Marketing

PRESSURE (…is a good thing)

In honor of March Madness NCAA Basketball Championship Game Day (Men’s and Women's) is a grade eight short speech written about the pressure of an athlete from a 13 yr. old girls perspective.  As a parent of a child who has encountered obstacles and social interference about her basketball dreams and aspirations she stays strong and determined. The RISE (Realize Individual Success Everyday) Centre is a vision and concept many high-level sport professionals have embraced. McMaster University Athletes Edge will train our athletes at a level proven for success. The RISE will give extraordinary athletes learning opportunities through The Hill Basketball Academy to flourish and guide in their athletic endeavours. I am very proud of Aerial Wilson’s perspective of life on and off the court. I hope you too enjoy how this young lady is dealing with the “PRESSURE” to pursue her basketball dreams.

Aerial Wilson 2

PRESSURE

by Aerial Wilson, March 01-2015

Small. Misshapen. Insignificant. A lump of coal! Ordinary, yet extraordinary, but what happens once it is under pressures of 725 000 pounds per square inch? What happens to a black piece of rock that does well under pressure? It becomes a diamond.

The most beautiful things are created from pressure, like us as individuals. Some can thrive under pressure and some of us will bow down and succumb to it. Those of us, who have the right mentality, come out of the fire as diamonds. They’re the peak performers that not only have trained and worked hard, but won't crumble when the time approaches to make their dreams come true. They can perform in high-pressure situations without surrendering to their doubt demons. They’re the one’s titled “Most Valuable Player”, the one’s who hit the game-winning buzzer beater shots, they’re the clutch players who can play and push through adversity. They’re the ones who attack life as a challenge, not a threat.

We all choke, but what separates two people with the same skill set is how they perform due to pressure. What’s your skill worth if you can never use it when it matters? You can have all the talent in the world but if you can’t use it in a game, it’s worthless. Pressure is always viewed as a negative, but that is just a mental roadblock keeping you from peaking. You can perform either 15% worse or 15% better under pressure. Those who are successful feed off the pressure to maximize their full potential, but in order to perform with more proficiency you must have a positive mindset. It is a proven fact that those who face high-pressure situations with a challenge state have blood flow more efficiently to their brain allowing them to have control over their thoughts and emotions. Where when we approach the same situations with a threat state our blood vessels constrict, causing us to cease up, hindering our ability to think and therefore perform at our best.

Nausea, sweaty palms, dry-mouth, about to throw up any second. I’m sure we’ve all felt it. Sure it’s because I’m nervous, but what’s there to be nervous about it’s just another game, I’ve played amazing on countless occasions before, I’m a good player. If I go out there and play a terrible game or lose it’ll be okay. Worst-case scenario: I’ll go home and sleep. No. I’m older now, and getting exposure, I have to play well in practice to get playing time and prove that I’m the best on the court. I can’t have a slump, because you never know who’s watching. It could be scouts, the team Ontario or Canada coach, or anyone who wanted to watch our game because they’re recorded. I want to do well so badly, I want to get noticed, want to play my best; I have to play my best. Every game is big and championships even bigger. Everyone watching. I have one opportunity to make it happen. One shot.

All of the pressure I’m feeling right now is a good thing. It’s making me work harder to get where I want to be. I am the only one putting pressure on myself because I have expectations. If I feel that something isn’t the best I can make it, then I’ll do even more to make sure that it is and I’m rarely satisfied. The added pressure can be overwhelming, but I will always resist the temptation to give up because the pressure I’ve put on myself is my motivation.

What do we think when a coach yells, “Put pressure on the ball.” Get up, get low and play defense. Don’t. Let. Them. Breathe. Chances are if you do that the other team will have a pretty hard time scoring, yet they may have one player that can play with the added pressure. If it were easy everyone would do it. That’s the difference: under pressure your true character is revealed. It defines you as a person. It will either make or break you. The ones who won’t panic, won’t fear, and won’t settle are the successful people in life. Although we see pressure as a bad thing it is actually good. It is an opportunity to rise. Not just to be seen as someone who can play, but as someone who can think. It forces us to attack life with a challenge mindset that only allows positive thoughts. No more, “Don’t miss,” only, “It’s going in.” And even if that shot somehow misses, keep your head up, hustle, and know it’s O.K to fail, but you better make sure that next time you have an opportunity that you take it. No pressure.

 Aerial Wilson 1

Hockey…Hockey…Hockey!

Congratulations Dundas Real McCoy's on your 2014 Allan Cup Victory! The entire week was full of energy from the volunteers, organizers and teams. I had a great time shooting for Hamilton Scores "The voice of the #HamOnt amateur sport community". All my photographs from the event can be viewed at www.Presentitphoto.com (Direct Link-2014 Allan Cup) Please enjoy my favourite picks from the tournament.

