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|| News Item: Posted 2012-06-08

By Robert Hanashiro, Sports Shooter

Photo by Karen Warren

Photo by Karen Warren

Robert Seale, right, photographs Brad Mangin holding the hat SF Giants pitcher Ed Halicki wore when he threw a no-hitter against the NY Mets at Candlestick Park in San Francisco in 1975. Seale and Mangin are in the basement of the Hall of Fame.
My buddy Brad Mangin is the most passionate “baseball guy” I know --- who else would be able to debate with me the merits of Giants’ shortstops Johnnie LeMaster and Hal Lanier?

Like me, Brad got his love of sports from his family and that’s maybe why we both care so much about the sport … that handing-down-from-father-to-son stuff.

Brad has donated nearly 4,000 of his transparencies --- that’s right, slides, chromes, you know those little things in a cardboard holder ---to the Baseball Hall of Fame. My first thought was “that makes sense”.

But I think it goes beyond just a love of the sport.

“My dream as an adult was to become the Giants radio play-by-play guy like Lon Simmons or Al Michaels.” Brad told me recently, “If that didn't work I would settle for buying season tickets. The radio thing never worked out, but through photography I got the next best thing: a field-level seat witnessing history and shooting the game I love.”

Baseball fans collect programs, bubblegum cards, newspaper clippings (remember those?), bobblehead dolls and other assorted trinkets, reminders of your team, favorite players or most importantly a trip to the stadium.

Brad over the years has captured memories and history. Besides a love for baseball, Brad has a love for tradition and history, a couple of things that are lost in the age of espn’s (meaningless) homer highlights, bloggers sitting in their underwear in front of a computer regurgitating news and $600 box seats.

“I like to think of myself as a baseball historian, and now that my images go straight to Cooperstown I take that responsibility very seriously,” said Brad, “This makes going to the ballpark and working hard more satisfying than ever.

“With my recent donation to the Hall of Fame my images will be able to be seen and used by baseball fans all over the world for generations to come.”

There is also another part to Brad’s generous gift to baseball … a love of photography.

These days we are so wrapped up in mega-pixels, Canon vs. Nikon and the decay of the photography business that we’ve lost sight of what got a lot of us to into this: A love of photography.

Like a bad soap opera, my love for photography has not always been true. Like life, it’s difficult. But reading Brad’s thoughts on his donation to the H.O.F. I couldn’t help but think back on a lot of great times I’ve had at sports events and how lucky I’ve been to have (apologies to Rod Mar) “The Best Seat In The House.”

“I love the HOF and all the people who work there, from President Jeff Idelson to everyone else who lives year-round in that tiny town to preserve the game's history,” Brad told me. “The HOF is a non-profit educational institution. It is supported by private donations and does not pay for artifacts. Donations like mine are what keep the museum going, and I am proud to be able to contribute to this great cause.”

Thanks Brad Mangin for your donation to the Baseball Hall of Fame. And thanks for reminding me to love photography.

* * *

Photo by

Matt Brown, center, works with Sports Shooter Academy Participants
We recently held the ninth Sports Shooter Academy workshop and like each of our previous educational programs I took away more than I put in. And believe me that is a lot!

These workshops would not be possible without the help of dozens of friends. I would be remiss if I didn’t thanked as many of them as possible…

The Sports Shooter Academy could not be held without the tireless efforts of co-founder Matt Brown. It is through Matt that we are able to schedule all of the college athletics we do and shooting top-flight sports is what makes the SSA THE coolest!

The instructor lineup is a who’s-who of sports photography … these guys took time away from their busy schedules and from their families to help with SSA IX. So a BIG THANKS to: Wally Skalij, Myung Chun, Rod Mar, Shawn Cullen, John McDonough, Mike Goulding, Dave Black and Sean Haffey. Two good friends helped run the behind-the-scenes logistics and keep me sane: Christy Radecic and Rafael Delgado … I am forever in your debt for your good humor and patience.

Nikon provided us with funding to pay the tuition for all of the students that attended the workshop and thanks goes out to Bill Pekala for his continued support of the workshops and to his dedication to photography education. Nikon also had three wonderful people at SSA IX providing tech support, guidance in the field and a ton of gear … thanks Sara Moosbrugger, Mike Corrado and Ron Taniwaki.

Samy’s Camera again supported us with both funding and equipment. A big thanks to Sam, Louis, Terry and Patrick!

Dave Honl and Honl Photo hit a home run with their support of the Workshop & Luau, Jr. held the day before SSA IX.

Think Tank Photo has been with The Academy since day one and this year they again sponsored the award for the best photo of the workshop, along with lots of cool products for both the participants and faculty.

liveBooks again was a tremendous help with products and support. Thanks Matt Bailey and Melissa Dubasik!

PocketWizard provided their remote gear for workshoppers to use in the field and super-tech Ian Ray was on hand for the entire five days. PocketWizard also held a couple of contests within the workshop for best remote and best portrait photos.

SanDisk and CameraBits (maker of Photo Mechanic) both provided products for SSA IX participants.

Thanks to Cal State Fullerton, U.C. Irvine, Fullerton College, Santa Ana College, Golden West College, Irvine Valley College and East Los Angeles College; the Belmont Short Rugby Club; Scott Hochstad and the lacrosse players from LXM PRO; Roller Derby Skaters PITA, D Cup and Kilo Kitty; Stan Liu and beach volleyball players Laura Ratto, Jenelle Koester, Meride Boyer, Katie Kahlweiss, Melanie Fleig and Derek Olsen.

Fifty-two students and photographers attend SSA IX, their desire to learn and to work hard were evident throughout the workshop.

And last but not least, thanks to Deanna and Emma … without their love, support and patience I would not be able to put on THE coolest sports photography event of the year!

* * *

Photo by

Elton John's "Tumbleweed Connection" and The Civil Wars "Live At Amoeba"

This delayed edition of the Sports Shooter Newsletter features a wide range of features that should both educate and inspire. Keith Birmingham writes about using an old Nikkor 500 mirror lens to cover the LA Dodgers; Preston Mack weighs the merits --- including the mega-pixels --- of Nikon’s two new DSLRs the D4 and D800; Nic Coury writes about a tool that should be in every photographers’ camera bag --- professionalism; James Madelin asks an important question and we have two reports about Sports Shooter Academy IX from Cooper Neill and Paul Bergstrom.

* * *

Elton John’s best LP ever 1970’s “Tumbleweed Connection” is getting lots of play in my office this week, as is a very cool live EP from The Civil Wars “Live At Amoeba”. And from my reading list: I just finished what I think is the best of John Sanford’s Lucas Davenport series “Buried Prey”.

As always, special thanks to: Deanna & Emma Hanashiro, Brad Mangin, Grover Sanschagrin, Joe Gosen and Jason Burfield.

Thanks this month to contributors: Keith Birmingham, Preston Mack, Nic Coury, Cooper Neill, Paul Bergstrom and James Madelin.

The comments, opinions and other perceived nutty statements that the writers may have expressed, implied, imagined or made up are theirs and theirs alone. Sports Shooter, Inc. and published these articles in good faith with the purpose of education and inspiration. Permission in writing must be obtained from Sports Shooter, Inc. and the author of the article before being reprinted. I welcome any comments, corrections, suggestions and contributions. Please e-mail me at

The Sports Shooter Archives, as well as tons of cool resources and information, can be accessed at

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