolf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutFebruary 24, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout men's golf tournament at Hiddenbrooke Country Club. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

I generally hate photographing golf. But I make my twice annual exception in covering Cal State East Bay Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout at Hiddenbrooke. Once for the men's tournament and once for the women's. (I guess I also make the exception for the Special Olympics High Tech Challenge, but that's more fundraiser team photos than it is golf.)

Women's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutWomen's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutMarch 7, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer shootout women's golf at Hiddenbrooke Golf Course. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos What I love about the Pioneer Shootout is that it lacks the "uppity-ness" of most golf tournaments and courses. While I don't see anyone wearing jeans, and I don't wear jeans, there is no hard-line "we won't let you in" extreme dress code. And there are actually people of color participating from players, to supporters to coaches. And dare I say people are having fun?! Women's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutWomen's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutMarch 7, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer shootout women's golf at Hiddenbrooke Golf Course. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Women's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutWomen's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutMarch 7, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer shootout women's golf at Hiddenbrooke Golf Course. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Anyway, back to the photography side of the sport. Electronic silent shutter means I can shoot in the back swing!

Women's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutWomen's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutMarch 7, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer shootout women's golf at Hiddenbrooke Golf Course. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

I have always made camera upgrades only when the camera can help me get a photo that I COULD NOT get before. For my jump to 1-DX it was the ISO capabilities. Switching to mirrorless (among other perks) is silent shutter which means when I'm on TV sets I can shoot during filming instead of needing to wait for the moments of downtime as they show clips, and shooting in the backswing of golf. Thought that's really not the biggest concern since the backswing doesn't really make a nice photo. But it means I can shoot freely while they are lining up their put, or doing some practice swings, without a distractingly loud shutter.

Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutGolf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutFebruary 24, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout men's golf tournament at Hiddenbrooke Country Club. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Golf is such a silly process (to me, someone who has never actually played anything but mini golf and gone to the driving range) because if you think batters take a long time to warm up in baseball, you haven't photographed a golf tournament. Approaching the hole in the golf cart, reading what the distance is, asking what "it's hitting" and using all these little tools to check what the distance really is, deciding what club, watching the other players and then changing your club, all before you even get started lining yourself up and taking practice swings.

Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutGolf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutFebruary 24, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout men's golf tournament at Hiddenbrooke Country Club. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

And if I go a blink too soon before the club actually hits the ball, I won't get any evil eyes because only I will know! Though full warning, there is a risk of some wonky rolling shutter type of effects where the club might look like it curls before strike. In this case the client thought it was cool, so I kept it in the set.

Women's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutWomen's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutMarch 7, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer shootout women's golf at Hiddenbrooke Golf Course. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

I suffer through golf (I know I'm being harsh, it's not really that bad) trying to take pretty pictures of manicured water-consuming landscapes

Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutGolf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutFebruary 24, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout men's golf tournament at Hiddenbrooke Country Club. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

And enjoying when nature fights back, against all odds

Women's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutWomen's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutMarch 7, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer shootout women's golf at Hiddenbrooke Golf Course. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Some of the players enjoyed the landscaping a little more than they might have hoped ;)

Women's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutWomen's Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutMarch 7, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer shootout women's golf at Hiddenbrooke Golf Course. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

But my favorite for sure was this egret, IN the tee box, not seeming to be too concerned that golfers were about to tee off. What's up guys?

Golf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutGolf: Tim Tierney Pioneer ShootoutFebruary 24, 2017; Vallejo, CA, USA; Tim Tierney Pioneer Shootout men's golf tournament at Hiddenbrooke Country Club. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action Cal State East Bay GetOlympus Golf KLC fotos NCAA http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/covering-golf-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii Tue, 07 Mar 2017 22:00:00 GMT
Covering Soccer with the Olympus OM-D EM-1 Mark II http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/2/covering-soccer-with-the-olympus-om-d-em-1-mark-ii SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

I was asked to cover the SF Deltas scrimmage match against the San Jose Earthquakes prior to SF Deltas inaugural season. This meant that my coverage was focused on getting great stock images of the Deltas as well as showing them, a North American Soccer League team playing against an MLS opponent.

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

Though they didn't treat it as just a scrimmage. Chris Wondolowski, Wondo, got fired up!

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

After loving the 300mm for baseball, I was excited to use it for long field photos. Soccer is a sport where you really need long glass because generally you can't switch your seating position during the game, some don't even let you anywhere except behind the goal line, so you are stuck shooting across the field. You don't want to be too tight because you don't want to crop off heads or feet, so there is still a need for the 40-150mm (80-300mm 35mm equivalent) as they get closer, but you want the 300mm (600mm 35mm equivalent) for a majority of the game. Sharp from behind one goal, all the way across to the opposite goal.

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

I found that I again loved the C-AF+Tracking when using the 300mm, it was easy to lock on the subject and have it not jump around the background or jump onto another player entering the scene. You can see the SF Deltas players face is just a littttttle bit sharper than the Earthquakes player because the focal point was able to follow him through this play.

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

But for the 40-150mm, I still found I preferred regular C-AF without tracking. With tracking on, I found it would lock on the wrong subject because that focal range was busier at multiple focal distances when wider so it was hard to lock on the right subject. C-AF with a single center point seems to serve me better. Keep in mind, I was focusing on SF Deltas players, so I was able to lock on here without having it hop to Shea Salinas.

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

While I had the two E-M1 Mark II bodies on the 40-150mm and the 300mm, I found it was still worthwhile to have a wide angle (specifically the 7-14mm f/2.8 in this case) so that I could hop over and get some of the fans without having to worry about changing out lenses.