Last year I posted about the Real McCoy's because they sponsored the newly added Atom Select team. Since adopted by the DMHA they were known as the Dundas Jr. Real McCoy's. Being part of a small community it is nice to have the boys mentored by an amazing group of local hockey players. The McCoy's sponsored the boys who were in hockey limbo and gave time to run a very special practice. Read More: They Sure Are the Real McCoy  | Hockey Links

Real_McCoys_HelpOn a personal note, my little guy tried out for rep that year and didn't make it. The coach of the Atom Selects was a former Real McCoy's player giving his time to share the love of the game. A wonderful parent network and commitment to the team led to lifetime experiences for our boys. These moments add growth to our children and deepens the ambition to be better hockey players. In my sons case, he wanted to try out for the rep team again. Once again he didn't make it. In light of some events he was asked to join the team. He had a great hockey year and the team building experiences are unforgettable. Now that hockey tryouts are around the corner, he has come to play. The Allan Cup Championship game has momentum that is inspiring to a young athlete. Mentorship is not only a one time moment, it is an ongoing connection and relationship.

The feedback from the 2014 Allan Cup by community members give a sense of loyalty and pride. I am pleased to present this video from the Championship day!

It was an extremely busy week. Just coming out of the OBA's in Windsor my computer hard drive failed. Creative Technologies in Burlington has worked hard to get me up and running. I hope to have a newly revised machine by the end of the week. Now among all that my daughter caught that awful hacking cold and was off school all week, my son had multiple sports-lessons and his birthday celebrations, I was shooting tons of hockey, my colleague from the Syracuse Crunch was in town to shoot the Bulldogs and I was hosting Easter Dinner.  Needless to say I stopped to smell the roses in the beautiful flower bouquet from by sweetheart. Ahhhhhhhhh got it all done though! 

_RLW7018 Photo Above: Transway Bantam Girls Emotional Celebration Reclaiming their Provincial title at the OBA's

As I wind down from hockey season, I will be processing the last of the images and putting together a portfolio specific to hockey.  Dave Black, SI photographer said my football is strong, but where is all the hockey? If I'm from Canada I should have more hockey in my portfolio. Well ya gotta listen and do when someone like Dave gives you advice. OH and I am very excited...no wait jumpy excited to meet with Dave Sandford-NHL photographer to gain some valuable photographic advice. It's kinda funny because I first met Dave Sandford back in 1997 at an event I was running. Yesterday when I was going through some photos I found this one one of a future NHL'r from the Whitby area. Jason Ward played in the OLA Celebrity Lacrosse Challenge. Here he is with NHL greats (L-R backrow: Adam Foot, Gary Roberts, Jason Ward, Joe Nieuwendyk, Colin Patterson. L-R Front Row: Darren Pang, Doug Gilmore, Brendan Shanahan, Stan Johnathan) all played lacrosse to improve their hockey skills.

At the time I was the Marketing Director for the OLA. I was just starting out as a photographer back then on film and we hired a professional photographer for the event to take the team shots. Such a small world to come full circle, live in a small town, support our local team and find a photo with some history.  Photo: Real McCoy, Jason Ward (1997) and NHL Celebrities

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The Hamilton Bulldogs (1) finished their season with a loss to the Syracuse Crunch (3) on April 20th, 2014 at FirstOntario Centre. Shout Out: Thank you Brandon Taylor, Hamilton Bulldogs photographer for sharing the glass and strobes all season. From beginning to end, it was so much fun to work with you.

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Photo: Hamilton Bulldog, Mike Blunden fires one off at the Syracuse in the final game of the season. View Photos Here: http://presentitphoto.com/hamilton_bulldogs

One last shout out...THANK YOU DMHA for the feedback on the 2013- 2014 Yearbook. The positive response and the enjoyment the membership has shared has been overwhelming. It is always a lot of work for all the volunteers and community to gather and submit the images and content, but they did an amazing job! Amy Yanover, DMHA Sponsorship bent over backwards to keep the deadlines and we accomplished amazing things together as a team. It is a true pleasure to design and include my own photographs for the Dundas hockey community to enjoy for a lifetime. "The yearbooks are great...very glossy, colourful and professional! Thank you!"..."Awesome yearbook cover!"..."The yearbook is awesome and a great keepsake for our family..."Best Yearbook EVER!!!"...

