Basic: The Cover
Sometimes life can be just as simple as an email with "What we need, and can we make it happen on this date." But who likes simple?
|Andre DeGrasse on the cover of Canadian Running Magazine 2021(ish)
When any magazine reaches out with a few basic needs and a high probability of cover use of an athlete, almost every sports photographer will jump on the assignment; no questions asked. In this case it was Canadian Running Magazine covering repeat Olympic and multi-medal holder Andre DeGrasse on his return to the upcoming games. I obviously gladly accepted the assignment and the full hour of the athlete's time to complete the checklist of needs. Anyone who has shot any major athletes knows it's very rare to get a full hour out of any editorial use from talent.
We only had a few days to plan out the shoot as well as the usual tight editorial budget to work with. This would be me spending most of the budget to make the shoot as smooth as possible for the talent as well as locking in permits for a location covering our needs. As the magazine is Canadian based and we were working in Orlando, FL the curve ball was it could NOT look like Florida. Long version short I ended up with one of the very few urban bridges that would also lend s few options to an open sky for copy space on the cover. The location overall gave us multiple looks as well as the freedom away from the public eye asking the usual questions. "will this be on youtube? " Just kidding .. but really.
|One Location with many different looks
The Cowbell: A Lesson to be Learned
As the 48 hour window from initial contact to production came closer I began to think how I could make this of more value to not just me but the athlete. I am of course gaining the value of shooting with a multi time Olympic athlete as well as getting another cover to show off, in this case, years later. But what could Andre and his team benefit, what needs could they have outside of just the cover and article. Warning; major lesson learned moment for up and coming photographers!
I reached out to Envisionse Sports and Entertainment to finalize a few back end "things" on the shoot. Brian, his manager, was great and if anyone knows me, we had plenty to talk about. I brought up the question if Andre had any additional needs that we could knock out while I was there. Keep in mind he was mid-training for the olympics and his time for productions was very limited. Low and behold there were actual needs from a few other brands they were working with as well as the seemingly endless social needs of any athlete. One easy questions putting a talent first lead to an extra hour of his time as well as more content to create on my side.
The actually lesson to be learned here does not come from the ability to get more time from a talent, create more work for your self, but how relationships can build from a simple extra ask of yourself. How can you become of more value to someone that just executing a job flawlessly. The once smaller editorial shoot has now added on content capture for 2 other brands. In this case it was Gatorade and Puma. I can now go into paragraphs of how business development (bizdev) works but to save an endlessly long post; The ground work was laid for a longer term relationship with a talent/sports management brand as well as 2 more commercial brands to work with in the future.
|Andre DeGrasse .. Subtle and not so subtle branding
|Additional cover option