A Second Shooter on the Grassy Knoll? Without a Doubt!

Her name is Emily Otten!

Oh, for you JKF conspiracy buffs who pull this up, this isn’t about THAT grassy knoll.  I have been shooting the Silas K. Pierce Base Ball Tournament at the Riverside Park in Grand Rapids, Michigan for the past two years and didn’t want to miss covering it.  On the other hand I also didn’t want to miss Colossal Con in Sandusky, Ohio where they were giving away a trip to Japan as part of their Cosplay (costume contest.)  

Those who have been following this site know that when I covered the World Steam Expo recently I found it frustrating to know at the outset that I really couldn’t provide adequate coverage by myself.  So I have been exploring options and one of them was getting a second shooter (staff photographer) to provide extra coverage at large events and to cover for me when I want to cover multiple events.

So I hit up my friend and former prof at Grand Rapids Community College, Jim Keating, for advice and he mentioned it to some of his students.  A couple of them contacted me and I sat down and chatted with Emily last week and looked over some of her work. 

Emily is a photography student at GRCC with a passion and pleasure for photography.  I set her up with an official Weird Review Staff Photographer Press Badge and asked her to go to the park and get team pics, pics of the beautiful costumes that many of  the attendees wear, and get some action shots too (even though action shots are sooooo not period!)

When we got together last night to go over her pics and to talk about her experience she talked passionately about the people she met.  She also told me that when she got there people saw her Press Badge and got all excited that the Grand Rapids Press was there.  Emily felt like she let them down because she isn’t with the Grand Rapids Press and that they were disappointed with her.  She said there were several members of the press at the park for the Grand Rapids Kennel Club Dog Show and expressed her frustration that none of them were interested in covering such a neat event as the Silas K. Pierce Base Ball Tournament. 

As she was sitting there talking about the wonderful costumes that some of the attendees wore that took months to make or how neat it was that they played Base Ball by the rules of the 1860’s, and how kindly they treated her and then in frustration asked me nobody was covering them, all I could do is smile and say to myself, “Yeah, she gets it.”  Some people look at the articles I write and the events I cover and wonder why I would do it.  She goes to the event and looks around and wonders why they don’t.  I like that and you can look forward to seeing more pics from Emily in months to come.

Thanks Emily and welcome to the staff!