I was given the task of photographing our All-Whatcom County Athletes of the Year, which is definitely fun because I can do anything I want (for the most part) but stressful and sometimes a pain in the booty (see later posts). It took me a good weekend to come up with my theme, which ended up being Battling the Elements. Each athlete (there were five for the winter sports season) was assigned an element: water, earth, metal, fire and air. Austin Fish, our boys’ swimmer of the year, was obviously going to be water. I wanted to do something different from any other portrait I’ve seen of a swimmer, so why not take him deep into his element? I looked into renting underwater camera gear, but had little luck with that in our town. I decided to just rig up a fish tank, some weights and a helpful colleague, Mr. Andy Bronson. I used the deep diving pool at our local swimming pool and had Austin dive in off the side. I lit him from behind so the trail of bubbles would be lit up. I also used a softbox near my camera. We tried different angles of where he dived in and of where I put the camera in the pool and this is what came out:
Sehome High School senior Austin Fish is a force to be reckoned with in the water and is our All-Whatcom County Boys’ Swimmer of the Year. He was photographed at Arne Hanna Aquatic Center Tuesday, March 22, in Bellingham.
I think this definitely showed me that when I have fun and a vision then something cool can come out of it.