Some of my first day of the fair, it included quilt judging, cookie tasting(while photographing cookie judging) some pigs, several cows, wrestlers, a guy wearing antlers, tractor pulls and a lot of walking. And I get to do it all over again tomorrow and for 7 more days. Meadville Tribune photographs by Richard Sayer
Meadville football players crack each other up during the team photo session this afternoon. I had planned on going there today and just doing my thing and I felt pretty at ease about how I would be able to organize myself, the players and it would all be fine. When I got there a group of very wonderful volunteers for the football boosters were there and they just took charge. They took names, collected the order forms, and made my life ....well...easy! A major thank you to those ladies. The coaches and team should thank you as well because it was your efficiency that got the job done, all football players from 7th through seniors had individual and group shots done--there must've been somewhere around 150 kids--they were organized, processed and done and we were done in just a little over 2 hours--I still can't believe it. I was planning on 3 to 3 1/2--which it would've probably taken had these...oh all right, I'll call them angels didn't step in. Thanks again and yes, I owe you! It was all smiles as demonstrated above(mostly) by the varsity bulldogs and below as Nathan Martin of the 7th and 8th grade Black team demonstrated after his team's picture was taken. SayerMotter Photographs by Richard Sayer
Today its all about MASH football. The unsung athletes on the football field are its cheerleaders, and they are athletes(if you don't think so just tell that to one of them and then watch as they beat you up) and they have the bruises to prove it. It was nearly 30 girls all posing for individual pictures in a location around the school of their choosing. We then did some group shots. Many of the pictures will be for the program coming out during the first week of the season and many others just for a frame in mom or grandma's house. This picture was a fun one to do after taking the senior's group photograph. Later today its the football team--I wonder if I can get them to jump in the air and toss up their helmets(probably not!) SayerMotter Photograph by Richard Sayer
Well I guess I like to break rules, thats been apparent for a long time. I really like using too much light for proper exposure and hoping to get something a little different. We're taught to expose for the highlights in digital photography, much like the old days of shooting slide film(negative film we exposed for the shadows--printed for the highlights). So when I set my flash on full power manual and get real close, I'm not exposing the picture correctly--but why not try it and see what we get. SayerMotter Photograph by Richard Sayer
You can see one win a contest at least once every year--the ball head. Over the years I've had about 1/2 dozen close ones--but you could always see some part of the persons head, perhaps a bit of the chin, or the back of the head--it was never perfect. Now these happen by pure chance, I don't believe anyone really tries to get one, its action, you snap and even though there is some hope that your plan to be in the right place at the time works to achieve good action shots, you really can't plan to have this happen. Maybe the greats can, but the rest of us just notice that when they happen, don't delete it in camera, wait until you see it on screen maybe just maybe you'll get something that works. It only took me 13 years to get one that worked this well and cleanly. If nothing else its good for a double-take and then hopefully a chuckle. Meadville Tribune photograph of Lakeview football practice by Richard Sayer
This bracelet was designed by Carol Knoblow, of Meadville, Pennsylvania. I met with Carol a couple of weeks ago to talk about jewelry photography. I quickly learned that this is where her passion lies. She trusted me to take this beautiful bracelet home and photograph it. This is my first attempt at jewelry photography and I am hoping that I did it a bit of justice. I will be the first to admit that I know nothing about designing jewelry. But, I am excited about teaming up with Carol and learning.
Photo By: Harmony Motter
On Sunday morning I loaded my cameras into my car and headed to Baldwinsville, NY(near Syracuse) I went there to photograph the Reinagel's, a family I've been photographing now for two years. They recently welcomed into the world Emereson--Emmy! I told them I would come as soon as I could to photograph Emmy and the family to keep up my 'photography through life' idea with them. I like this family, they are like my own family to me. I have to admit that driving 4 and 1/2 hours isn't the best motivator for making family portraits, but Eric, Aimee, Scout and Emmy were patient with me and we managed to get several good frames. The picture below was sort of funny for me because I didn't realize I was using the same set up that my friend and business partner Harmony used for a picture over a decade ago. Once baby Emerson started to cry I realized that this was Harmony's picture all over again.
Over the next several days I'll be going over this weeks photo shoots and I'll come to realize that this was a pretty special week where I got to meet a lot of nice people, photograph them and hopefully help them out in their careers and futures, also I got to hang out with some old friends and make new pictures of them as they continue to build and grow as a family. Its a pretty good life this photographic life! SayerMotter Photographs by Richard Sayer
I'm the first to admit that I don't know what I'm doing! I work with people wanting pictures and I begin to set up a portrait and I shoot a picture or two and then I look up and see an even better pose right there in front of me without any direction from me. The same thing happen with eye movement, hair and gestures--try moving you hair from one side to the next--the picture usually happens somewhere in between--not at the end where I think it will look right. I guess thats the beauty of working for a newspaper for so long--we expect the unexpected and when we're on our games we click the shutter. Carrying this over into portraiture has been a great thing and I think we're making pictures that aren't like the other photographers in the area--so I hope that translates into people taking notice of us and thinking we can make something special for them--we certainly do try awful hard to make something special each time we shoot. I've had a rash of assignments lately with folks looking for images to make or expand their portfolio. Each shoot has brought exciting things for me. Aubry, in the picture above is looking to really establish a portfolio she can use to show agencies and agents. I don't know if this headshot will make it into her portfolio, probably not, but I liked how her look was pretty intensely focused on the camera---this will be an asset to her as she grows as a model. Below is a more typical headshot. SayerMotter Photographs by Richard Sayer
"I did these pictures awhile back in this room with a smoker...' 'oh can we do that?' 'Do you smoke...?" Its funny sometimes how a picture comes to be. A month or so ago my friend Jim gave me this little light that is called a video light. Its bright and it gets really hot, but I've now used it on about four different shots and each I get something cool! Jim has good mojo! I didn't know BreAnn smoked and wasn't planning on doing any smoking pictures tonight, but we made a bunch in 6 minutes(apparently thats the basic duration of a good smoke!.. I learned that tonight). I have many I liked from this part of the shoot - I like this one for its directional movement and sort of elegance. It was a good shoot tonight and BreAnn, who is also a photographer, brought her mom Sara, who is also a photographer, so we spent some time talking about photography as well as shooting some neat pictures. SayerMotter Photograph by Richard Sayer
I keep seeing this image of a quarterback running all over the field against MASH and General McLane a few years back. Mo Williams was one of the most impressive high school athletes I've seen. It was fun for me to include him in a few pictures as I photographed his girlfriend Shaude for her portfolio yesterday. I still have a long way to go to go through all the pictures, but I like this one of the two of them together against a wall of graffiti in Meadville. SayerMotter Photography by Richard Sayer