Looking for a team photographer/event contract position for next season please contact me

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Social Media Please like us onfacebook, follow us on twitter and comment on our photographs/design on our blog. We always update on { Instagramtumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2014 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more)

Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com

Dundas, Brantford Open Allan Cup with Wins

Source: Larry Robertson (Hamilton Scores) DUNDAS—Cam Watson’s unassisted goal from a goalmouth scramble in the third period gave the host Dundas Real McCoys a 4-3 opening round 2014 Allan Cup Hockey Tournament win over the South East Prairie Thunder Monday night in the JL Grightmire Arena. _RLW7322 Dundas’ Cam Watson celebrates his game winning goal.  Earlier in the day, the Brantford Blast edged Kenora Thistles, 5-4, to open week-long series to determine Canada’s best Senior hockey club. Dundas takes on Bentley Generals from Red Deer, Alberta at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Playing at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday are Clarenville Newfoundland and Labrador Caribous against Kenora. Brantford’s next game is Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. against Clarenville. All games will be played at the Grightmire Arena. _RLW8361 The crowd takes in the 2014 Allan Cup tournament at the JL Grightmire Arena. The tournament continues at the Grightmire through Friday. On Monday night, the Real McCoys had to shake off a penalty shot goal by the Thunder’s Ryan St Laurent. Both teams were even after two periods at 3-3 when Watson scored the game-winner off a rebound. The McCoys outshot South East Prairie, 29-21. _RLW8810 Jordan Foreman, Simon Mangos on a powerplay, and Nick Smith rounded out the Dundas scoring, while Ryan Christie and Jason Ward set up two McCoys goals each. Brad Purdie and Shea Hamilton had the other Thunder goals. All three of the South East Prairie goals were unassisted and the Thunder failed to score on five powerplay opportunities, while Dundas was one for six. _RLW8908 Joel Prpic paced the Brantford attack with a pair of goals while Chris Leveille added a goal and an assist. Mike Burgoyne (shorthanded) and Dave Russell added single goals. _RLW8431 Kenora’s lineup featured two former Real McCoys – TJ Sakaluk and Dan Pitre, both of whom were released by Dundas at the Ontario Hockey Association’s Jan. 10 cutdown date. Sakaluk picked a goal for Kenora while Pitre was held pointless. Rob Lawrence, Jesse Baraniuk on a powerplay, and Sean McAslan scored for the Thistles.

TAG US #aerialpromotions @aerialpromotions #presentitphoto @presentitphoto

Social Media Please like us onfacebook, follow us on twitter and comment on our photographs/design on our blog. We always update on { Instagramtumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2014 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more)

Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com

Tyler Crapigna-2 Time All Canadian Kicker

It is really special when a coach wants to do something extraordinary for his athlete. Tyler Crapigna (#4) is a third year kicker for the McMaster Marauders Football Team. Crapigna has a long list of football accomplishments and currently completed the CFL Combine in Toronto (#CFLCombine). Wishing Tyler all the best in the CFL Draft. Check out this recent article "Ottawa man kicking his way into the CFL" by Tim Baines, Ottawa Sun. Tyler Crapigna It wasn't hard to find an arsenal of photographs to design from when Dana Segin, Tyler's Kicking & Punting Coach asked me to do this special project. What makes is all worth it for me is the amazing reaction received by the long standing supporters who help Tyler be the best kicker he can be. I am very impressed when Tyler's father, Mr. Crapigna drives from Ottawa to Hamilton to watch his son play ball every home game...WoW-That's dedication!  Vanier2012-2961 "When I asked Robin at Aerial Promotions‎ to put together a few shots of Tyler, I had no idea I was about to receive something so special. The attention to detail, appreciating my feedback was amazing! All in all, I have an amazing print of the best kicker ever to lace them up and kick footballs at McMaster University" Dana Segin Kicking & Punting Coach-McMaster University Football DSC_2877 Thank YOU Dana for allowing me to be part of this special project! Best of Luck Tyler, I'll be cheering for you! Follow Tyler Crapigna on Twitter @TCrapigna4  McMaster (33) vs Queens (20) Football ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Social Media Please like us on facebook, follow us on twitter and comment on our photographs/design on our blog. We always update on { tumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! Aerial Promotions is now on Instagram  Instagram ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2013 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here  ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more) Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com _RLW2581

Social Media (SM) Opens Doors at SI

My Klout is admirable. I'm not famous and I know I don't have a lot of followers, likes, pins, favourites or retweets. I appreciate the time and effort it takes to communicate on social media (SM) and more grateful for the opportunities it creates. Please join me on my journey to Sports Illustrated, NYC.

Instagram @bradpix “The wonderful Robin Wilson of @aerialpromotions stopped by for a visit today. Happy to have her spend some time with us, hope she can shoot for us this summer.” & on Twitter [symple_social icon="twitter" url="https://twitter.com/BradSmithSI/status/444179226892455936/photo/1" title="Brad Smith Twitter" target="self" rel=""] from @BradSmithSI. 

