Pure Gold Boxing Brooklyn Part B

© Marilyn Paulino

To All the Ships At Sea –

When all else fails, get off your ass and make some photos.  It’s a good thing.  No words today… Why? I’m getting off my ass to make some photos.  Khalid Twaiti is still undefeated and Marilyn Paulino is a fine photographer.

Hope to see you on the road again… Joe D

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

 

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

Try not to Pack Murphy When You Leave for A Shoot

To All the Ships at Sea –

You would think that after half a century of assignments for TIME MAGAZINE, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, HBO, advertising for Saatchi and Saatchi, J. Walter Thompson and the list goes on… that I’d have no problem doing a 2 hour shoot at Kings Theatre in Brooklyn. Piece of cake right?  Not so much!  Why?  That’s what I am going to try to explain.

I decided to use my Google for directions to the theatre.  Didn’t really have to, because I knew how to go.  The computer sent me through some Queens and NYC side streets to get to the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel ( yes I know its not the name anymore). You enter on Joe DiMaggio highway.  So what normally would take 2 hours took 3.  Why should I complain – it was an 8 o’clock shoot and  I was there early because  I wanted to shoot some street photography. Brooklyn’s changed quite a bit and mostly in a good way.  I made friends with a few NYPD officers and they gave me some tips on where to shoot.  I left the bulk of the equipment in the car and shot with one camera and one lens on the street.  I returned to my car and changed gear for the shoot.  I put everything together and realized I left a 10 cent Alan key on the staging area in the studio.  I went to business #1 and they told me to go to an auto parts place which then sent me to  Sears.  I Proceeded to explain my problem to 2 lovely people.  Finally, one gentleman came back with the proper key and I took out my wallet out and he said just remember to shop at Sears!  I was now ready to do my shoot.  I got there and was supposed to have full media credentials.  However, I was told it was now limited to 4 people and I was not one of them!  I talked to the Director of Public Relations and he was kind enough to let me shoot in a neutral corner against a post which was fine.   Kings Theatre is a very difficult Boxing Ring to shoot.  It’s very small which is good, but it’s only 8″ off the ground vs. 4-5 feet off the ground.  The end result of my take is acceptable – not earth shattering.  Pre-Production is always the key whether you are an amateur, semi-pro, or pro. Do everything to avoid Murphy getting into your camera bag or brain.

You have to be positive, go with the flow, standardization and simplification!  Enough with the  clichés?   As Willie says, “See you on the road again.”

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

Kodachrome

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the Ships at Sea –

Coming up to the 20th anniversary of digital (for me.) While researching a new book I came across this Kodachrome 64 slide of Tom Seaver.  It stopped me in my tracks.  Wow! Talk about butter!   Never to be seen again!

 

FILL THE FRAME 2.0

  To All The Ships At Sea –

I would imagine photographers are just like everyone else.  They get into a routine and take things for granted and that’s a very bad thing.  Anybody that knows me knows, that I shot Nikon Cameras from 1960 – 1984.  In 1984 I signed a contract with the IOC as a pool photographer.  I had to change from Nikon to Canon and from Kodak film to Fuji.  Not the easiest thing in the world to do but it had to be done to fulfill my advertising obligations with Canon, Fuji, and the Olympic Committee.

Suffice to say, Nikon makes very fine cameras and lenses. I found Canon to be not only equal but in many aspects a better fit.  Whether it was with sharpness, ergonomics, contrast, or speed.  The most important thing is that Canon  listens to both Professional photographers and amateurs.  It’s like one big focus group.  Their technical people are the best in the world.  They’ve always been there for me when I had any questions and have always had the answers.  Sometimes they’ve even had the answer before I had the question.  Rudy Winston who works for Canon, is not only a great photographer but also knows the equipment inside and out.  As far as I’m concerned he’s the go-to-guy on all aspects of the Canon System.  You’d think after being a working photographer for so long that I wouldn’t need help.  Wrong!  Things change constantly in the digital age of photography.

Below is a series of photos I did the other day with the 5D Mark IV and one of my favorite lenses the 100-400mm zoom.  It was late in the day with zero sunlight, lots of ice and difficult terrain.  I hope the photos speak for themselves.  Go out and make some photos.  One camera, one lens, two batteries , and two cards.  Keep it Simple Stupid!  The saying always works.

