The Grey Cup
Toronto Argonauts celebrate winning the Grey Cup after the team is presented with the trophy. LUCAS OLENIUK
Rick Madonik, Staff Photographer, @RMadonik
There's no doubt, news photographers always want to be where the action is. Whether its sports, news or entertainment, photogs want to be in a position to capture defining moments and scenes of great emotion. It is, after all, what life is all about.
Our newest incarnation of a boss (we've had six in the last 12 years) is a former picture editor. Since he took the helm of photo - and multimedia - earlier this year, Taras Slawynch, or T as he likes to sign his emails, has shown a lot of passion. He’s brought direction to a department that needed a rudder. This is the 2nd time in the last 5 months we've assembled the vast majority of the 15 staff shooters to converge upon a single "event."
The first installment was Nik Wallenda's walk over Niagara Falls. Last Sunday, we tackled the Grey Cup.
Unlike Wallenda, I didn't shoot the game. I didn't want to. So, I guess I'm finding fault in my own stated hypothesis at the top of this blog. Lets just say, I've never shot a Grey Cup, and I didn't want to break my record. This should not be taken as a sign I don't like shooting big events. I do. The previous weekend, I had a blast in Montreal as the Argos beat the Alouettes to punch their ticket to The Cup by winning the Eastern Division Title.
T began working on Grey Cup coverage months ago. He and Sports Editor Jon Filson opened a dialogue with the CFL and Roger's Centre in anticipation of going big on the 100th anniversary of Lord Grey’s trophy.
So, with my less-than-enthusiastic approach to shooting the game, I offered to help coordinate and to edit. In doing so, I soon drafted Andrew Wallace to help with the edit, captioning and transmission of photos back to the office. The plan was to put at least four, and as many as six, photographers on the field. (We had six for most of the game.)
Tucked away in an unappealing nook under the northwest seating of the Roger's Centre, Wallace and I toiled away editing thousands of images shot by our colleagues. Nello Merante, another draftee from the office, was enlisted to help run CF cards to and from the staff stationed around the field and up in the 5th deck.
One thing I do know, cameras capable of shooting 10 frames per second can make an editor dizzy! After hours of feeding cards into a reader, sifting thru the images, cropping images and moving them to a folder for captioning and transmit, I thought I might have garnered a repetitive stress injury from tapping my forefinger through endless images. At one point, I debated going to the sidelines to smack a couple heads of those forgetting to format their cards, leaving me with hundreds of extra pictures to cruse through.
At some point I noticed the sequence number being applied to files as I copied cards. It read over 10,000 (files copied) but that's a bit inflated since I had to "guess set” it midway after hitting a wrong tag. So, perhaps it was only 5,000, but that’s still a lot of finger tapping.
Add to that count the amount shot by Bernard Weil earlier in the day, Vince Talotta who worked a temporary photo booth on the concourse during the game, and Tara Walton and Carlos Osorio, who both covered the post game celebrations on the street.
Then there's Chris So's gigapan picture, which takes an hour to shoot as it slices and dices a near 360 degree (or close to it) high resolution composite. It can be seen here and if you were at the game be sure to tag yourself.
While we pumped images back to the office, picture editors Tim Finlan and Canice Leung under the stewardship of Taras, helped get our pictures onto pages in the paper and constructed various photo galleries for the online use. Links to those are found here,
All in all, it was a colossal effort.
Despite the constant stream of editing that occurred, what was unique (for me) was seeing two, three, or even four, versions of the same play from different angles. A picture I thought was “nice,” soon became irrelevant when I got to another photog's cards. It was an alternative perspective for me since traditionally, I'm shooting one of those angles and I only get to wonder (often aloud) how it looked from the other corner.
The plan was to be as fast as possible with a solid, tight edit. I had a run sheet of the 10 sports pages and the stories assigned and the various deadlines.
In the end, Wallace and I put out just under 100 images.
There were lots of great images to chose from, which makes an editors job that much easier. I'm not exactly the "warm and fuzzy" one on staff, but I was pretty proud of the great work produced by the photo department. Another big event, well done! Thanks folks for the solid effort. I appreciated it.
