CHICAGO — Patrick Gorski has a simple rule for photography.
"Always follow the light," the 19-year-old St. Patrick High School graduate said.
The mantra has paid dividends for the Old Irving Park resident who, despite starting his craft only five years ago, has had his work appear in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Dallas Morning News, USA Today and Washington Times.
A freelancer who specializes in sports photography, Gorski took a photo of Cubs star Anthony Rizzo that is shown prominently in the most recent Sports Illustrated.
"It is surreal to see photos I have taken in huge publications such as Sports Illustrated," he said. "But whether it's the New York Times or a small baseball blog, I feel accomplished every time my work is published."
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Gorski developed his passion for photography at St. Patrick. Freshman year, he signed up for a basketball webcasting crew as a cameraman and said capturing the games' images was rewarding. He bought his first professional camera, a Nikon D3200, while at St. Patrick, and originally intended it for video use but realized a still image could provide a bigger impact for fans.
As a senior, he photographed the Shamrocks games, then started freelancing locally.
Whether it's Wrigley Field, United Center or inside a theater, Gorski said light is key. He captured a bathed-in-light Rizzo warming up with a weighted steel bar in the Cubs' on-deck circle. Sports Illustrated used the photo on its "Lineup" page previewing the magazine's feature stories.
"At Wrigley Field during the summer, just for a few innings, the sun sets right through the concourse and makes for very unique shots, such as my SI one with Anthony Rizzo," Gorski said. "While shooting indoors, the sun can peek through windows and you can isolate the subject with just the sunlight. In a world of sports, angles make all the difference."
Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Kimmo Timonen (44) kisses the Stanley Cup.
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