What a year! A Stanley Cup and a World Series in my backyard here in Boston. A 20-year playoff drought for my Pittsburgh Pirates finally ended. And I documented an awful tragedy that had the overwhelming healing and support of its community and the very sports teams I photograph on a daily basis. Immediately following that was an inspiring showcase of talent and determination of the Wounded Warriors Amputee softball team that was put on display at Fenway Park against the men and women who were among the first responders on April 15th on near the finish line on Boylston Street.

For many, I’m sure that looking at sports photographs is merely for entertainments sake. Some, because of the raw power, skill, and emotion it shows that watching on television or in person may not be able to convey. But for the few who reached out and called, emailed, etc, because they were moved by my pictures for whatever reason, that to me is the best feeling and what I hope to accomplish every day as a photographer. Those messages help solidify why I do what I do for a living.

And as always, I appreciate the ever-continuing support from the photo community that I’m so lucky to be a part of every day.

So, to recap the year that was, here are some of my favorite images from 2013. Enjoy & Happy New Year!

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 24: The New England Patriots take the field against the Denver Broncos before a game at Gillette Stadium on November 24, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 24: The New England Patriots take the field against the Denver Broncos before a game at Gillette Stadium on November 24, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA - APRIL 12: Members of the Pittsburgh Riverhounds practice during training at Highmark Stadium on April 12, 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA – APRIL 12: Members of the Pittsburgh Riverhounds practice during training at Highmark Stadium on April 12, 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

TALLADEGA, AL - MAY 05: Trevor Bayne, driver of the #21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford, leaves a trail of smoke after blowing an engine during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway on May 5, 2013 in Talladega, Alabama.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

TALLADEGA, AL – MAY 05: Trevor Bayne, driver of the #21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford, leaves a trail of smoke after blowing an engine during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Aaron’s 499 at Talladega Superspeedway on May 5, 2013 in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - SEPTEMBER 15: Stephen Drew #7 of the Boston Red Sox dives but comes up short for a ball hit down the third base line against the New York Yankees during the game on September 15, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – SEPTEMBER 15: Stephen Drew #7 of the Boston Red Sox dives but comes up short for a ball hit down the third base line against the New York Yankees during the game on September 15, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - JANUARY 4:  Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics spills into the fans sitting in the court side seats before flipping over a chair after attempting to grab a loose ball against the Indiana Pacers during the game on January 4, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Kevin Garnett

BOSTON, MA – JANUARY 4: Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics spills into the fans sitting in the court side seats before flipping over a chair after attempting to grab a loose ball against the Indiana Pacers during the game on January 4, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12:  Santonio Holmes #10 of the New York Jets catches a pass against the New England Patriots in the second half during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Santonio Holmes #10 of the New York Jets catches a pass against the New England Patriots in the second half during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA - APRIL 14: Andrew McCutchen #22 of the Pittsburgh Pirates stands in the on deck circle during the game against the Cincinnati Reds on April 14, 2013 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA – APRIL 14: Andrew McCutchen #22 of the Pittsburgh Pirates stands in the on deck circle during the game against the Cincinnati Reds on April 14, 2013 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 20:  Brandon Lloyd #85 of the New England Patriots misses a catch against the Baltimore Ravens during the 2013 AFC Championship game at Gillette Stadium on January 20, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – JANUARY 20: Brandon Lloyd #85 of the New England Patriots misses a catch against the Baltimore Ravens during the 2013 AFC Championship game at Gillette Stadium on January 20, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - MAY 18: A member of the Chesapeake Bayhawks runs off of the field prior to the game against the Boston Cannons on May 18, 2013 at Harvard Stadium in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – MAY 18: A member of the Chesapeake Bayhawks runs off of the field prior to the game against the Boston Cannons on May 18, 2013 at Harvard Stadium in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - JULY 31: Fans watch the game between the Boston Red Sox and the Seattle Mariners in the 4th inning as the sun sets during the game on July 31, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – JULY 31: Fans watch the game between the Boston Red Sox and the Seattle Mariners in the 4th inning as the sun sets during the game on July 31, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 01:  Jason Grilli #39 and Russell Martin #55 of the Pittsburgh Pirates celebrate their 6 to 2 win over the Cincinnati Reds during the National League Wild Card game at PNC Park on October 1, 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA – OCTOBER 01: Jason Grilli #39 and Russell Martin #55 of the Pittsburgh Pirates celebrate their 6 to 2 win over the Cincinnati Reds during the National League Wild Card game at PNC Park on October 1, 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