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

I tried to avoid changing lenses at a game. Some photographers will only put their lenses and bodies together inside to avoid dust spots on their sensors. I'm not that extreme because I don't like carrying/storing multiple cameras with lenses attached (horror stories about them bouncing around and breaking off) but I don't want to change lenses in a panic. With my old gear, sometimes during baseball games where there is downtime, I would switch my long glass off my 1D-X in favor of the 70-200mm when there was a runner at third and I was hoping for a play at the plate. I so strongly favored 1D-X over the 1D Mark IV that it was worth it. But even better now that I can have two E-M1 Mark II bodies for my main action bodies, and then the slower to focus E-M5 Mark II for wide angle fun.

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

Exciting to have another pro soccer team in the bay area, while this was just a scrimmage their regular season games will be held at Kezar Stadium in San Francisco which they retrofitted with the old bleachers from Candlestick, how cool!

SF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesSF Deltas v San Jose EarthquakesFebruary 15, 2017; San Jose, CA, USA; SF Deltas defeated the San Jose Earthquakes 1-0 at the San Jose Earthquakes practice field. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos for SF Deltas

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action KLC fotos MLS NASL SF Deltas San Jose Soccer http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/2/covering-soccer-with-the-olympus-om-d-em-1-mark-ii Thu, 16 Feb 2017 02:15:00 GMT
Covering Baseball with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/covering-baseball-with-the-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

I first tested out the OM-D EM-1 Mark II at football because I know that really nothing compares to football in terms of needing to cover a whole field, needing fast focus, having isolated action and crowded action. I also tested it at a basketball game to test out it's low light indoor action performance. Those scenarios were enough to convince me that this system could be my only system for sports. Since buying my own, I've had football games and basketball games galore, not to mention countless events and portrait sessions. But now that the season is changing, I'm finally getting to test it out at some other sports! Like America's past time, baseball!

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Football can be fun and big and bold, basketball can be fast and flashy, but baseball can really be beautiful. 

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

To be honest, it took me some time to fall in love with baseball. I never played as a kid and the games, since I didn't understand them, seemed boring. Just as football fans think soccer is boring. But then you start to see intricacies, mental element, sliding plays, sense of camaraderie in the dugout, and suddenly you realize why so many people love baseball!

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

I wasn't sure how shooting baseball with the Olympus OM-D EM-1 Mark II would be different. I knew I would love shooting in the daylight but I didn't realize how much I would enjoy C-AF+Tracking. For the most part, I prefer C-AF and find it more accurate, but C-AF+Tracking is perfect for baseball. Normally, I would focus on the batters face and lock focus. Using continuous focus, it might hop to the bat. That would be great if their face was in the same plan as the bat's focus point or for a ball-on-bat or broken bat photo, but often in a hit, you want to prioritize the players face being in focus. But, then if you focus on the batter's face as they are at bat, you still risk losing focus because believe it or not, their face isn't stationary as they swing! With C-AF+Tracking, I could lock in on the the batter's face and it would continually adjust to keep the face as the focus point.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos Though it can't do anything about ugly background and I'm not sure if the electronic shutter is what is making the bat look bendy in this photo.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos Being someone who always felt that apart from the outfield, baseball was better suited for a 300mm (35mm equivalent) than a 400mm, I was surprised how much I loved the 300mm (600mm 35mm equivalent) and it didn't feel too tight. And meant I could get fun photos like this where you see the reflect in coaches glasses without it being a wide angle and risk also seeing ME in the reflection.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos And some nice outfield plays.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

Everything you see in this blog post was with the 300mm F4...Though it did mean I cut off some heads. I had brought my wide and a 70-200 which you can see in the full set.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos I also took advantage of the articulating screen. As I was covering the pitcher, I wasn't liking where the yellow outfield fence line was intercepting the pitcher's torso, so instead of trying to stand or hunch all game, I found I could shoot with the camera angled a little lower and using the screen instead of the EVF to frame the shot. You can see the difference below. Fence line included for reference but you can see it could have been easily cropped out for a much cleaner image.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

What makes a photographer ok vs good, is being intentional. If you like the line because it adds an element, sure, great, if you don't like the line because you want the image to be as "clean" as possible, sure, great. But whatever it is, be INTENTIONAL about what's in your frame.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos Worth noting, I'm not sure if it's because I was shooting every pitch and every at-bat, but while I can get through a basketball game on one battery, I don't think I could have made it through a whole baseball game on one and was very glad for the grip to hop to the 2nd battery which was plenty. But if you don't have a grip, I would definitely recommend having a spare battery ready. Especially because the torture that baseball can sometimes deliver: extra innings! Thankfully we avoided them this game.

CSUEB MBBCSUEB MBBFebruary 10, 2017; Hayward, CA, USA; CSUEB Mens Basketball. Photo Credit: Kelley L Cox-KLC fotos

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/3/covering-baseball-with-the-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii Sun, 12 Feb 2017 05:15:00 GMT
MindShift Gear http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/mindshift-gear

I'm excited to share a new, well sort of new, affiliate that I have a code for: MindShift Gear!

What is MindShift Gear? Well ya know ThinkTankPhoto that I love? This is an outdoor offshoot from them. Meaning all the great quality and customer service you're used to but more for the back trails than downtown.

I first used their gear on our trip to Cuba. The rotation 180 (Read the blog post about it here). Though it was more so intended for mirrorless, since I was only packing a 5D, a wide, a pancake, and a point and shoot, it held everything perfectly. And had the ever convenient pocket for water. And the top half to store my journal, sunscreen, cables, miscellany and ability to toss my sweater in there when it became warmer.

And now that I'm mostly mirrorless, it's even better!!

I am looking forward to getting into some of their larger packs.

Use the link to access the site (or any link that I posted above) and if you find something you like, I get a little kick-back and appreciate it so much!

http://www.mindshiftgear.com?rfsn=481478.3cb63

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) MindShiftGear Promo http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/mindshift-gear Wed, 25 Jan 2017 21:00:00 GMT
Anna + Brendon http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/anna-brendon Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos I had the pleasure of photographing Anna and Brendon's wedding at Vizcaya in Sacramento.

