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“Happy New Year” sentiments were shared, as the start of basketball season officially began Friday evening. I always know it is the start of another sport season as I never get adequate sleep. None the less, being right in the heart of events like these, definitely add to the perks of the job.
Check out my photo gallery from the event featured on ESPN Front Row: http://frontrow.espn.go.com/2012/10/tweetback-jeter-reaction-gameday-heading-to-the-swamp-irish-rising/!
In the spirit of old-fashioned school pep rallies before the big game, Midnight Madness offers the students a chance to get to know their team, their coaches, and to build momentum going into the beginning of the college basketball season. It’s a chance to show off, to have a little fun, and to encourage students to pack the house come game day. Leading up to a promotional event like this, there is a lot of work to be done in preparation. Photo shoots and green screen video of players are taken and edited for the upcoming season’s press guides and television displays. The sports information department plans for months to make sure Midnight Madness successfully kicks off the 2012-2013 season without a hitch. These events are one live continuous show for which there is usually no dress rehearsal or precedent, which means little room for error, especially for those in the production truck.
Despite the recent rule changes on coaching and practices that allow teams to meet mid-September for two hours a week, Midnight Madness at schools with historic basketball programs like Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. can still make a huge impact on ticket sales, team unity, and community exposure. The excitement and anticipation of the team making their public debut is a feeling that fans can experience whether in person or on television.
Midnight Madness is still very relevant, regardless of the latest changes, especially for those potential underclassmen recruits looking to be a part of history. McDonough Arena, which holds around 2,500 people, was packed with students who had lined up hours before, feasting on burgers and listening to DJ’s hyping the crowd. As we were set to do record an interview with former coach and ESPN men’s college basketball analyst Tim Welsh in front of McDonough Arena, he mentions how exciting this time of year can be, both as fans and coaches/teams. Rowdy fans swarmed around Georgetown star Otto Porter and chants like, “Otto-matic” began. The ballet of coordination between capturing video for later usage along with the live production as the events unfold requires a multitude of factors to be in sync in order to see the seamless presentation viewers enjoy at home.
The on-site Producers have scouted the optimal angles, set up the lighting effects, and arranged interviews well in advance. Satellite relays are established, hundreds of feet of cable are run, cameramen, stage crew, and technicians perform their integral duties to make sure all of the live action gets properly fed to the television production trucks. Once there, the producers conduct the symphony, graphics packages are added to garnish the video footage, and the end result is beamed to millions of viewers. The “Kickin’ it Ol’ Skool” theme featured a special performance by hip-hop legend Doug E. Fresh, who was thefeatured performer of the night, playing close to a half-hour set. Team introductions, several dance ensembles and student group performances continued throughout the night as the cameramen were up close and personal during each of these moments, capping off the night with a dunk contest.
Students chanted, “J-T-III “as Head Coach John Thompson III was spotlighted showed off his dancing talents amongst a sea of lighted thundersticks. Thompson talked about feeding off of the energy of the fans, and even for those working the game, the excitement makes for a far better atmosphere for all involved.
In a sense, he is helping to cultivate a home-court advantage for the season, allowing us to come in and capture those moments for the fans across the country ready to root for their team.
Here’s a little Doug E. Fresh interlude to set the mood:
Happy August! In between work and taking time writing papers for my group projects, I am looking through friends’ photo albums. I have often taken pleasure in the simplicity and complexity of photographs. I have dabbled a little in front of and behind the lens and really do enjoy the understanding of both sides. Photographs are beautiful and often tell amazing stories from a single frame. More importantly, they are extremely effective when it is associated with marketing, advertising, or public relations. I, myself, am a visual learner and respond better to colors, designs and pictures or video rather than words. Now, that’s not to say that words are not expressive on their own! If we remember (long ago) probably around the time AOL Instant Messenger first came out as a free program, we were first introduced to the animated gif or emoticon. Smileys on Yahoo! Messenger were probably my favorite. I remember playing around with Graphic Converter to make my own simple gifs. Remember the glitter gifs people used to post all over MySpace? Or what about the Peanut Butter Jelly Time dancing banana? I could stare at it for an hour!
Same thing applies here. Broken down, it is more or less a video of frames of images, almost like a flipbook. The animated gif is widely used in media today, even in sports; whether it is showing a great double play from a great baseball game or Glenn “Big Baby” Davis making a goofy face after he hit a floater to bring the Celtics within one during Game 3 of the NBA Finals. (don’t ask me why or how I even remember that!)
