My trip with Pearl of Africa Series 2 is quickly coming to an end here. I have been here in Uganda for 2 weeks now. It’s a short time, but I feel like I have gotten to know this beautiful and its lovely people so well. Now I am sad to leave, but feel very hopeful for the future of baseball in this country.

My mission for this trip is to conduct a scouting video workshop with local coaches so that they can produce videos locally and sustainably to showcase the local baseball talenst to the world. The videos will also be useful for coaching purposes. On top of that I am also here to shoot a short documentary as an update of Peal of Africa Series 1 that took place 2.5 years ago. 

It’s very inspiring to see how much baseball has developed in the last 2.5 years. It also means the world to me to see the kids that we have been supporting are now doing well in school and moving on to a new chapter of their lives. 

More photos and videos from this trip are coming soon. I can’t wait to share this amazing experience

Allie was an absolute beast in the gym! I tried to replicate some moves she was doing myself, and my heart rate went straight up! I have no idea how she was doing all these moves without sweating. I had to bring out the old fake sweat trick.  

It was another good day shooting some personal work. It was fun figuring things out in a tight space with little time. A great exercise to keep my photographic mind sharp.

My friend Jeff is a great model, actor, personal trainer, and all around athlete. After we did the CEF shoot together back in December, last week I was lucky enough to photograph Jeff again for this little shoot we put together for ourselves.  Jeff couldn’t be more pleasant to work with. Really the perfect type of talent a photographer could ask for. Professional, well prepared, enthusiastic, and full of ideas. I was able to bounce ideas with Jeff as we go. It was initially a challenging shoot as the weather turned out to be nothing I prepared for, and I was just not that familiar with body building/ fitness. But now I can say I learned so much I am much more comfortable with this subject matter next time I go into a similar shoot. I feel a big part of a photographer’s skill set is the ability to quickly learn and adapt. To sharpen that skill is another perfect reason to do personal projects!

Although I hardly play anymore, basketball is still one of my favourite sports. When I am sitting in front of the computer, inevitably once in a short while I find myself checking out ESPN or Bleacher Report for hoops news and highlights. Last week I had the opportunity to spend sometime with 2 amazing Vancouver players: UBC’s Kedar Wright, and formal college and pro player Demitri Harris. They played hoops while I played D with my camera. It was good times. Definitely in awe of their skills.  Again, thanks to photography, I got to witness first hand how amazing these athletes are. Really grateful.

I got to spend an afternoon to photograph my friend Roma who is an amazing runner and yogi. Perfect combination really! As a runner myself I know how awesome it is to combine running and yoga. The recovery and extra core strength yoga provides is unbelievable. Roma’s inspired me to perhaps give yoga another try. 

Last month I went down to Colorado to photograph an amazing group of young Canadian freestyle skiers. I am still going through thousands of images to put together an edit, but here are a couple of teasers for now. Keep an eye on these guys. They are all going to be future stars!

A few months ago I decided it was time for me to revamp my portfolio. I looked into the catalogs of the images I shot in the last few years, and it was a shocking and very scary feeling to realize how little I had shot for myself. Nearly everything was done for commercial assignments. On one hand it was really good to see how busy I have been. But on the other hand, I felt like I had stopped experimenting. I promised myself that would never happen again.

So on Sunday I did this little shoot with my friends Clayton, Allie, and Sonya. Very spontaneous. Very little planning went into it. I just showed up with a camera and a couple of lenses. No assistant ( as much as I love the people I work with!) No lights. Not even a reflector. It was such a free feeling! I thought the images turned out well. It really reminded me that, as a photographer, I have the responsibility to myself and my clients that I continue to practice and innovate. Musicians practice all the time, so do athletes. So why don’t photographers do the same?

Here are some images from a shoot I did for the Compassionate Eye Foundation on Giving Tuesday. The concept was to create some stylized sports images that aren’t commonly seen in stock photography. Both were quite a bit of a departure for me as I don’t tend to introduce much artificial lighting in my images, and I haven’t shot stock in ages. But I have to say I am quite pleased with the result. But above all, the best thing was that I got the opportunity to work with a group of fantastic volunteers who all donated their time and energy to help me create these images on a very cold night outside. The resulting images will be sold on Getty Images, with the proceeds going to the Compassionate Eye Foundation, and the projects it supports around the world. Thank you CEF for letting me be part of this wonderful cause, and thank you everyone that helped out! 

Here is a blog post from CEF about the shoot. Check it out, and maybe join us in 2014?

Fair Ball, Sportsnet’s documentary on the Canada Uganda baseball series premeres tomorrow April 1st! It’s going to be amazing to re-live the experience through the documentary. I cannot wait! 

It will also air repeatedly during the month of April.

For the first airing it will be titled “MLB SEASON PREVIEW on your TV guide.

Thereafter your guide will say “FAIR BALL.

For those of you in BC:

Sunday April 1st

Sportsnet Pacific channel

1pm-230pm pst (a one-hour MLB Preview followed by the half-hour Fair Ball doc) 

2pm pst (Fair Ball doc)

8pm-930pm pst (a one-hour MLB Preview followed by the half-hour Fair Ball doc)

9pm pst (Fair Ball doc)

For those of you in Ontario:

Sunday April 1st

Sportsnet Ontario channel

4pm-530pm est (a one-hour MLB Preview followed by the half-hour Fair Ball doc) 

5pm est (Fair Ball doc)

8pm-930pm est (a one-hour MLB Preview followed by the half-hour Fair Ball doc)

9pm est (Fair Ball doc)

The first solo airing of FAIR BALL (without the MLB PREVIEW SHOW) will be on Sunday April 8th on all Sportsnet channels at 12pm est, 9am pst.