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[symple_box color="green" text_align="left" width="100%" float="none"] The Lead Up [/symple_box] I joked about a year ago when I said Sports Illustrated (SI) is going to love this photograph. You may have heard the awkward laugh, but deep down I crave ambition to pursue this starlight fantasy. Here I am on my dream journey to NYC to meet with the Sports Illustrated Director of Photography (DOP), Brad Smith.

Twitter and Instagram is where we connect. It is important to be consistently aware and share great information for people to follow. I’m always trying to improve my photography skills and attend many conferences. KelbyOne/Photoshop World (PSW) is my favourite. I have met one-on-one with many professionals who have given me phenomenal advice (My Posts: Dave Black, Bert Monroy, Peter Hurley, Jack Reznicki, Catherine Hall and Scott Kelby)

As I blog about my experiences and post images, a direct message comes through twitter. This is an engagement that I embrace and want to develop a relationship like Brad says, "A healthy marriage between editor & photographer".

Brad asks, “When are you coming to NY?”  OK…put yourself in my shoes. Brad is the Director of Photography for Sports Illustrated. He is the SI cover guy….Yeah that guy!..Theeeeeee Guy! When I shared my news with friends I got the sarcastic, “yeah right” attitude.

I continued to post and work hard at being a better photographer. Brad acknowledges on my SM some of my family portraiture, ambiance and action. Speaking of shoes, one of my favourite @Bradpix post is Seattle Seahawk pumps on the sideline at the Superbowl.   I also enjoy it when he posts the latest SI covers fresh off the press on Instagram @bradpix and his Gator play by play action on Twitter @BradSmithSI. The relationship continues and I enjoy bantering online at the Team Canada hockey jabs in Sochi. BTW=“GOAL’D” 

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So when Brad says he has football playoffs-The Superbowl in January, then The Olympics in Sochi, Russia for February and wants you to pick a date to meet…pick a day and wish upon a star to make it happen. 

[symple_box color="green" text_align="left" width="100%" float="none"] The Trip [/symple_box]

The flights were cancelled and the weather was the worst we have ever driven in [ http://instagram.com/p/ldGrSSS5AW/ ]. It took almost 13hrs to get to NYC because the New York State Thruway was closed due to accidents and poor weather conditions.

Over the last month my workload has been extensive, but most rewarding. I have put in over excessive work hours and drove thousands of miles to expand my portfolio. Coming from the land of Tim Hortons, I really needed a coffee, but unfortunately another roadblock [http://instagram.com/p/ldOr6Dy5Na/].

White knuckles we keep driving. Due to the weather and dizzy GPS, we don’t know our ETA. We do know that if we travel East we won’t go in circles anymore. Yes it was that bad!

To have a great support system when following your dreams is heartfelt. My parents up in Northern Canada Cottage Country are entertaining the kids, my husband is determined to drive straight through the storm just to get me to my meeting on time, friends reach out on social media (SM) for encouragement and photography colleagues assist me on final details of my portfolio.

[symple_box color="green" text_align="left" width="100%" float="none"] The Meeting [/symple_box]

Excited and nervous to say the least. After a couple of hours of rest, I work on portfolio B-C-D…just in case Brad wants to see more. A few points that resonate with me in Youtube video “How to Edit Your Photos with Brad Smith” : 

Look for the peripheral things going on and encompass the whole game…even the portrait of a player on the sideline…it’s important to tell the whole story and include them in your portfolio. Keep shooting even when the play ends or when no one around you is working!

What do you want to show me? What do you want to do? I want to do it all, but I need to impress Brad with my action photography. Although I know I would love to do feature work too (Like Robert Caplin). There is limited time and I really need to show him what I want to do...ACTION game photography.

Show your best work first…Images you can’t take your eyes off. Because portfolio reviews are based on judgment, many people have different opinions. I have had the some of the finest people in the industry assist me in choosing the best images for my portfolio. Now I have my most important sports photography review of my career.

Time Life Building NYC

I am about to enter the Time & Life Building in New York City to meet with Brad Smith, Director of Photography Sports Illustrated. I was a half hour early after security. There was a gentleman from an advertising agency who does work for InStyle, People, Time and SI. We had a nice conversation in reception. When I arrived at SI, two fun loving characters met me at the front door.  They rolled out the red carpet and loaded me down with some fabulous reads.

Brad starts the conversation with his gratitude for coming down to NYC to meet with him. If anything I would fly over the moon for an opportunity like this. After I tell him about our travels, he expresses his appreciation to share with my husband for driving through the storm. He is such a compassionate man.  We then chat about our children and a little bit about the business. “Let’s get started…Show me what you got!”

