As I mentioned in the last blog post Roller Derby Season is Among us. As part of that the ladies moved into a new venue where a whole new realm of photo taking possibilities are available. You can view their most recent bout in my photos located
On Flickr I belong to a Roller Derby photo group, and one of the forum questions asked users to post their favorite derby shots that they have ever taken. After looking through the other posts people had made, I decided to participate in this post, and these are the shots that I came up with as the top 5 Roller Derby Photos that I have ever taken. (Presented in no particular Order) (this is the original post on flickr)
The shot above was taken in Minneapolis Minnesota during the North Star bout almost 1 year ago now. I took the shot from 90 feet above the track on catwalks inside the dome of the arena. According to the other team nobody had ever gone up there for bout action before, and the hits to the photos proved it. At the time this photoset was taken, it had more hits to it than any other derby bout I had photographed.
This photo is of a skater named Sweet C. I took this photo back when I had the D2x during season 1. Anybody who knows Cameras knows that the D2x was an Awesome camera, and the Mecca of resolution at that time in camera history. Anybody also knows that this camera had more noise than a broken antenna eared TV that used vacuum tubes powered by a hamster in a wheel. My solution to some of this problem was the use of flash pans in up close action. In this photo Sweet C is celebrating victory by giving High 5’s to her fans. The motion blur creates a dynamic to the frame that I feel can easily get lost in sports, while keeping her face sharp and identifiable with the flash gives it personality; as well as the intense feeling of the win.
That shot was taken in North Carolina inside of one of the coolest Roller Derby Venue’s I’ve seen to date. It was an ex hockey arena, that had these cool windows all around the outside. During warmup sometimes I like to take the opportunity to try new and slightly more lucrative photos of the Derby Girls which most often end in my butt being nailed by one of them in a turn like this. Nobody ever gets to see the girls this up close and personal during the bouts, and this seemed like a pretty solid way to so up close and personal what exactly these girls do.
This photo is of one of our jammers. Her name is Katya Lookin, and she’s a great inspiration to quite a few girls on the team. That is of course when she’s not looking angry enough to be in your derby eating your children. Last year I wanted to do HDR style photos for the programs and so I shot a few of these to pitch to the Art Director. In the end we didn’t use them for anything, but the girl who is pictured here loves this photo, and so do I. It shows all the hotness, as well as the fierce undertones that derby has to offer.
Last but most certainly not least is this photograph for the 2009 NRG Calendar of Cereal Killer. This shot was done in Red Rocket Michelle’s bathroom with 6 2 gallon bags of Fruit Loop equivilent cereal. Nikki Sutton did the style and the makeup, and good ol’ CK just laughed it up for us. It was an awesome time, and a helluva cleanup after-wards. Michelle said her bathroom smelled like milk and cereal for at least two days after that. We only used about a quart of milk too, the rest of it was water which was hilighted by the use of the single 400 watt strobe inside of the tiny bathroom.
So there you have it; the 5 derby shots I have taken that are my favorites. There are plenty of other ones that I’ve taken and there are plenty of others that I have yet to take which I’m sure can top these. These by far are not the best roller derby photos out there either, in fact; If it was the 5 photos that others have takenin question, than this is a whole other ball game because there are tons of talented photographers out there covering roller debry all over the Country. Tom Klubens, Dr. X, Greg the Mayor, Red Rocket, Bob Scheer, Polina Osherov, and many many more just here in Indianapolis, and all are worth checking out. Roller derby has been a valued experience for me thus far, and has taught me a lot about myself and the way I shoot sports. I only hope that everyone who likes to take photos can find something they are as passionate about. More soon.