Last week we began to prepare for a shoot we are doing on Coast Guard Rescue Swimmers.

Richard getting excited around the Blackhawk

Richard getting excited around the Blackhawk

We will be shooting the swimmers over several days and covering them in all aspects of their work. In order for us to do the aerial component and work in the helicopters over the ocean, the Coast Guard is requiring us to complete some special training… and any time the military wants to give us some training, we are more than happy to oblige!

Discussing flight ops

Discussing flight ops

Our day (as usual) began well before sunup. Richard and I met our friend Petty Officer Luke Pinneo from the Coast Guard public affairs office and headed south to Air Station Cape Cod located on the Mass Military Reservation at old Otis Air Force Base.  I have mentioned Luke before. Luke and I met when I taught down at DINFOS. Luke is talented photographer in his own right, and he has been great to work with on this project.

Meeting up at the Rescue Swimmer shop

Meeting up at the Rescue Swimmer shop

Greg and Luke

Greg and Luke

Whatever we do, we cant seem to begin a day without it being dark outside! So thank God Luke was driving, because Richard and I were exhausted. (Actually, we were worried that Luke would not want to hang with us anymore as we slept in the car both on the way down, AND the way back!!!! Thanks for driving Luke!)

We are so fortunate in our work as we get the wonderful opportunity to shoot photographs of such a wide variety of subjects. One day we will be in a chem-lab, the next we might be hanging out of an airplane, and the next we could be shooting in a soap factory.


Above all, I think my favorite subject to work with has to be the military. Personally its rewarding because of my own connection with the Army, but professionally, in my experience, they are some of the most motivated and squared away individuals you can meet. Working with soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines always seems to push my level of creativity. Their professional attitude tends to rub off, and you can’t help but shoot better images. Every time we get the chance to work with a high speed outfit like the Rescue Swimmers, we are so very grateful!


Our day was to be split into two segments. First, we would be tested in the pool to make sure that we would be able to operate in the water without problems. Second, we would go back to the helicopter hanger and be briefed on the gear we would be using while flying and covering rescue operations.

Anyway, once on the base, we met up with the Rescue Swimmers at their shop, hooked up with our training officer, were issued gear, and headed out to the pool.

All in all, the day went great! Thanks again to Petty Officer Pinneo, as well as LT Brendan A Blain for putting our training together, and to John, our trainer. You guys rock!

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