Last Tuesday I got the assignment from Southcreek Global Media to shoot the Beef ‘O’ Brady College Bowl Game (at the Tropicana Dome in St. Petersburg, Florida) between the Louisville Cardinals and the Southern Miss Golden Eagles.

My Fluke Mistake of the Day
If you’re thinking that the image above looks like it has some clipped highlights, well…you’d be right. At one point during the game, I turned D3s upside down, and leaned it against a wall in the end zone, so I could focus in-close for a series with my 70-200mm. Unfortunately for me in this case, the bracketing button is on the top of the D3s, and it turned on bracketing without me knowing. When I went back to my camera, and starting shooting, it took me a few minutes before I noticed that some of my photos were dark, some were really light (like the one you see above, which had been overexposed two stops), and some were OK. Of course, that shot above is one of my favorite shots from the day, and while I could lower the Exposure to recover some of the highlights, I couldn’t get them all back. The shot’s still “OK” but the clipping on his helmet and arm wrap on his left arm really bug me. NOTE: If you click on the photo to see the larger version, you can really see the blown out areas).

Southcreek arranged for me to have a Editor at the game to make the editing and uploading of images live during the game much faster and easier. I asked my buddy Matt Kloskowski to be my editor, and work the game with me. After each quarter, and at half time, Matt would come down to the field, we’d swap memory cards, and he’d head up to the Pressbox to import the images, find the best ones, do the editing, add the metadata required by Southcreek, and then upload it to Southcreek’s live servers. Not surprisingly, Matt did a fantastic job, and we had images uploading the entire game, and afterward. (Photo above by Andy Gregory, who was ejected from the game for once again trying to steal my shots).

Above: That’s Matt up in the press box, editing away. He looks very serious. Well, for Matt, anyway. ;-)

Above: Not only does he make the catch, he takes it in for a touchdown!

Above: It’s kind of a boilerplate shot, but for some reason, I like it (well, except for that foot on the far right edge of the shot. Because this is for a wire service, you can’t clone stuff like that out, but if I were going to make myself a print to hang on my wall, that foot would be gone in about two seconds.

Above: I love the way he’s hanging on to the drawstring on the receiver’s pants. Anyway, here’s a few more from the game:

Above: It was a back and forth battle all day, but in the end, Louisville edged Southern Miss 31-28. A great game, a great time, and it’s my last college game this season [sigh], but at least it ended on a high note —my first game where I had an on-site editor, and it was shot in a comfortable 72° indoor dome, which after the Steeler’s 22° shoot on the previous Sunday, that was a real pleasure.

Above: One last thing: I was psyched to see that one of my shots from the game—seen above—wound up on Southcreek’s home page in their highlights reel of their latest coverages.

About The Author

Scott is a Photographer, bestselling Author, Host of "The Grid" weekly photography show; Editor of Photoshop User magazine; Lightroom Guy; KelbyOne.com CEO; struggling guitarist. Loves Classic Rock and his arch-enemy is Cilantro. Devoted husband, dad to two super awesome kids, and pro-level babysitter to two crazy doggos.

37 Comments

  1. Scott:

    I posted this last week on one of your other blog posts:

    “Was just watching SportsCenter on ESPN. They were showing the Southern Miss/Louisville game highlights. At one point in the 4th quarter, #88 of Southern Miss leaps to catch a touchdown pass in the corner of the end zone over one defender. There’s a photographer in the background standing up getting the shot with his 70-200 Nikon (no white lens), wearing jeans and a black top. Big lens on a monopod leaning up against the wall behind him. Two photographers in yellow shirts kneeling next to him, by a big advertisement for “Wall Street”. Was that you? Was Matt standing next to you, wearing bags on a belt?

    If it was you, that must have been an awesome shot! Hope you share some of those photos.”

    So, an idea if that was you I saw? I don’t see any picture that might correspond to that moment, but maybe the D3 was in bracket mode at that point and the picture got messed up. The shots you posted are great, as always. Congrats on getting that shot published!

    BTW, did Santa bring you a new 500mm lens this year, or did it get delivered to Matt’s house? :D

    –John

    • Hi John:
      Yup—that was me, and that’s when my Bracketing got turned on.

      I did actually get the shot, but it was a really blah shot (even though I was in the right place, with the right lens–it just looked kinda blah, so I didn’t post it).

      I didn’t get a 500mm this Christmas—I’m pretty good on lenses this year, but my big brother did get me a black Fender Stratocaster with a maple neck, which I love. Of course, my wifey hooked me up with a bunch of amazing stuff (including a cool Fender hoodie, a Fender ball cap, and lots of other cool stuff), but seeing the kid’s lose their minds on Christmas morning was the best gift of all. :)

      Happy Holidays,

      -Scott

      • Scott:

        One of your “blah” shots is probably better than anything we would could get in that situation! And I think you’ve got someone in the “House-ski” to make it look good if you do’t have the time! ;) Let’s see it! :D

        Sweet present from your brother. My 18 year old son is a guitar player and he is very jealous! I don’t know how old your kids are, but I miss those days when my kids would go off the wall at Xmas! Enjoy these years!!

        –John

      • as far as classic guitars go i would/ve pegged you as a Gibson guy. but then you shoot Nikon, so i guess there you go. my favorite guitars i’ve owned have been the Parker Fly Deluxe, Gibson Herb Ellis es 175, Gibson es 335, and an old cracked Gibson dreadnot from 1930’s. i see you with an Flying V!

