Photo of the Week 12-29-08

Photo of the Week

(Nikon D300, iso 3200, 1/400 @ f:2.8, 35mm)
A fan holds up a sign during the Vermont State Division I High School
Basketball Championship game between the Burlington Seahorses
and the Rice Green knights at Patrick Gym on March 3, 2008 in
Burlington, Vermont. Photo by Brian Jenkins.

Each year I try to make it to the Vermont State Division I high school championship game held at Patrick Gym on the campus of the University of Vermont. The games are usually really good with the crowd and atmosphere electrifying. Last year (2008) was no exception especially since the championship game was a rematch from the year before (2007). The Rice Green Knights where looking to win their second straight state championship in a row, while the Burlington Seahorses where looking for a little revenge. I knew it was going to be a good game and that I had to be there to capture the sights. I wasn't on assignment for anyone, I was just there to be a part of the experience and for my love of sports photography.
As a photojournalist you are trying to tell a story with your photos. When shooting sports, you want to not only capture the action but also the emotions and atmosphere of where you are. You want the viewer to feel like they were there. When it really comes down to it anyone can take a photo of the peak action on the court (or field), it's really not that hard. The hard part in photography in trying to tell a story using still images and looking for little moments that capture the feeling of the event. There is so much more to a sporting event than what the players are doing. Especially in a high school Championship game. I was looking for those kind of moments when I noticed this girl holding up the sign. It is such a funny photo to me and it is one of my favorite photos of 2008. I wonder if she ever figured it out. Burlington did end up winning in the end and get there revenge on Rice for beating them in 2007. I'm sure this year's championship game will be just as exciting and I can't wait. Hope I can make it this year.

Photo of the Week 12-22-08

Photo of the Week

(Nikon D300, iso3200, 1/500 @ f:2.8, 300mm Lens)
Catamounts goalie Mike Spillane #31 keeps his eyes on the puck during the
Vermont Catamounts win 3-2 over the Maine Black Bears at Gutterson
Fieldhouse on Saturday night November 29, 2008 in Burlington, Vermont.
© 2008 Brian Jenkins
Ice Hockey is such a fun and challenging sport to photograph. It is so fast paced and usually the lightning is really poor. Each time I photograph a hockey game I make it a point to get a close up photo of both teams goalie masks. Each mask is unique and a work of art. At the end of the year I plan to make a collage of all the goalie masks I shot this year. Next time you are at hockey game (if you like hockey) you should really take a look at the masks if you can.

At the game against the Maine Black Bears I really wanted a super tight photo of Mike Spillane's mask so I put the 300mm lens (I usually shoot most of the game with an 80-200mm lens) on my camera and waited until there was a face off right in front of the Vermont goal. On the face off the puck went into the corner. Usually I would try to grab my other camera for a wide angle shot but this time I decided to concentrate on Mike as he watched the action. I have envisioned this kind of shot before and after a few years I finally got it. I love the big eyes and the intensity at which Mike is watching the action. I think he has done a good job so far of replacing Joe Fallon who is now with the Chicago Blackhawks.

Most of the hockey that I shoot is UVM. They are really looking pretty good this year and I hope they can keep up the hard work for the rest of the season. There is still a lot of hockey left and
it should be an interesting rest of the season for the Catamounts.
Go Cats!

Photo of the Week 12-15-08

Photo of the Week

(Nikon D300, iso 1600, 1/125 @f:2.8, 10.5mm)
A general view of the stadium as the Bruins and Sabres warm up before the start of
the Boston Bruins win 7-4 over the Buffalo Sabres at TD Banknorth Garden
on Wednesday night November 19, 2008 in Boston,
Massachusetts. © 2008 Brian Jenkins

I always try to get an overall view of each stadium I visit.
This being my first time at the TD Banknorth Garden and running late, I didn't get into the arena until 6:30 (game time at 7:00). I usually try to get to a sporting event well in advance, especially when it is a place I have never been. Once I got into the Garden I found out where to go and made my way to the rink to find a place to shoot the game from. After asking a few questions I found a spot, sat down and started shooting.
At hockey games there is a little hole in the ice so that you can stick your lens through and take photos. It can be pretty scary when a puck or body comes flying at the hole. I have had a few close calls, but haven't been injured yet. I got hit in the shoulder with a stick that came through the hole during a Vermont game one time and I have seen the results of a puck hitting a 200mm F:2 lens. It's not pretty.
I was sitting at my shooting position on the glass, shooting stock photos when another photographer from a different wire service came up to me and kindly booted me out of that shooting position. I guess some of the shooting positions are assigned but I just showed up and sat down. I got up and thought about my next move. The players were about to take the ice for the game and since I had to find another shooting spot I decided to get a general view of the Garden during the pre game ceremonies. I quickly ran to the top of the Garden and put on the fish eye (10.5mm) lens I borrowed from a friend and began to shoot.
The lighting is pretty cool during pre game. I haven't been to an NHL game since I lived in Colorado (12 years ago). I took several different shots while I was up there (see post here for a different version) but this was my favorite one. I wish I could have gotten the whole blue stripe of light but I was already leaning over the railing with my arm stretched out to get this shot. Didn't want to press my luck. Maybe next time I'll try a pole cam.
After getting a few good shots, I headed down to the ice, found an open hole in the glass and shot the rest of the game.

