Nov 29, 2011

2012 Sports Photography Calendar - Trail Running Cover Shot Explained

Every year I receive numerous request about my photography calendars and despite the tremendous work that is involved, it's rewarding to see the finished product.  A huge thanks goes to the athletes included within and my wife for getting it to print!

So for those asking, go here to purchase: 2012 SPORT/ADVENTURE CALENDARS ON SALE NOW (just $10)

About "The Cover Shot": This years cover shot comes from a shoot for Mountain Hardwear/Montrail this past year in Lake Tahoe, CA featuring ultra trail runner extraordanare, Max King.  Max has way too many titles and accompanying list of victories to include here, but suffice it to say that he's wicked fast (sub 4:40 miles on pavement), ridiculously smooth (off-road) and one of the best athletes I've had the pleasure to work with on a photo shoot. 

We had a back-to-back days that were just plain brutal including working our way over several snow covered areas on the flume trail that were normally dry this time of year.  In all we ended up traversing about 6,000+ vertical feet on two consecutive days (First scouting and back to shoot the next day with gear, crew and athletes) to get to this location and meet our shoot objectives of environment long-range photography -- 'rave run' type stuff.

Initially, I had another shot picked out to shoot near this location (see below), which we had discussed in our pre-production days that would  provide an awesome environmental sport image.  But like any other location shoot, once I'd nailed what needed to happen according the the brief, I began exploring for additional compositions.  This was a  moment for me to push the creative direction and shot list just a bit further and capture something unexpected and engaging.  We explored the trail and found just up from our first location a piece of overhanging piece granite rock that was intriguing both compositionally and aestically.  I decided to rally the troops (who were well spent) and shoot this local also.    The set-up took about a half an hour as I employed a favorite rig I like to call the 'mini heli'; essentially a camera mounted boom pole that allows me to get an 'mini' aerial perspective of a location very quickly and with minimal gear.  This was the perfect location for the mini heli!

We rigged up the 5D Mark II (no grip) with a 15mm fisheye, and a 4x6 sunbounce reflector and started exploring the trail from this new perspective.  The late afternoon sun worked well to backlight the runner and we bounced a little fill into the front.   Thirty minutes later we had a few takes that were solid and we called the flume trail shot a wrap!

Check out more trail running photos from this shoot in a recent case study here: photography case study with Mountain Hardwear

(Another Trail Running Shot from the Flume Trail)


Oliver RR said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Oliver RR said...

Stunning. Makes me want to go running.

trail running said...

You really had a great experience..
It's ignites me to run..
Nice blog..:)