Behind the Scenes in Chopper for Outside Magazine Spread

Here’s a little clip my assistant Brandon Magnus put together of some POV behind the scenes shot from the helicopter during the 2012 Ironman World Championship. Nothing too fancy but you get a good idea of the height and the perspective from the chopper, and I was just happy that it wasn’t too windy with the door off while I was hanging outside with my camera! Shot with GoPro HD2 mounted on helmet and pole with safety strap, special thanks to Rick Loughery from GoPro! Hope you enjoy, and more videos to come!

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Oprah Interview with Lance Armstrong January 17th

Lance Armstrong

(Photo by Donald Miralle for LAVA Magazine)

I, like the rest of the general public, am eagerly anticipating the Lance Armstrong interview on the controversial topic of his doping with Oprah Winfrey this Thursday on January 17th. Lance was considered one of the greatest athletes in the world as well as the poster boy for the fight against cancer until he was was stripped of his 7 Tour de France titles last year for doping and playing a role in team-organized doping on his Tour de France cycling squads. His fall from grace, like so many other athletes, politicians, and public figures in the recent years, happened meteorically fast with the same familiar script of denial and then apology.

Winfrey, who discussed the interview on “CBS This Morning” today, said, “We were mesmerized and riveted by some of his answers. I feel that he answered the questions in a way that he was ready. … He certainly had prepared himself for this moment. He brought it. He really did.” I love that both sides agreed to no leaking of details of the interview, but of course it’s been a free for all, which will probably cause the TV ratings for Oprah’s Interview on her OWN network to skyrocket. And way to juice it into two separate segments Oprah. It’s all good, I will probably DVR both segments and read about it when my wife’s issue of O comes in the mail…

ht_oprah_lance_armstrong_dm_130115_wg(George Burns/Harpo Studios, Inc.)

This morning every talk show in San Diego was chattering about leaks about interview filmed Monday. People were calling into 1090 Sport Talk radio and comparing Lance’s wrongs to that of  Tiger Woods‘ infidelities and Pete Rose‘s gambling. Isn’t that like comparing apples to oranges? Wood’s had a secret personal life that was very different that the one he projected to the public, Rose had a gambling addiction that blew up after his retirement from baseball, and Lance used performance enhancing drugs in a sport where EVERYONE on the podium uses them. It’s better to compare Lance’s situation to that of MLB Baseball in the late 90’s where Sosa and McGwire chase for the homerun record catapulted the sport to new heights. Everyone including Major League Baseball knew that these guys and alot of the players in the league were juicing at the time, but turned a blind eye and opened their wallets to endorsements and skyrocketing TV ratings.

The sport of cycling and the International Cycling Union (UCI) has probably benefitted as much as Lance Armstrong from his doping and 7 Tour wins, but didn’t hesitate to throw him under the bus and make an example of him. “Lance Armstrong has no place in cycling and he deserves to be forgotten in cycling,” Pat McQuaid, the president of the International Cycling Union, said at a news conference in Switzerland announcing the decision. “This is a landmark day for cycling.” Way to eradicate Lance and his wins from cycling history and replace his name with names of other known dopers as Tour de France champions. Maybe they should clean house of all dopers and their titles in their sport, and bring in tougher and more stringent standards across the board.

It’s hard to sit back and judge Lance’s accomplishments as an athlete, and totally disregard Lance’s fight against cancer.  I had the great experience of having Lance give myself and writer Jay Prasuhn a personal tour of the Livestrong Foundation last April during our cover shoot for LAVA Magazine. Having had the unfortunate experience of family and friends die of cancer, including my dad, I can truthfully say I was moved at seeing Livestrong first hand, and realize that this is his legacy, not 7 Tour de France wins. You can only hope that this venerable foundation does not suffer because of the negative media onslaught on it’s founder.

At the end of the day, the Lance Armstrong doping scandal has the same old tired script that human nature and media just thrives and feeds upon: Man overcomes odds, rises to the top, falls to the bottom, and then has to rise from his ashes again. It’s just a matter of time before Hollywood produces a screenplay for this one and it becomes a blockbuster oscar winning movie. I just wonder who they would cast for Lance?

