Last week, Sports Illustrated magazine published the above photograph by US Presswire photographer Matthew Emmons. Found in the “Leading Off” section, the photo shows the Baylor Bears football team celebrating after their upset victory over the #2 ranked Kansas State Wildcats.
The image has many people talking, not because of the unlikely event that it captures, but because it appears to be heavily manipulated. And it’s not just the fact that the picture looks like it passed through an HDR program, but that the Baylor football players didn’t wear green jerseys during that game. They wore black. Read more…
This photo is the greatest sports photo of all time — at least according to Sports Illustrated. The magazine has published a gallery containing 100 of the greatest images (from an American’s perspective), and the #1 image is the above shot of Michael Jordan hitting the game-winning shot to help the Chicago Bulls beat the Utah Jazz and win the 1998 NBA Finals in 6 games. Read more…
The latest issue of Sports Illustrated magazine features 18 baseball photographs by sports photographer Brad Mangin across 6 of the opening pages. Not just any photographs, mind you, Instagram photos. Mangin has an interesting blog post on how the whole process happened:
By the time the regular season opened in April I felt like I was shooting baseball for the first time ever, through the lens of my iPhone and the square format of Instagram. I wrote a blog post for The Photo Brigade entitled “I Love My New Camera.” I wasn’t kidding! I started looking at everything with a fresh set of eyes from the moment I walked onto the fields in Oakland and San Francisco about three hours before each game. It was like I was a newborn photographer seeing things for the first time.
I was naturally drawn to the dugouts where I found many baseball-related pieces of equipment that made for good pictures. By the time the players came out and sat in the dugouts before the games I was ready to try and capture them getting ready. At first I felt pretty strange not using my Canon EOS-1 Mark IV and shooting with my iPhone instead. I eventually became more comfortable and started getting some pictures of the ball players that I liked.
Every year, ESPN releases a special Body Issue in which athletes pose nude — an edgy, artful response to Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Issue that focuses instead on the power and form of athletes’ bodies. Last summer, a sports writer stripped down for an interview with two NHL players, a turning of the tables on sometimes awkward locker room interviews. This year, ESPN columnist and senior writer Jim Caple stripped down for his own body images by sports photographer Rod Mar. Caple poses as nude Lance Armstrong, a doughnut and press pass version of Michael Phelps, plus some other memorable sports photographs. Read more…
“The Catch” is one of the most famous plays in American football history, and Walter Iooss Jr.’s photograph of Dwight Clark leaping into the air is one of the game’s iconic images. Paul Lukas of Uni Watch has published an interesting analysis of the photograph and why it “works”:
I’ve been fascinated by the famous photo of the Catch for years and have always thought it to be the greatest photo ever of NFL action, and possibly the greatest sports photo, period. The photo has always been very visually pleasing to me, so I recently decided to find out why.
Out of curiosity I applied the golden ratio, the rule of thirds, and perspective to the photo, and I was completely blown away by the results. Now I know why this photo has always been so visually stunning to me: Compositionally, it is divine. I’ve prepared a series of exhibits to support my points.
If you aren’t familiar with these two rules of composition, check out this article.
The Super Bowl isn’t just the biggest event in the NFL season, but one of the biggest events for the world’s best sports photographers each year. Here’s a neat behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to shoot the Super Bowl as a Sports Illustrated photographer.
Today at Google I/O, Sports Illustrated editor Terry McDonell showcased this demo of the HTML5 version of the magazine. Last December, SI released a mockup video of how their online version would look as an app, but this version is based on the web and can be viewed with laptop and tablet browsers. It looks like a print magazine layout, with fantastic spreads, photos, and fonts, but it also has a lot of unique multimedia features that are incorporated into the design.
In the presentation, McDonell said:
“The idea is really very simple: combine the best of the web with the best of the magazine, like the sports photography, which is deep, deep in Sports Illustrated’s DNA.”
SI’s really giving photography a great plug: the demo issue also has a behind-the-scenes portrait shoot with Shaq, and there’s an expanded photo gallery option for readers to see more shoots than the ones included in the main design. Even the interactive demo ad is photo-related, showing a faux camera brand with interchangeable lenses.
This web design really opens up the doors for visual and multimedia storytelling, and is an exciting way to make an interactive publication accessible (not to mention SEO-friendly) to the entire World Wide Web.
Let us know what you think about SI’s new magazine format in the comments.
About a week ago at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, Russ Beinder caught a Sports Illustrated photographer at the hockey rink with a pretty interesting gear setup:
I think this is David Klutho uberphotog from Sports Illustrated. He has what appears to be two Nikon D700 cameras “glued” together with a 24-70mm f/2.8G attached. I am guessing there is some custom eletronics to synchronize the exposure and focus between the two. The little black box on the camera on the right has a cable running in one side and out the other. It has a simple toggle switch and what appears to be a indicator light. He was taking shots into the crowd.
This Sports Illustrated Tablet Demo by Jared Cocken came out a few months ago, before the announcement of the Hearst/LG/Marvell lovechild, the Skiff e-reader and Apple’s iPad. With the more announcements of technology that will become available just around the corner, this demo is worth a second look.
The demo is just one example of how tablet and advanced e-reader technology could be applied practically to bring the magazine medium into a digital format, not only adding an interactive feel, but increasing the scope of content — especially photographs.
While videos are also a prominent feature in the tablet demo, I get the reassuring feeling that magazines like Sports Illustrated won’t let go of still photography anytime soon as they shift into new media. In fact, photography seems to be a major selling point for e-readers and publications alike.
What do you think? Will the prospect of interactive magazines and photographs be enough to interest e-reader buyers and subscribers?