Friday, July 25, 2014

One Month to the US Open Tennis Tournament!!

For many of my new readers, and I thank all of you, you may not know I am bit of a tennis nut. It started very young, watching on the television and always wanting to go to one of the majors. My photography really began with attending the US Open in Flushing Meadows in 1996. Every year after that I attended the tournament. It started just for one day, and then eventually I would go the whole first week. The first week is the best time because there are so many matches going on and the night matches are really the best. I had a great company that provided transportation to/from the tennis center from Manhattan. I actually rode with the umpires, ball boys/girls and lower ranked players. Unfortunately that company went out of business and I really am not a fan of taking the subway to the tournament. I skipped the event in 2012, then my Mom's health declined in 2013 so I missed that year as well. This year I plan to attend for the day as I have missed it the last 2 years. I actually sold many of my photographs on Ebay for a few years, they went as far as Japan and Australia, which I thought was pretty cool! Watching tennis in person is really so much better than on television. The players are really such high level athletes. I thought I would give you a peek at the grounds and some of my tennis photos since the tournament is coming up in the next month. 
The Arthur Ashe statue on the grounds. The grounds are really beautiful and flowers are just about everywhere!  
Another fun shot of people mulling around. I had the pleasure of attending the Arthur Ashe Kids Day as press for Tennis Panorama News in 2010 and it was so amazing. I actually got to sit in the photographers pit which felt so cool. I was disappointed when some of the pros were not very nice, but I guess they have to be that way, it's a grind to get the shot you want for your publication. You can check out my post HERE of the players. Karen, who is a fabulous person, who runs the site, now covers all four grand slams as press for her site. I would love to visit the other 3, but I think the French would be my best bet.  
I always love to pop in the exhibit from the tennis hall of fame. They have some great historic items on display, and it's air conditioned which is helpful in the NYC summer heat!  
Pretty grounds, right?  
The shirt selection is always fun. I am a McEnroe and Nadal fan myself. 
I even attended a Wilson fashion show in 2011 which was very, very cool. God knows how I stood as my coach sneakers did not agree with my feet and caused blisters. I understand however when you are doing something you really love, you do whatever it takes. You can check out my full post HERE of the show.  
Feliciano Lopez was in attendance at the fashion show. He wears Wilson and yes, he is gorgeous! The Spanish players are all very easy on the eyes! 
Vintage Maria Sharapova photographs  

Marat Safin from Russia who was a two-time Grand Slam winner. This was taken when the practice courts were open and it was so much nicer. Now the players are in an enclosed area, and you have to be very tricky with your lens to get shots without fencing in front of them. 
Ana Ivanovic from Serbia, who is ranked in the Top 10 this year, during an evening match. I really love the tennis at night, the weather is much more pleasant and it's a great vibe in all the courts. 
A vintage photo of Novak Djokovic who just won his second Wimbledon this year 
One of my favorite photos of Maria Kirilenko who always makes for a cool tennis shot. 
A collage of Rafael Nadal taken during practice session where I had my lens through a hole to get direct shots. It drives me crazy that the fans pay so much money to see the players at the tournaments, and can't even see them in a normal way. From what I am told, it is like this at all the Grand Slams, so one is no better than the other. These came out pretty great I thought! 
Victoria Azarenka, from Belarus, at practice. Again, taken with the lens through a hole, not too shabby! 
One of my very old shots, Andre Agassi. taken with film camera, being at the right place at the right time. Sometimes that is all it takes to obtain a very great photograph. I sold this one on Ebay many times over. 
Another neat shot of Victoria Azarenka during her match. I love when the skirt flies in the air in a shot. 

I hope you enjoyed my little trip at the US Open. It is a great tournament, and if you are a tennis fan, a must visit for sure. I did a post with Karen from Tennis Panorama News about tips visiting, you can view that HERE. If you are planning to visit for the first time and have any questions, feel free to email me and I will try to help any way I can. 

Today's Words of Wisdom: “Success is a journey not a destination. The doing is usually more important than the outcome. Not everyone can be Number 1.” ― Arthur Ashe

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