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Wisconsin Editorial Photographer and Wisconsin Commercial Photographer Mike Roemer’s blog.

Hi, I'm Mike Roemer, a commercial, corporate, industrial, agriculture and editorial photographer based in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

 

I've lived the photography business since childhood, first tagging along during my father's long newspaper photography career before ever carrying my own camera gear. My interest grew as I watched the fascinating process of my dad making black and white images appear while shaking trays of chemicals under the red lights of a developing room.

 

My professional career started with a ten-year stint as a newspaper photographer meeting tight deadlines, adapting to curve balls and making the famous and not-so-famous comfortable in front of my lens.

 

I returned to Green Bay in the mid-1990s to start my own business, and now regularly travel around the U.S. and internationally for my clients. I enjoy the creative challenge of combining unusual angles, lighting and lens options to produce the perfect commercial image.

 

I've won first place awards in Pictures of the Year International, National Press Photographers Best of Photojournalism and National Headliners, along with being a three-time winner in the Pro Football Hall of Fame photo contest.

 

I love the variety of projects I get to work on, from healthcare organization and foundation annual reports, high-energy casino and gaming shoots, industrial projects at locations as diverse as cheese manufacturers and steel plants, to corporate culture assignments and documenting the Green Bay Packers.

 

Thanks for looking!

 

Mike

NFL Photographer • Photos From The Green Bay Packers Win Over The Seattle Seahawks • Packers Advance To The NFC Championship Game

The Green Bay Packers defeated the Seattle Seahawks 28-23 at Lambeau Field in the divisional round of the NFL football playoffs.  The Packers will play the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship with a Super Bowl appearance on the line.  Here are some of my favorite photos from covering the game, from Seattle quarterback Russel Wilson signing autographs before the game to a happy quarterback Aaron Rodgers walking off the field in celebration.  I’m happy with the way I was able to tell the story of the day and was grateful that the weather for a mid-January night actually wasn’t that bad.  Packers rookie head coach Matt LeFleur has done an amazing job getting the Packers to where they are at today after a two year drought for the Packers in the post season.

This will be my last game of the season since I don’t travel to cover the team, but hopefully the Packers make it to the Super Bowl and I’ll get to cover all the fun things that happen in the city on that night.

Thanks for looking!

Mike

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson signs an autograph for fan before the game.
Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones runs through the Seattle Seahawks defense.
The Green Bay Packers defense tries to corral in a fumble by Seattle Seahawks tight end Jacob Hollister.
The Green Bay Packers defense take down Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers signals a touchdown by Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson escapes the defensive pressure of Green Bay Packers nose tackle Kenny Clark.
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson throw a pass to Seattle Seahawks running back Travis Homer.
Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones celebrates his touchdown with quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams runs the ball in for a touchdown.
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams celebrates his second touchdown of the game.
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Jake Kumerow tackles Seattle Seahawks running back Travis Homer on a punt return.
Rapper Lil Wayne leads Packers fans in Roll Out The Barrel.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers gets sacked by Seattle Seahawks outside linebacker Shaquem Griffin and cornerback Shaquill Griffin.
Green Bay Packers fans celebrate in the final seconds of their win over the Seattle Seahawks to send them in to the NFC Championship game.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson shake hands after the game.
Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Za’Darius Smith shoots a video selfie after the game.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after defeating the Seattle Seahawks.
Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones high fives fans as he walks off the field.
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams high fives fans as he walks off the field.
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    Wisconsin Drone Photographer • Reaching One Of My 2019 Goals.

    One of my goals for 2019 was to buy my first drone, get my FAA Part 107 license to fly the drone commercially and start incorporating the drone into the work I do for my clients and my stock photography.  The FAA license isn’t about how to fly a drone, but rather how to fly one safely while understanding the restrictions in various types of air space controlled by the FAA.  I’ve been shooting aerials from planes and helicopters since my way back days of interning at various newspapers as a photographer in the mid ‘80s.  One of my frustrations with shooting from a helicopter or plane was we could never get low enough.  Legally, you can’t fly a plane or helicopter less than a thousand feet above the ground.  With a drone, however, the maximum height you’re allowed to fly is 400 feet above ground level and if you’re in controlled airspace, you may need to fly even less than that. The airspace in Green Bay has many areas with flight restrictions; there are also some no fly zones, like Lambeau Field and the area around the airport.  Even if you want to fly a drone for business or recreational purposes outside of the no-fly zone by the airport, you still need to request permission from the FAA if you are within a  5 mile radius.  My own home is in restricted airspace so any time I want to just pop the drone in the air, I need to get permission from the FAA.  Luckily, the FAA has made it much easier to access permission though an app I have on my phone.  Once I apply, I usually hear back within a few minutes if the permission has been granted,