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos

First I stopped by the Residence Inn Sacramento Downtown to get some of the bride and groom getting ready.

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos

This wedding had been planned over a year out from their engagement and Anna and "Sacramento" (technically Davis) native and current New York resident was really looking forward to getting some photos in front of the Capitol Building. Of course this was the rainiest weekend of the season (I guess we can't say rainiest of the year when it's only January 7th) but thanks to a bridesmaid with a poncho, as well as a break in the rain, we were able to get some great photos.

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos What a friend to be out in the rain, laying down ponchos so her friend's dress wouldn't get dirty! Did I mention this bridesmaid was quite visibly pregnant?!

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Generally when photographing couples on their wedding day, I give very little direction, so that all smiles, poses and reactions are as natural as possible, maybe to put shoulders back, offer suggestions to look at one another or at me, or fix a stray hair, but never "stand here, do this". But as Anna picked up her dress to ensure it wouldn't touch the ground for the walk back to the hotel, I said "wait, let me get one like that"

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos

... it's silly and certainly not the traditional wedding photo, but I thought it was so fun and would provide a little memory about how stormy the day was, and how they didn't let it damper their spirits. I want to take photos that are fun for me, and good for my portfolio, but I don't want to waste any precious wedding day time taking photos that are ONLY appealing to me, so I was pleased to see that this was the first image she shared on her instagram.

Then off to Vizcaya where the groomsmen were getting ready in the "man cave" and the flower girl (who's father was a groomsmen) was none too pleased to be stuck with the boys. Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Ceremony time she wasn't too thrilled either. Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos

In all honesty, she was very sweet and really excited to be the flower girl, but it was so fun for me to capture these little moments of a kid, well, being a kid.

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Her father was also dad to another little girl. Ah, life of a dad.

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos It nearly made me cry thinking that, in what will seem like a few short years, instead of being on a dance floor to put her shoe back on, he might be doing this with his that same little girl.

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos But before I get too sappy. Here's some more of the bridal party and the party party.

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos You can have your cake and eat it too!

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Wishing the happy couple a lifetime of love!

Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos Anna + BrendonAnna + BrendonJanuary 7, 2017; Sacramento, California, USA; Anna and Brendon. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) KLC fotos Love Olympus Sacramento http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/anna-brendon Sun, 08 Jan 2017 07:59:00 GMT
Allstate Sugar Bowl http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/allstate-sugar-bowl Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Before the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

Back at it for my third year of covering the Allstate Sugar Bowl!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) before the game against the Auburn Tigers in the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

This year was new and yet the same because it was the second time covering Oklahoma in the Sugar Bowl. Always reminds me of my high school calculus teacher Mr. Moutray who LOOOOOOVED the Sooners. (Also, here's a shout out to public schools - Vacaville High, UC Berkeley, and Oklahoma University!) I bet in his time they used real horses ;)

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners spirit before the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

Being based mostly in the West Coast, when I cover the Sugar Bowl which is an SEC v Big 12 matchup, I often am photographing players for the first time. So when Baker Mayfield tried to pretend he's Orlando Brown by switching name cards, he made me second guess myself!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceAllstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) speaks to the media a press conference at Marriott at the Convention Center. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl In the three times I've covered the Sugar Bowl at the Superdome I had never actually taken a photo of the Superdome from the outside! So one evening I convinced Patrick to drive me around. From what I had seen, compared to what I got I was disappointed. The photos I had seen must have a) taken more advantage of a slow shutter ie actually walked the freeway instead of doing a "drive by" b) photoshopped out streetlights

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceAllstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Mercedes Benz Superdome. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl But, never one to give up, we continued to the Hyatt, went to the top level where the gym as surprisingly open to non-hotel guests (perhaps not intentionally) and I was able to make this photo that I am MUCH more pleased with... I would have preferred to come a little earlier so it was twilight, but wasted too much time getting the above photo... and the following nights were all downpour so perhaps next year!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceAllstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Mercedes Benz Superdome. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl The rest of the week was press conferences, parades and fan fests.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Fan FestAllstate Sugar Bowl: Fan FestJanuary 1, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; XXXXX at the Allstate Sugar Bowl fan fest. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl The rain rescheduled some of practices to be at the same time as the parade, which from a Sugar Bowl perspective was more important, so I didn't a single chance to photograph in the Superdome until game day! This was particularly worrisome because on this trip, I ONLY brought my Olympus gear.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYE ParadeAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYE ParadeDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve Allstate Sugar Bowl parade. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl I had been shooting Olympus with the loan and with my older gear for a handful of events, but I had always brought my canon gear for backup "just in case" But I really wanted to start the new year all Olympus, my camera's arrived Christmas Eve. And while the batteries (more than 2 lithium ion batteries outside of the equipment they belong in can only be shipped ground) didn't arrive until the hour I boarded the plane to New Orleans, thankfully my dad was able to FedEx two to me to me overnight! And I am SO glad I committed to using the Olympus gear!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Fan FestAllstate Sugar Bowl: Fan FestJanuary 1, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; XXXXX at the Allstate Sugar Bowl fan fest. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

As I mentioned, there is one day of action and the rest of my time in New Orleans is covering events for the Sugar Bowl. Sometimes that's press conference grip and grins, in which I was thankful for the light weight.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceAllstate Sugar Bowl: Press ConferenceJanuary 1, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners head coach Bob Stoops, Allstate Sugar Bowl President Chuck Lapeyre and Auburn Tigers head coach Gus Malzahn during a press conference at the Marriott at the Convention Center. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl But it also means walking 20 minutes from the hotel to just outside Jackson Square, so I was VERY thankful for the weight, or lack there of. And did I mention is was raining. Like REALLY raining! So I was even more thankful for the weather sealing waterproofing of the Olympus system. Since the game is indoor I didn't have to worry about rain gear but with all of these events, I would have needed rain gear. Let me tell you raingear for wide angle and medium length glass is WAY more cumbersome than rain gear for your long lens.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Fan FestAllstate Sugar Bowl: Fan FestJanuary 1, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; XXXXX at the Allstate Sugar Bowl fan fest. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