[symple_box color="green" text_align="left" width="100%" float="none"] The Critique [/symple_box]

What resonates with me when I watch Brad review my images is how he emphasizes with the athlete. “More head trauma, only if they knew what they know now, unfortunately it makes a great shot.” Because I was trying to show my ability to capture prime action, many of the portfolio images were of collisions or impact.

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Brad then says, “Another great shot of a defender…there should be more of it.” I’m starting to understand that Brad want’s to see unique images and not what he sees come across his desk everyday.  He does mention that SI still needs the portrait of the QB and the story image.

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Brad seemed to enjoy my basketball night portrait the most. I have an entire collection of dunks and fun basketball portraiture that I would love to expand on. I actually feel it is my specialty above the rim, below and through the net [see more]. The Indiana gym photo- although Brad zoomed right into the garbage can-facial expression, general ambiance and frozen motion make him smile. “This is a great shot.”

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I feel I should have shown more variety in my photography. I have it, I just didn’t build my 20 images with this in mind for the initial portfolio review. Brad is a very busy person, but was generous with his time to see more.  Brad suggests that I shouldn’t show all my action cropped-tight with a 400. He acknowledges that I can shoot action, but to try a new perspective by lens or angle to make a more interesting image. Did I mention that I rock the fisheye!

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Now I’m beating myself up a bit because I didn’t show that one picture because I didn’t know he wanted to see it. I have the hardest time choosing. I was a little nervous, showed too much, possibly over processed a vignette on one image and even went into the wrong portfolio.  I wanted to show him my composites too, but focused on action. I over prepared. Brad wants to see me tighten up the portfolio. Live and learn, but what a time to have a teaching moment when you only have one shot….Literally! OK let's lighten it up a bit with some Dundas Blues Hockey Bobbleheads...

Bobbleheads

Sometimes you need to feel failure in order to succeed. I still felt at ease because Brad has the most wonderful, kind and sincere demeanor about him. I think the title purely “Authentic” in front of his name is justified.

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He asks me, “What do I want?” A question that stimulates an electrifying response, “I want to shoot for you!” If you need someone to cover any Canadian events or Detroit or Buffalo…as a take a deep breath…The Pan Am Games are coming to Toronto and the NBA All Star Game soon. Brad explains the process and what SI will cover. OMG, then I hear, SI will get you credentials to shoot for us at the Pan Am Games. We will run a section and you can cover the Pan Am Games for Sports Illustrated. I am giddy like a schoolgirl, but trying to contain myself. I now have the most perfect opportunity to prove myself as a Sports Illustrated photographer. I have access to 36 sports with 7000 athletes in my own backyard venues. I can research, practice and prepare the most unique photographic images I have ever done. Most importantly I will be able to capture these elite athletes at a prime moment in their athletic career as I fulfill mine.

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Another gentleman comes to visit, Chris Chambers. Brad introduces us and explains Chris was an editor for Getty and edits the NBA, NFL and Motorsports for SI. We go into the boardroom and chat a bit about the industry. I then start to show Chris some of my photographs, more specific to football and basketball. Chris advises me that it’s about access and what is available to you.  He said, even though you are shooting amateur sports you are taking great photos. Hearing him say, “No doubt you can shoot” makes me so happy. Chris than spoke to me about layers. Everyone has a purpose to make the photo better. Fans create the energy; band makes you move, coaches direct the game and so on. Chris says he want’s to see the one blade of grass in the forefront of the photo leading up to the action and then the crowds reaction. I need to be responsible for everything in the shot. Even when the shot's not clean try to make it a part of the story. This conversation was very inspiring because I want to emote this in my photography always.

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Today as I review my photographs with fresh eyes, I understand how I can make my portfolio better.  I want to intrigue the viewer and make them stay in the moment- frozen in time. I want them to see something different, build an emotion through the layers and not take their eyes off my photograph. I am not afraid to fail, but anxious to experiment and achieve greatness in my photography. THANK YOU Brad!

My portfolio is always a work in progress! To view more photographs visit 500px or Behance  (Update in Progress)

A huge shoutout to all the amateur athletes who give it everyday, CIS, OCAA, OUA and McMaster football who allow me to capture the good, bad and the ugly. Thank YOU to all of my friends, family and colleagues who support me. I am very grateful for my young athlete followers and will always keep it real. Thanks for all the retweets, likes, favs and your encouragement. I want my kids and husband to be proud of me and love them for joining me on my special journey. Check out some of my colleagues great work. I appreciate the help with my portfolio selects: Matt Hernadez, Brandon Taylor, Scott Thomas, Hamilton Scores-Denis LeBlanc & Sean Healey.

