So I went to Vegas, to take photos for the NFAA. Lots of them. So many. More than you can possibly imagine. And it was a lot more difficult than I thought it might be. Nah, who’s he kidding. I’d like his job. Yeah, I’m pretty lucky really.
My brief was mostly cover ‘real people’, rather than serious competitive archers, who obviously aren’t real people. But I did some of those anyway.
The photos were almost all pretty straightforward, but The Vegas Shoot is by turns the greatest thing ever and the most exhausting weirdness, sometimes at the same time. I hope I occasionally got a shimmer of that, anyway.
During the practice ends I decided it wouldn’t be that intrusive to break out the 20mm lens, on the ends of the line. This is an ultrawide lens that requires you to get really close to your subject – too close, really – but rewards you with a grandiose, yet personal feel if you get the right background. Closer to what the eye sees than a fisheye, but still unreal.
The barebow lines had all the interesting people. And this service dog. With some shoes.
Fatemah Ghasempour is, apparently, the first female archer from Iran to shoot barebow. Ever.
It hurts, frankly, to push the supplied pins into the bales with your fingers. Some people even bring hammers. Or make their own arrangements.
Sara Lopez (Colombia). Looking at the screen. Or maybe praying. Both very possible.
Just before the final championship shootdown I did exactly what I did last year, which was position myself by the screen that the final 900’ers have to walk past, one by one, to get into the arena. Again with the ultrawide, you are right in people’s faces. There is no element of quietly documenting. You are very much taking a picture of someone, and they are hyper aware of it. I tried to be quiet and polite and unobtrusive, but just not hide in any way what I was doing. The camera is only a foot or so away from their face. Which makes for some interesting results. Some played the all-American superman, some enjoyed it, some ignored it, some were super nervous, and PJ Deloche looked at me and just gave a cheeky grin.
Thanks for looking.