HARTFORD, CT - JULY 16: Brek Shea #23 of the United States celebrates his goal after scoring late in the second half against Costa Rica during the CONCACAF Gold Cup match at Rentschler Field on July 16, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

HARTFORD, CT – JULY 16: Brek Shea #23 of the United States celebrates his goal after scoring late in the second half against Costa Rica during the CONCACAF Gold Cup match at Rentschler Field on July 16, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - MARCH 29:  Terrence Williams #55 of the Boston Celtics dunks the ball against the Atlanta Hawks in the second quarter during the game on March 29, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – MARCH 29: Terrence Williams #55 of the Boston Celtics dunks the ball against the Atlanta Hawks in the second quarter during the game on March 29, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - MAY 13: Patrice Bergeron #37, Tyler Seguin #19, and Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins celebrate following Bergeron's game-winning overtime goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 13, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – MAY 13: Patrice Bergeron #37, Tyler Seguin #19, and Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins celebrate following Bergeron’s game-winning overtime goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 13, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

EAST HARTFORD, CT - NOVEMBER 08:  Shakim Phillips #8 of the Connecticut Huskies makes a catch in the fourth quarter in front of Calvin Pryor #25 of the Louisville Cardinals at Rentschler Field during the game on November 8, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

EAST HARTFORD, CT – NOVEMBER 08: Shakim Phillips #8 of the Connecticut Huskies makes a catch in the fourth quarter in front of Calvin Pryor #25 of the Louisville Cardinals at Rentschler Field during the game on November 8, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - JUNE 15: US Womens National midfielder Kristie Mewis #8 celebrates with teammates following her goal in the first half against Korea Republic during the game at Gillette Stadium on June 15, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – JUNE 15: US Womens National midfielder Kristie Mewis #8 celebrates with teammates following her goal in the first half against Korea Republic during the game at Gillette Stadium on June 15, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Mike Napoli #12 of the Boston Red Sox is congratulated by teammates at home plate after hitting a walk-off home run in the 11th inning against the New York Yankees during the game on July 22, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts.

Mike Napoli #12 of the Boston Red Sox is congratulated by teammates at home plate after hitting a walk-off home run in the 11th inning against the New York Yankees during the game on July 22, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts.(Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

 

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 03:  Emmanuel Sanders #88 of the Pittsburgh Steelers misses an attempted pass in the endzone in front of Kyle Arrington #25 of the New England Patriots in the second quarter at Gillette Stadium on November 3, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 03: Emmanuel Sanders #88 of the Pittsburgh Steelers misses an attempted pass in the endzone in front of Kyle Arrington #25 of the New England Patriots in the second quarter at Gillette Stadium on November 3, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - JULY 24: Felix Doubront #22 of the Boston Red Sox pitches against the Tampa Bay Rays as the sun sets over Fenway Park in the fourth inning during the game on July 24, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – JULY 24: Felix Doubront #22 of the Boston Red Sox pitches against the Tampa Bay Rays as the sun sets over Fenway Park in the fourth inning during the game on July 24, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

HARTFORD, CT - JULY 16: Celso Borges #5 of Costa Rica takes a corner kick in the first half against the United States during the CONCACAF Gold Cup match at Rentschler Field on July 16, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

