Saturday, January 31, 2009
Friday, January 30, 2009
I thought to myself this night that I was happy to be going to bed at a decent time to get much needed rest. Only to find that when I went to grab my phone to place it on the charger, I just missed a call from the office. Getting a call from the office this late a night is never a good sign. Thinking it would be some home on fire or shooting, I was a little shocked to hear a riot had broken out in the west side of Chico. I had just unpacked all of my equipment to organize my gear when I had to pack it all back up to race to the scene.
A few individuals throw a couch into a bonfire near Sixth and Chestnut streets early this morning. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
Onlookers take video and pictures with cameras and cellphones as they watch a bonfire near Sixth and Chestnut streets early this morning. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
I arrived on scene to hear a large crowd gathering with a good bonfire roaring in the middle of the street. Chico Police had already blocked access to the streets for the public. I showed my press pass and walked into the scene. It was a very calm event considering most of the students weren't violent, just intoxicated. Most were there to have fun and just witness it. Not to cause a disturbance, though it was very much one.
People climbed on cars and stairs. I myself climbed up the top of a balcony and was caught in the middle of a cat fight, to which I kindly pushed my way back down the stairs thinking I would be safer below. I took pictures of the flames and the kids jumping and throwing items into the fire. Once the couch was lit, the intensity of the flames pushed a lot of the crowd back.
I walked over to the cops who were putting on their riot gear. The rush of adrenaline became the usual "hurry up and wait" as I grew tiresome of the same fire still burning. I talked with some of the officers, but made sure to make my presence known. That way if a confrontation occurred they would hopefully remember that I am with the press.
WATCH video from scene
The cops cleared the streets. I was looking for that perfect shot of an arrest, but was unable to come across one. The lighting was dark and I was battling a dead battery. But if they keep the riots up at this rate I am sure we will hit our third riot just in time for St. Patty's Day! Here's to you Chico. You're such a riot!
Monday, January 26, 2009
A burst of rain near sunset brought a colorful rainbow in the sky over Hwy32 near Bruce Rd Saturday, January 24, 2009 in Chico, CA. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
A car drives along Hwy32 near Bruce Rd under a full rainbow seen across the sky Saturday, January 24, 2009 in Chico, CA. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
I was driving along Bruce Road when I noticed the intensity of the rainbow. Most of the time conditions aren't the best for digital cameras to capture the dynamic range in rainbows. But the setting sun beaming on the dark stormy clouds created an intense array of colors in the sky. I couldn't help myself by pulling over on the side of the road and taking a couple of shots. Most rainbows aren't this big or bright. You never know when you are going to get a chance to see one again.
See the image in fullscreen
Read how the photographer, David Bergman took the image
I have given much thought to a piece of technology like this. But never really seen its true potential till now. Before I had seen it be used in mostly still environments, but using it now during the Presidential Inauguration gives new meaning to its application. I myself am looking forward to investing in this awesome piece of equipment.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
A Peking Acrobat flips off a giant ball during the Peking Acrobats show at Laxson Auditorium Tuesday, January 20, 2009 in Chico, CA. Chico Performances brought more than 20 gymnasts, jugglers, cyclists, and tumblers that make up the Chinese Acrobats.(Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
I stay perched high in the crowd, but the show is always a pleasure. Even from far away I can still get a sense of excitement and anticipation. I always say to myself, "Wow, OK that was good. I should leave now." Yet my feet do not head out the curtain. I continue to stay, feet planted watching the show. As one performance ends another picks up right where it left off. Now I say, "Well maybe after this one I'll leave." The problem with that statement is that I say it about 6 more times. Then at last when my batteries begin to become exhausted the main curtain comes down and I have now realized that I have stayed long enough for intermission to come. At that moment I can finally pry myself away from the awe that is the Peking Acrobats. The "Freeking" Peking Acrobats! If only they weren't so wonderful, I might be able to finish work on time.
A flock of snow geese take flight just beyond Gray Lodge Monday, January 19, 2009 in Gridley, CA. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
The moon is seen as a backdrop for several snow geese that fly just beyond Gray Lodge Monday, January 19, 2009 in Gridley, CA. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
With no real good place to pull off on the side of the road, I decided to continue to Gray Lodge thinking there would be more waterfowl at the reserve. To my disappointment there was little action on the water. Though the drive was nice we decided to head back to the first batch in hope that they were still there. While driving up to the location we didn't notice the group of birds at first. Then we spotted them. They were still there, numbering in the hundreds. I pulled into this driveway and slowly exited the car. We were probably looking at hundreds of snow geese no more than 30 feet away.
I told my mentee to get ready as I knew we would soon spook the group and they would flutter in a frenzy into the air. About 3 seconds later the birds must have overheard us an leaped up like a tsunami. The noise from the birds and the flutter of their wings created an intensity you could feel just feet away. The birds took to the air as we took to our cameras firing as many images as we could. They circled around us several time not knowing if it was safe to land. It was the closest I have ever been to that many birds at one time.