And I brought it out for the concerts on NYE and fake NYE (more on that here) and was very glad for being able to be so discrete with my gear both for access and safety reasons as I walked about around a bunch of drunks ;)

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl And not only work use but being able to have my work camera and personal camera be one in the same, is the best! Walking around and getting photos I COULD NOT make with an iPhone, but without the "I won't bother bringing my 'real' camera" mentality I had before.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Still, game day I was a little nervous. I customized my white balance, I got my Eye-Fi cards working, I shot warm ups so I could dial in the continuos focus settings that work best for me (my tip, abandon facial recognition if you are trying to shoot sports even sports where faces are more visible than football... facial recognition focus is much better served in portrait type photos).

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Auburn Tigers quarterback Sean White (13) warms up before the game against the Oklahoma Sooners in the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

Ultimately, the game went great. There was a lot of back and forth and I had no problem running up and down the sideline.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Auburn Tigers quarterback Sean White (13) controls the ball against Oklahoma Sooners defensive end D.J. Ward (87), defensive end Austin Roberts (95) and defensive tackle Matt Romar (92) during the first half of the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

And it didn't let me down on Samaje Perine's carry to achieve Oklahoma school record rushing yards.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners running back Samaje Perine (32) escapes defensive back Stephen Roberts (14) during the second half of the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

And when Oklahoma had the win locked up, I felt there was no sense in covering a "meaningless" Auburn touchdown and propped myself in the end zone that Oklahoma was scoring towards so that if there was an Oklahoma interception I could have the photo. With the 300 (600mm equivalent) I was able to shoot across the field for when that interception did happen. I wish it could have been at the 50 because 300 is quite a reach, but I think it tells the story a bit to be in the end zone and all the photographers in the background.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners cornerback Jordan Thomas (7) celebrates after intercepting the ball during the second half of the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

Also Eye-Fi cards worked (more on that here), batteries lasted, and the biggest struggle was just being able to connect to the wifi in the stadium. Though it was public and not browser log-in based, both the Eye-Fi card and my phone trying to upload to DropBox weren't able to connect appropriately. But ultimately was able to get them out to a drop box folder that was shared with the director of communications, communications assistant the social media manager, the website designer, and other folks with various roles that needed live imagery during the game to promote the Sugar Bowl. (ie I'm not JUST looking for good action, or story telling, but also ways that market the Sugar Bowl, think, logos ;))

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) controls the ball as he looks for an open receiver against the Auburn Tigers during the first half of the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl On the whole, the Sugar Bowl staff was pleased with the images (important to impress client in terms of getting these kind of gigs) and I was pleased (important in creating a body of work I'm proud of). I am looking forward to 2017 as a full-time mirrorless Olympus photographer!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersAllstate Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma Sooners v Auburn TigersJanuary 2, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Oklahoma Sooners after the win against the Auburn Tigers in the Allstate Sugar Bowl football game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Oklahoma Sooners defeated the Auburn Tigers 35-19. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

For those curious about my set up, I used:

Two: OM-D E-M1 Mark II as my main bodies

OM-D E-M1 original as a third body for my wide)

OM-D E-M5 Mark II on the plane, because it's fun and hipster

M. Zuiko 300mm f/4 PRO

M. Zuiko 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO

M. Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8 PRO as my wide

M. Zuiko 12-40 f/2.8 PRO rarely but worth bringing because you never know if your wide will be too wide and the 40 too tight.

 

*Note - I am not sponsored by Olympus at the time of this posting (though I would like to be! Hello Olympus!! Here I am!!). If you are curious about brands I am affiliated with either as a sponsor or in terms of getting a "kick back" when items are ordered through my links, you can go to my affiliates page

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action Football KLC fotos NCAA New Orleans Sports http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/allstate-sugar-bowl Tue, 03 Jan 2017 07:59:00 GMT
Happy (Staged) New Year http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/happy-staged-new-year Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Well... we can say so long to 2016! I again welcomed the New Year in the city of New Orleans just like I did to kick to 2014, 2016 and 2017. (2015 I was ringing it in in Cuba) Apparently I like getting a head start on the new year so I prefer to welcome it in a time zone ahead of the one I generally live in ;)

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl This new year is a little different because with the 1st being on a Sunday, the Sugar Bowl doesn't compete with NFL and the game will be hosted on the 2nd as opposed to the usual 1st. This means I can't be drinking too much on NYE because I have to be up for an 8:30am press conference, but truth is, I don't really enjoy having more than 2 drinks, 4 if I'm going "big", so I'm not too disappointed to now have an excuse of why I don't "party". Especially if this how kids party these days ;)

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl This year I am without Colin and Lindsay and while I still have John, Sylvia and Patrick to hang out with, they are pretty busy keeping things running smoothly and I made a new friend, photographer Tyler Kaufman.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

It's always fun to meet photographers in new areas, talk photography, see who we know in common, grunt about the industry while also inspiring each other about what we're doing and what we can do to find the kind of success we didn't know we were looking for. Just like musician Jason Derulo promoting his shoe line. Hey, maybe I should do that... except I don't QUITE have the star power.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Tyler is covering the Sugar Bowl for the marketing group that represents Allstate. Pro tip: it's not just newspapers and teams that need coverage... go after that CORPORATE rate. The argument that it's selling your soul could be valid, but sports ARE corporate these days, and if someone is making money, it might as well be you! Anyway since NYE has the threat of lighting (have you seen the stage? It's basically multiple lightning rods, and people dying at a Fan Fest is NOT good PR) they did a pre-tapping of NYE on the 30th.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Yes, that's right, every image above is from December 30th. Including the scripted banter with Ryan Seacrest. Now, in the age of reality television, I'm not surprised or even appalled that they would do a pre-taping, that just makes sense. But here's the crazy part. I walked in with Tyler and no one gave me any trouble. No credential, no nothing (taking a page out of Z's book). As we set up between the barricade and the stage.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Near the forklift that was used simply as a curtain holder