HARTFORD, CT – JULY 16: Celso Borges #5 of Costa Rica takes a corner kick in the first half against the United States during the CONCACAF Gold Cup match at Rentschler Field on July 16, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - MAY 1: Leo Komarov #47 of the Toronto Maple Leafs attempts to continue fighting Chris Kelly #23 of the Boston Bruins by grabbing his arm after having his jersey pulled over his head in the final seconds of the third period in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 1, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – MAY 1: Leo Komarov #47 of the Toronto Maple Leafs attempts to continue fighting Chris Kelly #23 of the Boston Bruins by grabbing his arm after having his jersey pulled over his head in the final seconds of the third period in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 1, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - JUNE 24: Members of the Chicago Blackhawks celebrate following their 3-2 win against the Boston Bruins during Game Six of the Stanley Cup Final on June 24, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

BOSTON, MA – JUNE 24: Members of the Chicago Blackhawks celebrate following their 3-2 win against the Boston Bruins during Game Six of the Stanley Cup Final on June 24, 2013 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

 

EAST HARTFORD, CT - NOVEMBER 08: Liam Sallquist #15 of the Connecticut Huskies runs onto the field prior to the game against the Louisville Cardinals at Rentschler Field on November 8, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

EAST HARTFORD, CT – NOVEMBER 08: Liam Sallquist #15 of the Connecticut Huskies runs onto the field prior to the game against the Louisville Cardinals at Rentschler Field on November 8, 2013 in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 06: Pedro Alvarez #24 of the Pittsburgh Pirates warms up in the on deck circle in the fourth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals during Game Three of the National League Division Series at PNC Park on October 6, 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH, PA – OCTOBER 06: Pedro Alvarez #24 of the Pittsburgh Pirates warms up in the on deck circle in the fourth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals during Game Three of the National League Division Series at PNC Park on October 6, 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - AUGUST 16: Kevin Ogletree #85 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reaches but misses a catch in front of Justin Green #41 of the New England Patriots during the game at Gillette Stadium on August 16, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – AUGUST 16: Kevin Ogletree #85 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reaches but misses a catch in front of Justin Green #41 of the New England Patriots during the game at Gillette Stadium on August 16, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 19:  Koji Uehara #19 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates after defeating the Detroit Tigers in Game Six of the American League Championship Series at Fenway Park on October 19, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Red Sox defeated the Tigers 5-2 to clinch the ALCS in six games.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – OCTOBER 19: Koji Uehara #19 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates after defeating the Detroit Tigers in Game Six of the American League Championship Series at Fenway Park on October 19, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Red Sox defeated the Tigers 5-2 to clinch the ALCS in six games. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - NOVEMBER 02:  Jonny Gomes #5 of the Boston Red Sox lays the World Series trophy and the 'Boston Strong 617' jersey onto the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Boylston Street during the World Series victory parade on November 2, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – NOVEMBER 02: Jonny Gomes #5 of the Boston Red Sox lays the World Series trophy and the ‘Boston Strong 617′ jersey onto the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Boylston Street during the World Series victory parade on November 2, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA - AUGUST 19: Gregory Reynolds #5 of the Wounded Warriors Amputee softball team catches a fly ball before throwing off his glove and throwing the ball with the same hand during the game against the Boston Marathon first responders on August 19, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

BOSTON, MA – AUGUST 19: Gregory Reynolds #5 of the Wounded Warriors Amputee softball team catches a fly ball before throwing off his glove and throwing the ball with the same hand during the game against the Boston Marathon first responders on August 19, 2013 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12:  Wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins #85 of the New England Patriots drops a pass in the endzone against cornerback Dee Milliner #27 of the New York Jets in the second quarter at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins #85 of the New England Patriots drops a pass in the endzone against cornerback Dee Milliner #27 of the New York Jets in the second quarter at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 10: Neymar #10 of Brazil walks off of the field and through the tunnel past cheering fans following their 3-1 win against Portugal during the international friendly match at Gillette Stadium on September 10, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 10: Neymar #10 of Brazil walks off of the field and through the tunnel past cheering fans following their 3-1 win against Portugal during the international friendly match at Gillette Stadium on September 10, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

 

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins #85 of the New England Patriots drops a pass in the endzone against cornerback Dee Milliner #27 of the New York Jets in the second quarter at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins #85 of the New England Patriots drops a pass in the endzone against cornerback Dee Milliner #27 of the New York Jets in the second quarter at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

After a completely dry first half, the skies opened up to start the 3rd quarter in what ended up being a showing of performance that was just as sloppy as the weather that Mother Nature provided us with.