      

Dr. Jeffrey Liegner vs God

To All the Ships at Sea,
     I had an epiphany the other night after driving 160 miles round trip to photograph a boxing assignment.  What I found out was that highways have exit and speed limit signs and was totally taken back by this!  A friend mentioned they’ve been there all along but you could have fooled me!
     I’ve probably mentioned before that I don’t particularly like smart phones, however,  like them or not,  they are here to stay.  I no longer use my car GPS because it’s not up to date, so I have been using my IPhone. Up until recently,  I was unable to really see the directions on my IPhone very well.  So how do I account for my improved eyesight all of a sudden? This all came to be,  thanks to a friend recommending eye Doctor Jeffery Liegner, a specialist in corrective eye surgery to me, telling me how truly great he was.  I have to agree Dr. Liegner is truly an amazing guy and a true visionary.  He came up with new protocols for eye surgery including eye drops that are put in the eye during the surgery and not needed afterwards (also a great savings.)  I had cataract surgery in my shooting eye,  and my vision has gone from 20 /400 and progressively worsening to now seeing better than 20/20 both day and night.  Before my surgery Dr. Liegner told me I’d see colors, depth and sharpness like I’ve never seen before.  I now understand what he was saying.  He also gave me vision in my left eye which I had not had since I was a young child! That eye was virtually blind (or so I was previously told.) I am absolutely freaked out by the contrast, detail, and color I now see!  It is so truly amazing!  I take my Beret off to this very special Doctor.  I also found out Doctor Liegner, donates a good amount of time helping the underprivileged as well.  When I return from my trip to S. America, I plan on making a documentary on Doctor Liegner and shooting an in-depth picture story on him because I find it important I do that. I truly am a lucky man!
     An additional note, Dr. Liegner is an active Pilot and is in the process of building his own plane.  I’ve included one of several photos of Andrew Wright in a F-22 Raptor from the NY Airshow.  Also a couple photos from one of the fights I shot that evening.

©Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

Kid Chocolate Alias Eligio Sardiñas Montalvo

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

In all my previous trips to Cuba, we never put boxing on our people-to-people trips or our humanitarian trips. On this VIP trip (Joe and JoAnne) Havana was seen up close and personal. I asked where the boxing gym was and they all said Kid Chocolate. Not wanting to be argumentative, I said, “Si!” Of course I know Kid Chocolate as Peter Quillin, a middle weight from Chicago. Well, there was another Kid Chocolate and that Kid Chocolate had a total of 152 fights and 136 wins. Kid Chocolate is now the name of the boxing gym in Old Havana. Of course, not doing my research properly, I showed up at the gym on a Sunday. I go to Gleason’s on Sundays all the time… well Kid Chocolate is not open on Sundays, so two security people who spoke a little English said to come back mañana. Sure enough we returned mañana and the security people, recognizing us from the day before, took us through the back door. I have to tell you, this was the smallest, darkest, and most cramped boxing gym I’ve ever been in- and I’ve been in a lot of gyms, some in bars and even in private homes. They didn’t have a ring! I spoke to the manager of the gym. We talked a little bit and I gifted him a few of my boxing photographs. We also met all of the boxers that were going to work out that day (all boxing in Cuba is amateur and amateur only- it wasn’t that way in the 20s, 30s and 40s, but it is that way now). My initial reaction was, ”Wow, this venue is impossible to make a good photograph in.” As one of my old friends would say, it was “o’dark 30.” JoAnne stuck her head in and said she’d sit outside. Well, we walked two miles to the gym and I wasn’t ready to walk two miles back so I said, “Let’s make a few frames.” I switched to black and white, went to jpeg fine and shot everything with a 24mm lens. I looked at a few of the images and they seemed to be acceptable. When I went out to get a breath of fresh air, JoAnne was meditating; I asked her if she would like to come back in and she did. Being the seasoned pro that JoAnne is, she made sure she knew exactly where I was shooting and made sure to stay out of my frame as I made sure to stay out of her frame. The two of us danced around this extremely small, extremely hot, extremely  dark gym and guess what? The photos turned out to be just fine. Fast forward a week later (the first time we got to a computer) and I looked at JoAnne’s work and I have to tell you it was amazingly great.I loved her images, which shouldn’t surprise me. I’d like to share these images with you as well. There’s no doubt we are going to go back. As a matter of fact, I may look for an angel or two to see if we can go back and make a documentary on Cuban boxing. The number one trainer is Carlos Manuel Miranda La O and the associate trainer is Michell.

Please take some time to read this Wikapedia page on the real Kid Chocolate from the 1930s.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kid_Chocolate 

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

 

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© JoAnne Kalish

© JoAnne Kalish

© JoAnne Kalish

© JoAnne Kalish

© JoAnne Kalish

© JoAnne Kalish

Ringside or Ring Sight? That Is the Question.

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© Dylan DiMaggio

The main protagonist in my film “in this corner” is Harry Keitt. Harry is a former heavyweight boxer who now trains fighters. The fighter he is working with today is “Big Baby” Miller, who on Friday night was fighting for the WBO and ____ Heavyweight championship. We called our agent and requested two ringside credentials, one for Dylan and myself. The venue agreed (I told the promoter that if we couldn’t have two at ringside that I would not cover the fight. He assured me no problem). The day of the fight, we were informed that there would be only one ringside position and one auxiliary (which was supposed to be a great position.) We picked up our credentials at 6 o’clock. I made the executive decision to have Dylan shoot ringside and I would shoot from the auxiliary position. I believe the auxiliary poisiton was approximately 250 yards from the ring. You would think that Dylan got the best part of the deal until you realize that the only fight we HAD to cover didn’t start until after 12 o’clock midnight. Someone once asked what it was like to be a professional working photographer.  I’ve heard ten photographers say the same thing, “Hurry up and wait!” And thats what you do you – hurry up and wait. Being up since 5 AM with no dinner and it being after midnight the next day which was Saturday morning, after seven hours of standing and no break, nor bathroom is not the easiest thing in the world. Well, the reality is Dylan kicked ass and took names.  For the record, ten minutes before the main event, the promoter came over and said, “Here’s your ringside credential.”  The interesting part of it is that after waiting six hours, I was cold, not an excuse – I’m not complaining… just explaining. The reality is, Dylan outshot me.

