Saturday, December 29, 2007

Slam dunks and layups

Dec. 19, 2007; Denton, TX, USA; Oklahoma State Cowgirls guard Andrea Riley (10) shoots a lay up against the North Texas Mean Green during the second half at the Super Pit. Oklahoma State defeated North Texas 77-55. Mandatory Credit: Caleb Simpson-US PRESSWIRE

Dec. 17, 2007; Denton, TX, USA; North Texas Mean Green guard Adam McCoy (5) goes up for a slam dunk during the second half against Southern Jaguars at the Super Pit. Mandatory Credit: Caleb Simpson-US PRESSWIRE

Things have been a bit slow because of the Holidays lately, but hopefully work picks up again soon. As of now I don't have a lot of assignments on the books since I thought I was moving to Colorado. I am still working on getting up there though, so perhaps it is better that work is slow.

I will be photographing the Cotton Bowl on New Year's day though. This will be my fourth year in a row covering the big game. It's always nice covering the larger bowl games like this because they give you lots of free food and a nice media gift. This year it was a nice zip-up Columbia fleece. I have plenty of outdoor clothes so I am not sure I will use it, but if nothing else I will donate it to a homeless shelter or give it to a friend.

Anyway, I hope to post some photos with the G9 soon, so be looking for that.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Self Portrait

So, after much debating I opted to purchase the G9 because of the large file size. It also allows me to use my Speedlite flash units. The above self portrait was taken with one of my 550ex flashes bounced off the celling. I haven't done extensive tests yet, but I have already seen a few things I don't like. If I get some time maybe I will post a mini review of sorts. But seeing as how I haven't even had the chance to post pics from basketball games the past couple weeks that may not happen. But for now, I am happy to have a smaller camera I can carry around with me.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Going consumer

For the longest time I have wanted a compact consumer model digital camera. Mainly because I want to take pictures in my every day life, but don't want to lug around a large 5 lb camera every day. I have decided I will be purchasing one in the near future as a Christmas gift to myself. I am currently debating over two models.

Canon Powershot G9
This camera is currently my number one pick because it allows me full creative control, has a hot shoe mount. The only downside I really see is that the lens is 35mm at it's widest.

Canon Powershot SD870

The nice thing about this camera is it's a lot more compact and the lens is 28mm at it's widest. I love shooting wide angle, so this one seems idea, but I am not sure I can get over the lack of full creative control the G9 offers.

So, if you have a suggestion for which model might be best let me know. Or, if you have experience with one of them please share.

I also plan on posting a few images from two recent basketball games I shot. This season has been slower than normal and the winter is going to be fairly slow to. I lost a couple wedding assignments because I thought the job in Colorado was a slam dunk, but as it turns out they hired somebody else. So, I will remain here in Texas until an opportunity to move presents itself.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Snow drifts and teddy bears

I am currently sitting in a hotel in Colorado Springs as snow piles up outside my window. It has been snowing non-stopped since late last night. There has to be at least five inches of snow on the ground by now, if not more.

The purpose of the visit was to figure out if I am going to move here or not. As of now things are looking very positive. I should know by the middle of next week whether or not I will be making my new home here or not.

This little guy was a stowaway in my bag. My roommate stashed him away in my shoe before I left. My roommate is not only a fan of Kansas but for some reason believes the state itself is the greatest ever, so I thought I would let his bear experience the greatness of fresh Colorado snow.

The rest of the photos are a few pics I took out at Garden of the Gods. I had never seen the place covered in snow before, it was quite a sight.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Mean again

Last weekend the North Texas Mean Green got their second win of the season. The game wasn't super exciting, in fact it wasn't very pleasant at all. It was cold and rainy. The cold I can handle just fine, but the rain is another story. Try photographing a game in the rain while keeping your gear dry. It's not easy. I did manage a few decent images though.

I typically wouldn't crop the last two photos the way I did for news usage, but I really like negative space, so thought I would post a more "creative" crop. In one sense I think it is better because it shows how far away the runners are from the pack.

