Artistry and Athletics: SVCS Welcomes Sports Photographer Shanna Lockwood

By Michelle DeLateur, Teacher, Capturing the Athletic World

The curiosities started with a baseball floating in mid air

“How did she do that?” students wondered. Maybe someone tossed it for her? Or perhaps it was edited in post? In this case, students were able to ask the photographer herself.

The inaugural class of Capturing the Athletic World welcomed Shanna Lockwood, official photographer for the University of Auburn Athletics and former Digital Media Manager and Photo Editor for USA Today, to learn more about her work.

A new Upper School course developed out of student interest in filming, editing, and sharing sports material, Capturing the Athletic World investigates our relationship with sports, how we capture athletic stories, and why we find the sports world interesting. The course also dives into real world applications of capturing stories and athletic moments, a process that Shanna is certainly familiar with.

Shanna, discussing her 2013 shot from the “miracle” Georgia-Auburn game

Shanna entertained questions and inspired students, sharing her favorite sport to capture (swimming), her most iconic image (the 2013 “miracle” game between Auburn and Georgia), and her favorite shot (Houston Texans player J.J. Watt with fireworks exploding behind him), all while explaining her process, inspiration, and technical expertise. 


As for the floating baseball, Shanna did have help (a security guard tossed the baseball for her), but she also went through a process of trial and error to ensure the correct height and alignment of the ball. Practicing and evaluating performance is a process both athletes and artists embark on.  The many overlaps between artistry and athleticism, along with reflecting on the power and stories of sports, are a key component of the new course. 

Next up, Capturing the Athletic World will embark on creating media stories of their own from Upper School athletics. We can’t wait to share them with you!  

Credit: Shanna Lockwood