Golf Digest Shoot with Ricky Fowler

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We just did a photo shoot for Golf Digest with Ricky Fowler at Bear Creek Golf Course. It was an instructional for GD, so we went through a myriad of different swing sequences of do’s and don’ts, and ended with a couple portraits. Video was also shot during the session. Ricky was super easy to work with, and it was great to see the Golf Digest crew again. Special thanks to Golf Digest Director of Photography Christian Iooss, Staff Writer Max Adler, lighting assistant Shawn Cullen, and my Rep Jim Lee. The magazine issue isn’t out yet so I can’t put up any of the pictures but they turned out great! Here is a couple of behind the scenes shots for you guys:

Shoot with Ricky FowlerShooting Ricky Fowler from below

DICKS SPORTING GOODS GOLF SHOOT

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Last month I had the great opportunity to do a campaign with Dick’s Sporting Goods for their upcoming 2013 Golf Catalogue and commercial imagery. The assignment was in Palm Springs for 7 days where we stayed at La Quinta resort and shot at some beautiful courses including PGA West, Arnold Palmer, and Jack Nicklaus Private courses. It’s been awhile since I shot at any of these courses (Last in ’99 at the Bob Hope when David Duval shot a record 59), so luckily we took the  first 2 days to scout four courses with the Dick’s Sporting Goods crew. Golf more than many sports is all about the light, and it was a huge advantage being able to see how the sun affected different holes, how the front 9 or back 9 had better natural lighting in the beginning of the day or late afternoon, and what would look better with the talent and brands being shot.

Once we chose our spots and had a schedule set, we prepped the gear and got ready to shoot the next 5 days from 6am to 6 pm. But the long days flew by because we were working hard, the crew was so easy to be around, and every session we stuck to our shotlist but had some creative improvisations as well. Shooting in the desert in the winter can be a mixed bag of weather. You can get screaming light because the sun is so low for most of the day and the air is so clear. But you can also get howling 60 miles/hour wind,rain and  frost which can delay things a bit. Luckily for us we had some awesome weather for the majority of the shoot and only encountered a few showers on the last day.

It was a fantastic experience and pleasure to work with Dick’s Sporting Goods, and look forward to another shoot in the future. Big thanks to Barry Berenson, Scott Lenz, Jody Pfister,  Kim McEniry, Brandon Magnus, Marc Kelly, and Billy Small for all their help. Special thanks to Rep Pat Hugg of Getty Images for making the job come together!!!

Dick's Sporting Goods Golf Shoot

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Outside Magazine Spread

Just grabbed my February issue of Outside Magazine from mailbox and stoked to see my aerial pic from the Kona Ironman World Championships run as a double-page spread in the “Exposure” section. Have always loved this publication and psyched to finally get a big pick in there…Get your copy today!

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Sign the Petition to Protect Kid’s Yoga Program in Encinitas Schools!

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From TheYogaBlog:

“In case you missed it, there has been a lot of controversy lately regarding a kid’s Yoga Program in Encinitas’ schools. (Click hereand here for a full back story). A significantly large group of parents have voiced enough concern and frustration with the program that it is in jeopardy of being cut. They believe Yoga is inherently religious and pushes children to practice Hinduism in school. Large Media outlets such as The Huffington Post andThe Associated Press have reported on this situation; it has received a significant amount of national attention.

Now the parents are threatening a lawsuit unless the program is cut.

As a Yogi and Yoga teacher myself, I have always believed in the universality of a good practice on the mat. Uniting both the body and the mind, Yoga has been shown to reduce stress levels by bringing a sense of calmness to the practitioner and produce a cascade of wonderful effects…including mental clarity and increased concentration. And in my opinion, the school board was most likely well aware of these proven effects when they decided to implement the program. After all, isn’t part of the job of a good teacher to provide students with the tools necessary to succeed in their studies? Especially when it comes to mental awareness and concentration.

Yoga is not inherently religious; it can be spiritual if you want it to be, just like anything…but that does not mean it is religious indoctrination.

I hope you will take some time to sign this petition and help me encourage the Encinitas School Board to keep this program. Perhaps if we get enough signatures we can make an impact on the back room discussions…and maybe even sway the opinion of some of the parents who are adamantly opposed to it. If there was ever a cause that the Yoga community should consider rallying around, it would be kid’s Yoga.

This petition goes directly to the email inbox of Timothy Baird, the superintendent of the Encinitas School District.”

Please go to this link http://theyogablog.com/protect-kids-yoga-program/  and scroll to the petition box where it takes less than a minute to type your name in. Thanks!!!

Free Gift and Free Shipping for thinktank photo gear!!!