I have recently stumbled upon this new version of an animated gif, using the same process (perhaps just a tad more complicated …) called the cinemagraph. It is exactly what you think, not quite a video, not quite a photograph. It is completely unique to what type gif I was used to seeing though the same idea.
Created by Jamie Beck and Kevin Burg, they have taken the animated gif to a new level. I would love to have something like this on the blog. It is almost creepy how realistic it is. Literally making the photograph capture an exact moment in time. A simple “Wow” factor like this can boost any Website or page. Even though this idea was formally developed within the last year or so, I’m looking forward to the future of cinemagraphs, specifically with sports, athletes and big businesses. It is also a much smaller file and loads quicker outside of having Flash or HTML5 loading on a Website. Definitely something to think about with graphic design!
You can find tutorials online if you search for them, and it is only a matter of time until an actual app or simple generated website is created specifically for cinemagraphs, much like gifsoup. I always enjoy little DIY ideas and doing it yourself or with a good friend.
Not to mention the satisfaction of a finished product you’ve worked hard on is always a good feeling! I’m definitely going to attempt to make one of these at some point. Here’s a few of my favorites from Jamie (http://fromme-toyou.tumblr.com) & Kevin’s (http://kevin.tumblr.com/) collaborative gifs where subtle motion images like wind are used:
A new type of visual is always exciting to learn about. Being fresh and creative in any industry is what sells any particular product or service. Be unique and inspire others! Have an idea for my next blog post? Shoot me an email!
Well, it happened, The Dallas Mavericks are the new World Champions of the National Basketball Association. Who knew Mark Cuban could pull it off. This series of the NBA Finals has been one of the most exciting one’s to watch. MVP of the series Dirk Nowitzki, Jason Kidd (finally!), DeShawn Stevenson, JJ Barea, Brian Cardinal, Jason Terry, Shawn Marion, Rodrigue Beaubois, Peja Stojakovic, Corey Brewer, Caron Butler, Brendan Haywood, Tyson Chandler, Ian Mahinmi, Dominique Jones, and head coach Rick Carlisle all got rings… I will be curious, however, to see what this will mean for the future of the Miami Heat franchise and any (if any) scrutiny will come their way – especially from/towards the big three.
Another unprecedented event last night was the 65th Annual Tony Awards. What an amazing season, as an avid theater go-er/performer/lover, it was one of the better productions of the broadcast I’ve seen. Having moved to a different spot this year, the Beacon Theater in the Upper West Side area of New York, the feeling was incredible. Stunning performances and some amazing shows. I even got to see a friend I performed with in high school perform (and watch his show win) on the Tony’s for the first time. So cool. Neil Patrick Harris was a phenomenal host. The cross over between theater and sports have always been parallel, never one higher than the other. Perhaps having the blessing of two televisions last night really helped in the matter! But getting back to work..
Credentials – check! TV parking pass for shuttle lots – check! Beautiful weather in Bethesda, Md., – check!
The US Open is finally here and I cannot be more excited. It has been a busy few weeks, job applications, finishing up the end of my marketing class for the semester, and coming to a close as of last night.
Here are some quick links to get you everything there is to know: I started to compile a list of all the players who are on twitter…but there are just far too many to count. i think I got through the entire first round before I looked at the second and pushed back from the keyboard. Congressional Country Club is ready to go for what will be quite the tournament this year.
Here are your 2011 U.S. Open pairings: http://www.usopen.com/en_US/index.html#!/scoring/groupings/round1
Golf Digest’s U.S. Open viewer’s guide:
U.S. Open Spectator Guide (via @WashingtonPost) http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/sports/2011-us-open/transportation/index.html
ESPN’s Golf page: http://espn.go.com/golf/ – and follow ESPN Senior Golf Writer Bob Harig for the latest updates: @BobHarig
Fun history and background of 111 years of the U.S. Open: http://www.direct-golf.co.uk/golf_news/News/111-years-of-the-US-Open./n2393
iPhone’s official U.S. Open app: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/u-s-open-golf-championship/id319204550?mt=8
and for your main source of coverage, follow @usopengolf on twitter.
Even if you aren’t the biggest golf fan, the buzz surrounding an event like this is pretty incredible. The NHL Playoffs will be decided tonight which puts summer into “full swing” after today. Will you be watching?