Western Kentucky Hilltoppers defensive back (2) Marcus Minor tackles North Texas Mean Green quarterback (15) Giovanni Vizza during the first quarter at Fouts Field. - Caleb Simpson-US PRESSWIRE

Western Kentuck Hilltoppers running back (1) Tyrell Hayden runs for a touchdown against North Texas Mean Green during the first quarter at Fouts Field. - Caleb Simpson-US PRESSWIRE

North Texas Mean Green running back (20) Jamario Thomas on a touchdown run against Western Kentucky Hilltoppers during the fourth quarter at Fouts Field. North Texas defeated Western Kentucky 27-26. - Caleb Simpson-US PRESSWIRE

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Baldy Peak

I spent last weekend with the Texas Mountaineers at Quartz Mountain, where I gained my first multi pitch trad experience. We climbed six pitches total that day, reaching a summit twice. The intention of the trip wasn't to get photos, but I always make an effort get bring it out at least a little bit. I often get so into the climbing that I don't take enough photos, but my plans for the second day didn't work out as planned so I ended up on the ground shooting several photos. The trip was great and the weather was amazing. So, here are a few photos from the trip, a few of them will be going into my stock collection.

A view of the night sky from the parking lot of our campground. I attempted to get some longer exposures, but I walked away from the camera since I was using a remote, but the signal was lost shortly after walking away so this is the best star trail shot I got.

Quartz Mountain as seen from the road approaching the climbing area. The peak is also known as Baldy Peak and randomly juts out of the ground in the middle of flat farm land in Oklahoma. It's an amazing site to see from the top of the peak.

This is a couple in our group climbing Snakes Head (5.5x). This was the third pitch of the climb, we also climbed this line. It was a fairly easy climb, and a lot of fun. There was very little protection on this route, but as a second I didn't have to worry about it much.

This is what I am calling the crux of the entire three pitch line. It is more of a mental game than anything. You had to leap across to the boulder to scramble up some more slab to the rappel anchors.

Mike (who's last name I forget) free solos Desire (5.10b). What is even more amazing is Mike doesn't have fingers on his left hand. He also down climbed every route he sent, except for the one pictures here, because of the bulge he climbed down a route to the left.

I think this route is Amazon Woman, it goes at around 5.10. I think this pair of climbers is also with the Texas Mountaineers.

Self portrait from the summit of Baldy Peak.

Although my intention for this blog is to display professional work along with a few personal work posts (like this one), I may end up writing a trip report from this adventure and post it here. I have yet to write a trip report about any of my climbing adventures, but seeing as how this was a completely new and different experience, I just might share it with the world!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I bet that hurt

Last weekend I shot the North Texas vs Navy game at Fouts Field in Denton, Texas. The game was high scoring, which wore me out because I was constantly running up and down the sideline. After I went through my images for a second time I discovered this jewel. Can you say "ouch".

I was pushing this photo to Sports Illustrated for a two page spread, but unfortunately it likely won't get picked up because the photo doesn't really fit the format for the spread. Hopefully the image will still get picked up elsewhere.

North Texas Mean Green defensive back (13) Kartey Agbottah and (35) Antoine Bush bring down Navy Midshipmen slot back (7) Reggie Campbell during the the second quarter at Fouts Field. Navy defeated North Texas 74-62.
Caleb Simpson-US PRESSWIRE

This weekend I will be headed out to Quartz Mountain in Oklahoma. I will be roped up most of the day learning trad, but hopefully I will come away with some good images too. The Leonid Meteor Shower is also this weekend, so being away from the city lights should provide me an opportunity to get some good photos of that.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The PhotoShelter Collection is live

It's official, the PhotoShelter Collection went live today. I have been working on submitting images over the past couple weeks, but unfortunately have not submitted nearly as many as most contributers, but will be working on getting more up over time.

I am mainly focusing on getting some of my climbing images up. You can see my archive by clicking here. You can also view the main page and search images here.

I still have a lot of images that have been approved that are not up yet; I have to get keywords placed in the image and photo releases uploaded.

This pas weekend I photographed the North Texas vs Navy game at Fouts Field. It was a historic game because is on the record as highest scoring game in regulation play. I have some great photos to post as well, but have not had time to resize them for the web. Hopefully I will get to that later this week.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Reimer's Ranch

The weather was perfect for a day of rock climbing at Reimer's Ranch near Austin, Texas. The temperature was in the low-mid 80's, but did not even get that high until late in the day. We climbed in the shade most of the time too, so we barely broke a sweat.

