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Photography, sports make for harmonious fit



Tap into Andy Chasteen's life at any given moment and discover a man who lives for the next adventure. Whether he is perilously scaling the face of a mountain, grinding his way through a double marathon, or cycling in a 100-mile road race " Chasteen is in his element.

The 32-year-old Oklahoma City resident has never met an endurance challenge he didn't embrace.

When he isn't competing, Chasteen can usually still be found close by, searching for the perfect shot with his Nikon D300 camera. And while his photography ranges from weddings and portraits to commercial and corporate projects, his lens never strays too far from sports adventure stuff.

This past weekend in Wichita Falls, he spent Friday evening shooting a criterium bike race in freelance mode before turning around Saturday to compete in his first category 4 race at the Hotter 'N Hell 100.

"It was a great experience. I didn't win like I wanted to, but the race gave me an idea of how I match up with that kind of field," said Chasteen, who finished 10th out of more than 100 riders in his category. "And then to be able to do some freelance work while I was there " that makes for a perfect weekend."

Chasteen is a professional photographer by trade, working out of his studio near Bricktown. Like sports, it's something for which he has passion.

The challenge of finding the perfect natural lighting or a distinctly unique angle are elements that fuel Chasteen's "other" passion, which he randomly discovered he had an eye for back in 2003 while doing some climbing one day.

"I just picked up my buddy's camera and starting shooting " and just fell in love with it. A few days later, I ordered some camera equipment, and here I am doing it full-time now for a living," said Chasteen.

Since taking up photography, his work has been published in any number of local and national publications. But when asked about his day job, the Missouri native raises an inquisitive eyebrow in response.

"My photography really isn't work. It's something I love to do. There is challenging element to it, like capturing a different or unusual moment " but that's what makes it fun," he said. "Jay C. Upchurch


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