I had a fairly big project going on with the day job today, but there was a brief moment that relieved a little bit of the stress. I forgot about the email that mentioned Lights was coming in for a performance in our lounge at the station. I snagged my camera and snapped a few shots for the one song that I could stick around for.
I shot this while crossing the Burrard Inlet in a Seabus to the north shore. This kid was a giddy as I often am while looking out the same windows at the city. It always makes me think about how lucky I am to be living in this city, and how thankful I am to all of my friends and family that made it possible for me to achieve everything I have.
I think that in a lot of ways, I’m still a kid at heart. That’s why I took this photo.
Just a little fun with long exposure, Rebecca used a drawing app on her iPhone 3GS to make her screen pink and did her best to spell out “love” in reverse. When you shake the phone, the screen turns back to being white, and that’s how she got the white circle to show up around it. I just had to figure out all the settings on my camera to get this to work, and around the fourth or fifth time, it came out like this.
This photo was taken in my parent’s driveway back in Iowa after the fireworks had just finished for the 4th of July, and this is why you always go back to spend time with your family. Visiting always makes us feel loved.
Last May, Rebecca and I finally made it over to Lighthouse Park on a cool, muggy day. It’s another one of those things that’s been on the list of places to visit after a few boat cruises by it and staring at it from the shore across the way from it.
The park is really pretty, but bring your hiking shoes for sure. As steep and narrow as some of the trails get, I still can’t figure out how, or yet alone why, some people got baby strollers over this terrain.
I’d barely recommend taking a stroller through Stanley Park, but it’s just the idea that some folks leave their front door not thinking about the fact that they are about to go to a park which sits at the base of a mountain.
Might this not seem like an unlikely place you’d want to bring a stroller?
I often enjoy riding shotgun while Rebecca drives. It gives me the opportunity to experiment with taking photos from the car, which usually doesn’t always turn out the best. Sometimes it’s blurry, the windows might be dirty, another passing vehicle can ruin the shot, and so on.
Rolling down Pacific Street with the sun setting off in the distance, this is a testament of not knowing how something will turn out until you try.
And I feel like this really is what summer in Vancouver is all about.
While many people will say that it rains a lot in this part of the world and they couldn’t live here because of that reason, you have to smile and nod. On those days that it’s not, this city is a vastly different experience. I don’t mind saving my energy to convince them otherwise.
The radio day job always gets me into places around Vancouver that I would probably not wander through if it weren’t for the opportunities that keep coming up, and Empire Field is no exception.
TEAM Radio is the official broadcaster of the BC Lions, so during our initial test setup for the first home game back in June, I brought my camera along to hopefully snap some photos of the field before the public got to wander in for a peek. What I didn’t anticipate was that while the first event to be held at this temporary stadium was just days away, workers were all over the place, still getting ready.
While BC Place[wiki] gets a new roof downtown, Empire Field[wiki] has been built on the former site of Empire Stadium[wiki], which used to be the home of the BC Lions Canadian Football League team prior to moving into the dome in the early 80’s.
The crazy aspect to this stadium is that it’s completely temporary, but I find that hard to tell at times.
Aside from the field turf and the four sets of lights at each corner of the stadium, all of this will be gone by the summer of 2011. The BC Lions get one full season to call this place temporarily home, and the Vancouver Whitecaps FC will start their inaugural MLS season on the same field.
In all actuality, I’m not an overly huge football fan. I like to watch it, but I don’t actively seek it out. That doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the sport by any means. I’ve certainly let the CFL grow on me, even though punting the ball on 3rd down continues to throw me off from time to time.
What can I say? I grew up in small town America where Friday nights belong to high school football, Saturday’s are for college ball(Go Hawks!), and Sunday was NFL. Four downs(CFL has three), the flags are yellow(CFL flags are orange), and the only time you can score a single point is kicking the ball through the uprights after a touchdown(I’m still confused by all the various ways you can score a single point in the CFL, but oh well).
It’s really tough to comprehend that this stadium will only exist for barely over a year. With the mountains as a gorgeous backdrop and the close proximity of the fans to the field, this isn’t just a great place to watch football or soccer. I could see this being a great outdoor concert venue as well.
Whatever happens to this place in the future, it’s a little rewarding to be involved in a tiny piece of Vancouver’s history. Just like people talk about Expo ’86 or when the Olympics were here, I can say I was there, running around the field, ducking into the double-wide trailers that make up the locker rooms, and hauled plenty of equipment up and down stairs to make the radio side of things happen.