Photo of the Week 12-08-08

Photo of the Week

(Nikon D300, iso 3200, 1/1000 @ f:2.8, 50mm)

Catamounts freshman Ase Lundin competes in the high jump during the indoor
track and field meet between the Hartford Hawks and the Vermont Catamounts
at Gutterson Fieldhouse on Saturday afternoon December 6, 2008
in Burlington, Vermont. © 2008 Brian Jenkins.

I shot my first Track and Field meet ever on Saturday afternoon at Gutterson Fieldhouse. It was definitely a challenge. Not only was it pretty dark inside but most of the backgrounds were horrible. There was a second floor running track around the outside of Gutterson so I decided to go up there and clean up the background. I think it worked pretty good.

Photo of the Week and the Crazy Coach!

Photo of the Week
(Nikon D100, iso 1600, 1/400 @ f:2.8, 300mm)
The Greyhounds head coach Jimmy Patsos yells at forward Jawaan Wright #21,
a junior from Agawan, Massachusetts, during a time in the closing minutes of
the second half in the Vermont Catamounts win 64-62 over the Loyola, Maryland
Greyhounds at Patrick Gym on Saturday afternoon November 28,
2008 in Burlington, Vermont.

I have shot a lot of basketball games over the last few years and I would have to say the head coach for the Loyola Greyhounds, from Maryland, is one of the most intense coach I have ever seen. (UMBC head coach Randy Monroe is a close second come to think of it).

The Vermont Catamounts hosted the Greyhounds at Patrick Gym on Saturday afternoon. I had an interesting experience at the game. I was there to shoot Vermont in their new black uniforms for the UVM athletic communications department, so for most of the first half I was on the floor on the visitor's side of the stadium with Vermont coming at me. As soon as the game started I noticed that the Loyola head coach was something special, a basketball photographer's dream. After I got some decent shots of UVM I decided to go near the Greyhounds bench to see what I could get of the head coach Jimmy Patsos. I still had to keep an eye on the action on the court but every chance I got I would point my camera towards Jimmy.

(Nikon D2x, iso 1000, 1/250 @ f:2.8, 17-35mm)

After I took this picture (above) the head coach walked to the end of the bench and sat in one of the last chairs. As he turns to look in my direction I push the shutter button on my camera and sure enough I am out of memory (I hate it when that happens). As I am trying to change my memory card, the coach looks at me and says:

coach: "Hey, what's up? You getting some good pictures? You know I am a really nice guy for twenty-two and a half hours a day. Where are those pictures?"

Me: "I'll take whatever pictures you give me"

Coach: "All you media want are pictures of my bad side."

Then he gets up and goes back to coaching the game. The trainer on his team and I look at each other and start laughing. (damn 2g memory cards fill up so fast).

If I wasn't shooting from UVM, I probably would have stayed on him the entire game. I have never seen a coach get into his players faces so much and be so animated. There was even a little pushing going on. I have to give it to him though, he definitely was passionate about the game. Here are a few more photos for your enjoyment.

(Nikon D300, iso 2000, 1/400 @ f:2.8, 80-200mm)
(Nikon D300, iso 2000, 1/400 @ f:2.8, 80-200mm)

(Nikon D100, iso 1600, 1/400 @ f:2.8, 300mm)

At the hockey game later that night between the Vermont Catamounts and the Maine Black bears, a security gurad came up to me and said he was right behind me and saw the coach talking to me. He said he thought the coach was be an ass and had my back. I am sure Jimmy is a really nice guy off the court. (mabye)

(Nikon D300, iso 2000, 1/400 @ f:2.8, 80-200mm)

Jimmy Patsos is a friend and former college teammate of Catamounts head coach Mike Lonergan when they played for Catholic university. I wonder if he was the same in college.