Get your holiday shopping done early, order thinktank photo gear as a friend of Donald Miralle Photography and qualify for free shipping and a free gift with your order! If you don’t already own some of the awesome thinktank products, they make the best bags, straps and accessories for pros and consumers out there. To get there holiday deal just go to http://www.thinktankphoto.com/affiliates.aspx?code=WS-628 and start ordering!

The NPPA Biz Blitz Roundtable on The State of The Photo Industry

If you’re in SoCal tomorrow pop your head into the Kona Gallery in San Clemente for the NPPA Biz Blitz Roundtable for good discussion, good people and great photography. BYOB!

WHAT? NPPA Biz Blitz Roundtable on The State of The Photo Industry

WHERE? Kona Gallery + Photo-Journalsim Center – 412 N El Camino Real, San Clemente, CA, U.S. 92672 exit 75 on I-5

Which hopes to have a new show by ART BREWER up and also the Best of DOUBLEtruck Exhibtion and a showing of some of the BOP 2012 Award Winners, as well as the proflic essay by AL SATTERWHITE: the Racers. The 3 KONA gallery spaces will be packed with amaZing Photography, Art and Journalism. Worth the trip by themselves:) www.TheKonaGallery.com

WHEN? Friday the 16th (yes tommorow). From 18:00 till 22:00 and it is FREE!  BYOB

Join Panelists:

Sports Legend and in NPPA BOP Show at Gallery: DONALD MIRALLE

Commercial and Editorial Legend: AL SATTERWHITE

ASMP President SHAWN HENRY

Legendary, former Time Magazine Contract Photographer: ART GRACE

Portrait Photographer Extraordinary and ASMP Board Member: KEVIN LOCK

Environmental Photographer, Rights Adovcate and ASMP Board Member: JENNA CLOSE

And a  few last minute surprises…

You do not need to be a NPPA member, all are welcome.

 

To register or learn more on THE EVENT:

https://www.nppa.org/news/25966

BEST OF LONDON OLYMPICS

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After 18 days of sleep and food deprivation chasing around the world’s greatest athletes at the London Olympic Games, my cameras shot over 20,000 images at my seventh Olympic Games I have covered as a photographer. The hardest part of the assignment other than logistics and transport is the editing of these photos and cutting them down to the best of the best, which is about .5% or less than a hundred photos. Now that the dust has settled and I am back in sunny San Diego with my family, looking back at my experiences and I realize how blessed I am to have documented the spectacle of the Olympics again. There were some great memories and images made over the course of two and a half weeks, and here is a gallery highlighting my adventures in London. Thank you all for reading my posts, looking at the photos, and motivating me with your kind notes during my journey. Special thanks to Beth Johnson and Katherine Harris from NEWSWEEK Daily Beast for having me cover the games for them, David Leah of Mexsport for sorting out my accommodations in the UK, Simon Lodge and the crew at Lodge Scuba for assisting in the underwater camera placement and aquatics, Head Photo Chief Bob Martin and his support staff that made great angles possible, William Pekala and Sarah Moosbrugger of Nikon, Brandon Magnus in my San Diego office making sure the photos and posts were published, all my fellow photographer for their friendship, and most importantly my wife and kids for dealing with my absence and supporting me along the way. As the Olympic motto states Citius, Altius and Fortius “Faster, Higher, Stronger”, the games really brings out the best of what humans are capable of, whether it be in sports, photography, or the human spirit. Thanks for following my journey and hope to  do it again in a couple years body and mind willing!!!

Let the Games Begin! – Opening Ceremony

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Let the games begin! The Opening Ceremony started the 2012 London Olympics off with a bang with tens of thousands of athletes and fans in attendance at the Olympic stadium. And what a show it was from the pyrotechnics, to a little dose of English history, to the great montage of British Music (from a tear jerking rendition of Jerusalem that always reminds me of my favorite sports movie Chariots of Fire) to Bowie, the Beatles and Zepp. The London Organizing Committee did a fantastic job and set the tone for what should be a great games. I’m gonna keep this post short as I am still a bit jetlagged and only had 2 hours of sleep last night, woke up at 5am and it is now 6 am as I write this having just returned from an very empty Olympic Park. Enjoy the photos it was a great night I hope my pics captured it. Special thanks to Sean Cullen for lending me a much needed Nikon cable release, to Clive Rose for some peanuts that held me over for a bit, to Jackie Chan for stopping for a second to take some photos, and to Lucy Nicholson for always being helpful and pleasant to be around…Time to get some sleep!!!