I spent some time on Sunday with the Oakland Colonels of the Bay Area Vintage Base Ball League. These gentlemen not only play the game like they did back in 1886, but they look the part too. Complete with handlebar mustaches and mutton chops, these ball players are donned in reproduction uniforms from the 1880's and only use period specific reproduction balls, gloves and bats. As a photographer and baseball fan I couldn't have come across a better subject, the historical accuracy makes it that much sweeter.
The Colonels home field is at Oakland's Mosswood Park, a recreational pillar since 1907. Just as the ball fields of 1886 had no outfield fences, Mosswood Park's field follows suit complete with an 1864 Carpenter Gothic style mansion as the center field backdrop. The San Francisco Pacifics came to square off against the Colonels at 12:30PM, not exactly the best time to be shooting outdoors. Luckily for me there was a building belonging to a gardening club just behind the field, its awning provided the shade I needed and it's wall as my backdrop support.
I wanted to photograph the Colonel players similar to the tobacco advertisement 'trade cards' from the 1880's...only fitting to keep the historical accuracy. The two portraits shown above are of 'Scout' and 'Mouth', I'll post the rest of the team portraits as I finish them up.