Faces of the NBA

Apr 20 2015

I have spent my career photographing athletes for the NBA, NHL, Nike and many others. At NBA All-Star Weekend, I decided to try a slightly unorthodox photography method — the tintype wet plate, a process that dates back to the mid-1800s. Using a Graflex Super D 4×5 Single Lens Reflex Camera, I captured each image and immediately processed them in chemicals to a final sheet of metal. The process did not allow for much trial and error. With only minutes to photograph each player, a quick shoot happens incredibly slowly. I took some extra time with Chris Paul to talk to him about the tintype and how I wanted to capture multiple images of him on one sheet of tin — a tight portrait shot overlaying an image of his three fingers to highlight his nickname, CP3. After much discussion as to how to position his hand, we got one of my favorite shots of the weekend.

Photos by Jennifer Pottheiser/NBAE/Getty Images