Here is my take from the home opener for the New England Patriots in week 2 against their rival, the New York Jets. Enjoy!

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Wide receiver Julian Edelman #11 of the New England Patriots drops a pass in the second quarter against free safety Antonio Allen #39 of the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Wide receiver Julian Edelman #11 of the New England Patriots drops a pass in the second quarter against free safety Antonio Allen #39 of the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Defensive end Michael Buchanan #99 of the New England Patriots celebrates after a sack in the second quarter against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Defensive end Michael Buchanan #99 of the New England Patriots celebrates after a sack in the second quarter against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Stephen Hill #84 of the New York Jets catches a pass over Alfonzo Dennard #37 of the New England Patriots in the second half during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Stephen Hill #84 of the New York Jets catches a pass over Alfonzo Dennard #37 of the New England Patriots in the second half during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Ryan Spadola #85 of the New York Jets attempts to catch a pass in front of Devin McCourty #32 of the New England Patriots before having it knocked out of his hands during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Ryan Spadola #85 of the New York Jets attempts to catch a pass in front of Devin McCourty #32 of the New England Patriots before having it knocked out of his hands during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Aqib Talib #31 of the New England Patriots celebrates after catching an interception in the second half against the New York Jets during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Aqib Talib #31 of the New England Patriots celebrates after catching an interception in the second half against the New York Jets during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Santonio Holmes #10 of the New York Jets catches a pass against the New England Patriots in the second half during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Santonio Holmes #10 of the New York Jets catches a pass against the New England Patriots in the second half during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Stephen Hill #84 of the New York Jets has his pass broken up by Aqib Talib #31 and Devin McCourty #32 of the New England Patriots during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Stephen Hill #84 of the New York Jets has his pass broken up by Aqib Talib #31 and Devin McCourty #32 of the New England Patriots during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Julian Edelman #11 of the New England Patriots catches a pass in front of Antonio Allen #39 of the New York Jets in the fourth quarter during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Julian Edelman #11 of the New England Patriots catches a pass in front of Antonio Allen #39 of the New York Jets in the fourth quarter during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Alfonzo Dennard #37 of the New England Patriots intercepts a pass in front of Clyde Gates #19 of the New York Jets in the fourth quarter during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Alfonzo Dennard #37 of the New England Patriots intercepts a pass in front of Clyde Gates #19 of the New York Jets in the fourth quarter during the game at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 12: Geno Smith #7 of the New York Jets walks off of the field following their 10-13 loss to the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – SEPTEMBER 12: Geno Smith #7 of the New York Jets walks off of the field following their 10-13 loss to the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on September 12, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

 

Three football games in three days will definitely get you in a groove. It was nice to see some old friends from Pittsburgh and was happy with a few frames at the end of the weekend. Enjoy!

Friday Night: Pittsburgh vs Connecticut

EAST HARTFORD, CT – NOVEMBER 09: Volunteers hold up a giant American flag on the field prior to the game between the University of Connecticut Huskies and the University of Pittsburgh Panthers on November 9, 2012 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

EAST HARTFORD, CT – NOVEMBER 09: Ryan Griffin #94 of the University of Connecticut Huskies leaps over Lafayette Pitts #23 of the University of Pittsburgh Panthers during the game on November 9, 2012 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

EAST HARTFORD, CT – NOVEMBER 09: Chandler Whitmer #10 of the University of Connecticut Huskies has the football knocked out of his hands on a hit by Andrew Taglianetti #41 of the University of Pittsburgh Panthers in the second quarter during the game on November 9, 2012 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