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl And the portable cell phone tower

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl But just before Jason Derulo was about to perform (two hours later than scheduled), a person working with the promotion team asked who I was shooting for. When I said the Sugar Bowl, they said that it would be ok if I photographed if a) they had written note from my Sugar Bowl contact that they needed coverage, fair b) I got approval from his management team to cover it, fair c) that any image I took first went to Derulo's management for individual image approval, um... you GOT me there!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Now this woman was very non-aggressive about it and just doing her job so I didn't want to hassle her too much. I know many musicians seek this kind of agreement. So I politely asked, "ok, but if I walk outside the barricade and enter as fan, and take pictures, then Sugar Bowl and myself can theoretically do anything we want with the photos?" and she responded "I can't tell you yes, but as long as I'm not giving you access, then I can't say what you can and cannot do with the photos.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl The absurdity to me is people without any credentials have more rights to photos than those with access. So effectively non-media members have more freedom than the press. I can understand that an organization might limit the USE of those images per credential (can't sell the photos fro profit) or if the event was a private event or if fans were not allowed to bring cameras or take pictures. But if cameras are allowed to the public than a media member shouldn't be restricted in what kind of images they run. Can you imagine the warriors needing approval and if Stephen Curry slipped on a play they could say "you can't run that image". Actually wait a minute, that kind of did happen!! What is the world coming to?! This is also probably related to why the term "media" is so vague. Anyone can post to social media... and it is effectively media! Myself included!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloAllstate Sugar Bowl: Jason DeruloDecember 30, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Jason Derulo performs at the French Quarter. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl In better news, NYE celebrations were postponed but not cancelled. I didn't bother photographing Derulo's "real" performance and I only stopped by for a few frames of Panic at the Disco.

Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Then I went about wandering the streets of New Orleans. While Annie Leibovitz is not the photographer I strive to be, she is the source of a quote that rings SO true to me

“As a young person, and I know it’s hard to believe that I was shy, but you could take your camera, and it would take you to places: it was like having a friend, like having someone to go out with and look at the world. I would do things with a camera I wouldn’t do normally if I was just by myself.”  - Annie Leibovitz

Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Though I may have had some additional "spirit" friends along the way... this is New Orleans after all! I walked 4+ miles in downpour and unavoidable puddles that were deep enough water came in the TOP of my boots, for this shot and it was totally NOT worth it visually (especially after discovering there was a closer cemetery), but definitely worth it spiritually ;)

Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Then I met up with some human friends and happily welcomed in the New Year on a parking garage overlooking the fireworks. Rabbit Rabbit!

Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEDecember 31, 2016; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl Allstate Sugar Bowl: NYEAllstate Sugar Bowl: NYEJanuary 1, 2017; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Year's Eve. Photo: Kelley L Cox -KLC fotos for the Allstate Sugar Bowl

Oh also, I had started drafting a blog to reflects on 2016 (covering NBA Finals and Superbowl, though it was mostly the year of waffling whether I want to instagram my "real" photos instead of only using instagram for photos of my feet - let's see if those links are even active by the time you click on them ;)) and what I'm looking forward to 2017 (shooting with Olympus mirrorless cameras, scaling up [and streamlining] KLC fotos, and as always striving to be the best, if not at least slightly better, version of myself) but it got too sentimental, self-serving, and felt just as staged as fake New Year's Eve, so instead, you get photos of Jason Derulo, Panic at the Disco and a parking garage while I vent about what a weird state the photo industry is in. Happy New Year!!!

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) New Orleans http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2017/1/happy-staged-new-year Mon, 02 Jan 2017 07:59:00 GMT
NCAA Women's College Cup http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/12/ncaa-womens-college-cup NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans players celebrate with the championship trophy as confetti goes off after defeating the West Virginia Mountaineers in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the against the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

While other people were covering the Pac-12 Football Championship (congrats to Kyle Terada who got an SI cover photo from it) and the Raiders game on Sunday. I had the pleasure of covering the NCAA Women's College Cup at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans versus the Georgetown Hoyas, the West Virginia Mountaineers v the North Carolina Tar Heels. And the final between the Trojans and the Mountaineers.

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; The field before the game between the West Virginia Mountaineers and the USC Trojans in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

You might think I'm being sarcastic, but I'm not. I LOVE women's soccer. I so miss my days of covering FC Gold Pride for WPS... though mostly I just miss Marta, one of the only athletes I've ever felt in awe and slightly nervous to be in the proximity of ;)

FC Gold Pride vs Washington FreedomFC Gold Pride vs Washington FreedomMarta celebrates after scoring the equalizer. FC Gold Pride tied the Washington Freedom 1-1 at Castro Valley HS Athletic Stadium in Castro Valley, California on June 5th, 2010.

I'm lucky because every year I get to shoot college football, every year I get to shoot NFL, and I don't take that for granted. But I LOVE covering something I don't regularly get to cover. And by that I don't just mean women's collegiate soccer, but actually the frisbee dogs who are THE BEST!! Mostly because their human counterparts are JUST as excited as the dogs.

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; Frisbee dogs perform during half time of the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; Frisbee dogs perform during half time of the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

I have some pretty big beef with the NCAA for using the hashtag to be #WCollegeCup while the men's is just #CollegeCup as opposed to #MCollegeCup. And their signboards constantly flashing College Sports: A Pathway to Opportunity.