    I took a couple of classes, watched a bazillion online videos, and did multiple online sample tests to prepare for the FAA 107 license. When it came time to take the test, I’m happy to say I passed with a 91%.  I haven’t heard of too many people scoring higher than that and maybe only one or two people who got a perfect score.  Every two years you have to retake the test in order to renew your license. Let’s hope I can pull off a passing score again.

    Making images with a drone isn’t without its challenges, but the different perspectives it gives makes it all worth while.  I love it for my agriculture work, since it allows angles I could only get before by hiring a fixed wing plane or helicopter for hundred of dollars per hour.  With the drone, I can set up my takeoff and landing site close to the area in which I’ll be photographing; this allows quick and efficient movement to get diverse shots from different perspectives.  Let’s say I was shooting a tractor planting or harvesting in a field.  If I were shooting still photos from the ground, I would shoot some long lens shots of the machinery coming at me, as well as a more medium telephoto, and then wide angle as the subject came towards me.  But I would be  somewhat limited in my angle.  I’d also need to wait for the tractor to come back around for a second swipe if I wanted to shoot more.  With the drone, I can easily move around the field to get different backgrounds, lighting, and field patterns; I can also vary my height.  Some people think every drone shot needs to be taken from as high as possible, but I love being able to shoot from just 20, 30, or 40 feet above and either behind or in front of the tractor.   When I shoot the work in the field, I might add some height to capture interesting patterns in the field as well.

    As I’ve become more confident in my skills, I’ve also been sending the drone out over the water to shoot anything from lighthouses to surfers.  Just a few weeks ago, I stopped at one of my favorite spots on Lake Michigan to catch surfers and was rewarded with some very cool photos of the bright surfboard against the pattern of the waves.  The ground level shots wouldn’t have been nearly as interesting; with the overcast sky and the surfer in a wet suit, there was not much differentiation in color between him and the water.  Once winter sets in, I hope to get out to some lighthouses with ice accumulating on them. I’ve already talked to a commercial fisherman to get some drone shots as he busts his way out of a frozen river.

    I’ve also become more comfortable in my skills to fly the drone indoors, and I just completed both still and video shots in a production facility in Illinois.  The video shots I got as the drone flew down an aisle in a warehouse as forklifts picked items of shelves was very cool.

    One of the biggest challenges in adding drone photography to my business was dealing with insurance.  Many of the major insurance companies won’t insure you when you fly a drone commercially.  If you buy one for you and your kids to fly around and take some shots of your house, you’re probably insured. But once you start getting something in exchange for the shots, you usually aren’t covered even with a normal business policy.  I found a vendor that allows me to vary the amount of liability insurance I need for a specific shoot, with the upper limit being ten million dollars.  It also allows me to buy insurance for just the duration of the shoot.  If I’m flying the drone around a farmer’s field, I usually don’t need the same level of liability as I would if I’m flying my drone above a piece of machinery in a production line that would result in major problems if I crashed the drone into it.

    It does get frustrating when I see shots that I know violate various FAA rules governing drone flight.  One rule is that you have to maintain the drone in your visual line of sight at all times. You also can’t take off or land in a state or national park. So when I see a shot of a lighthouse inside of a state park from 50 feet off the light, and the terrain is such that I know it would be impossible to maintain a visual line of sight to the drone, it’s obviously a rule violation –  even if you could fly to the location and back from your take off and landing spot outside the park.  Or when I see shots of a building popping out of low level fog, I know the drone pilot violated maintaining a visual line of site with the drone because of the fog; also, you’re required to have 3 miles of visibility to fly, so there is another rule violated.

    The FAA is continuously making changes to the rules for drones.  Some of these rules will not only make it much harder for drone owners to fly their drones without having an FAA license, but it will also clamp down on both hobbyists and commercial pilots that are not flying within the rules. From what I’m reading, it won’t be long before all drones will need to have a transponder in them to let the FAA know to whom the drone is registered.  Most drones built in the last few years have those transponders built in; they just need to be activated.

