'Through the Lens' will appear once per week during the offseason. Packers team photographer Evan Siegle will deconstruct and give insight to some of his favorite images from the 2021 season. Each week will offer a new photo gallery of some of his best photos from the past season.
The tunnel is a goldmine on gamedays, from the dramatic light to the smoke that billows out of a fog/smoke machine. It's a redundant task week-in and week-out but I try to make the moments unique and fresh. The smoke can be a challenge, so I tend to shoot everything on manual focus. Sometimes the smoke can get too thick, which can be frustrating because you can lose the players' outlines, but sometimes you come away with a creative visual and something you and the fans both like. I usually kneel near the front of the tunnel to get the dramatic light falling on the players as they run out to the roar of the crowd. Knowing that Aaron Rodgers would be the last player introduced I decided to shoot from a behind perspective. Luckily, the smoke lightened up and I could see him the entire take. I like that you can't see what is on the other side, we all know that he's running out onto the field, but the blanket of smoke gave it mysterious look with an empty but clean background. It created a timeless shot as Rodgers ran onto the battlefield.
This image was shot with a 35mm lens (ISO = 3200, Aperture = f2, Shutter = 1/8000th)
Man in the Mirror
I really enjoy documenting games on the road. A different city and venue can be welcoming, especially when looking for new and creative compositions. Every season I look forward to the trip down to Chicago because I love the city's ambiance and I like the stadium. Some people think it's odd looking, but I like it a lot.
I'm lucky that I have great access, so I try to capitalize on every opportunity that I can. I try to look for quiet moments or other scenes that our fans don't usually get to see.
The Soldier Field visitors' locker room has a weird layout and it's a small space, so common things aren't in common areas. A lot of times I'll notice objects or potential compositions and I'll make a mental note on coming back to it. Sometimes that means I'm standing there waiting for a moment to unfold. When we arrived at Soldier Field, I noticed this coffee setup right in the bathroom area in the Packers' locker room, it was kind of comical being a coffee pot, boxes of sugar and some cups sitting on the counter of the bathroom/shower area. It kind of makes sense but it's still in an awkward location. I made a mental note to myself to come back to the area before the game.
I circled back right before the guys took the field and I found this quiet moment of Packers tight end Marcedes Lewis as he adjusted the fit of his jersey. Patience pays off.
This image was shot with an 35mm lens (ISO = 2500, Aperture = f1.8, Shutter = 1/800th)
I call it organized chaos. Having the opportunity to document a winning touchdown or walk-off field goal is a complete rush. It's stressful and jubilant all at once!
The stress comes from making sure that putting yourself in the best position to get both the action and reaction of the moments. Sometimes the reaction imagery blows away the action part. Emotion is powerful.
In September, the Packers traveled to Santa Clara, CA, to play the 49ers at Levi's Stadium. The game was filled with great action moments, especially with the Packers jumping out to a 17-0 lead by the second quarter. The 49ers respectively came back and made it a game.
With seconds left in the game Aaron Rodgers and company drove down the field and put us in position to hit a game-winning field goal. The entire time I'm trying to adapt to the situation. I plan for as much as I can. My concerns are what lenses do I want to use (not be indecisive with) and where I want to position myself. I lined up along the sideline near the Packers' bench, knowing that this was the best spot to get the kick and possible reaction from the bench. I know that getting the action shot is the easiest part, it's rushing onto the field with all your gear (400mm draped over your shoulder and camera hanging at your side) in complete madness that's difficult.
Sure enough Mason Crosby hit a 51-yard field goal to win the game. This was one of my favorite images from the game. The joy in Mason's face says it all, his teammates chase him around the field in pure jubilation. It was an amazing moment. I probably shot 250 frames from this moment and only 15 images turned out due to players' backs and having bad angles. I guess it's a good thing that you only need one.
This image was shot with a 35mm lens (ISO = 3200, Aperture = f2.8, Shutter = 1/3200th)
Team photographer Evan Siegle shares his favorite photos from the 2021 Green Bay Packers season.