I was frustrated with the whole day though. To start off I lead an easy 5.8 route but failed at my red point attempt because I was out of it mentally and I had my camera strapped to my back. I had planned on shooting another climber coming up the route. Once I topped out I realized there was not a single tree close to the cliff for me to set up an anchor and shoot from. On top of that other climbers started showing up and wanted to get on the route, so a good part of our morning was wasted because my failed attempt to set up an anchor to photograph a climb.

In addition to the failed attempt at getting a beautiful shot on one of the tallest walls at the crag I climbed like crap the entire day. I didn't climb a single route clean and even struggled to climb routes on top rope that I had lead in the past. I guess every climber has those "mental" days where there mind is just not in the right place.

I did however get to shoot one climber on Liposuction (5.12). The route is one of the first routes on the right when approaching the crag. It starts on an overhanging cave formation and then climbs huge jugs and tufas to the top. The light was fairly decent but I wish it had been more direct on the climber. I was pleased with the shoot of the climb overall though.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Granite Gripper 2007

Since it's Friday and I am heading off to the crag for a weekend of climbing after work I thought I would post some photos from The Granite Gripper a few weeks ago. I hope you enjoy them.

I will be climbing and shooting at Reimer's Ranch near Austin. Though I am a Texas climber I have only made it out there one other time. The climbing was great, but we spent most of our time on one wall (Dead Cats Wall). I hope to explore more of what the crag has to offer tomorrow. If all goes well we will be doing some deep water solo climbing in Lake Travis on Sunday morning.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Not so mean

Before I feel in love with climbing I considered myself a college football fan. Today it just doesn't interest me as much, but I still love photographing the sport. Last weekend I covered the North Texas Mean Green game against the Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders for US Presswire. Middle Tennessee State defeated North Texas 48-28. Below are a few of my favorites from the game.

I am also pleased to announced I have signed on as a contributing photographer with T ">he Photoshelter Collection. I have already have several images selected and hope to get many more up before the November 5 launch date.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Photoshelter Collection

I am still a bit distraught I lost so much work in my hard drive crash. I had my first does of reality when submitting a photo to the new Photoshelter Collection. I had an awesome image of my friend Ben climbing a 5.8 crack out at the Wichita Mountains, but the photo could not be accepted because the file size was to small. I had the best images saved on my main hard drive as a JPG, but the RAW files where on the drive that crashed. I was however able to up the resolution and achieve a usable file size, but that will have to wait until my second submission, hopefully at lest some of my images make the first cut so I can continue to submit images.

For those that don't know, Photoshelter is making a valiant attempt to compete with Getty Images. They are starting what is called "The Photoshelter Collection". They are basically similar to penny stock agencies such as iStockPhoto, but they do not allow you to price an image under $50. The photographer also retains their copyright and submits on a nonexclusive basis. The percentage paid out to the photographer is also higher than any other stock agency out there.

This is an excellent opportunity for photographers to make extra income off the photos they already own. The only thing that sucks for me is that I have lost a ton of work I could have submitted. I am in the process of contacting past clients though about getting copies of the work I did for them, but I still can not recover the personal work I had worked so hard on.

Anyway, below is a photo of me photographing a trad climber on the route Orange Peel at The Granite Gripper at Enchanted Rock. My friend Alx Eller from the Texas Mountaineers took the photo.

Another "new" blog is born

Over the years I have been known to create new blogs, destroy said blog and then re-open another blog under another name. I currently have three blogs. One I never post on. I have decided to consolidate them all into one shinny new blog. Well at least it will be shinny and new for now.

I decided on the blogger format because of the security. When using Movable Type there would always be hackers that posted comments advertising salacious material. I got tired of deleting them, worrying about patches. I eventually had to turn commenting off totally.

So, you can begin looking for my posts on this site. I loath the domain though, who would have thought there was another CalebSimpson with a blogger account? You can view old blog posts at, well at least I own that domain!