Was sooooo cool to watch the 4×100 Relay win the gold last night!!! Woooo hooooo!!!!!

It was a joy to watch Cullen accepting his gold, and Garrett Weber-Gale and “half man-half chlorine” Michael Phelps’ reaction to the win was priceless…. what a final leg by Jason Lezak!!!!!

I have to say, I chose not to finish filling out the details for a media pass to the Olympics nearly two years ago because I knew that it would be such a long break from all the other responsibilities of studio work, and the thought of leaving my children for that long is kinda unfathomable.

But watching them all up there accepting their medals, kissing them, turning to the camera and smiling those megawatt smiles, I had that piercing “oh, man, i could’ve been there capturing that!!

An ambassador for African American swimmers, Jones cares a great deal about knocking down stereotypes about race and swimming, and he’s an exceptional example of how far you can go, starting at inner city pools to breaking world records to a high-profile sponsorship with Nike, to the top of the podium, accepting gold. Wow.

(interesting bit of photography trivia: because Cullen Jones is sponsored by Nike, the cap that he donned for our shoot had was of course branded – but for some reason it also was a defective swoosh – it was inexplicably facing the wrong way. We noticed it when we were narrowing down the images to use, and after checking with Cullen’s agent, it was determined: yes, it matters. In the end, we used about 15 images in the spread and scattered throughout the editorial, and I had to re-swoosh each swoosh, all different sizes in relation to the perspective of the images, so that each swoosh faced the correct way. I now have a new line item on my advanced editing fee chart for Swoosh Shifting :)

A cute blurb from Cullen, alluding to the sheer amount of serious work every one of these athletes put in to get to these games… is his mom proud, or what????