Pro Tour Fate Reforged Photo Essay

Posted in PRO TOUR FATE REFORGED on February 8, 2015

By Craig Gibson and Marc Calderaro

Not all the stories at the Pro Tour can be told with words. Tell me, please tell me, how you can use words to discuss how Pro Tour Hall of Fame member and fourteenth–ranked Paul Rietzl is so excited about drafting that he's gnawing on his booster packs.

Paul gnawing on Boosters

You see? You can't.

Some stories are larger than words. And when they are, Pro Tour photographer Craig Gibson captures all the action. Like how often do you see a red-shirted Head Judge in the role of a player?

Head Judge Kevin Desprez assessing the right line. The right judge line, that is.

Or Tasigur, the Golden Banana?

Bananas, I tell you!

Or how often can you see the straight-up greatest looking dude in the Multiverse...

Pro Tour Hall of Fame member Brian Kibler, with Nicol Bolas figurine (note the real Nicol Bolas is not actually that size).

...being held by Pro Tour Hall of Fame member and Pro Tour Dark Ascension winner Brian Kibler?

Or Nicol Bolas allowing himself to be on display in a glass prison? I mean, that trophy is pretty cool, though.

We all know Nicol Bolas is the real winner of Pro Tour Fate Reforged. Oh, wait, or is it Ugin?

We need all the available media to cover this Pro Tour—video, text, and photographs. Because here in Washington, DC, anything is possible. This town erects monuments to great men from America's past...

Washington Monument

...pays tribute to the dream for America's future...

Lincoln Memorial

...and if people get out of line, we have horses. Two horses. We have two horses.

Ugh, I bet that horse on the right is a total Nightmare.

Just kidding, we have fencers.

There are those players who considered dropping early to watch this sweet fencing regional competition next door.

Okay , that's not true. There are no horse nor fencer enforcers here, only a competent, photogenic judge staff.

I haven't heard them before, but this ska band should probably trim some members.

Photos show how something filled with promise...

The Feature Match area before the mayhem.

…can be fulfilled at a moment's notice.

Seth Manfield and No. 15 Jacob Wilson are the foreground, with a slew of pros playing for Top 8 in Round 15.

In-match frustration can best be conveyed with pictures.

Sam Pardee would find the answer if he could just find the light at the end of the tunnel, and get his darned head out of his hand.

What's with the head-in-hand pose anyway? How many times have you seen this familiar expression?

Head-in-hand is never a good sign.

Or this techy variant?

Covering your head with something other than your team jacket is so passé.

But no matter how many people do this head-in-hand move, in whatever varied form, we must pay homage to the head-in-hand originator, Pro Tour Hall of Fame elite, Jon Finkel.

Unlike when other opponents do this, when Jon Finkel does it, you're probably about to lose. But let's face it, whenever you play Finkel you're probably about to lose.

Pictures don't just capture the agony; they also capture expected triumph...

A familiar crowd cheers on No. 6 Lee Shi Tian playing for the Top 8.

...and the payoff.

An almost-duplicate picture from the Pro Tour Khans of Tarkir—Lee Shi Tian embraces his compatriots after a match he saw as a win-and-in.

Above all else, photos capture something for which there is only one word:


Because, well, Paul.

Photos are an important way to capture the impossibly high amount of action that goes on each and every Pro Tour weekend. Though Craig Gibson's work is often used to highlight other text or video pieces, it's important to highlight the photos themselves, while getting closer to the drama and fun than most of us will experience.