In this episode, we have some photos from recent St. Louis bouts:
- Smashinistas vs. Rebel Skate Alliance
- Riverfront Crimes vs. South Grand Slammers
- Rockford Rage vs. ARRG St. Lunachix
You may note that the list does not include M-80s or Stunt Devils. Unfortunately, there was a little bit of a capacity constraint that led to me running video for that bout instead of taking photos. I don’t want to muddy the waters but let me just say that fire codes can suck it. This explains why there are no M-80 or Stunt Devil photos this month, but let’s talk about the question that everyone always asks: WHY DON’T YOU HAVE MORE PICTURES OF ME? Don’t worry, it’s only about five percent because certain people are nicer to me.
As it turns out, I do try to get everyone. However, a few things usually conspire to make this not happen. First, some people tend to play positions that are hard to shoot from outside the track. ARRG does not currently allow center track photography, so if you mostly hang on the inside and/or back of the pack, it’s going to be really hard to get clear shots at you. Second, the players that have more time on the track are obviously going to be represented more in photos. There are just more of them in the first place, which increases the likelihood that they will be in interesting shots.
There are some more subtle things behind it, too. For example, jammers are easy to shoot because they naturally break away from the pack and look pretty cool coming around solo or right on each other’s tail – especially the ones with good skating form. And it’s easy from certain angles to get good jammer line shots. Pack lineups at the start of the jam sort of get boring, I try to get a handful from each game but they don’t have much action, to be honest. I also try to work all the zebras in but again, it’s hard to get outside pack refs from outside the track. Just not the right angle unless you want a lot of zebra butt.
And, the one that maybe stings a little: some people are just really interesting to shoot. Please note that this does not necessarily mean they’re “hotter” by conventional standards, besides which, what roller girl isn’t good looking anyway? It means that they have really good form, or a good war face, or sell their hits to the crowd, or you just know they’re going to do something that everyone will want to see later. One of the photographers from Naptown made a comment that a certain ARRG jammer was the only subject he’d ever seen who was never out of focus. You get a sense after a while that certain people will do certain things and you start to follow that. Not that other people also will not do awesome things, but for example… if Bat Wing or Quadzilla is near an apex, I’m aimed at either one of them no matter what.
The support people like EMTs, NSOs, jeerleaders, etc… to be honest there’s a lot going on during the bout and I have trouble focusing on that. And during the breaks, when a lot of them are doing their thing, I am changing batteries and memory cards and I am also not usually set up to shoot something like that anyway. Throw a couple lens changes and associated camera adjustments into that break and I just don’t have time to cover it all. It’s not ’cause I don’t love you!