About three weeks ago I photographed the Bay 101 tournament for the World Poker Tour in San Jose, Calif.
I was contacted by the WPT about freelancing for them at one of their tournaments that they needed images from. This was an awesome opportunity and I was thrilled to be offered the chance to work with them. So, I made the trip up to the Bay Area and spent Friday evening – and many more hours into the morning – shooting the Final Table.
I’ve seen poker tournaments on TV, and know a couple people who have played professionally at various levels. So while it wasn’t a completely new experience being around television cameras, professional talent, etc., working with this major brand was a new setting for myself.
The staff of the WPT was wonderful though – everyone I came in contact with that evening was very helpful and everyone pretty much seemed to know I was there for the evening replacing their normal photographer and they all made sure I was able to do and shoot everything I needed that evening.
So, to the staff of the WPT, Thank you! I had an amazing time and you all were great!
Hopefully I get the chance to work with the WPT in the future; until then I hope you guys enjoy the images. I’m sharing a small collection of some of my favorite shots from the evening.
Final Table, before the start of the match.
The Royal Flush Girls
Getting started for the night
Vivek Rajkumar took 4th – winning $295,800
Casey McCarrel took 5th place, $221,800
Mike “The Mouth” Matusow took 3rd place, $369,800
Kimberly was extremely friendly made sure to give me enough time to get a nice shot of her in the booth.
Occasionally there were some moments where everyone was laughing and had some great expressions.
Moments like this were much more interesting though. Alan Sternberg ended up taking 1st place, winning $1,039,000 that night. But there were a few points that he lost some sizable hands.
Equally stressful were some major losses by Vivek. This was shortly after he lost a few hundred thousand dollar hands.
Getting ready for the final two.
The stare-downs were pretty intense.
Steven Kelly ended up taking 2nd place, $595,300.
Waiting on the flop.
Alan wins, and in congratulated by Vince Van Patten, Tony Dunst, and the Royal Flush Girls
The winning hand.
Group shot of everyone.
Really awesome experience working with the WPT that evening. I spent some time chatting with various people behind the scenes, got to meet a few members of the WPT talent, and also chatted with some of the Royal Flush Girls who were all surprisingly friendly (I say because a lot of models I’ve met are not, haha).
I look forward to the next time I get the chance to work with a great group of people like this.
Coming up for me is a trip out to Tennessee for the holiday weekend – so check back soon for new additions to my portrait series!