I LOVE BEING A PHOTOGRAPHER! How bout a reality series for photographers like America's/Canada's Next Top Model EH?

TAG US #aerialpromotions @aerialpromotions #presentitphoto @presentitphoto

Social Media Please like us onfacebook, follow us on twitter and comment on our photographs/design on our blog. We always update on { Instagramtumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2014 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more)

Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com

ACHONWA…aaahooo!?!?!

February 27th, 2014 | Notre Dame (100) vs North Carolina (75) | Joyce Center-Purcell Pavilion | South Bend, IN

Uh-CHAWN-wha…t? Will not be a question of who in the basketball world, but a fascinating everyday name we Canadians are proud to follow. Natalie Achonwa is a senior basketball player at University of Notre Dame in South Bend, IN. She is the first international player to suit up for the University in its 37-year history.

Not only is Achonwa in the record books with three consecutive NCAA Women's Final Four appearances, including two NCAA national championship games, she is a five time Canada Basketball Team selection. Natalie began her international training at the tender age of 14 in Hamilton, Ontario. In September of 2009, Achonwa became the youngest player to be selected for the Canadian Senior Women’s Basketball Team at the age of 16.

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Achonwa has recently competed for Canada at the 2012 Olympics in London, England. Natalie was a part of the Canadian Team that won Silver at the 2013 FIBA Americas Championship in Xalapa, Mexico.

Chris Seto of The Guelph Mercury produced an amazing intimate video and article-Natalie Achonwa’s Compelling Story - Big stage, big presence — Guelph’s Natalie Achonwa leads one of the hottest teams in U.S. women’s college basketball [Read More] 

I met Natalie at (DJ’s) David Johnson’s Basketball Clinic. Read More: [real-basketball-mentors-making-time] Although Natalie is from Guelph, Ontario she feels connected to Hamilton because she is a graduate from St. Mary’s Catholic Secondary School and trained with the former Basketball Canada’s NEDA (National Elite Development Academy) program at McMaster University.

DJ-Achonwa We planned to do a photo shoot, but unfortunately couldn’t align our calendars. Natalie informed me that UND was going to play a game at Ryerson in Toronto on December 1st, 2013. Again the timing did not work out. When Natalie told me that February 27th, 2014 would be her last regular season basketball game. All I could say is “Road Trip!”

It was her last regular home game of the season and as a senior. What better reason to take a road trip to South Bend, IN. We started out late and drove through the night. The last hour was the worst with the storm, whiting out most of Indiana. When we reached the Varsity Club Suites, we were overwhelmed with the sports memorabilia that adorned every wall of the hotel.

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After a few hours of sleep we arrived at the University of Notre Dame, almost 2 hrs before the game. It was nice to see the famous Football Notre Dame Stadium right beside Basketball Joyce Centre-Purcell Pavilion. Of course the girls needed to get a sharpie for some autographs and a little Irish spirit. There were many alumnae, the fans were animated, you could feel the oomph and the fun was just beginning.

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Can you say “Energy stimulus overload”. It's the crowd, band, cheerleaders, fans, scoreboard, music, Dance Cam, Jumbotron to the fine detail of the basketball popcorn bowls. My family was thrilled to be there, huge fans of “ACE” (Natalie's Nickname) and very grateful for the phenomenal seats.

Ambiance The coaches came out in style. Muffet McGraw and her beautiful coaching staff came out in blazing hot red to celebrate her # 1000th career game.Coaches

My job is to get great photographs. I started out on the end line, but the referees positioning seemed to be directly in front of me. When I asked a fellow photographer if I could get in close to the post, he was more than accommodating. I was able to get low and see the paint beautifully. Now it's just up to me to capture the moment. View Game Photos [Click Here]

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Natalie finished with 24 points, 8 rebounds and 2 assists. Notre Dame finished the regular season with a perfect record and the second longest winning streak in University history. Natalie-Achonwa-2

Although my main focus was Natalie Achonwa (#11), her other teammates were exceptional too. Notre Dame Senior Tri Captain, Kayla McBride (#21) netted 28 points.

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ND Sophomore, Jewell Loyd (#32) was double trouble for UNC with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

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The very young University of North Carolina team was led by Tar Heel, Xylina McDaniel(#34)-18pts and Diamond DeShields(#23) with 17pts.

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It is an amazing experience to watch an NCAA game in the home venue of a team you cheer for. We have all the more reason to love The University of Notre Dame because of Natalie Achonwa. Nat said ND would love to have us and EVERYONE treated us like a lucky charm.  Remember the back of this jersey. Pronounced "uh-CHAWN-wha". Natalie, AKA "ACE" is not only a basketball player but a true motivational leader and role model for young student athletes.

