B Roll By Kent O. Smith Jr

Varnished Decks, Film, St. Johns River Run, 1998

A huge thanks to Kent O. Smith Jr for sending in this wonderful story about. B Roll! It’s always fun to get stuff from Kent, even his B Roll is A List material!

Chickee IV, Film, Raceboat Regatta, Clayton, 1996

Any story, whether printed or published online can only display so many photos. What happens to all the others that were taken?
I call them B roll, or seconds, images that were passed over in favor of others. In recent years, at any given event, I take a thousand or more photographs. If there is action in the event, it could easily be 2,000 – 3,000 shots.

Palatka Reflections, Early digital, St. Johns River Run, 2000

The ones that readers get to see have been carefully selected. We try to find the ones that are most pleasing – the best light, the spray or wake just right, perfect expressions on the subjects, the least distractions in the background, a good angle on the boat, a nice composition, etc. We spend a lot of time culling through the thousands to find the dozen or so that you get to enjoy.

From the Bow, Early Digital, Lake Beauclaire FL, 2000

That doesn’t mean that all B roll photos are bad. Perhaps an image wasn’t in keeping with the story being presented. Or there were already similar images selected for use. Whatever the reason, I thought it would be fun to share some seconds from the many years I’ve been doing this.

First Snow, Early digital, Upstate NY, 2001

As mentioned before, even showing B roll photos requires culling through my catalog of over 75,000 images that reside on my 4 terabyte hard drive. So enjoy these, and if you would like to see them all, make an appointment and plan on bringing a lot of vodka ☺

Chris Craft from Above, Lake George, 2009.

Incorrect Burgee, Lake Congamond MA, 2010

Big Guy Little Boat, Lake Congamond MA, 2010

Goofing Around, Lake George NY, 2009

Scotty’s Cockpit, Lake Winnipesaukee NH, 2009

Sultana’s Dash, Lake Winnepesaukee NH, 2010

Synergy Streamliner, Clayton, 2011

Canadian Friends asking for More Beer, Clayton, 2011

Water Testing a Custom Build, Lake George, 2011

Black Witch Transom, Clayton, 2015

Mayea Boats Custom Build, Bay Harbor MI, 2010

“Raven Rhapsody”, Clayton, 2010

Boat Bedouins, Clayton, 2010

Early Albany Boat Co, Rexford NY, 2013

Oh Crap!, Silver Bay NY, 2010

Shiny Varnish, Cutwater Boatworks NY, 2013

Hacker Production Facility, Ticonderoga NY, 2010

Golden Racer, Lake Cobboseecontee ME, 2015

Wise Guy in the Back, Burlington VT, 2016

Century at Speed, Clayton, 2016

OMG, Lake George, 2015

Private Client Shoot, Candlewood Lake CT, 2016

El Lagarto, Lake George, 2017

Chris Craft Submarine, Skaneateles NY, 2014

The Bride Arrives in Style, Androscoggin Lake ME, 2013

Power Plant, Clayton, 2016

Not Forgotten Limo, Lake George, 2017

Drone Ariel, Cutwater Boatworks NY, 2015

Fini, Lake George. 2017

Gar Wood Factory Photo, Brant Lake, 2013

Behind the Scenes, Lake Dora, 2013

11 replies
  1. Greg Lewandowski
    Greg Lewandowski says:

    I wish I could take a photo half as good as these second string ones! Great selection of beautiful boats. Thanks!

  2. Rabbit
    Rabbit says:


    (Also, in filmmaking, B Roll has a different meaning: It’s the footage outside of the main dialog and action that editorially holds the story together. It’s often shot by a different crew and director… also referred to as “second unit”.)

  3. Ryan
    Ryan says:

    Kent has taken and let the Lyman Boat Owners Association use many of his wonderful photos over the years. He has some serious talent and a great eye for capturing these classics.

  4. Mike K
    Mike K says:

    “incorrect burgee” boater must be a sailor too (as i)

    mount gay rum is a huge supporter of sailboat racing, and supplies racers with hats that include their logo and name and year of the race. (they also supply rum!)

    matt, maybe you can use your advertising connections and get some liquor company to support our hobby like mount gay supports sailing? i understand that tito of titos vodka has a house on the shores of lake geneva, maybe he would do it!
    (wonder if he has a woody?)

    • Dick Hansen
      Dick Hansen says:

      As I’m sure know, the only, and I mean only! way to get a Mount Gay hat is to participate as a crew member in a recognized sailboat regatta. You can of course get a used one on E bay, but that would be the height of poser-ness or poser-ish.

  5. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    How about Bell’s brewery? They could be the official beer of WoodyBoaterville as it seems a large proportion of us already consume it.

    Great B shots from Kent. I typically take thousands of shots in hopes of getting a half dozen good enough for his C-roll.

  6. Kent O
    Kent O says:

    Thank you everyone for the kind comments, I am glad you enjoyed the images.

    Mike K – Great idea on a liquor sponsor. There was an old hydroplane in the 50s called the Miss Smirnoff – maybe they could be tapped again, or the Miss Tito could be interesting 🙂

    Rabbit – I have heard of that definition of B roll as well. Back in the film days in my teens, we called our seconds B roll, probably incorrectly so, but now it’s burn into my head.

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