(Nikon D100, iso 1600, 1/400 @ f:2.8, 300mm)

Some of you will probably notice that I am using a Nikon D100 sometimes. That camera was my first digital camera. I bought it about 5 years ago. I still love it. Besides the small file size, it has pretty good image quality and white balance. The files aren't too noisy at high iso and any photos shot at iso 1600 or below seem to be really sharp. I will use it as long as it is still kicking. I use it mostly as a third body or a remote.

Economic Chaos

When the editor from the Burlington Free Press called to ask if I was available for Friday morning, I immediately accepted the assignment. Sounded like fun. When I told my girlfriend what I was up to she immediately said she wanted to go along for the ride. Yup, We where there at Wal Mart at 4:30am along with the thousands of other crazy people to wait for the holiday shopping season to begin. I knew there would be people there but I never imagined it would be that many. The line was more than a quarter of a mile long and people had been waiting all night for the store to open.

I didn't really sleep very well the night before so It was a chore to drag myself out of bed at 3:45am. I probably should have gotten out of bed a little earlier but that is easier said than done. On my way there I was thinking about what the scene was going to be like and trying to visualize different ideas I had in my mind for photos I wanted to get (and if I had time to stop and get some coffee). To be honest, I had no idea what to expect.

(Nikon D300, iso 2000, 1/30 @f2:8, 17-35 at 17mm)
In the car on the way to Wal Mart.

The Wal Mart in Williston is in a shopping plaza with many other box stores like Home Depot, Circuit City, Toys R Us, etc. We had to pass most of them to get to the parking lot of Wal Mart and every store we passed had a huge line. When we got to the lot I was blown away at the amount of people waiting in line to get into Wal Mart. The line stretched for more than a quarter of a mile. There were thousands of people waiting in line to have first crack at the holiday deals. Cars were still streaming in when we left at 6. We parked the car and I immediately got out and went to work.

© 2008 Brian Jenkins/Burlington Free Press
(Nikon D300, iso 2000, 1/30 @ f2:8, 17-35 at 17mm)

© 2008 Brian Jenkins/Burlington Free Press
(Nikon D300, iso 2000, 1/25 @f2:8, 17-35 at 17mm)

© 2008 Brian Jenkins/Burlington Free Press
(Nikon D300, iso 1600, 1/10 @ f2:8, 17-35 at 35mm)

I have heard stories of the media and photographers getting kicked out of the parking lot (it is technically private property) so I was prepared to deal with the powers that be if I had to. There were plenty of police and employees on hand to help keep the crowd under some sort of control. I was never questioned or asked to leave and every cop or Wal Mart employee I encountered was really nice. I was not able to take photos from inside the store so I just stuck to the parking lot. With in a half an hour the line was gone and shoppers were leaving the store with full carts.

I was amazed at how unruley the crowd was. People were yelling and pushing at each other and saying some pretty nasty things. So much for the Holiday Spirit.

© 2008 Brian Jenkins/Burlington Free Press
Matt, a Wal Mart employee, watches holiday shoppers
enter the store after waiting in line for hours in the cold.

(Nikon D300, iso 2000, 1/13 @ f5.6, 17-35 at 17mm)

© 2008 Brian Jenkins/Burlington Free Press
David Stantillan, from Montreal, Quebec, leaves Wal Mart with a shopping cart full

of Holiday gifts on Friday morning November 28, 2008 in Williston, VT. Daivd was
the first person in line, waiting more than ten hours to enter the store.
(Nikon D300, iso 1600, 1/60 @ f5.6, 17-35 at 17mm)

It is pretty ridiculous to me that with the state of affairs in the country and world today, that we still pile into stores on the Friday morning after Thanksgiving to save a few bucks on already jacked up holiday prices for "things". It is insane to me that people will wait in line for hours and even go so far as to bust down the door and trample a Wal Mart employee to Death like that poor guy in New York. Is it really worth it? With the economy in the shitter, I was really hoping that I would show up and no would be waiting in line. Not this time, oh well, mabye there is hope next year. (but I doubt it).

Photo of the Week

Every Monday I send out a photo of the week email to various people I know. I have about 95 people on the list made up of friends, family, editors, and client so far. Everyone seems to really enjoy the photos and it gets my work out there on a regular basis. I haven't been offered an assignment from it yet but it is a good way for me to stay in the minds of clients I have worked for in the past. Below is the photo of the week I sent out for the week of Thanksgiving.

