AFC Championship: Denver Broncos vs. New England Patriots

My first and only football game I photographed this season was quite spectacular. The energy, excitement and passion was incredible for which the Denver Broncos are heading to Super Bowl XLVIII in New York. Speaking of New York (as to how I came about covering the AFC Championship). I received a call from New York Daily News photo editor Kevin Macdonald asking me if I was interested in going? He saw my sports portfolio on my website.

While waiting for a media shuttle in downtown Denver I crossed paths with my friend and mentor Damian Strohmeyer. It’s been 30 years since Damian took me under his wing and taught me about sports photography, as well as a few life lessons. He’s been impactful in my career as well as many others and I’m so appreciative of him. I also had the opportunity to see many familiar faces of other photographers in the digital workroom and on the sidelines that made my day complete.

After being laid off last March and subsequently having to sell off my camera gear last September, I had to rent camera gear. And to make covering this event happen my sister Gail Michel fronted the funds for which I’m also so appreciative.

In going on a year of being out of this business I’m not sure what the future holds. However, I do know that if this happens be my last assignment, I went out with a great one! Here are a dozen of my favorites.

Denver Broncos head football coach John Fox celebrates a 26-16 victory over New England during the AFC Championship at Sports Authority Field in Denver. Coach Fox made a comeback after being out four games in November from heart surgery.

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Senior Portraits

Not having children of my own, it’s been a blessing for me to enjoy and watch some of my close friends (and family too), children grow up over the years. And being asked to take their senior high school portraits was an honor and a lot of fun. Casey is a senior at Horizon High School in Thornton, Colo. lettering in golf. His mother Nancy and I met while in high school ourselves. Portraits were taken at Stone House Park in Lakewood, Colo.

My friend Joe and I also met in our high school days and I photographed his daughter Emily who attends Westminster High. Emily’s younger sister Hanna stood in for a few shots as well as Casey’s girlfriend in his photo shoot.

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Red Mountain

This image is from a recent road trip to Apache Junction, Ariz. Red Mountain is part of Tonto National Forest.

Recent work

This most recent post has some of my favorites photos taken over the last three months.

Amy Hackett with American Sign stops traffic during a RTD lightrail testing of crossings at 6363 W. 16th Ave. Lamar Station in Lakewood, Colo.

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Romney at Red Rocks

Mitt Romney and running mate Paul Ryan met together for a campaign rally at Red Rocks Amphitheater in Morrison, Colo. Red Rocks is best known as a venue for summer concerts which is a natural amphitheater located just west of Denver. An estimated 10,000 supporters converged for the event.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney greets supporters concluding a rally at Red Rocks Amphitheater.

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The Search for Jessica

Volunteers assisted police authorities in Westminster, Colo. by bus loads in searching for missing 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway. Unfortunately for her family, friends and a hopeful community Jessica’s body would be discovered just off a roadway near a landfill in Arvada. The search for Jessica brought together many people for a common good and showed how our community will rally around such an unexpected tragedy.

Nakita Dvorburg, and sisters Molly and Emma Grencik, hold candles during a candlelight vigil for Jessica Ridgeway at Westminster City Park.

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Presidential Debates

Although I didn’t see hide nor hair of our sitting president or GOP challenger at the first 2012 presidential debates in Denver. I did come across a wealth of interesting things to photograph around the University of Denver campus. There were initially a group of Mitt Romney supporters lined up on the west side of University. As I walked south I approached a very (much larger group) of very vocal Barack Obama supporters that were stopped by Denver Police a block away from the Romney group.

As time went on and police continually tried to keep supporters off the street and on the sidewalk, some found a back street to take so they could line up directly across from their opponents. Occupy Denver showed up as well and paraded throughout the neighborhoods as police in riot gear followed. At that they made a complete stop at the intersection of Evans and University.

Michael Blake, Operation Vote-National Deputy Director, left, rallies a group of Barack Obama supporters.

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Colorado Community Media

Its been awhile since my last update. I started a new position as photo editor at Colorado Community Media, leaving Laramie, Wyo. toward the end of August. There are a lot of good, talented, hard-working people on staff. I am responsible for the photography of eight weekly newspapers of 19 in our newspaper chain.

It’s been a challenge learning a new system as well as trying to keep up with a with a heavy workload. Although its nice to be back in Colorado and covering new events, being close to family and old friends.

These are several of my favorites from my first month on the job.

Aiden Prince is excited as he peers through an opening in a hot air balloon basket while taking a ride up during 60-year anniversary celebration at Wooden Shoe preschool.

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Summer Concerts

Journey singer Arnel Pineda tries to get a recation from an audience by giving an ok during a Cheyenne Frontier Days concert.Neal Schon of Journey smiles while looking out over an audience at a Cheyenne Frontier Days concert.Neal Schon of Journey smiles while looking out over an audience at a Cheyenne Frontier Days concert.

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2012 Cheyenne Frontier Days

Cody Riley Pruitt of Gering, Neb. competes in tie-down roping during a Cheyenne Frontier Days rodeo.

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