Back2Back DVD being offered by Pierce

DVD chronicles the Flashes’ 2003-2004 seasons

By: Sean Moylan
   Janet Pierce’s fantastic action-packed photographs of the two-time defending Group I championship Florence Flashes football team have graced the pages of The Register-News more than a few times over the past two years or so. Remarkably she was doing professional quality work from the moment she started clicking away on the sidelines roughly four years ago. Yet Pierce’s latest — and perhaps greatest — excursion into the Arts may end up having the most everlasting impact on fans of Florence football.
   Pierce has put together a DVD, which chronicles the Flashes’ 2003-2004 seasons called "Back2Back." In "Back2Back" Pierce uses photo montages set to music to recreate the incredible winning spirit of the past two championships. The DVD has the sensibility and direction of a Ken Burns’ documentary mixed with an MTV flair. It is an incredible accomplishment for a person who is basically learning on the job.
   "I don’t know when I got the idea for a video. Usually I’d make a poster for the football team. But at the end of last year I said to myself ‘what can I do that’s better’," said Pierce.
   Pierce is always trying to top herself. Yet she is also willing to go through periods of trial and error to get better. Pierce’s daughter Jamie got her interested in taking pictures for the school (she also takes shots at Florence’s Pop Warner games). At first she ran into basic problems like dead batteries or just not getting the shot. Now she prepares herself for almost anything that can come her way during a game.
   "Now I use a lipo battery. You can shoot over 500 shots with it," said Pierce, who uses an Olympus Camedia E-10 digital camera. "I’m looking to upgrade. I bought it on E-Bay."
   During most games she’ll take hundreds of shots and she’ll even download her first-half photos during the halftime break. Pierce’s style is shoot everything . Sometimes it will result in a magnificent photo like the one she took of Florence running back Abree Jones seemingly floating in midair with the ball. That photo is actually in "Back2Back." Other times she may only get a couple of decent shots in an entire game.
   "I don’t look until I get home," remarked Pierce. "This year the New Egypt game was horrible. Not only was there bad lighting (it was a night game) but it was raining too."
   Pierce took enough great shots over the past few years to produce a great DVD. The video starts with a written intro in Star Wars’ slanted lettering, but after that Pierce lets her photos and the music tell the story of each game of the 2004 season. But the action actually starts with the Flashes’ 21-14 victory over Keyport in the 2003 championship contest.
   "That wasn’t my idea (adding the Keyport game). Mary Ellen Kessler (Joe Frappolli’s great secretary) suggested that it would be nice to have a game from last year," noted Pierce.
   The Keyport game set the tone for the whole video. Amazingly, Pierce only showed the final scores of just a couple of games. Nonetheless, her photos told one that Florence won every game. Pierce used computer software to make the DVD, which took countless hours to complete. Often times she’d find herself working on it late into the night after working a full day on her government job. Yet the finished product is a mini-masterpiece, which even included devil -themed songs during the section where the Flashes played the Blue Devils. One really gets into the personalities of the Florence players through the photos, which where taken by Pierce herself. "That’s what took the longest time finding the right music for the right game. I changed the music so many times," said Pierce, who even added some great shots from the team’s pep rally.
   "Back2Back" is currently being sold at the school and at the Flashes’ football games. It cost $20 in a case and it’s a few dollars less in a sleeve. But Pierce will not make a dime on the project as any profits will go to the team as a fundraiser. She’ll just get reimbursed for the money she spent on the discs. Unselfish to a fault, Pierce credits dozens of people on the DVD before crediting herself.
   For more information on purchasing a copy of "Back2Back," one can e-mail Pierce at Back2Back@comcast.net.
   "Now I have to figure how to top this," said Pierce, who will be clicking away at tomorrow’s title game versus David Brearley.
   We can’t wait to see what one of Florence’s true creative artists has in store for us next.