15 February, 2018

The Waiting Game (Moments In Between, part 3)

There are so many ways to wait. And even when you're going hard, sometimes you're also waiting — for an opportunity… for a break… for something to go wrong…

There are so many ways to wait. They're each a little different, and in 25 hours of racing, you're liable to experience more than a few. That's just how endurance races go. Plus, aside from the times when you're in the driver's seat, an endurance race is a lot like a relay race: when you've got the baton, you can make things happen. But when you don't, you still have to wait for it to come back around.

30 January, 2018

Strategies for Photographing an Unfamiliar Sport

I recently shot a handball match for the first time. Despite spending 15–20 years of my life playing soccer, I haven't really spent much time photographing ball sports before. And regardless, the rules and gameplay of handball are sufficiently different from soccer that I didn't know what to expect. I had a lot to learn, and only the 1-hour duration of the match to find my balance and get some shots. Here's how I approached that challenge.

19 January, 2018

The Calm Before The Storm (Moments In Between, part 2)

There's a gap before almost every competition. After the madness of preparation and last-minute fixes, you pause, take a breath, and get ready to put that work to the test.

At the 25, there's a twist. Once the cars are all gridded up, the spectators are welcomed out onto the track to check out the cars and take pictures of (or with) the teams. It's chaos. But amidst that chaos, there is a calmness to the team's crew and drivers. But beneath that calmness, you can still sense an underlying tension and anxiety: The start is coming. Did we miss anything? Did we forget anything? There are still a few moments left to remedy any oversights.

31 December, 2017

Moments In Between: 25 Hours of Light and Darkness

There's a saying in motorsports: "fast is slow; slow is fast." And while it's questionable advice for the actual technique of driving, it's still relevant for the driver's mindset. Actions that feel fast tend to be reactive — something happened and you were fast enough to catch it and respond. Like if you trip while walking and you catch yourself — it certainly takes a bunch of skill and experience to avoid a spill, but tripping and recovering still slowed you down.

By contrast, a feeling of slowness tends to accompany actions that don't even require a reaction. Maybe you predicted the problem and avoided it entirely — you saw that raised edge in the pavement and you adjusted your stride to walk right past it. When a driver has a feeling of slowness during the race, it often means that they're actually moving fast. They are relaxed and in control of the situation. Their actions are precise and proportionate. Deliberate.

But the specific memories that we retain about an event tend to center around the fast moments, and the slow periods tend to be compressed and forgotten. We anchor on the things that were exciting, and everything else fades away.