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Photographer's Note

I figure everyone was waiting for this, the action shots from our night at Roller Derby with the Arch Rival Roller Girls. If you weren't with me until today, this match was between The Smashinistas and the The Stunt Devils. I remember watching Roller Derby on TV when I was a kid, back then they were on a raised and banked track and there were men and women teams. The only team I really remember was The Bay City Bombers. This television show followed another classic - "Wrestling at the Chase" which was local wrestlers in a venue in the basement of the Chase Park Plaza Hotel, in the West End of St. Louis. I'm sure that is a legacy they wish to live down, it is quite a classy place. We had a wrestler named "Dick the Bruiser" who was my favorite. Anyway, even as kids we knew it had to be fake - I mean, how many people can survive getting beaned with a metal card table chair four or five times a week and come back to do it to someone else the next Saturday night? So, since we knew wrestling was fake, then Roller Derby must be fake, too. They did sometimes bleed on both shows, though, and THAT didn't look fake.

While I didn't see any blood in this match (damn!), it didn't look fake, either. These girls really gave full effort, both teams were trying to win. To us, it was mere entertainment, to many of them, it was serious and a lifestyle.

In this image, I tried to depict the action and determination I saw from these women. The action part was easy - I was shooting in fairly low light with an f/4-5.6 zoom, so, even with the VR engaged, I was going to have to get lucky to get much in total focus. Now I see why those sports photographers invest in those incredible f/2.8 prime telephotos. The determination and intensity of the actual game was the hard part, but I think I might have gotten that here. The coach is yelling at them, the referee is watching for violations and the girls are clamoring for position in the pack.

Technically, I used Photoshop CS2 to crop, add the frame and knock down a little of the noise, and DxO Filmpack v.2 to make the photo look like it was shot with Fuji Neopan 1600 and a dark orange filter.

I felt this was a natural progression in relating our Roller Derby experience. I have a separate, but inclusive progression going on TL, too, which may be helpful for those of you who are still trying to grasp the idea behind this game...

Thanks for looking!

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Additional Photos by Reed Radcliffe (rlrad) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 250 W: 18 N: 393] (1845)
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