A couple weeks ago I got to do a great gig, make a little money, donate a little money and time, travel, and have a blast, all for a good cause. The El Pescado Billfish tournament in St. Augustine has been run by the Monique Burr Foundation for a few years now. The foundation was started by Monique Burr’s husband Ed Burr after her passing for the goal of raising money to help prevent child abuse. Something Monique was extremely passionate for. This year alone the foundation raised over $151,000.00 with a large portion coming from a check over $40,000.00 from the first time tournament winner, Ed Burr, donating his grand prize check. My second camera and video came from a good friend and excellent photographer Aaron Snell who fit in well with the fisherman, that what he does. We met some amazing people on this trip and hospitality from the organization was second to none. While I’m at it I would like to thank Sammy Vaughn and whole crew from “Lor-A-Di” for letting us on their boat to film and photograph fishing. That was a very gracious act, as these boats are fighting for winnings in the tens of thousands and spending anywhere from $1,000 – $3,000 in fuel A DAY! Standing “O” for those guys!
To the photo talk, well, this was supposed to be event coverage and very simple. Get the people mingling, a fish jumping, and a winning team with a big check in their hand. Yeah, its never that easy now is it? The situation that made the most work for Aaron and I is… well, Aaron and I. We are both perfectionist. We both are trying to get something never seen, to tell a story from an angle other than ‘spectator.’ Although it made us work more, its what makes us work to begin with. Kudos to us! We got some amazing shots.
The gear list was rather large and in the end we we’re able to cut it down a little before leaving. Our hotel looked like a Command Center and slowly migrated to the adjacent building where the event was taking place which at the end looked like Command Center. The main gear consisted of an iMac with accessories, Macbook Pro, 500gb HD, a 160gb HD, and a 100gb HD. The photography was done with a Nikon D700, Nikon D300, Nikon 24-70/2.8, 70-300VR, 20/2.8, 35/2, 50/1.8, and a Tokina 12-24/4. Add to that 4 memory cards, 5 filters, a grip battery pack, 4 batteries, two SB-900’s and every cord those goes with them and you have an entire vehicle/hotel room/conference area worth of what tallied to about $13,000 worth of gear. This may be a couple hours shoot worth of gear for a videographer but for primarily event photography with no studio flashes or stands, ITS A TON! Add to that Panasonic HD video camera, Sony SD video, and two GoPro HDhero’s and i’m damn thankful I made a check list!
We had to shoot all of the event with stills and cover some speeches and awards with video all the while running a slideshow on Plasma TV’s at the event. The slideshow had to be constantly updated with the last events photos. We were shooting, making library’s upstairs on the iMac, sifting for selects, then putting them onto the slideshow software on the Macbook pro without cutting into the time guests would see the photos. And most of this happened while a new event was going on. It was 3 days of on the run shooting that couldn’t have been anymore fun. We got to talk to all the guests and use a few downtime minutes talking fishing and drinking a few beers with the crews. Since there is way more on here than most will care about, here is what came from all that work, Enjoy the slideshow. JP