    Below are some of my favorite drone shots from 2019. Special thanks to Bill Bongle of Titletown Drones and the wisdom he shared in the classes I took with him.  He made sure I didn’t crash the drone I bought from him on my first flight.  He also has been a great resource in answering technical or industry questions throughout the year.

    Thanks for looking!

    Mike


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      Wisconsin Sports Photographer • Maybe I angered the photo gods.

      Once again the Green Bay Packers did not score a touchdown in the north end zone at Lambeau Field. I apologize to all the fans that buy tickets in the north end zone; I feel like it’s my fault. Maybe I angered the photo gods, and this is payback? Even though the Packers – and not even the Bears – scored in the end zone I cover on Sunday, I’m happy with my photos. I think I told the story of the Packers defeating the Bears on a cold December day. I like a couple of the photos of quarterback Aaron Rodgers reacting to scoring that I was able to shoot all the way across the field, something the photographers in the south didn’t have as nice of an angle on. I also was in just the right spot for a defensive turnover when Packers Dean Lowry intercepted a pass. I also like a couple of the pregame shots of fans and players in the cold and even the shot I captured of Packers players walking off the field after the win.

      Hopefully if the Packers host a playoff game, the scoring flood gates will open up in the north.

      Thanks for looking!

      Mike

      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers warms up before the game.
      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers eyes up a receiver during warmups.
      Green Bay Packers tight end Marcedes Lewis poses for a selfie with a fan before the game.
      Green Bay Packers cornerback Chandon Sullivan and Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur before the game.
      Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones after saying a short prayer before the game.
      Green Bay Packers cornerback Tramon Williams loses control of the ball on a kickoff return, but a Bears penalty was called on the play negating the turnover.
      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers looks for a receiver.
      Chicago Bears cornerback Kevin Toliver II breaks up a pass intended for Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams.
      Chicago Bears Nick Kwiatkoski shows his frustration after not being able to pull in a pass to Green Bay Packers tight end Jimmy Graham for an interception.
      Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones tries to get away from the defensive pressure of Chicago Bears linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis.
      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers tries to keep out of the grasp of Chicago Bears linebacker Leonard Floyd
      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and running back Aaron Jones celebrate a touchdown.
      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers celebrates a touchdown.
      Chicago Bears running back Tarik Cohen gets tripped up by Green Bay Packers cornerback Kevin King.
      Green Bay Packers defensive end Dean Lowry tries to get to the end zone after intercepting a Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky pass as Chicago Bears offensive tackle Rashaad Coward tries to stop him.
      Green Bay Packers defensive end Dean Lowry celebrates intercepting a Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky pass.
      Green Bay Packers defensive end Dean Lowry celebrates intercepting a Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky pass.
      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers watches the final seconds of the Packers win over the Bears.
      Chicago Bears head coach Matt Nagy and Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur shake hands after the Packers defeated the Bears.
      Green Bay Packers running back Jamaal Williams celebrates the Packers win.
      Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after the Packers defeated the Bears.
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        Green Bay Wisconsin Editorial Photographer • Packers Defeat The Redskins To Go 10-3 On The 2019 Season.

        The Green Bay Packers defeated the Washington Redskins on Sunday 20-15 to go 10-3 on the season, but from my viewpoint as a photographer positioned in the north end zone, it sure was a boring game.  I feel like I’m a broken record saying not much action happened in my end zone, but the Packers only scored two touchdowns and both of those were in the south end zone.  I may have jinxed the north end zone and apologize to all of the fans that have paid for good money for tickets in the north.

        Sunday is a new game and hopefully, the Packers go crazy with their scoring in my end zone.  The Packers will take on the Chicago Bears, who have been playing some pretty good ball lately.  The Packers defeated the Bears to open the season in Chicago, but this will be a different game.  So far, the weather looks pretty decent for a mid-December game, but I wouldn’t mind a little snow falling for Sunday.

        The Packers are currently the number two seed in the NFC and would get a week off in the playoffs before hosting in the divisional round.  Let’s hope the Packers can win their last three games against divisional rivals the Bears, Vikings, and Lions.  With a little luck – okay maybe a lot of luck – they could get the number one seed. But, if they stumble in these last few games, they could easily fall into wild card weekend.

        So, these are my favorite photos from covering the game. Nothing great, but hopefully next weekend the Packers score like mad in my endzone and I have some better stuff to show.

        Thanks for looking!

