Prequel to the Sequel

Portrait of a National Champion

Posted in Editorial, Sports by brmeyer3 on 03/16/2011

Yesterday I had the opportunity to take a portrait of Andrew Riley, who runs hurdles and sprints on the Illinois track team. Riley recently won the 60 meter hurdles event at the NCAA national championships and will be trying out to compete in the upcoming Olympics.

When I was asked to cover this, I knew I wanted to create a silhouette essentially by rim lighting Riley and not have a fill light, and capture him jumping over a hurdle. I placed two strobes, one in a soft box and the other with a half-closed umbrella, aiming at his back and front and had them slightly behind, just enough to hit the edges of his arms, face, and legs and wrap around slightly, still leaving his figure dark and underexposed.

Josh helped me out set up my lights and get everything ready so we didn’t waste much time with Andrew, and I was able to capture this image in only 2 shots. This shot came out exactly like how I imagined it, but my only gripe is that Andrew didn’t show up wearing running shirts and jersey. So I had to deal with him wearing his warm up clothes. I guess I can’t have my cake and eat it too.

*Image copyright Brad Meyer and the Daily Illini

A week full of pole vaulting

Posted in Editorial, Sports by brmeyer3 on 03/02/2011

Over the weekend I stopped by the Big Ten Conference indoor track championships that were held in the Armory to grab some photos for the paper. I’m naturally attracted towards the pole vault competition because I vaulted for two years in high school. I also knew that we had a freshman, Matt Bane, on our team that is really good, and was probably going to place high in the event, which is content the paper was looking for. Bane ended up taking first in the vault and set a new personal record.

While watching others jump, I became aware of the super clean graphical background, something rare in the Armory, behind the crossbar and wanted to grab a frame using it to my advantage. I also decided to include the entire cross bar and use the standards as “bookends” for my photo. I’ve also got this thing going on where I’m composing and cropping my shots for a a 2:1 ratio format.Hopefully I don’t exhaust it too soon.

Illinois’ Matt Bane clears the bar in the pole vault competition during the Big Ten Indoor track championship held at the Armory on Saturday, Feb. 26, 2011.


After his stellar performance, Matt ended up being awarded Illini of the Week from the Daily Illini, and I was asked if I could go out and make a portrait or him for the paper. I agreed to shoot him, but quickly realized I had no idea on how to make a pole vault portrait interesting, I had a case of writer’s block. When I arrived I was told I wasn’t allowed to have him take a couple jumps because he wasn’t dressed to do any physical activities, nor was I allowed to shoot his feet, because he was wearing sandals. Knowing I had a very limited amount of time with him, and had certain restrictions, I just had him hold his pole right in front of him. There are probably a ton of different things I could have had him do, but my brain fart prohibited me from it. I am fairly happy with my lighting on it, and I think it produced the most three dimensional looking photo I have ever churned out. My only gripe about the photo is the weird shadow on the right side created by one of my rim lights.

*All images copyright Brad Meyer and the Daily Illini

Mega Sports post / update

Posted in Editorial, Sports by brmeyer3 on 02/19/2011

So it turns out, the last semester of college is really hard, full of homework, and time consuming, which results in a lack of blog posting. Below are a collection of sports photos I have shot since winter break. I’m going to try a lot harder for the rest of the semester to keep this blog updated a lot better and post photos right after
they run in the paper.

(Left) Illinois’ Myers Leonard (12) dunks the ball after completing and alley-oop during the game against UIC held at the United Center in Chicago on Saturday, Dec. 18 2010. (Right) Illinois’ Brandon Paul (3) blocks Michigan State’s Korie Lucious’ (34) during the game against Michigan State at the Assembly Hall on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2011.

Ohio State’s Jared Sullinger (0) dunks the ball during the game against Ohio State at the Assembly Hall on Saturday, Jan. 22, 2011.

Illinois’ Mike Davis (24) attempts to block Michigan State’s Kalin Lucas (1) during the game at the Assembly Hall on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2011.

Illinois’ Mike Davis (24) dunks the ball during the basketball game against Purdue at the Assembly Hall on Sunday, Feb. 13, 2011.

Illinois’ Jereme Richmond (22) questions of referee’s foul call during the basketball game against Purdue at the Assembly Hall on Sunday, Feb. 13, 2011.

Illinois head coach Bruce Weber stands out on the court calling plays to his team during the basketball game against Purdue at the Assembly Hall on Sunday, Feb. 13, 2011.

Illinois’ Corey Liuget (93) celebrates after tackling an opponent during the Texas Bowl at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas on Wednesday, Dec. 29 2010. The Illini defeated the Bears 38-14 making it their first bowl win since 1999.

Illinois’ Jonathan Brown (45) prepares to tackle and opponent during the Texas Bowl against Bailor University at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas on Wednesday, Dec. 29 2010.

Illinois’ Austin Bostock (22) celebrates with teammates on the bench after assisting a goal during the hockey game against Oklahoma on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011.

Illinois’ Scott Barrera (73), left, Mike Ursitti (32), Chris Peter (21), and Joe Sullivan (24) talk amongst each other while sitting in the penalty box for different instances of fighting during the hockey game against Oklahoma on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2011.

Illinois’ Amber Stack passes an opponent from Eastern Illinois University in the 1 mile race during the Illinois Intercollegiate track meet held at the Armory in Champaign on Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011.

Illinois’ Jimmy Kennedy wrestles Ohio State’s Randy Languis during the wrestling meet held at Huff Hall  on Friday, Feb. 4, 2011.

Illinois’ Jimmy Kennedy wrestles Ohio State’s Randy Languis during the wrestling meet held at Huff Hall  on Friday, Feb. 4, 2011.

*All images copyright Brad Meyer and the Daily Illini

Track Conference

Posted in Personal, Sports by brmeyer3 on 05/19/2009

On thursday, Summer officially started for me. When i got home, i unpacked all my stuff and threw it into the garage, and hopped right back into my car to go to My high schools track conference. I spent most of my time with my camera magic armed to a pole hoping to get some cool pictures of the pole vaulters. I had a lot of problems with getting focus right and triggering my camera.  Once light was gone, i hand held my camera and did some off camera flash for the jumpers. Sam, from my old high school set a new PR of 15 feet. Another kid from my sister high school, jumped 15′ 6″, beating his previous PR by 2 feet, and he did this after running the 110 m and 300m hurdles, which i still dont know how he managed to do that. In the middle of the whole pole vault frenzy was going on, i managed to get a pretty good pan shot of another kid from Neuqua, its not the slowest pan, but his face is really sharp.

track-2

track-6

track-7

track-1

*All images copyright Brad Meyer

Tagged with: , , ,

Track

Posted in Editorial, Sports by brmeyer3 on 05/03/2009

Yesterday afternoon i had the opportunity to shoot the track meet here. It was our only outdoor meet of the year, and i was kind of anxious to shoot it. I got their and started mucking with my remote camera and was constantly fiddling with it. I hung around the pole vault pit for a long time because i jumped in highschool and it is my favorite track event. I didnt shoot nearly as well as i thought i would have tho. I miss jumping a lot, i wish i could still do it, but my broken rotator cuff wont let me. Also shooting with two cameras means twice as many photos, which sucks.

track-5

track-10

*All images copyright Brad Meyer and the Daily Illini