(Nikon D300, 10.5mm lens, iso800, 1/400 @f:2.8)

Catamount forward Marcus Blakely #23, a junior from Metuchen, New Jersey,
makes a lay up during the George Mason Patriots win in overtime 80-79 over
the Vermont Catamounts at Patrick Gym on Saturday afternoon November 15,
2008 in Burlington, Vermont. © 2008 Brian Jenkins

The Catamounts hosted George Mason on the 15th of November and they almost pulled out the win against a team that is thirty months removed from the NCAA Basketball Tournament's Final Four. Vermont looks pretty good so far this year taking George Mason and Maryland into over time and seemed to have done a great job recruiting in the off season. I think they are definitely the team to beat in the America East. It would be nice if they can pull out the AE Championship and return to the NCAA Tournament this year. Go Cats!

If you would like to be added to the Photo of the Week email list please send me an email at:

First NHL Game and I Almost Missed It!

(Nikon D300, iso 1000, 1/500 @f2:8, 14-24 @14mm)

I got to photograph my first NHL game on Wednesday night and it almost never happened. I totally forgot what the date was and thought the game was on Thursday night. A call by a friend of mine reminded me of the correct date and I had to scramble to get home, get my gear and drive to Boston. I ended up leaving town around 3:00pm. I live in Jericho, Vermont so it is about a 3ish hour drive to the Wellington train station. I usually show up to sporting events at least an hour before the start of the game especially if it is my first time at the location. It is always a good idea to get to a game early, you never know what problems might arise and you can usually get some good stock shots before game time. I got to the TD Banknorth Garden about a half hour before game time. With a little walking around and a few questions later I found my way to the media entrance and then to the ice.

(Nikon D300, iso 1000, 1/500 @f2.8, 14mm lens)

With about fifteen minutes to go before game time I settled into a shooting position in one of the corners of the ice. I got my camera's out and took some test shots to get the exposure for the night. As I was looking at a photo on my computer another photographer who was assigned that position came and booted me (nicely) from my spot. After that I decided to go to the balcony to get a over view of the Garden during the player introductions and then I would find another place to shoot from as the game started.

(Nikon D300, iso1600, 1/13 @ f2:8, 10.5mm)

I took a about 20 shots from the balcony, but it was hard for me to just pick one because I liked most of them. Each had some different lighting so I ended up transmitting a few of the images.

After I was done with that I made my way back down to the ice and found a position on one of the corners of the ice to shoot from. I liked it because it had I nice view of both benches. The holes in the glass to shoot from at the Garden are a little smaller than the ones I am use to at Gutterson Fieldhouse for the Vermont games. It was a little harder to maneuver around but after awhile I got the hang of it.

It was a good game right from the start. Tons of action and lots of goal scoring. The Sabres lead the game 3-2 within the first five minutes of the game.

(Nikon D300, iso 1250, 1/500 @f2:8, 80-200mm @ 165mm)

It was nice shooting a hockey game that was so bright. Here at Gutterson on the University of Vermont campus, I'm shooting at iso 3200 with 1/320 @2:8. Check out my sportsshooter page to see what I am talking about. It is tough to get some good quality photos out of that place. Good thing the new Nikon's high iso kicks ass.

A friend of mine loaned me a couple of his lens, the 10.5 and the 14-24. I ended up using the 14-24 a lot. I really love the wide angle shots in Hockey. It really gets you right into the action.

(Nikon D300, iso1600, 1/640 @f2:8, 14-24 @14mm)

I've been to many NHL games as a spectator, but I was surprised by the lack of big hits in the game. This was one of them but the funny thing is that Jaroslav Spacek #6 falls down after trying to lay a hit on Michael Ryder #73.

(Nikon D300, iso 1250, 1/500 @f2:8, 80-200 @200mm)

The Bruins ended up beating the Sabres by a score of 7-4. I had a blast at the game and I got some decent images but I can't wait until my next Bruins game.

(Nikon D300, iso 1250, 1/500 @f2:8, 80-200 @86mm)

Brian Jenkins Photography

Brian Jenkins Photography is based in Vermont specializing in music, sports and portrait photography and video production. Brian is the chief photographer for the University of Vermont athletic department, photographing all of the Vermont Catamounts sports events. Brian's dynamic photography can be seen in some of the largest local and national editorial publications such as the Burlington Free Press, and Sports Illustrated, among many others. Brian Jenkins Photography is capable of producing high quality imagery for your sports, portrait, editorial, or concert projects. Brian Jenkins photography also directs and produces high quality video production for editorial, promotional and music clients. Contact Brian Jenkins Photography at for more information.

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