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia vs North CarolinaNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia vs North CarolinaDec 2, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; A signboard promoting NCAA during the second half between the North Carolina and the West Virginia at Avaya Stadium. The West Virginia defeated the North Carolina 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

That is a HUGE problem. Sure, NCAA has been a means for SOME athletes to have the "opportunity" access to take classes on a college campus. This does not mean the NCAA has provided the necessary support to ensure these student athletes get degrees let alone degrees and resources that provide them a lifetime of opportunity after their career is over. Some coaches, universities and players take this upon themselves, but the NCAA patting themselves on the back gives me endless eyerolls. Also, not everyone has the build or mindset to be an athlete, our education system needs to offer "a pathway to opportunity" to everyone, instead of teaching young kids that sports are the pathway to opportunity.

Also, watching this poor ball girl freeze all night, did not seem like a great opportunity :P

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; A young ball girl sits on a stool during the game between the West Virginia Mountaineers and the USC Trojans during the second half in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But off my soap box... two great semifinals games, 1-0 (yes, I know we Americans struggle caring about low scoring games) second half goals

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - USC v GeorgetownNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - USC v GeorgetownDec 2, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC forward Katie Johnson (33, center) celebrates with midfielder Ashleigh Plumptre (22) and forward Leah Pruitt (35) after a goal against Georgetown during the second half at Avaya Stadium. USC defeated Georgetown 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports And then the final where USC goalkeeper, Sammy Jo Prudhomme, really wow-ed me with some amazing saves... she is fearless and definitely the real deal.

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme (1) defends the shot by West Virginia Mountaineers forward Sh'Nia Gordon (99) during the first half in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme (1) punches away the ball against West Virginia Mountaineers forward Michaela Abam (5) during the first half in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme (1) extends her leg to defend the shot with defender Ally Prisock (23) against the West Virginia Mountaineers during the first half in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme (1) punches away the ball against the West Virginia Mountaineers during the first half in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports And Katie Johnson, the non-starter senior recorded TWO goals and scoring Friday night's game winning goal as well, and was basically just in disbelief at the final whistle. Like "Is this really happening?"

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans forward Katie Johnson (33) reacts as the clock winds down against the West Virginia Mountaineers during the second half in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports I hate taking dejection photos because it feels so mean to expose someone's pain like that

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; West Virginia Mountaineers players console goalkeeper Rylee Foster (25) after the loss to the USC Trojans in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports But I LOVE celebration photos that include the dejection of the other team. It doesn't reveal their faces, but it does show their feelings, and reminds you that sports can bring you so much elation, but if there's winner... that also means there's a loser :-/

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans midfielder Morgan Andrews (3) reacts as the Trojans win the women's college cup NCAA national championship game against the West Virginia Mountaineers at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports Though with a score 3-1 where the losing team had some time in the final minutes to process the loss, it's not quite as dramatic as the 1-0 finals where the losing team still felt they had a chance until the final whistle, and it wasn't just losing the championship, but realizing your season is over and you aren't going on to the championship

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - USC v GeorgetownNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - USC v GeorgetownDec 2, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme (1) celebrates after the win against Georgetown at Avaya Stadium. USC defeated Georgetown 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports Hard to think that the winning team in the semi final game had this feeling on Friday

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia vs North CarolinaNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia vs North CarolinaDec 2, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; West Virginia players celebrate after the win against the North Carolina at Avaya Stadium. The West Virginia defeated the North Carolina 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports ... before losing on Saturday

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; West Virginia Mountaineers players react after the loss to USC Trojans in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports But congrats to USC (Go Pac-12)

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans celebrate after the win against the West Virginia Mountaineers in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

After the game, I used my old Olympus OM-D E-M1 and OM-D E-M5 Mark II (still waiting for my E-M1 Mark II bodies to arrive) and made some fun celebration photos.

NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans players dump powerade on head coach Keidane McAlpine in celebration after the West Virginia Mountaineers in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. The USC Trojans defeated the against the West Virginia Mountaineers 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansNCAA Soccer: Women's College Cup - West Virginia Mountaineers vs USC TrojansDec 4, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; USC Trojans forward Savannah Levin (13) and defender Mandy Freeman (12) lay on the field surrounded by confetti after defeating the West Virginia Mountaineers in the women's college cup NCAA national championship game at Avaya Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action Avaya Stadium College Georgetown Hoyas NCAA North Carolina Tar Heels Soccer Sports USA Today Sports Images USC Trojans West Virginia Mountaineers http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/12/ncaa-womens-college-cup Sun, 04 Dec 2016 08:15:00 GMT
TTP: Holiday Special Offers http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/12/ttp-holiday-special-offers -Promo-

My friends at Think Tank Photo have announced two holiday special offers on their award-winning camera bags.  The first is their Outlet Center, which is chock full of huge discounts.  And second, through December 31st whenever you buy a Think Tank rolling camera bag you will receive Road Warrior Kit for free.  The Road Warrior Kit features 10 Red Whips cable ties, a Cable Management 10 pouch, an AA Battery Holder and a Travel Pouch. That’s $54.50 worth of accessories FREE!  And don’t forget, with our special relationship with Think Tank you will also receive a free gift when you use my special URL, as well as free shipping.  So get shopping!

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Promos ThinkTankPhoto http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/12/ttp-holiday-special-offers Thu, 01 Dec 2016 08:15:00 GMT
Shooting 49ers v Patriots (in th rain) with Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/11/shooting-49ers-v-patriots-in-th-rain-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) tries to hold off New England Patriots strong safety Patrick Chung (23) and defensive end Trey Flowers (98) before being sacked during the first quarter at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

After a soggy Cal game for my first sports test with the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, headed back out into the wet weather for San Francisco 49rs v New England Patriots.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) in the huddle against the San Francisco 49ers during the second quarter at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Though the tech rep told me I could shoot without rain gear, I was too much of a chicken to do it at the drizzly Cal game, thinking let's not break the loaner camera on it's first outing! But after one game under my belt, figured no better time to test out the weather sealing, especially with someone else's camera ;). All of my photographer friends, cameras covered in rain gear were eyeing me like I was a crazy person and coming up throughout the game "still working"? And glad to confirm yes, I am amazed how well this performed in the rain! Look closely and you can see the water bouncing off the camera!!