  2. I’m curious about the copyright on the photos- I noticed that the copyright on that web page shot says © Scott Kelby / Southcreek Global and you mentioned ‘required metadata’ by Southcreek. Did you have to sign a contract for your photos as Work Made For Hire? I’m always interested in how that part works, especially since I’m a frequent reader of the Copyright Zone Jack Reznicki/Ed Greenberg articles about image rights. Can you shed some light on who owns the images or the conditions set fourth? -M

  3. Very nice, best guys, best camera, best photograph.

  4. Scott,
    Awesome shots! I like the #13 QB photo, you could make a wall sticker out of that one! I saw where RC was in Chicago for a game, did he shoot sidelines?
    KT

  5. You said “Louisville edged the Cardinals”. As a Kentucky fan I enjoyed the error but just thought I’d say that Louisville edged the Golden Eagles.
    I’ll bet Brad would have caught that one.

  6. Great shots Scott, did you shoot the Bucs yesterday?

    • Hi Dave:
      Unfortunately, no. I would have loved to shoot the game (especially since they won), but Southcreek already had it covered, so I sat this one out. Sad, too—because the game was blacked out locally. At least my Bears won—and you could see it on TV!!!! :)

      -Scott

  7. Scott,

    I have to tell the truth, I’m not a sports fan at all. I don’t watch football, baseball, basketball, hockey, or any other sport unless I have to. I’m a true nerd, but your sports work actually makes sports look interesting. Not going to become a sports fan but I can appreciate the difficulty in getting the shots you do.

    • Hi Tim:
      Thanks for your kind words. I only have two more football shoots left (including one this weekend, and one playoff game), and then that’s it for this Season, and back to shooting people, travel, and stuff (for which many readers will be glad—football photography doesn’t appeal to everyone, but right now, that’s pretty much what I’m shooting, so I don’t have anything else to put up).

      Thanks for keeping an open mind to something new. I’ll have a blog post about all of this next week. :)

      Happy Holidays,

      -Scott

  8. Scott,

    Nice shots. I’m a fellow Southcreek’r from Ohio. I’m headed to the Sugar Bowl for the Buckeyes game next week in New Orleans. How did you like having someone else edit your images? I’ve always been a little leery of that, since I haven’t seen individual situations/shoots handled the same way by different photographers very often. I feel the edit can be half the job in some situations and I’m not sure they’ll see it the way I would!

    I know how you feel with featured shots on Southcreek’s page. I shot the New Orleans Bowl last week and had one of mine up there from that game!

    Maybe we’ll end up shooting the same game someday. After the Sugar Bowl, I’m on to the college basketball season. Have you shot basketball? It’s a whole different animal!

    Scott

  9. Wonderful, action packed series of images Scott!

    What’s great to see is how all you guys work so well together and clearly have fun doing so.

    Best wishes to you, Matt and the gang,
    Glyn

  10. I love these shots, Scott! I live just on the other side of the Ohio from Louisville, so they’re my home team! I especially love the no. 13 QB shot, very nice!

  11. I don’t understand the upside down camera. Any takers on this one?

    • Hi Andrew: My camera’s lens is attached to a monopod, so I turned the camera upside down (with the monopod aiming up toward the ceiling), and I put the camera down on the ground (so picture it leaning against the wall like a mop). :)

      -Scott

  12. I love how sharp your photos look, Santa brought me a 50mm f1.8 for christmas, so maybe I’ll start to get sharper images from now on (the kit lenses are good, but not that good).

    I don’t understand all the leagues, modules, series and whatever you guys have on the US, for American Football, however shoot a sports game from the field line have to be awesome, maybe someday I will!

    I’m still going after that Kelby Media Group internship! Keep on the amazing work.

    Pedro

  13. Hey Scott,

    I saw you out there on the sidelines. I was also there shooting for SouthCreek. I unfortunately didn’t get to have an editor out there and was stuck in the photo pit transmitting photo’s during the game.

  14. Scott-

    Great images, as usual! I appreciate the little lessons you share about the things that go wrong, too.

    P.S. I always wanted that exact guitar, too, a black Strat with the maple neck!

  15. Great shots! Love the detail showing the drawstring!

  16. If you shot Raw you would of probably recovered those highlights :)

  17. Football over? What is next?

  18. Great shots as usual Scott. Too bad football season is almost over. I’ll miss seeing your football shots on a regular basis, but I’ll still enjoy whatever types of shots you share with us.

  19. Amazing football photo’s again Scott.
    Are you going to make some shots during the NFL play-offs??

    Happy Hollidays from Amsterdam, NL.

  20. Do you shoot basketball Scott? I’m a huge NBA fan.

  21. Scott,

    I was glad to read about your fluke mistake as I make those kind of mistakes regularly. This week, while photographing the vintage subway cars in NYC, I got home to realize I was set to a -1.7 exposure. No idea how that happened.

    It is reassuring that even the pros mess up. The only difference is for you it is a fluke. For me it par for the course.

    Happy Holidays,

    Steven

  22. Looks to me like you’re becoming quite the sports photographer! I used to be on the field or court for every game in college representing the school newspaper. I sure to miss those press passes!

  23. excellent, favorite shot: QB about to throw, perfect and intense. hey go shoot some hockey for us hockey lovers now please!? happy holidays everyone.

  24. Hey there!

    Great pics, as always. You said about that foot that shouldn’t be in theimage: Because this is for a wire service, you can’t clone stuff like that out. I understand that, but can’t you crop it out?

    Have a great new year!

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