You see now, I had never heard of the Drumstick Dash, even though this is it’s 11th year running here in Indianapolis.
But I was asked to shoot it and I figured, oh why the hell not! Besides, I’m not doing much on Thanksgiving morning except watching another endless parade.
So with a 6:30a crew call and a 16 degree temperature outside, I was pleasantly surprised at how large this event turned out to be. A roughly 5 mile course with 17,000 runners and walkers. Many of them in shorts??
Last Saturday was my 3th year shooting the AMA Flat Track Grand National Race at the Indiana Fair Ground Stadium, and I just figured I would show you a little bit of what I saw and did, in pictures.
I was camera 5, positioned on the stage. I was responsible for shooting the beginning and ending of the race, the straightaway and the winner’s podium. Because I was shooting continuously throughout the race, I was given a relief camera operator, which gave me a couple of opportunities to shoot some of my own video during the evening.
One more Hoosier Classic Basketball event for me. I’ve done all of them from the beginning, making this my 8th. The Classic highlights the best boys and girls senior high school basketball players in the State. I shot the game yesterday in Knightstown, Indiana.
Being held in the Hoosier Gym makes it a fun game to watch, being that the Hoosier Gym is a classic it’s self. Built in 1922, it still looks the same, as you can see below.
Every year for the last 10 years or so, I’ve shot a stage production called Behold The Lamb for TV40. It’s an Easter Passion play, a story about the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, put on by the members of the Harbour Shores Church.
It’s one of the most elaborate passion plays that I have ever seen. With the well made costumes, background scenery, the music and how they involve the audiences into the play, it’s all very well done.
We use 5 cameras to shoot the performance and I think that over the years, I have shot from just about every position, but for the last 5 or 6 years I’ve been shooting camera 4. Right up against the stage, slightly stage-left. A good position for getting some great shots, if not for one reason!
I’m crawling around on my knees for an hour and a half.
Which can get very painful after awhile. Even with Knee Pads it begins to hurt after 45 minutes or so.
I figure that it’s all part of shooting. That you have to learn to block out the pain and concentrate on getting the best shots that you can.
And I have gotten some pretty good shots over the years.
I haven’t been posting much because most of my shoots over the last month, have been the routine football and basketball games. But this week I’m working the Big Ten Championship game at the Lucas Oil Stadium. It will be three days of long hours specially Saturday night.
Day 1: Thursday Nov 29th Had a 9am Crew Call, but as usual, I got to the stadium early. Ended up waiting about a half hour for others to arrive. Got our Credentials and Parking Passes and then we were told that we will be building out stage for Saturday’s show.
We are not shooting the game, our group will be shooting the Pre and Post Shows and the stage for these shows is right at the edge of the football field. The stage is built on tracks so that it can be pulled back for the game and pushed into positions for the show so that the Big 10 Talent can look like they’re sitting at their desk on the field.
The real challenge will be getting that stage into position for the Halftime Show. We will only have about 2 or 3 minutes the push both the stage and camera platform into position, and setup the cameras, lights and talent. And do the same thing in reverse after Halftime so that the game can continue.
We spent hours putting together that humongous, heavy metal stage and laying out the tracks that it will move on, only to have the director and his people come out and tell us, that they would like to have the whole thing moved, 5 feet to the right!
It was a very lovely day.
Day 2: Friday Nov 30th Our Crew Call was for 8am. We put the finishing touches to the stage and then spent some time unpacking and loading the awkward and heavy announcers desk on to the stage.
But most of the morning was taken up with finding and setting up and faxing cameras, building the Jib and running a few cables.
After lunch, we spent a fair amount of time just sittings around waiting for the announcers to show up for the afternoon feed to Chicago. During that feed the announcers, Dave Revsine, Glen Mason, Gerry DiNardo and Howard Griffith, talked about the game tomorrow between the Wisconsin Badgers and the Nebraska Cornhuskers and interviewed both Head Coaches.
After the interviews, some of the Wisconsin players were on the field and they came over to the desk to get pictures taken with the announcers.
We were suppose to have a full rehearsal of moving the stage into and out of it’s positions, but our Tech Manager just had us move the stage into it’s game position and lock it off. No rehearsals this time, unlike last year. So we were out of there by 5:30p instead of the scheduled 7:00p. Which is a good thing because tomorrow will be a long one.
Day 3: Saturday Dec 1st Crew Call wasn’t until 12 noon, but I knew coming in, that it was going to be a very long day.
The announcers did a few on-air promos, but most of our afternoon was spent waiting. Which seems to always be a large part of our jobs.
At 2p we had a box lunch out in the production truck area and then most of our camera crew group spent the rest of that waiting time up in the Press Box area, high up in the stadium.
