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

Real McCoys Pick Up 2nd Allan Cup Win

Source: Larry Robertson (Hamilton Scores)

DUNDAS—Ryan Christie was everywhere – even trapped on his back in the Bentley Generals net – as the Dundas Real McCoys skated to a 6-2 victory in the second day of preliminary round play in the 2014 Allan Cup Hockey Tournament Tuesday night (April 15) at the JL Grightmire Arena.

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The Dundas Real McCoys score, en route to a 6-2 victory over Bentley Generals on Tuesday night at the Grightmire Arena. 

Earlier in the day, Clarenville Newfoundland and Labrador Caribous defeated Kenora Thistles, 5-2.Dundas leads preliminary play with two wins.

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On Wednesday (April 16) in preliminary round play, Brantford Blast takes on Clarenville at 3:30 p.m. followed by the Generals- South East Prairie Thunder contest at 7:30 p.m.

Christie with all his rambunctious play finished the night with a shorthanded goal and an assist, and six minutes in penalties.

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On the scoreboard, Greg Stewart led the Dundas attack with a pair of goals including a shorthanded one, while Justin Davis had a goal and two assists. Nick Smith and Scott Mifsud added single goals. Simon Mangos set up two of the Real McCoys goals.

Kyle Bailey scored both of the Bentley goals, one on a shorthanded play.

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In the earlier game, Martin Lapointe became the hero rather than the goat for Clarenville as he returned from a high sticking penalty to score the insurance goal in the Caribous’ victory over Kenora.

Lapointe was sent off at 10:35 of the third period, and Kenora turned up the heat on Clarenville, only to turn over the puck on the Clarenville blueline to Doug O’Brien. O’Brien in turn flipped the puck over a Kenora defender as Lapointe raced from the penalty box for open ice and the loose puck, which he corralled and fired past Tyler Gordon in the Kenora goal.

The counter gave the Caribous a 4-2 lead and deflated the Thistles. Luke Gallant scored into an empty net on an unassisted play to complete the Caribous scoring with 24 seconds left.

Rodi Short, Cam Fergus, and Gallant collected a goal and an assist each with Ryan Desrosiers and Lapointe adding single goals. Peter Campbell set up two of the Clarenville scoring plays.

Ryan Pearson and former Dundas Real McCoys forward TJ Sakaluk accounted for the Kenora scoring. [symple_divider style="solid" margin_top="20px" margin_bottom="20px"]

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Schedule and Results

Monday, April 14 Kenora vs. Brantford 4 – 5 South East vs. Dundas 3 – 4

Tuesday, April 15 Clarenville vs. Kenora 5 – 2 Dundas vs. Bentley 6 – 2

Wednesday, April 16 Brantford vs. Clarenville 3:30pm Bentley vs. South East 7:30pm

Thursday, April 17 Quarterfinals Quarterfinals

Friday, April 18 Semifinals Semifinals

Saturday, April 19 Championship Final 3pm (TSN)

(all times are EDT)

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View More Photos Here on my Google+ Page [CLICK]

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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...

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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

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)

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Dundas Basketball Tournament Champions 2013 (December 2013)

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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

Blue Star Ontario Basketball

Hamilton is a hotbed for basketball in Ontario. Our own local basketball hero's begin their NCAA basketball career Fall 2014: Amira Gianatassio- Mount St. Marys, MD-The Mount, Christina Buttenham-University of Iowa-Hawkeye’s, Hilary Hanaka-University of Vermont-Catamounts and Kia Nurse-University of Connecticut-Huskies.

The energy this year regarding the accolades of Andrew Wiggins has been invigorating. Of course, my favorite is the front cover of Sports Illustrated [Cover-Story]! This past summer Natalie Archonwa of Notre Dame took some quality time to speak with our young aspiring basketballers [Read full story here]. Toronto will be hosting its very first NBA all star game in 2016 [ESPN-NBA].  Needless to say there is a lot of basketball planning going on in the next few years. 

I am very excited to be involved with development and advancement of our young athletes in the future of sports. When some of the biggest basketball advocates offered the opportunity to assist in a new elite basketball program how can I resist! [Blue Star Ontario Brochure-Photography & Design by Aerial Promotions]

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Canada Drive is expanding and rebranding as Blue Star Ontario. The new programming and partnership with Blue Star Basketball will provide athletes with unprecedented levels of development and exposure. Website: http://canadadrivebasketball.com | Twitter: @CanadaDrive | Facebook: CanadaDriveBlueStar

Blue Star Basketball – http://www.bluestarbb.com Blue Star Basketball is the longest running national evaluation and college showcase organization in women’s basketball.  Many of the top AAU programs from all over the United States play under their banner. Blue Star Ontario will be their first international affiliate. The partnership will ensure Blue Star Ontario teams will have: • Greater NCAA exposure through Blue Star Media • Increased branding within the recruiting community • Access to some of the best AAU tournaments throughout the US • Priority seeding and scheduling for AAU tournaments • Stronger relationships with other clubs and sponsors already associated with Blue Star Basketball • Teams will be outfitted in Nike Product AAU Teams Blue Star Ontario will offer two types of AAU travel teams every spring and summer. Blue Star Ontario Elite Exposure will be running teams from 12U-17U.  These teams will be focused on developing skills and gaining exposure.  They will be attending many of the top USJN tournaments throughout the summer.  Please visit  http://canadadrivebasketball.com website for the full 2014 schedule.

Canada Drive Elite Development For the younger age groups Canada Drive will be running teams with a greater emphasis on skill development and gaining experience playing against American competition.  There will be teams from 10U-14U with some of the top players also participating on the 12U-14U Elite Exposure teams.

All of the Canada Drive teams will be selected in part by recruiting the best talent available and also tryouts to find any undiscovered talent.

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Development Camps

While expanding our AAU program Blue Star Ontario will provide athletes with further development opportunities throughout the calendar year. We have designed several camps that can supplement what athletes are already doing through their club season.  We are pleased to announce three camps starting in January. Visit our website for all the details or contact Coach Nate McKibbon nathanmckibbon@hotmail.com with questions.

Last year was a banner year for Canada Drive with several of our athletes accepting scholarships to many of the top American and Canadian universities. Blue Star Ontario looks forward to continuing that tradition and to a fantastic 2014 season. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions regarding our programs.

Richard Nurse, Program Director canadadrive95@gmail.com

Nate McKibbon, Associate Director nathanmckibbon@hotmail.com

Download Blue Star Ontario Brochure: BlueStar Ontario Brochure Design and Photography by Aerial Promotions

Wishing You a Very Happy Holiday!

Well this Christmas may not be as we planned. We are days without power because of the ice storm. Yes it's cold and dark, but I am blessed to be sharing the holidays with my loved ones. From my family to yours, Wishing you a Wonderful Holiday and Spectacular New year! I can't believe that it has been over ten years of my own family Holidays . Photographs are so important to me and just to focus on my own family on Christmas day is a special treat. I have taken many photographs of memorable moments. I enjoy seeing my children grow up and spending time with loved ones. This is certainly my favorite time of year.

This video is a special dedication to PaPa and Grandma with love at Christmas time! XoX

What do you do with over ten years of photos sharing Christmas Day with your loved ones...Remember to Enjoy them! Please be safe this holiday season.

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As inquisitive as I am...found some photographs from my parents that I have never seen before! Such a heartwarming feeling. I don't have many images of myself growing up and perhaps this is why I capture so many moments with my own family. There is something special to be said about grandparents. I adore my family and cherish all these memories and look forward to many more. Happy Holidays! (Note to Self:  When the power comes back on perhaps I will restore a few of these old photos for my parents-xox)