Huntsville Otters Tournament – Image of the Week


The Tournament – Huntsville Otters Tournament

The Huntsville Otters Tournament was held at the Canada Summit Centre in Huntsville and the Lake of Bays Arena in Baysville. The tournament was host to eighteen rep teams: nine Atom and nine Bantam teams. This is our second year photographing the action in Huntsville. Now that we have moved to London, ON, it is a bit of a drive for us to get to Huntsville so this tournament actually seemed like a little vacation! We had a road trip there and back and stayed in the quaint little Rainbow Inn with a king sized bed and a fireplace. Staying so close to the arenas made dragging our butts to photograph the 8am game a little bit easier.

I’m from a small town not far from Huntsville called Killaloe and if you read our About page, you know I grew up playing, coaching and reffing hockey. I really enjoy getting to spend time in close knit communities like Huntsville to photograph hockey and give kids photos of the same great memories I have.

The Image

Here is the Huntsville Otters Tournament Image of the Week. This one is for all the coaches out there. I’m sure if you ask any hockey parent about the hockey season, they’ll say their lives are centered around the game for eight months of the year. For a coach it’s more. It’s early morning practices and late night play making. They know the stats, habits and name of every child on the team, not just one. I really enjoyed being on the bench of the Elmvale Atom Rep team. These coaches seemed to care deeply about positively teaching and mentoring the kids, but also that everybody was having fun. I found out from the team’s manager that none of the four coaches had a child on the team. They volunteered simply because they wanted to coach a hockey team together. Now that’s love for the game!

The Settings

When I zoom out to 120mm to photograph the action on the bench, I find that I have to change my exposure to compensate for the loss of light reflecting off the ice. The benches are normally a little darker and I don’t need to freeze action so I just change my shutter speed from 1/1000 to 1/640. This image was shot at f2.8, 1/640 at ISO 6400.

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I thought it was interesting that most of the images I really liked from this tournament were of goalies staring intensely at the puck. Here is a look at a few more photographs that were considered for Image of the Week:


About Julie Whelan

Julie Whelan, professional photographer of over fifteen years, has had the opportunity to shoot all over the globe--from capturing portraits in Vanuatu to shooting off rooftops in Maui to photographing products in Calgary. She now finds herself in Ontario photographing outdoor adventures and the active lifestyles of athletic individuals and athletes in competition & training. Julie has also worked with professional athletes such as Don Cherry, Darryl Sittler, and Roberto Alomar. When not behind the lens, Julie likes to unwind with a good book or spending time in the garden.

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