Yesterday the SPEED channel brought their whole reality TV show called PINKS to the Milan Dragway here ouside of Monroe. The premise way that 400 cars would compete for 16 final spots to be on the tv show and go head to head with each other. Each round someone would be eliminated and someone would win 1,000 dollars. Each round thay had to bet part of that 1000 (for the sake of tv drama) and continue to the next round. Well, i go tthere at 5:00 and there were 30,000 people packed into the dragway. Which made it hard to shoot and even harder to move around. Im not a big fan of general even coverage, but i need more practice at it, so i set out to find some nice feature. I came across a bunch of black guys from the east AND west side of Detroit, as they informed me,, who were betting on the races. I hung out with them for a while, got some nice images and audio, and set off on my way. (ill post those pics later today) I shot some more random features and i decided i should probably go interview a driver while they werent doing anything so i could have some audio from a driver. Well, heres the kicker. The First guy i walked up on was from Temperance, MI (Thats one of the few counties we cover, so it was great to get audio from a local guy because most guys were from Detroit) named Jay. He was driving a really old plain looking Ford Fairmount to which someone later said, "Hey, My grandma drove one of those!" Basically its the last thing youd expect to see on a drag strip, so that was cool too. Oh, and the guy and his wife were extremely nice, affectionate with his wife, and most important, willing to let me follow them around for a while and get some audio (if you cant tell no, i was working on a multimedia piece) and stills. So a few minutes later, he pulls his car up to the starting line to race against something very loud, very big, and very yellow. The guy drops his arms (old school racing style) and they're off. Well, Jay started just a bit slower and was about a car length behind for most of the race. Oh well, i though he lost but its cool, cause i still have some nice images and audio. Well, the results came back and he actually beat the guy on down the track. Thats when i though, wouldn't it be cool if this randon guy i picked won the whole thing. Well, 4 races later he did. He won it all. 10,000 bucks plus other stuff. So, i ended up with all images an audio from him and his family. I posted the slideshow below.
Looking back at the end of the night driving home, i realized that this is why i love what i do. Its all about people, emotions, and stories. Its not about going to the race track and finding some cool pictures of cars, that just isnt what drives me. Finding a story full of moments and emotion and showing what it was like to be there through someone elses eyes. Its being able to document the most important event in someones life, and most importantly being able to share in their excitement, even if its only on the inside. Thats what its all about.
I will say though that i had a bit of trouble with the audio. People talking and loud muscle cars didn't seem to compliment each other especially with the microphone i was using, so please forgive that
Click HERE for Slideshow