Portrait Shoot with Braylon Edwards
As an Editorial Field Editor I don’t have too much interaction with athletes I cover when I’m working. 99% of the time I am in a dark, dingy room in front of my computer and a TV if I’m lucky. I don’t get to see much of the games I cover in person because while the game is going on have to be editing. Sure, I see the athletes in the back tunnels of venues all over the country but rarely do either of us acknowledge one another. A recent assignment provided me the chance to actually interact with one of the athletes we were photographing.
The Monday before Thanksgiving, I got sent on assignment to assist New York based photographer Nick Laham on a portrait shoot in Cleveland with second year Cleveland Brown wide receiver Braylon Edwards.
Nick planned on doing 2 different shoots in 2 days. One in a studio we would set up and the other in an area of downtown Cleveland which we would scout for once there.
The day started early with Nick and I heading downtown to find some places to shoot. After a few hours of driving around and looking for locations, Nick and I had successfully picked out where our second day shoot would be.
Nick Laham takes test shots under a bridge in downtown Cleveland. (Photo by Michael Heiman)
We then headed out to the suburbs to meet Mr. Edwards at his house to do the studio shots, which we planned on setting up in his garage. We met Braylon, some of his friends and his family and after talking for a little while we set up all of our gear in his garage. After setting up some lights and a backdrop we got to work.
Michael Heiman hams it up for Nick Laham to test the lights and exposures before shooting. (Photo by Nick Laham)
Nick Laham shoots Braylon Edwards of the Cleveland Browns in the garage of his house. (Photo by Michael Heiman)
Braylon Edwards of the Cleveland Browns poses in the garage of his house. (Photo by Nick Laham)
Braylon proved to be really good with the camera and gave us plenty of time to shoot him in different poses and clothing. After around two hours of actually shooting we decided we had enough studio shots for the night and broke everything down and headed back to our hotel.
Tuesday was the day we choose to shoot on location in downtown Cleveland and decided to meet Braylon around 1pm at one of the spots we had scouted the day before. We started off on a closed down bridge in downtown Cleveland. This was a perfect place for us to start the shoot. It was closed to traffic and off the beaten path so we didn’t have to worry about getting in anyone’s way and they couldn’t get in ours.
Nick Laham shoots Braylon Edwards of the Cleveland Browns on a closed bridge in downtown Cleveland. (Photo by Michael Heiman)
Braylon Edwards of the Cleveland Browns poses on a closed bridge in downtown Cleveland. (Photo by Nick Laham)
After 45 minutes or so we moved to our second location which was an asphalt plant we had also checked out the day before. This was a great location that again was very quite and allowed us to shoot and not get in anyone’s way. At this point, the sun had gone down a little more and provided us with some really nice light for the rest of our shoot.
Nick Laham shoots Braylon Edwards of the Cleveland Browns at an asphalt plant in downtown Cleveland. (Photo by Michael Heiman)
Braylon Edwards of the Cleveland Browns poses at an asphalt plant in downtown Cleveland. (Photo by Nick Laham)
After another 45 minutes or so we called it a wrap and packed up and headed back to the hotel.
Two days of shooting gave us time to work with different ideas and is one of the reasons this shoot was so successful. Braylon was a really nice guy and a total professional and it came through in the final edit. For me, this experience and assignment proved to be both challenging and fun.
To see the final edit click here.