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Aerial Wilson and Kaillie Hall play for Transway Bantam Girls Basketball Team in Hamilton, Ontario. They are currently in the process of trying out for the Canada Drive-Blue Star Elite AAU Travel Team [Learn More]. They had an exceptional time at The University of Notre Dame and are more ambitious today because of Natalie Achonwa to pursue their basketball dreams. Postgame-800 Let's cheer a little louder for our Canadian Athletes and support them on social media. Connect with Natalie Achonwa on Twitter https://twitter.com/NatAchon

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For more information about Natalie Achonwa: Natalie Achonwa Bio - UND.COM - University of Notre Dame  http://www.und.com/sports/w-baskbl/mtt/natalie_achonwa_713254.html http://ndwbb.com/team/players/natalie_achonwa/ Big stage, big presence — Guelph’s Natalie Achonwa leads one of the hottest teams in U.S. women’s college basketball http://www.guelphmercury.com/news-story/2793171-big-stage-big-presence-guelph-s-natalie-achonwa-leads-one-of-the-ho/ Video: Natalie Achonwa on what Notre Dame has to do to remain undefeated http://www.swishappeal.com/2014/2/23/5438058/video-notre-dame-undefeated-natalie-achonwa A Competitor's Mentality http://www.und.com/sports/w-baskbl/spec-rel/021314aab.html No. 5 Notre Dame Rolls Past Duquesne, 100-61  http://www.und.com/sports/w-baskbl/recaps/120113aaa.html Natalie Achonwa Named To Canadian Olympic Qualifying Team http://www.und.com/sports/w-baskbl/spec-rel/060512aaa.html Three Prep Women's Basketball Standouts Commit To Attend Notre Dame http://www.und.com/sports/w-baskbl/spec-rel/111309aab.html Famous Guelphites http://www.library.guelph.on.ca/archives/famous_person.cfm?id=63 Game Photos: February 27th, 2014 | Notre Dame (100) vs North Carolina (75) | Joyce Center-Purcell Pavilion | South Bend, IN [Click Here] Natalie Achonwa ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Social Media Please like us on facebook, follow us on twitter and comment on our photographs/design on our blog. We always update on { tumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! Aerial Promotions is now on Instagram  Instagram ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2013 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here  ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more) Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com _RLW0205

Radiant Athlete Refocuses My Attention

The 89th Hamilton Indoor Games were held last week on Feb.21st, 2014 at First Ontario Centre (Copps Coliseum). I really enjoyed meeting Track Star, Meaghan Rice from St. Marys. I used to love Track and Field and found Meaghan to be a multi talented athlete.  When I met Meaghan, she was talking to herself by the high jump pit. I immediately saw the big "M" on her sweatshirt and asked if she was from St. Marys.

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Proud to say she was a Crusader and really enjoys the pentathlon. As a photographer I zoned in because I want to photograph a variety of events. I missed Meaghan's gold winning performance in shot put. She threw an 8.9m on her last throw to win. I was excited to watch Meaghan's next event, high jump. She cleared the bar for a personal best at 1.50m, as she celebrates with her coach. Unfortunately, Ms. Rice did not place in long jump. I am certain there will be more great Track and Field results from Meaghan Rice in the future. (It was nice to see some of the McMaster Students out of uniform volunteering their time to help with the meet too!)

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Funny story! When I was in middle school, I trained with Athlete's International. I begged my parents for a high jump shoe...yes just one shoe OMG-LOL! Then when high school came I trained with a javelin and discus. My neighbor's dog would play catch with me....just kidding! So many styles of high jump.  The Fosbury Flop, Scissors and I don't know what some of these other ones are.

Highjump2Congratulations Katrina Kerekesch from Highland High School in Dundas with a first place jump of 4.39m.

longjumpWith all the Canadian hockey love during the Olympics, it helped me to produce the 2013-2014 DMHA yearbook. It is always a lot of work for all the volunteers and community to gather and submit the images and content, but they did an amazing job! Special shoutout to Amy Yanover who in my professional opinion was a dream to work with! The yearbooks will be distributed on March 22nd at the Dundas Minor Hockey Association Championship Day!

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Natalie Achonwa plays her final home game of the season on Thursday, February 27th, 2014 at the University of Notre Dame, IN. I love American NCAA Basketball and a good roadtrip. Can't wait to see Natalie in action on the court against North Carolina. 

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Friday, February 28th I will be back in Hamilton to photograph the Bulldogs take on some Monsters from Lake Erie. Joonas Natinnen pins the Marlies for Lucky girl to get a quick click! 

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The Ontario Colleges Athletic Association’s 2014 women’s basketball champions will be decided Feb. 27-March 1 at Mohawk College.