An Argos fan points to a logo on his arm prior to start of the Toronto Argonauts and Calgary Stampeders100th CFL Grey Cup Game at the Rogers Centre. DAVID COOPER
A Calgary stampeders fan wears her colours proudly as she waits for the start of the game. STEVE RUSSELL
An Argo fan cheers prior to start of the 100th Grey Cup. RICHARD LAUTENS
Calgary's Charleston Hughes dances during introductions. RENE JOHNSTON
Governor General David Johnston shows good form during the pre game ceremony at the 100th Grey Cup game at Roger's Centre. COLIN MCCONNELL
The 100th Grey Cup gets underway at Roger's Centre. LUCAS OLENIUK
Toronto Argonauts Chad Kackert runs pasts Calgary Stampeders Malik Jackson during second quarter action. STEVE RUSSELL
Toronto Argonauts QB Ricky Ray (15) is sacked by Calgary Stampeders Charleston Hughes (39) during second quarter action in the 100th Grey Cup game at Roger's Centre. STEVE RUSSELL
Toronto Argonauts Jordan Younger (26)tackles Calgary Stampeders Nik Lewis (82) during the second quarter action of the 100th Grey Cup game at Roger's Centre. RENE JOHNSTON
Toronto Argonauts Dontrelle Inman celebrates a touchdown against the Calgary Stampeders. STEVE RUSSELL
Toronto Argonauts Andre Durie scores a fourth quarter touchdown. STEVE RUSSELL
Fans hold signs up signifying a major score. LUCAS OLENIUK
Calgary Stampeders Larry Taylor during third quarter action in the100th Grey Cup game at Roger's Centre. STEVE RUSSELL
Toronto Argonauts Jason Barnes catches a pass. STEVE RUSSELL
The view from the 5th deck. LUCAS OLENIUK
Canadian pop star Justin Bieber plays his set during the halftime show. RICHARD LAUTENS
While Canadian pop star Justin Bieber plays his set during the halftime show, a young woman snaps photos from the pit in front of the stage. RICHARD LAUTENS
Canadian pop star Justin Bieber plays his set during the halftime show. LUCAS OLENIUK
Toronto Argonauts Chad Kackert (44) is tackled by Calgary Stampeders Keon Raymond (25). RICHARD LAUTENS
Toronto Argonauts Maurice Mann (9) crashes into signage with Calgary Stampeders Keon Raymond during third quarter action in the100th Grey Cup game at Roger's Centre. STEVE RUSSELL
Toronto Argonauts Robert McCune (45) tackles Calgary Stampeders Jon Cornish during third quarter action. STEVE RUSSELL
Calgary Stampeders Demonte' Bolden lays on the field helmetless during the second quarter. RENE JOHNSTON
Calgary Stampeders kicker Rob Maver, not looking all that pleased, on the sidelines. RENE JOHNSTON
Toronto Argonauts Marc Parenteau (57) is attended to by training staff during the third quarter. STEVE RUSSELL
Toronto Argonauts quarterback Ricky Ray celebrates touchdown in the fourth quarter. LUCAS OLENIUK
Toronto Argonauts head coach Scott Milanovich celebrates with teammates after defeating the Calgary Stampeders to win the 100th Grey Cup game at Roger's Centre. Argos won 35-22. STEVE RUSSELL
Argos clamber to get a hand on the The Cup after the presentation on the field. LUCAS OLENIUK
Adriano Belli breaks a handle off the Cup. LUCAS OLENIUK
Argo Noel Prefontaine drinks from the Cup in the dressing room at the conclusion of the 100th Grey Cup. LUCAS OLENIUK
Cagary's Demonte' Bolden, sits dejected, in the locker room following the conclusion of the 100th Grey Cup played at Roger's Centre on Sunday, November, 25, 2012, between Toronto Argonauts and Calgary Stampeders. Argos won 35-22. STEVE RUSSELL