Interestingly enough, my photos have made the rounds on a handful of sites promoting the environmental sustainability aspect of the stadium, most noticeably the recycled tires that makes up the field turf.
Inhabitat used my photos to highlight the use of “22,000 recycled tires, amounting to 346,000 pounds of crumb rubber,” in the field turf that makes up the playing surface of Empire Field. While that’s pretty cool in itself, the playing field can actually be altered in terms of response by either vacuuming up those tiny bits of rubber or adding more to change the amount of bounce you get from the field.
They found my photos on Flickr and published them in a post with proper attribution. That’s social networking done right.
I was contacted directly about using my photos in this post, and that request was in English. As you can tell by the title of this post, all of this site is in Italian. Ecopnues is an Italian website that focuses on the use of recycled tires, taking a cue from the previous post I’ve already highlighted.
What fascinates me is the theme of sustainability being immensely popular around the world. Empire Field certainly has its critics, but in the bigger picture, the long term benefits to the communities around this area is viewed positively by many.
Empire Field is a limited time experience and well worth it. If you go and are the adventurous type, get some seats in the end zones. Space was so limited in the construction of this stadium that they couldn’t put nets up to prevent balls from going into the stands.
How’s that for a souvenir? Well, that is if you’re willing to work for it.
Honestly, sometimes this city makes it easy to take beautiful photos of it. But in this case, this shot is more of an accident because I was only demonstrating the extra trigger I have on the battery grip for my Nikon D90. I held it to the side and just pushed the button.
Some photos, at least for me and are to my personal liking, are pure luck. Other times, it might be random. When you hit the sweet spot between the two, it’s immensely rewarding.
I was contacted a couple of weeks ago by a representative of the David Suzuki Foundation about using a photo that I had taken in one of their promotional videos. As it turns out, Devon from the DSF was actually a former intern at the radio stations where I currently work, so it was nice to make a connection with someone who has progressed in their career and on to a great opportunity to work for an organization that I have a lot of respect for.
The photo itself was from the 2008 Canucks Superskills competition at GM Place. I shot it with my Canon S5 IS, and it’s one of my more favorite shots of Willie as he was just skating around in circles during a brief moment of downtime. Anyone who goes to see enough Canucks games knows that he’s a constant mover on the ice when nothing else seems to be going on.
The video was put together to spotlight an ongoing effort on the B.C. coast by the Coastal Alliance for Aquaculture Reform (CAAR) to help preserve the fresh salmon from the effects of sea lice that comes from the salmon farms in the same areas.
You can see more Cause An Effect videos on the DSF website. Many thanks for to their organization for asking me to use the photo in their video.
Even though it was rainy, it was still a great event. I only wish we could have stayed longer, but Rebecca’s health was waning at the onset of early evening as she’s been battling a head cold over the past few days. Short on time right now, but I’ll post some more of my favorite photos from the day later.
Updated: August 2, 2010: It’s taken me a while, but here are a variety of other shots that I took. Event photography continues to grow on me, but it’s really a fun challenge each time. You have to adapt to the venue, lighting, crowd, staging, and entertainment.
This is a great tradition of Surrey Canada Day celebrations. If you come up, you can get a cupcake for free. And quite honestly, everyone loves cupcakes. People from all walks of life, young to old, line up for these things. Continue reading “Canada Day 2010”
Working the first BC Lions game felt like being a part of Vancouver history. I know I’m not from here, but this little boy (and his sister is in the other mascot’s arm) made me appreciate this day a little bit more. He was absolutely beaming to hug Leo.
And let’s be honest, this guy in a mascot outfit is simply a marketing tool of the football club. He gets the crowd pumped up, trots around on the field to reinforce the imagery of the team everyone in the stands are cheering for, and keeps the kids coming back for more and more.
Even when you understand all too well that there is a hefty business reason for Leo’s existence, it’s this one moment that you have to forget this.
In ten or twenty years, this little boy will recount the one year they whipped up a stadium in 111 days for there to be professional, Canadian football to be played here for just one season in Vancouver.
When all the stands are tore down and all that remains is the legacy of an artificial turf field and the four sets of lights, he might recount how his parents took him to a game one day, and even though the Lions lost in the final seconds of the first game to be played in the history of this temporary stadium, he even got to meet Leo and give him a big hug.