Meeting Photo Challenges
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Creating Better Photographics
Night & Low Light Photography
Light & Exposure
Close-Up & Macro
Digital Black & White
Color & Design
Choosing & Using Lenses
Digital Photography Equipment
Bob Lilly: Hall of Fame Football Player Bob Lilly Shoots Scenics
All photos by Bob Lilly
Most of us associate the name Bob
Lilly with the legendary Dallas Cowboys player—one of football’s
former stars, immortalized in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Coach Tom Landry
has stated, “I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again.
In my lifetime, there hasn’t been a player as good as Lilly.” As
a pro player for 14 years, Lilly has enjoyed many firsts—the team’s
first draft choice, first Pro Bowl selection, first Ring of Honor member and
first Hall of Famer.
Lilly set out about photographing his teammates, and games that took place at the Hula Bowl in Hawaii and the Shriners’ All-Star game in San Francisco. By the time he became the number-one draft choice of the Dallas Cowboys, he was hooked on photography. He shot candid photos of the Cowboys and their coaches, and generally had a camera with him wherever he went. He invested in a Leica M2, with 35mm, 50mm and 90mm lenses. Lilly shot only black-and-white for the first eight years, and transformed the bathroom in his apartment into a darkroom. “I put some plywood over the bathtub to hold my developing trays, washed prints in the sink, and replaced the lightbulb with an amber safelight. This is how I created my first pictures!” Since the early days he’s always had a darkroom, he says. With no formal photographic training, Lilly was strongly influenced by photographers like Ansel Adams and Eliot Porter.
A New Direction
It was around 1984, Lilly points
out, that “I really got involved with landscape photography.” Although
he had taken mostly black-and-white photos up till then, he got a large color
processor for his darkroom in New Mexico. In 1986, he moved on to a more-advanced
setup that allowed him to create Cibachrome prints, as well as printing from
his color and black-and-white negatives.
A Variety of Tools
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