A flock of snow geese can be seen leaving the ground as they take flight just beyond Gray Lodge Monday, January 19, 2009 in Gridley, CA. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
The front page of the Chico Enterprise-Record Commemorative Inauguration Edition was released January 20, 2009 in Chico CA.
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Music legend Willie Nelson performs to a sold out crowd at Laxson Auditorium Wednesday, January 14, 2009 in Chico, CA. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
With an American backdrop, Willie Nelson sings a collection of his greatest hits for fans in Chico. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
Willie Nelson coming into town was going to be a big story for The Buzz, but with a slow news day, Mr. Nelson became the big news. I stayed longer and shot more of the musician than normal. I mean, come on, when is the last time you've seen this big of a star?
Willie Nelson has been around long enough to know when to be comfortable as he sports more comfortable shoes and strums on an old beat up guitar. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
I only had 10 minutes to shoot of his performance. In total for just Willie Nelson I shot 410 images. That means I was shooting an average of about 1 image every 1.5 seconds for the whole 10 minute performance. I figured I would put those images into a video, so you could see the whole performance I captured through my camera.
The video is a sequence of 410 images compressed into a minute video.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Butte County Search and Rescue Dan Newman, Tom Chisholm, and Brett Eagan (left to right) await orders as they work to help a man trapped on the edge of the canyon wall above Diversion Dam in Upper Bidwell Park Friday, January 10, 2009. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
I was able to take my time to take a lot of images. In the end, because the incident came without injury, it was pretty exciting. I managed to stay quite a bit. I wish I could have stayed till the end, but as always, deadline is waiting.
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Ah, the joys of my job. Thank you Backyardigans. I'll see ya Saturday!
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
With no back story to the punishment, I had approached sports reporter Leland Gordon about who he felt would be a contender in the game. He informed me that he couldn't decide, being that all the starters were benched. He told me the reason and I checked out for myself. Sure enough, I found the whole starting team in well-dress attire not suitable for ball play.
I decided the to take a picture of the benched players being that it might be necessary for Gordon's blog. It wasn't my intention to have it dominant in the story, but rather a side bar of some sorts. I didn't know how Gordon would address it, if at all in his story. I took a quick snap and focused the rest of my time on the game.
The seven Chico High players who were suspended earlier this week watch during the Panthers' 49-28 home loss to Red Bluff that opened Eastern Athletic League play Tuesday. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
When returning to the office to edit my images, there was a phone call to the sports department. I overheard the dialogue talking about the benched players. I quickly handed the image of the benched players to the sports desk. It was just to illustrate that indeed the starters had been benched. The desk thanked me for snapping a shot of that. They felt it was an important part of the story. From Gordon's story, it did prove to be a major part. It is an impressive image to see 7 key players are to sit out for almost a month of games, which explains a lot into their major loss that night. I am sure that the loss of the game will pale in comparison to the loss of a classmate.
Today's InnerView was of a a woman named Jean Phillips who had polio as a young girl. She had make a lifelong commitment to help those with disabilities. Phillips was very nice and welcoming. She was confined to her bed in the living room of her home, but that didn't seem to get her down.
I started to photograph her in her environment with an overall shot, then some medium shots and a couple closeups. The images were nice, but it lacked the creativity of inspiration. When looking around for another shot I turned my back to Phillips, and to my excitement saw a mirror that was framed with pictures of kids. I asked Phillips, "Is this your family?" She responded, "Yes." The idea was set. I spent the next several minutes not even facing Phillips, but looking away from her taking shots of her reflected in the mirror.
Jean Phillips is reflected in a mirror framed with pictures of her family. Phillips had polio as a young woman and has a lifelong commitment to people with disabilities. She looks back at her life while in her home Wednesday January 7, 2009 in Orland, Calif. She has raised three daughters and received an award from Butte County Coordinating Council for making a difference for people with disabilities. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
I made sure my aperture was small enough so that the depth of field would pick up detail in the pictures, and have my subject in focus. Low light made it hard to hand hold at 1/20 a second. But a few turned out. I only needed one of her smiling, and I did.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
The scanner called for a two vehicle accident on eastbound Skyway just above Tuscan Ridge with a vehicle fire. I quickly raced up the hill. The accident was actually just above Lookout Point when traffic began to back up. Normally in accidents, traffic can be a problem; but for most, a steady slow-moving pace is usually on the agenda. For this accident, the traffic was taken to a stand still in both lanes.
A two vehicle accident on the eastbound Skyway just east of Lookout Point caused major traffic jams and delays as CHP and Cal Fire - Butte County attended to the scene Tuesday, January 6, 2009 in Chico, CA. (Jason Halley/Chico Enterprise-Record)
After being stopped for about two "ever-seemingly enduring" minutes I decided to pull my car off the side of the road and start running. I luckily consider myself young enough to foot race to many assignments, though, every year that distance seems to get longer and longer. This accident to which I thought was just around the bend ended up being around the bend and then about a half a mile. I was really surprised at the number of cars that had piled up on the collision. At that point I had run too far from my car, so I decided to continue to the wreck and would have to run back after capturing the incident.