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I LOVE BEING A PHOTOGRAPHER!

TAG US #aerialpromotions @aerialpromotions #presentitphoto @presentitphoto

Social Media Please like us onfacebook, follow us ontwitterand comment on our photographs/design on our blog.

We always update on { tumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! NEW! Aerial Promotions is now on Instagram  ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2013 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more) Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com

DMHA Yearbook 2013-2014

The wonderful arenas we get to visit throughout the season inspired the font cover. Symbolic of "Beaming Character", that still is and once was. I felt a sense of belonging and history when I walked into the Orillia Community Centre Area in Coldwater, Orillia. The staff was exceptional to allow me access to photograph. The newest venues are stunning with state of the art facilities, but when that Zamboni came out it was breathtaking!

Program The positive response and the enjoyment the membership has shared has been overwhelming. It is always a lot of work for all the volunteers and community to gather and submit the images and content, but they did an amazing job! Amy Yanover, DMHA Sponsorship bent over backwards to keep the deadlines and we accomplished amazing things together as a team. It is a true pleasure to design and include my own photographs for the Dundas hockey community to enjoy for a lifetime. “The yearbooks are great…very glossy, colourful and professional! Thank you!”…”Awesome yearbook cover!”…”The yearbook is awesome and a great keepsake for our family…”Best Yearbook EVER!!!”… [cincopa AELAopbgSY_W]

Best of Luck to the Basketballers!

The Transway Bantam Girls AAA Basketball team plays this weekend (Feb. 7-9, 2014) at Glenndale High School in the annual Hamilton Transway Tournament. Wishing all the basketballers great tournament play and safe travels! Transway1-1280

Scarborough Basketball Tournament Champions 2013 (December 2013)

Scarborough Gold

Dundas Basketball Tournament Champions 2013 (December 2013)

Dundas Gold

Chatham Basketball Tournament 2014 Silver Medallists (January 2014)

Chatham Silver

Transway Basketball Tournament 2014 Gold Medallists (February 2014)

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London Ramblers Basketball Tournament 2014 Gold Medallists (February 2014)

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Michigan State Silver Bracket Basketball Tournament 2014 Gold Medallists (March 2014)

Transway Bantam U13 Girls AAA Basketball Season 2013-2014 [View Photographs] More Coming Soon!

Transway U12 Girls AAA Basketball Season 2012-2013 [View Photographs]

Learn More about BlueStar Ontario [Here]

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TAGS #aerialpromotions @aerialpromotions #presentitphoto @presentitphoto

Social Media Please like us onfacebook, follow us ontwitterand comment on our photographs/design on our blog.

We always update on { tumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! NEW! Aerial Promotions is now on Instagram  Instagram ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2013 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more) Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com

Sponsored Moments in Play!

I love a clean background because it always makes the subject in play stand out. Sometimes you don't have a choice when photographing in public venues. There is a lot of sponsor signage and team logos everywhere. When covering the game you have to take the action where it's happening.

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Once in a while you get lucky when something amazing happens - framed up, locked into the play and it all just works.

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And then sometimes you just have to laugh! Referees and other interference in photographing sports is inevitable. The way I look at it is, it makes me more agile and creative in my shooting.  

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Silence is a beautiful thing! Be patient and wait for that right moment. Go early and stay late is just part of a photographers business hours.

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Sponsors spend an enormous amount of money to keep our athletic programs and athletes active. It takes a lot of work to get sponsors and even more effort to keep them. My marketing background makes me hypersensitive to appreciating and valuing great sponsors. 

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When photographing minor sports in recreational facilities positioning is critical to get the shot. Signage around the venue can add character to your photograph, bring depth and tell a story. A photo is worth a thousand words!

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Most wall art is balanced around the gym floor. Team logos are generally behind the endlines and pennants/banners may hang from the ceiling. It is important to know your angles to prepare yourself for the frame. 

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Messaging and call to action is important in efficient signage. With great branding just a glimpse of a logo can stimulate a viewer to act!

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Support the Allan Cup on April 14th-20th at J.L. Grightmire Arena, Dundas, Ontario

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Social Media Please like us on facebook, follow us on twitter and comment on our photographs/design on our blog. We always update on { tumblr blog | flickr photostream | YouTube channel | Pinterest Boards | Google+  } too! NEW! Aerial Promotions is now on Instagram  Instagram ____________________________________________________________________________________________ DOWNLOAD IMAGES* © Aerial Promotions 1997-2013 *Read AP Terms & Conditions Before Download…click here *Read AP Photographic Licensing Before Download…click here ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Why...Because We CARE! It is part of AP mission to give back to sport & the developing athletes as a volunteer in the local community (...more) Images available now at www.Present it Photo.com