EAST HARTFORD, CT – NOVEMBER 09: Ray Graham #1 of the University of Pittsburgh Panthers stiff arms Dwayne Gratz #7 of the University of Connecticut Huskies while running with the ball during the game on November 9, 2012 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

EAST HARTFORD, CT – NOVEMBER 09: Shamar Stephen #59 of the University of Connecticut Huskies celebrates a defensive stop in front of Tino Sunseri #12 of the University of Pittsburgh Panthers during the game on November 9, 2012 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Saturday Night: Notre Dame vs Boston College

CHESTNUT HILL, MA – NOVEMBER 10: Troy Niklas #85 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish celebrates with his teammates after catching a touchdown pass against the Boston College Eagles defense at the end of the second quarter during the game on November 10, 2012 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

CHESTNUT HILL, MA – NOVEMBER 10: Everett Golson #5 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish dives with the ball over the Boston College Eagles defense near the goal line during the game on November 10, 2012 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

CHESTNUT HILL, MA – NOVEMBER 10: Tyler Eifert #80 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish goes up to catch a pass against the Boston College Eagles during the game on November 10, 2012 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

CHESTNUT HILL, MA – NOVEMBER 10: Chase Rettig #11 of the Boston College Eagles lays on the field after being knocked to the ground by the Notre Dame Fighting Irish defense during the game on November 10, 2012 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

 

Sunday Afternoon: Buffalo Bills vs New England Patriots

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: C.J. Spiller #28 of the Buffalo Bills runs with the ball against the New England Patriots defense during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Scott Chandler #84 of the Buffalo Bills catches a pass against the New England Patriots during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Fred Jackson #22 of the Buffalo Bills fumbles the football near the goal line before members of the New England Patriots recovered the ball in the second half during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Rob Gronkowski #87 of the New England Patriots catches a pass against the Buffalo Bills during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Brandon Spikes #55 of the New England Patriots hits Ryan Fitzpatrick #14 of the Buffalo Bills before being flagged for a personal foul in the second half during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Stevie Jonhson #13 of the Buffalo Bills stretches out to catch a pass against the New England Patriots during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: George Wilson #37 of the New England Patriots lands on his head after defending on a pass in the endzone against the Buffalo Bills during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

FOXBORO, MA – NOVEMBER 11: Ryan Fitzpatrick #14 and David Snow #61 of the Buffalo Bills walk to the locker room after throwing an interception to Devin McCourty #32 of the New England Patriots to end the game in the fourth quarter during the game on November 11, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

LaMarr Woodley #56 and Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrate after defeating the New York Jets in the AFC Championship game on January 23, 2011 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hines Ward is no longer a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

It was sad news to hear from both a fan and photography standpoint as he always made for great images but he was such a great person to have as part of the Pittsburgh community. I sure hope that the Steelers organization brings him in as a coach and mentor to the young wide receiving core in Pittsburgh.

In honor of his hard-nosed play and always great attitude for life and the game of football, I’ve posted my favorite images from the two seasons that I was lucky enough to cover him for.

Happy Retirement, Hines!

PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 06: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks at the scoreboard following their loss to the Baltimore Ravens during the game on November 6, 2011 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

ORCHARD PARK, NY - NOVEMBER 28: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers runs through a tackle by Drayton Florence #29 of the Buffalo Bills after completing a catch during the game on November 28, 2010 at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Wick Photography)

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 09: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates by dancing after scoring a touchdown against the Tennessee Titans during the game on October 9, 2011 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH - DECEMBER 12: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers catches a pass in front of Johnathan Wade #26 of the Cincinnati Bengals during the game on December 12, 2010 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

ORCHARD PARK, NY - NOVEMBER 28: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers catches a pass during the game against the Buffalo Bills on November 28, 2010 at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Wick Photography)

PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 21: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates after catching a pass against the Oakland Raiders during the game on November 21, 2010 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH - DECEMBER 19: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers makes a catch against the New York Jets during the game on December 19, 2010 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH - OCTOBER 17: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Cleveland Browns during the game on October 17, 2010 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PITTSBURGH - SEPTEMBER 18: Hines Ward #86 of the Pittsburgh Steelers is flipped over Walter Thurmond #28 of the Seattle Seahawks after catching a pass in the first half during the game on September 18, 2011 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

 

Wickerham

Apply, apply, apply.

