Saturday’s Season Opener Doubleheader (all those adjectives!) was rowdy fun. A huge crowd of fans turned out in Cortland – the ILWR faithful as well as many, many derby newbies. The JM McDonald Sports Complex was jam-packed and raucous. I was there for both bouts, shooting for the first time in the arena and also with a brand-new lens – slightly telephoto.

I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark II and, on this night, a 85mm lens. I borrowed my friend George’s (Furious George, photographer and referee) camera bracket; I am in love with the camera bracket and am indebted to George for introducing it to me. The bracket moves my flash just slightly off the center axis of my camera – just enough to make the light interesting. Plus, the bracket gives me super powers – transforming me, temporarily, into a professional (looking) photographer. Never underestimate the power of confidence!

Well, from looking at my favorite photos from the evening, you would not guess at the noise level or spiritedness of the night. Every image is still with anticipation. We are waiting for something to happen — for the whistle to blow, for an opponent to strike, for the games to begin, for the clock to run down. For me, the theme was anticipation.

Lauren (Shatterbug) has been taking pictures of the ILWR since August 09. An amateur who is smitten by documentary-style photograhy, she knew she had found her subject when she walked into a SufferJets practice session for the first time. She has become a true fan of the sport, a sincere admirer of the league and its skaters and a member of the extended derby family.