Aaron Ashley plays basketball for Cleveland Heights High School. His Junior year he broke his leg in a game and after rehabing he was diagnosed with Gullian-Barre syndrome; a disease that attacks the nervous system. He battled back and was granted a 5th year of eligibility to become a top basketball player in the state of Ohio.
We were given the honor of producing this video to showcase Aaron's story on the ESPN Rise website. You can view it there at: espnrise.com/riseabove
We scripted a short storyboard and I knew I wanted some specific shots but, when we arrived at the high school for the shoot, it was raining and everyone was inside for practice. We had to share the gym with the softball team and the weight room was off limits for the football team.
We grabbed a hurried 15 minutes of b-roll shots in the gym and then headed to the athletic office (the only quiet room left in the school) for the interviews. When we finished the interviews I asked Aaron if I could follow him to the locker room for one last shot. When we walked in, the quiet solitude of the empty lockers and single light sparked the idea of the opening shot. It ended up being my favorite sequence and I was really glad I checked that out before leaving.
We had our Nikon D7000 and our 17-55 f2.8 and our 24-70 f2.8. For the moving shots we had our glidecam 4000 and our DIY slider made with IGUS parts. The interview was shot on both the D7000 and the Canon T2i and audio was captured on the Countryman B6 lav and a Sony IC recorder.
Special thanks to Aaron Ashley, Coach Egan, Margaret and the staff at ESPN Rise and a big thanks to Danny Vega, the best sports photographer I have ever known.
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