Anyone who has applied for an internship will tell you how hard they are to get. Sometimes though, it’s not so much about your portfolio as it about the intangibles. Let me explain…

Everyone knows how much talent exists in photojournalism and how many schools are churning out photography students (especially if you read the article about the school where I graduated from, The Art Institute of Pittsburgh). All of the best colleges and universities are having their students apply for internships. So how do you think you can win over the editors and photography departments of the respective newspaper/magazine/wire agency that you are applying at? By simply wanting it more.

I will use myself as an example here. I had three internships while going through school: Pittsburgh Pirates, Getty Images, and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. I know for a fact that the other students who applied for all three of these internships had much better work than I. In fact, I failed to get the internship with Getty the first time around. After working my butt off for a year and attending Sports Shooter Academy for a second time, I was asked to reapply and I did so with even more motivation.

Some are you are probably thinking, “Well, I’m not ready or think my portfolio is good enough for an internship yet”. Maybe you aren’t ready to get it THIS year, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t apply for it. You are not going to be looked down upon for applying for an internship earlier than you should. It actually can help you in many cases. Just like with the images you make – you have to do all of the little things to set yourself apart from the competition. So when the DOP or person in charge of hiring the upcoming photography intern every year sifts through the many applications and recognizes your name from the previous year(s), they are much more likely to set yours aside for final consideration because it shows your persistence.

Wickerham

For those of you who may think your body of work isn’t strong enough to nail an internship, think about this. An internship is your opportunity to take chances. As a young, student intern you are expected to make some mistakes. Learning from those mistakes is sometimes the best learning experience you can have. In my opinion, to be surrounded by a group of supportive veteran photojournalists in a real world environment will help you grow as a photographer more than a semester of any college course you might take.

Most internships will ask you to write an essay explaining why you think you deserve it. Even if they don’t – as was the case in one of my internships – send one along with your application and portfolio anyways. The mere fact that you spent time to write an essay and went above and beyond what they asked for will speak volumes in and of itself. Even more so if that essay expresses your passion for photography and your desire to grow as a photography intern, your chances of being picked go way up.

The one thing most students or recent graduates looking for an internship or job don’t realize is that how well your personality fits in with the company is often times the clincher. Even if it’s just for the possibility of steady freelance work, it’s important. If you don’t get along well with others, your talents may not be enough to save you. This is a small community – even smaller with social media. Your reputation will follow you wherever you go.

Although most internships are announced and made public on many online photography forums (SportsShooter, NPPA, ASMP, etc), some come from referrals by meeting the right person at the right time. If you put yourself in the right situations by attending workshops (i.e. Eddie Adams Workshop, Sports Shooter Academy, NPPA Northern Short Course), your chances for these opportunities are much greater. Another way to find internships and learn exactly what each is like is to read the blog of the students who have already experienced it. They will show you and tell you things that aren’t written up in the description of the internship. That student can also be a great resource to recommend you for the internship the following year as well!

All in all, apply for and do as many internships as you can. No matter where it takes place, I guarantee that you will come away with some of the best images and experiences of your life.

And as my favorite editor picture editor at Getty, Trudy Laltoo, always used to tell me before every assignment, “Don’t fuck up!”

Wickerham

Here are a few blogs of students from various schools who completed internships this past year:

- Joel Hawksley (Ohio University) – Seattle Times

- Patrick Fallon (University of Missouri) – Dallas Morning News

- Patrick McDermott (Brooks Institute) – Getty Images Sport

- Brooks Canaday (Boston University) – Moline Dispatch & Rock Island Argus: