meridian high school

Northwest SilverStars Exhibit Athleticism and Coordination

Last Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016, I had the pleasure of photographing the 2016 Cheerfest sponsored by the Northwest SilverStars. The demonstration is the capstone from a week of Mini Cheer Camp hosted by Hailey Rio.

In Synch

In Synch- The Mount Vernon High School cheerleaders get pumped before their performance during the 2016 Cheerfest hosted by the Northwest SilverStars on Saturday afternoon Nov. 5, 2016, at Meridian High School in Laurel, Wash. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

In Synch- The Mount Vernon High School cheerleaders get pumped before their performance during the 2016 Cheerfest hosted by the Northwest SilverStars on Saturday afternoon Nov. 5, 2016, at Meridian High School in Laurel, Wash. (© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald)

Click to See More Cheerleading!!!

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Meridian HS Loses to Faith Life Academy in Playoffs

On Saturday, my assignment for The Bellingham Herald was to cover Meridian High School against Life Christian Academy during the 104 Tri-District 1A Baseball Tournament.

Life Christian was off to a good start with 3 runs scored in the second inning. Not a good start for junior Tanner Tutterrow. Meridian attempted to play catch-up the rest of the game, but just could not get it going.

Safe Slide:

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald - Meridian High School senior Josh Hosick (5) slides safely into 2nd base as Life Christian Academy sophomore short stop Sam Absten (2) comes down with the ball during the fifth inning of the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel, Wash. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald – Meridian High School senior Josh Hosick (5) slides safely into 2nd base as Life Christian Academy sophomore short stop Sam Absten (2) comes down with the ball during the fifth inning of the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel, Wash. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

Throwing errors and poor judgement cost Meridian a playoff spot in the state championship. One error which could have been avoided is pull the pitcher after the opposing team score so quickly. Life Christian read the pitcher like a grade school book.

Back To First:

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald -  Life Christian junior Sam Absten dives back to 1st base during the first inning of  in the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald – Life Christian junior Sam Absten dives back to 1st base during the first inning of in the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

Bobbling the Ball:

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald - Meridian High School senior David Anderson (2)  bobbles the ball as Life Christian Academy junior Sam Absten (2) slides into 2nd Base during the fifth inning in the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald – Meridian High School senior David Anderson (2) bobbles the ball as Life Christian Academy junior Sam Absten (2) slides into 2nd Base during the fifth inning in the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

Off the Tips:

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald - Life Christian Academy senior pitcher Taylor Roelofs goes against Meridian High School during the second inning on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in the 2014 Tri-District 1A Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School in Laurel, Wash. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1 to advance.

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald – Life Christian Academy senior pitcher Taylor Roelofs goes against Meridian High School during the second inning on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in the 2014 Tri-District 1A Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School in Laurel, Wash. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1 to advance.

Strong Pitching:

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald - Meridian High School sophomore relief pitcher Devyn Holmes (3) throws against Life Christian Academy during the sixth inning of the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald – Meridian High School sophomore relief pitcher Devyn Holmes (3) throws against Life Christian Academy during the sixth inning of the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

On The Bat:

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald - Meridian High School senior Jamison Hodge (17) bats in the fourth inning against  Life Christian Academy in the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

© Paul Conrad/The Bellingham Herald – Meridian High School senior Jamison Hodge (17) bats in the fourth inning against Life Christian Academy in the 2014 Tri-District Baseball Tournament at Meridian High School on Saturday afternoon May 17, 2014, in Laurel,Wash.. Life Christian defeated Meridian 3-1.

Thank you for stopping by to read and view my work. Feel free to comment, critique, or just ask questions.

Also, feel free to share and reblog, link to, and add your site in the comment section.

Paul “pablo” Conrad

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Blaine at Meridian High School Varsity Soccer

Meridian High School varsity boys hosted Blaine High School in an extremely close match. The Trojans and Wolverines fought a battle until the last 30 seconds of the game.

Protecting the Goal:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

It was a tight the entire game. Meridian would bring the ball down for a shot. Blaine would recover and run it down to the other end attempting a score. Back and forth, back and forth.

Battle for the Ball:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

Each team had several shot which ricocheted off the cross-bar or from an upright. The goalkeepers on each team made some spectacular saves.

On the Mark:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

Blocking a Shot: 

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

Shot on Goal:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

It wasn’t until the last 30 seconds anyone scored.

A struggle:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

Another Shot at Goal:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

Blaine ran up the left side, the Meridian goalkeeper made a fatal mistake and ran towards the winger. The winger passed to the center.

Blocking a Kick:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Woverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last minute of the second half.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Blaine High School boys take on Meridian during varsity soccer action on Thursday afternoon April 17, 2014, at Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash. The visiting Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 with a single goal in the last-minute of the second half.

With the Meridian goalkeeper out charging the winter, the goal was left unprotected and Blaine scored. Only 30 seconds left in the game.

The Wolverines defeated the Trojans 1-0 in a hard-fought battle.

Thank you for stopping by to read and view my work. Feel free to comment, critique, or just ask questions.

Also, feel free to share and reblog, link to, and add your site in the comment section.

Paul “pablo” Conrad

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Sedro-Wooley at Meridian HS soccer

The past few days I have been busy shooting Meridian High School sports. Soccer, baseball, and golf were all on the agenda.

But first, I’m going to show a few soccer photos from a few weeks ago I failed to upload. Sometimes I forget the social media aspects of photography. I love to shoot and document peoples lives.

Heads Up!!

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

Landscapes, scenics, urban, macro, and such are fine genres of photography, but I prefer sports, photojournalism, portraiture, and street. There’s more a challenge to me capturing fleeting moments.

Yes, I have been more disappointed than satisfied with what I get, but that keeps me pushing harder, learning more, trying new angles, and stretching myself to keep improving.

Up For Grabs:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

I’m still sorta old school in that I prefer to “stop & pop” and not “spray & pray.” Read the game, find a good position to shoot from which has a clean background, and anticipate moments.

Stopping the Attack:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

“Stop & Pop” is taking the time to learn what’s going on. It relies on your knowledge of the sport and players, anticipation by following the action, a cool head, and prefocusing. You get better images. Most sports photographers learn that the hard way.

Sliding Tackle:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

I think this technique harkens to the days of film and early digital. Back a few years to 2002 when cameras were barely breaking the 5fps limit. You had to learn the game, learn patience, and learn the limit of your camera.

Saving a Score:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

My first digital camera was the Nikon D1. Slow, very slow. About 4fps. Yes, two frames per second. But not as bad as the NC2000E. That was 1 frame per 2 seconds. Seriously, it was super slow. And you had to wait a long time if the buffer filled.

Chest Stop:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

My second was the D1H. Not much faster at 5fps but to get it you had to have fully charged batteries. Then I bought a D200. That was a whopping 5fps. Although they were rated at that, the cameras very rarely pulled it. I think mine averaged 4, and sometimes even 3fps on bad days.

Pulling a Foul:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

With that being said, I am one who believes that it’s not the camera but the photographer who makes great photos.

Practice is what matters. And a lot of practice. Not how fast your camera shoot, how big of a lens you have, how many frames you shoot, or how many card you fill.

No Harm, No Foul:
© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Sedro-Woolley High School boys take on Meridian on Friday afternoon Mar. 28, 2014. The visiting Cubs defeated the Trojans 2-1.

What matters is that you capture good storytelling moments, you keep pushing yourself, keep learning.

Thank you for stopping by to read and view my work. Feel free to comment, critique, or just ask questions.

Also, feel free to share and reblog, link to, and add your site in the comment section.

Paul “pablo” Conrad

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Meridian HS baseball: From the Dugout

One of the fun jobs I get to do is to photograph Meridian High School varsity sports. As part of the North West Conference Athletics team of photographers, my home team is Meridian.

Off The Tips:© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

One of the things I missed most while working for a newspaper is covering prep sports. Not just because some people think it’s easy, but because the kids really got into it.

Safe at Home:© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

These kids have heart. They have passion and drive. They have desire. Every game counts.

Out at Second:© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

And you weren’t stuck in one spot to photograph. You can move during the game. Find a better angle. Talk with the parents. Listen to fun stories. You get to really enjoy the soul and spirit of the game.

Comparing HS football, college, and the NFL ( I shot the Tennessee Titans during their first year at Adelphia Stadium in Nashville as well as other pro sports), I believe you can get just as good of photos from any of them. You get good action and reaction. You just have to pay attention.

A Hit at Bat:© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

Three rules simple rules to help you capture great sports action/reaction photos:

  • Know the sport. Understand simple things like if there is a runner on 2nd, they may attempt to run to 3rd or home when they hear the crack of the bat. Where is the smartest play?
  • Know the Team. Is the quarterback going to throw long to the wide receiver or hand it off?
  • Know the player. Is the left winger fast and aggressive? Do they pass a lot or great at footwork or both?

This is why large metro newspapers have dedicated sports photographers. They not only are great photographers, but they also know the sports and teams they cover.

Relief Pitcher:© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

Learning sports does take time, and with High School, the teams constantly change. Unlike pro sports where you may have several years with minimal roster change, every year the team changes. You can take that as a challenge or an obstacle, I take it as a challenge.

I played baseball and soccer in High School so I know the sports and positions. I like watching both on TV on occasion. But would love to attend regular Seattle Mariner or Sounders games. To be honest, knowing baseball did not help the first time I shot a minor league game.

At Bat:

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography – Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

Shooting my first pro game was in the mid 80s at the Denver Zephyrs (which moved to New Orleans in 1992). I honestly had no idea what to shoot. I just bought a used 300 f/4 for $100, called the main office and said I wanted to shoot some baseball, they said OK show up at this gate at this time and they’ll escort me to my spot. I was near 3rd base sitting in a patch of grass. I didn’t have a clue at what to shoot. I shot 1/2 a roll of Tri-X and got crap.

Will He Make It?© Paul Conrad/ Pablo Conrad Photography - Meridian Trojan boys against the Brewster Bears at Meridian High School in Bellingham on April 2, 2014. Meridian lost 5-4.

But as you progress, you learn about the game, what’s the best angle, how to stretch your creativity, how to become a better photographer. Give it time and you will see improvements.

Thank you for stopping by to read and view my work. Feel free to comment, critique, or just ask questions.

Also, feel free to share and reblog, link to, and add your site in the comment section.

Paul “pablo” Conrad

Follow me on various Social Networks:

Follow Me on Google+

Pablo Conrad Photography

“Like” my Page on Facebook

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