I must admit that the Press Box had a impressive view of the field and it ran it’s entire length.
We were expected to be back on the field around 6p and the Pre-Game show started at 6:30p then ran for an hour. When the show was over with we moved then locked the stage back into it’s game position. After that, we were free to watch the game.
Such that it was!
The Wisconsin Badgers demolished the Nebraska Cornhuskers 70-31.
It wasn’t even close!
I spent the first half of the game up in the Press Box, the 3nd quarter sitting in the North End Zone area and the 4th quarter sitting on the game field.
After the game we ran into a little problem with rolling the stage back out. One of the wheels ran off the track, but luckily the stage was already in it’s final position and since we didn’t have to move it again, we left it as is.
The Post Game show started around Midnight and didn’t finish until after 1a Sunday morning. Once the show was over with we had to breakdown the cameras, lights and audio, and everything had to be hauled back to the production trucks.
And then, the real work started…
…that humongous, heavy metal stage and tracks had to be taken apart.
There is nothing like working late in the evening (or early in the morning) in what seems like, a completely empty Lucas Oil Stadium.
With all hands on deck, we finished about 4:00am Sunday morning.
To Tech Manager, “Are we cleared?”
Tech Manager, “Yes, you’re all cleared!”
High-fives all around, now lets get the hell out of here!
I just have to show you what I think is one of the best runs that I have ever seen. Quarterback Taylor Martinez’s ran for an impressive TD in this game, and his team still lost.
This is my third year shooting the American Motorcyclist Association Pro Flat Track Race at the fair grounds.
It would have been my 4th year, but last year’s race was cancelled because of the stage that collapsed during a outdoor concert by Sugarland.
A lot of cable had to be laid down in order to cover the 1 mile ‘Track of Champions’ with 5 cameras. But most of that was done by another crew Friday night/early Saturday morning.
By the time that we got there Saturday noon, we still had a lot of cabling and equipment to setup and Fax out in order to be ready for the 3 o-clock practice runs.
After the practice runs, we had some time to walk over and see a little of the Indiana State Fair.
As always, I was on camera 5, at the stage. It was my job to get the start of the race. To cover the race in front of the grandstand and to shoot the winners on the stage. We also had cameras at each of the 4 turns.
The last 2 years I did this by myself, so I was always pretty much shooting for 3 hours straight. But this year, I had Casey working with me, so I was able to take some breaks.
Though I’m not a big motorcycle race fan, the race is fun to watch and also very LOUD on the ears.
There is a certain technique in trying to shoot a motorcycle, and keep it in view as it blows by you on the straight-a-way at over a 100 mph. Fun-To-Do!
The real hard work though is when the race is all over with, and we had to roll up all of the cable that had been laid around the track. This year, it went pretty quickly. We were out of there by 1 am Sunday morning.
Some video of one of the practice runs earlier in the day.
They’re now streaming the game over the internet. Which adds a little extra to my camera work because I live by the Tally Light, which indicates when my camera is “live” to program. When that light goes off, I’m quickly readjusting my camera and moving to my next shot.
But with them streaming to the internet, there is no tally light to signify that I’m “live” to the web, unless the director tells me so. Which he may not do. Even though my tally light has gone out, indicating that my camera is no longer “live” to program, I maybe still “live” on the web.
Basically, I now have to think of my camera as being “live” at all times. A minor hassle, but you make the adjustment.
Tamika Catchings scored 23 points, including the winning free throws with 8.4 seconds left, to give the Indiana Fever an 84-82 victory over the New York Liberty.
I shot the video below (and not a very good one) with my iPhone. It’s the walk that I make from the Control Room to my Camera 1. If you’ve never been in Banker’s Life Fieldhouse, this is for you.
They raise funds for child abuse prevention programs serving Madison County Indiana.
I’ve been during this auction for about 8 to 9 years, and it’s a live auction, running from 6pm to 12 midnight tonight and all day tomorrow. But I’m not working tomorrow because I will be shooting the Pacers first playoff game.
The morning was filled with us setting up cameras, running a lot of cables and testing equipment. It really didn’t take that long but they did add a 5th camera to the mix this year.
The afternoon was lunch and basically, a lot of sitting around with nothing to do.
The evening was all Auction. I worked the Replay Station which basically means I ran all of the commercial breaks, the Auction’s Opening and Close and a Guideline tape that detailed the rules for calling in and placing a bid on items being auctioned.
It’s nothing but button pushing all night.
I also ran audio which covered the house feed that we were getting from the auditorium, the music that was played under the auctioneers and the audio for the commercials.
There was no camera work because the auction had a lot of first time volunteers to do that, which, every year turns into a headache for the directors.