I dialed in my own ability to focus better. Still getting use to the extra length of an effectively 600mm 35mm equivalent with the 300 F4.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; New England Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett (88) carries the ball ahead of San Francisco 49ers free safety Eric Reid (35) during the third quarter at Levi's Stadium. The New England Patriots defeated the San Francisco 49ers 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

But impressive tracking, even when on a moving subject with a lot of nearby "objects" of similiar contrast that can often cause focus to slip off the subject.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers cornerback JaCorey Shepherd (38) carries the ball against the New England Patriots during the second quarter at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Which is tough compared to the easy money shots of Tom Brady passing the ball.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) passes the ball against the San Francisco 49ers during the first quarter at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

I did have a card fail, (my only guess is that moisture from my sleeve got on it when I went to send my first transmit). I WOULD have missed Phil Dawson getting his 400th career field goal. But this is a key reason why dual card slots are a great addition to the Mark II, because thankfully I was dual writing to two cards, so I had a back up of the images. The card worked the second half and the camera worked throughout.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers kicker Phil Dawson (4) kicks a field goal against the New England Patriots during the first quarter at Levi's Stadium. The New England Patriots defeated the San Francisco 49ers 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

And that allowed me to really test out the 18 frames per second with continuous focus... here's 24 frames, at 18 fps, without hitting the buffer!

Also worth noting, I covered the whole game on one battery. Battery life is SIGNIFICANTLY improved from the original E-M1 and the E-M5 Mark II.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; New England Patriots wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell (19) runs for a touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers during the fourth quarter at Levi's Stadium. The New England Patriots defeated the San Francisco 49ers 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

As someone who rarely peeps my photos at 100% zoom and doesn't do much detailed editing (much more rooted in journalism more than I am in photoshop) I'm still trying to determine if this is a true competitor against the 1D-X in terms of the file, I welcome any feedback. Full set here.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick on the sideline during the fourth quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. The New England Patriots defeated the San Francisco 49ers 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

In terms of capability, durability, reliability, versatility, and "bang for your buck" this camera BLOWS AWAY the competition. In debating whether I should switch it's tough because it's always been canon for me and Nikon has always seemed like the alternative... but then again, I guess I'm not one interested in following the traditional path.

NFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNFL: New England Patriots at San Francisco 49ersNov 20, 2016; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Referee Sarah Thomas during the fourth quarter between the San Francisco 49ers and the New England Patriots at Levi's Stadium. The New England Patriots defeated the San Francisco 49ers 30-17. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

 

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action Football NFL New England Patriots Olympus San Francisco 49ers Sports USA Today Sports Images http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/11/shooting-49ers-v-patriots-in-th-rain-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii Mon, 21 Nov 2016 04:45:00 GMT
Shooting College Football (in the rain) with Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/11/shooting-college-football-in-the-rain-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal players celebrate with the Stanford Axe after the win against the California Golden Bears at Memorial Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

As you may know, I've been testing out the new Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II. While I had a blast geeking out over getting still photos with the shutter open 6 seconds hand held that's not really useful to me in terms of the type of photography I do, so I needed to test it out in real time at an assignment... first up Cal Football v Stanford!

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; California Golden Bears safety Jaylinn Hawkins (6) and linebacker Devante Downs (1) celebrate with cornerback Marloshawn Franklin Jr. (18) after preventing the pass intended for Stanford Cardinal wide receiver Michael Rector (3) during the second quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

My game plan:

Warm ups with 300mm F4 - gives me an in-game setting for my first (second if you count the dog park for 5 min) time handling the 300mm except a little cleaner and can anticipate plays because they're doing drills :)

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal quarterback Keller Chryst (10) warms up before the game against the California Golden Bears at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

1st Quarter with 40-150mm F2.8- because I'm already familiar with it AND because I know I'll be looking for early tight shots from the sideline not downfield shots where longer glass is necessary... even though Cal opened up their offensive drive with a touchdown

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal quarterback Keller Chryst (10) hands off the ball to running back Christian McCaffrey (5) against the California Golden Bears during the first quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; California Golden Bears wide receiver Chad Hansen (6) on a touchdown run against the Stanford Cardinal during the first quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

2nd Quarter with the 300mm F4 - real time testing new body AND new lens together

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA;California Golden Bears cornerback Marloshawn Franklin Jr. (18) breaks up the pass intended for Stanford Cardinal wide receiver Michael Rector (3) during the second quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; California Golden Bears cornerback Ashtyn Davis (27) prevents the pass intended for Stanford Cardinal wide receiver Trenton Irwin (2) during the second quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

3rd Quarter - 40-150mm F2.8 with 1.4x - this is the 35mm equivalent of 80-300mm with 1.4x it's 112-340mm at f/4

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal running back Christian McCaffrey (5) scores a touchdown against the California Golden Bears as quarterback Keller Chryst (10) celebrates in the back ground during the third quarter at Memorial Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

4th Quarter - planned to switch back to 300mm but then thought I'd keep the 40-150mm with 1.4x because I was pretty happy with it and wanted that flexibility for end of game instead of being stuck with long glass

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal quarterback Keller Chryst (10) throws under pressure from California Golden Bears defensive end Cameron Saffle (51) during the fourth quarter at Memorial Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal running back Christian McCaffrey (5) points to the sky in celebration after a touchdown against the California Golden Bears during the fourth quarter at Memorial Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

End of game - since it wasn't a close game, with 4 minutes left, I had time to run back to the work room to lose the rain gear and toss the 7-14mm F2.8 for the wide celebration photos.

