Column: Smile for the camera!

Published 9:06 am Friday, December 9, 2005

By Staff
Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!
Hopefully, everybody made it to their destinations safe and sound this morning.
I have to laugh at our meterologists in this area. They can pump us up for a big storm that is going to bring 8-10 inches of snow and when all is said and done we get a dusting.
But when they predict three inches of snow, as they did yesterday, we get dumped with this. Go figure!
Pay me that kind of money and I'll predict the weather anyday. And probably more accurate. As my dad says, they should just get farm animals at the stations. They'll tell you the weather everyday.
Anyway, on to this weeks column.
I get tons of e-mails daily from people all over the country…all over the world for all I know. Most of the time it is junk mail, somebody wanting me to buy a $25 Rolex or wanting my bank account information…I get them all. Although not as bad as my fellow co-worker Marcia Steffens, who's image of Bart Simpson will never be the same!
Then I get the “normal” e-mails from people thanking, complaining or just dropping a letter to say hi.
I must say I appreciate them all, the good and the bad. They let me know what I am doing right or wrong.
But, this week it wasn't an e-mail I received, but a letter in the mail from a reader. This person, who was left anonymous, wanted to see more pictures of different players - seniors to be exact - in the paper this season.
Fair enough I would say. Afterall, it is their last season, right? Unfortunately, it doesn't work that way.
I would like to explain our “picture taking agenda” to everyone because I am sure this is not the only person who has had this question or has wondered why John Doe has been in the paper so much.
I'm sure most of you have seen myself, Scott Novak or one of our freelancers at games snapping tons of pictures. Most of the time I feel bad because my flash is constantly going off in athletes faces. I will apologize in advance to those I have blinded when trying to make that layup!
So, with so many pictures, how do we choose what goes in the paper?
The main thing we look for is a crispy clear picture. Which a lot of times may not be that clear after all is said and done.
I know there have been plenty of times I have picked out a picture, only to see it is blurry or just looks funny once it is printed.
The other thing we look at is good action shots. A great tackle, a dunk, somebody getting hammered in the face or a wrestler struggling for a breath.
These pictures tell little stories of what the game was like. If you see a lot of action in the photos, chances are it was a pretty exciting game. Someone just standing around? Probably wasn't a thriller.
Next we try to get someone who had a great game. Maybe they scored 30 points, maybe they broke the school record for the most aces in a game, if someone had a good game, they should be recognized, don't you think? Me too!
Or maybe our best picture of the night came from someone who only played for 20 seconds. Hey, if it's the best shot, we are going to use it no matter who you are.
I know sometimes it may seem like Sally Smith is in the paper every week and you really get sick of seeing those funny looking faces. Why is this? Because they have the best picture of the night.
I would say in one given game I snap my little picture button more than 100 times. Some games I get that many pictures, some games I may only get 20. And out of all of these pictures I take, I would say maybe half of them turn out to be really good or decent pictures.
So, to answer this persons question about wanting to see more seniors in the paper, I appreciate your input, but to only highlight on the seniors wouldn't be very fair to the other members who make up the team.
I understand that juniors, sophomores and freshmen all have some time left to shine, but that's still not fair to them.
I try my best to get different players in each game, but the majority of the time my plans fall through because the picture may be fuzzy, blurry or just plan funny looking.
I hope I answered this persons question. If things are still unclear, let me know! I encourage anyone with questions like these to contact me.