        Mike

        Green Bay Packers Head Coach Matt LaFleur.
        Green Bay Packers fans.
        Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Za’Darius Smith triest to get around Washington Redskins offensive guard Ereck Flowers as he chases after Washington Redskins quarterback Dwayne Haskins.
        Green Bay Packers cornerback Jaire Alexander.
        Washington Redskins strong safety Landon Collins and cornerback Jimmy Moreland take down Green Bay Packers wide receiver Allen Lazard.
        Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers tries to get out of the grasp of Washington Redskins nose tackle Daron Payne.
        Green Bay Packers inside linebacker Blake Martinez sacks Washington Redskins quarterback Dwayne Haskins.
        Green Bay Packers strong safety Adrian Amos intercepts a pass intended for Washington Redskins wide receiver Kelvin Harmon.
        Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones tries to get around Washington Redskins free safety Montae Nicholson.
        Washington Redskins Chris Thompson fumbles as he is hit by Green Bay Packers Darnell Savage.
        Washington Redskins linebacker Ryan Anderson and nose tackle Daron Payne try to take down Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
        Washington Redskins defensive end Matthew Ioannidis and inside linebacker Jon Bostic sack Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
        Washington Redskins cornerback Fabian Moreau knocks the ball loose from Green Bay Packers wide receiver Geronimo Allison.
        Washington Redskins quarterback Dwayne Haskins tries to run in a two point conversion.
        Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Washington Redskins running back Adrian Peterson talk after the Packers defeated the Redskins.
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          Green Bay, Wisconsin Sports Photographer • Packers Defeat The Panthers In A Snow Globe Game

          As I loaded up my camera gear to shoot Sunday’s Green Bay Packers vs the Carolina Panther NFL football game at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin yesterday, I took a look at the hourly weather forecast. I chose not to bring my rain and snow covers since the chance of precipitation was 0% until midnight when it went up to a whopping 5%.  Let’s just say the forecast was a tad off. Midway through the first half of the game, a light snow started to fall.  I’ve shot a few photo friendly snow globe games at Lambeau Field and this one would rank right up against those.  

          Shooting in falling snow has its challenges, especially with telephoto lenses.  It makes it difficult for the camera and lens to find focus on your subject when there is a mess of snow between you and your subject. Another issue when shooting cold weather football games is that heat waves interfere with the sharpness of your images.  The heat waves come from the heaters in the bench areas and can push out on to the playing field.  I don’t shoot much from the bench area during cold weather games because of this and try to shoot as much as I can from the end zone.  Despite the challenges that shooting in snow and cold create, I do like the look of the photos and I’d much rather shoot in snow than in rain.

          Here are some of my favorite photos from the game.  

          Thanks for looking!

          Mike

          Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones runs in to the end zone for a touchdown.
          Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones celebrates his touchdown.
          Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones celebrates a touchdown with wide receiver Davante Adams.
          Carolina Panthers linebacker Mario Addison tries to take down Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
          Carolina Panthers strong safety Colin Jones tackles Green Bay Packers running back Jamaal Williams.
          Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers looks for a receiver.
          Carolina Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen fumbles the ball.
          The Carolina Panthers defense pressures Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers as he tries to pass out of the end zone.
          Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers gets ready to catch a penalty flag as Carolina Panthers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy looks on for roughing the passer.
          Green Bay Packers linebacker Rashan Gary pressures Carolina Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen.
          Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey fumbles the ball as Green Bay Packers defensive back Ibraheim Campbell applies pressure.
          Carolina Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen throws down field.
          Green Bay Packers cornerback Tramon Williams intercepts a ball intended for Carolina Panthers wide receiver Jarius Wright after being tipped by strong safety Adrian Amos.
          Green Bay Packers cornerback Tramon Williams celebrates his interception with Green Bay Packers strong safety Adrian Amos.
          Green Bay Packers cornerback Kevin King defends a pass intended for Carolina Panthers wide receiver Curtis Samuel.
          Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones runs through the Carolina Panthers defense.
          Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers throws a pass downfield.
          Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Preston Smith celebrates a sack.
          Carolina Panthers linebacker Bruce Irvin and cornerback Javien Elliott takes down Green Bay Packers tight end Jimmy Graham on a long catch and run.
          Carolina Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen throws downfield.
          Green Bay Packers outside linebacker Preston Smith pressures Carolina Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen.
          Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers pause as they walk off Lambeau Field after defeating the Carolina Panthers to shoot a cell phone video.




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