As a footnote: That is just this one time. Rest assured, next time I’m going to try and blow his doors off! The question is, well you know what the question is, but let’s be clear about one thing: I’m not hanging him up just yet. Maybe in ten or fifteen years…but not yet… I take my beret off to Dylan. Once, just once.

© Dylan Michael

© Dylan DiMaggio

© Dylan Michael

© Dylan DiMaggio

fight

© Dylan DiMaggio

Gordie Howe The Great

© Unknown

© Unknown

A very dear friend of mine reminded me that a blog should not be an obituary, and of course he is right. It’s not my fault that so many great, powerful, wonderful people have chosen to move to another plane of consciousness on my watch. Believe me, I wish they were still on this plane. I genuinely miss them. Anyone who knows me knows that I occasionally like to tell a story. Not often, but once in a while. The story that follows needs no embellishment.

While I was on assignment for SI, I was in Detroit photographing the Detroit Red Wings. I had a mediocre shoot, nothing spectacular. Sometimes that happens (all of my hockey film is at the Hockey Hall of Fame in their archives, so I have no Gordie Howe to share with you.) So here we go.

To all the ships at sea, I make it a practice of being either the very, very first one out of a stadium or the very last. I have a tough time  dealing with crowds bumping, banging, and pushing. So, if I can get out fast to the press parking lot, I get out and go. If I can’t, I like to hang out in the press room. I’m in the press room and the TV and local newspapers are gone. It’s just me and a tin bathtub of beer with lots of ice and lots of water. The door opens up and this tall, good looking guy walks in, severely backlit. He walks in and says, “Hey man, can I have a beer?” and I said, “Of course, take two!” He picks one up, pops it open, and takes a seat before I realize its Gordie Howe. Suffice it to say, I almost ____ my ____. I’m not big on getting starstruck but this is Gordie Howe, man, the one and only Gordie Howe! He asked, “May I have another?” and I said, “Take whatever you want!” He takes another and puts it in his London fog coat. (At this point he looks like the great author Vance Packard.) He filled every pocket of his jacket with beer, popped another one and said, “Thank you very much!” He walked out with a lot of beer. I said, “Gordie, why don’t you get a group of the guys and bring a tub of beer on the bus!” and he smiled. We’ll miss you Gordie. He was one funny S.O.B.

The other two photos I put in because this is a hockey blog. Anyone wanna take a guess on the kind of camera or film used? Email me at http://dimaggiokalish@gmail.com

@ Joe DiMaggio

@ Joe DiMaggio

@ Joe DiMaggio

@ Joe DiMaggio

 

 

 

Don’t Look Now- Somebody’s Gaining On You!

GUADALAJARA, MEXICO - OCTOBER 16: Cesar Cielo of Brazil blows water out of his mouth before he competes in the men's 100m freestyle final during Day Two of the XVI Pan American Games at Scotiabank Aquatics Center on October 16, 2011 in Guadalajara, Mexico. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

GUADALAJARA, MEXICO – OCTOBER 16: Cesar Cielo of Brazil blows water out of his mouth before he competes in the men’s 100m freestyle final during Day Two of the XVI Pan American Games at Scotiabank Aquatics Center on October 16, 2011 in Guadalajara, Mexico. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

To all the ships at sea,

I believe Satchel Paige once said, “Don’t look back. Something might be gaining on you.” I guess there’s a lot of sports photographers that haven’t been looking back these days. Well guess what? Al Bello is coming. As a matter of fact, he’s moving at light speed. Please understand, I’m not putting anyone down. This photographer is absolutely great. There are a lot of great photographers out there, but he’s quite special. To be honest, I never had a hard look at his webpage until last week. He has an ability to get the most out of the men and women he is photographing. What. A. Pleasure. Here is the link to his page, check him out.

http://albello.com/

Upcoming Workshop Gleason’s/ DUMBO, Brooklyn March 13th 2016

Romain-8571

© Joe DiMaggio All Rights Reserved

To all the ships at sea,

Gleason’s Gym is the oldest boxing gym in the United States, located in DUMBO, Brooklyn for those not familiar with the term it means -Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass. Great day, great fun, great people, great photos – join us

Brooklyn Bridge ©DiMaggio 3197 e

Brooklyn Pier & View of Manhattan from DUMBO © Joe DiMaggio All Rights Reserved