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal player kick up their legs as they sing a song after the win against the California Golden Bears at Memorial Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Full review to come after I get more games under my belt but first thoughts

Auto Focus - Great. It dials in quickly when I move quickly to catch a play. I struggled with it a bit on some plays that came at me. I think because I have a habit of "pumping" my focus so to speak. During a play, I take little breaks to allow focus to reset in case it's off, in my testing I was better served just sticking to the subject as opposed to trying to correct what's already tracking and then losing it to something with more contrast or more in center frame (since I mostly chose single point) in the background.

But it did a great job catching plays that came RIGHT at me and what might have been off in the first frame it easily caught up by the second. And in first frame the center point was clearly not on anything, so that's more on me than on the camera.

ISO - Excellent, I shot most of the 2nd half at 6400, just to test it and also because I was shooting at f/4 and wanted to keep my shutter speed up. I ran a bit of noise reduction in post but nothing extreme or telling. Though tough to tell how clean a file is because there's speckles of drizzle in them :P Below ISO 6400, 1/1000s at f/4

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; California Golden Bears place kicker Matt Anderson (9) scores a field goal against the Stanford Cardinal during the third quarter at Memorial Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Writing files - I can't waaaaaait for there to be software that can read RAW, I hate editing off jpegs mostly for the lack color control (I shot the whole game on cloudy white balance because I knew auto WB would be thrown off by the sign boards and you can't batch correct auto WB in jpegs. I shot one card jpeg one card RAW a WONDERFUL new feature with the updated slots. On that note, I've already ordered two SanDisk SD 250mb/s cards because my lousy 95mb/s were not cutting it. Would sometimes take half a minute to write a sequence to a card which meant I could not view to tag, but at least I could keep shooting. I also recorded to different folders so my 3rd quarter could easily be ingested with the different IPTC than my 4th quarter.

Review/Chimping - Significantly Improved. Much faster to browse through photos and much easier to tag with have a dedicated protect button in preview mode so I don't have to go into the menu or touch the screen. While trying to chimp through my rain gear, I would lift the plastic a bit to view full monitor and block the sensor which makes the camera think you are holding to your face and reverts to shooting mode, so cleverly, I would instead chimp through the EVF while keeping my head tucked in the rain gear. Something you CANNOT do on an SLR. The EVF is not as crisp as the monitor but it'll get the job done... and it's better to have it not look sharp in EVF and be sharp when ingested on my laptop, than the other way around!

Battery Life - one battery won't get me through a whole game, but with the battery in the grip this wasn't an issue and I got well over 1000 frames on the first battery before it dropped to 10% and started flashing. Their specs suggest 400. I was at 75% at the end of the first quarter so in theory I cooooould have used the camera more sparingly and made it through a game but it was nice to not worry about it, knowing I had a 100% battery ready to go.

Miscellaneous musings:

It's arguably a terrible idea to change lenses during a rainy game. Even though I changed them in a dry room, there could have still been condensation in the lens that I trapped while swapping. The fact that it held up through that pretty impressive.

I was told by the tech rep that I need not worry about putting rain gear on it, it had been testing through rain, sleet, snow, hail. But I figured I like keeping my hands dry anyway, I have raingear, I might as well toss it on. Could it have handled the rain? I'm sure. Do I want to risk not being able to test out all the specs of this camera during my trial period because I fried it on the first game? Nope!

ThinkTankPhoto hands down makes the best rain gear. I kept the Mark II in a hydrophobia 70-200 (not even designed for mirrorless... but hey maybe they should make one!) and the Mark I in a -will not be named- both protected the camera just fine, but the ease of use of the ThinkTankPhoto one was on another level.

I kept a 2nd body of the original E-M1 on my shoulder that had 40-150mm during the time I had the 300mm on the Mark II and otherwise had a 12-40mm, barely used at all but that's partially because it was rainy so tossing up a wide isn't quite as easy, in terms of getting a grip on it through the rain gear.

The twist lock feels much sturdier on the 300mm than the 40-150mm. Can kind of twist it snug, as opposed to one twist click in.

I kept my Canon 1D-X and a 300mm in my bag just in case this whole thing went awry. I WANT this camera to be everything I believe it can be but I was working this game for USA Today Sports Images and they expect a certain level of quality. When my editor (who knew that I was testing out Olympus this weekend) said "I'm amazed this is the olympus" I thought yay!! then when he said "we gotta have a talk about this tomorrow" I thought uh oh, he's going to tell me 'these are impressive for a mirrorless but you really can't be using them on assignments' and that will be the end of this story, but then he followed up with "cuz I'm buying my kit during the holiday sale"... so I guess Olympus is making quite the impression!

General takeaway: For hobbyists, a resounding 'get this camera immediately', you are silly if you are lugging around an SLR to your kids soccer game or your hiking trip, this is more than you will ever need. As a pro, I think it has the potential to be a real contender against the SLR flagships but I still need some time to work out the kinks.

Oh and congratulations to Stanford for keeping the Axe, definitely deserved. I'm ashamed to say Christian McCaffrey is a pleasure to watch, maybe he'll try to head to the NFL early and Cal will have a chance at the Axe next year... 

NCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNCAA Football: Stanford at CaliforniaNov 19, 2016; Berkeley, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal running back Christian McCaffrey (5) with the Stanford Axe after the win against the California Golden Bears at Memorial Stadium. The Stanford Cardinal defeated the California Golden Bears 45-31. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

*For those who want to check out what the un-edited jpgs look like can go here. Can also compare to what Ezra shot for Getty or Marcio Sanchez for AP both on Canon. Please kind about my personal skills but let me know your thoughts about the images the camera can produce. Think it can compete with the big boys?

 

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kelley@kelleylcox.com (Kelley L Cox) Action California Golden Bears College Football NCAA Stanford Cardinal USA Today Sports Images http://www.kelleylcox.com/blog/2016/11/shooting-college-football-in-the-rain-with-olympus-om-d-e-m1-mark-ii Sun, 20 Nov 2016 04:45:22 GMT