From bolts to Baldwin: Weather photographer gets dream job with Seahawks

The Space Needle shines the night before the Seattle Seahawks faced the New Orleans Saints in the NFL's Divisional Round of the playoffs. (Photo: Dan Poss Photography)

Imagine growing up around Seattle, rooting for the Seahawks your entire life -- even owning a Cortez Kennedy jersey...

And then one day being given the opportunity to work for them and have among the best "seats" in the house to all their home games?

Dan Poss is living the dream.

Poss is a professional photographer who never took a traditional photography class -- he started using his mom's camera when he was young and has since taken hundreds of thousands of photos and taught himself along the way. He's shot commercial imagery, local concerts, time lapse videos and panoramic landscapes. Those of you who frequent my weather blog have seen me highlight some of his gorgeous weather photography and videos from time to time.

But this UW alum has also done his fair share of sports photography. And after being invited to shoot Clint Dempsey's debut as a Seattle Sounder during their match against the Timbers (on Poss' one-year wedding anniversary, no less. Luckily his understanding wife said "go!") the Seahawks asked if he'd like to be a guest photographer.

The answer was simple:

"Hell, yes!"

So this season, Poss has been working as a freelance photographer for the Seahawks and was able to shoot at all but two home games.

"My general assignment was pretty clear; there's already an army of photographers shooting the action on the field, so instead, photograph the game day experience, the fans, the stadium, and players on the sidelines," Poss said. "Shoot anything that Rod Mar (the team photographer) isn't shooting and look for the unique."

His photos have appeared on the Seahawks' main Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and website.

Some of them you might have seen lately blowing up your Twitter feed or finding on your Facebook wall as they've been retweeted/shared thousands of times -- like this one of Doug Baldwin during a TV timeout moments before he was to receive a kickoff against the Saints:

What's next? Just waiting for the winner of #SFvsCAR. #NFLPlayoffs (Photo by @PossPhotography)

Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) January 12, 2014

"Later that night I tweeted him and asked, 'How would you caption this photo?'. The next morning he replied back, 'Just waiting on my moment', which I thought was perfect," Poss said. "The photo then took off online. The Seahawks tweeted out the image, then the NFL did, and then the Seahawks made it their cover photo on Facebook and it quickly gained over 50,000 'likes'. Soon after I started getting messages from fans asking how they could get a print. As a photographer, it's an incredible feeling when fans want a copy of your work. The Seahawks have put the photo in the game gallery so that fans can now buy a print for themselves."

Among his perks, he was able to photograph an entire behind the scenes tour with Monday Night Football before the first Saints game, and now even has the honor of having snapped one of Russell Wilson's favorite photos -- a black and white picture just before Wilson took the field against the Titans.

"I mentioned to Russell (during the Monday Night Football feature) that I had taken that photo and wished him a happy birthday - which was the day before," Poss said. "He thanked me and said it was a cool shot. A couple days later it popped up as his Facebook profile picture - I was stunned. I mean, there are tens of thousands of photos of Russell out there, and the fact that he wanted to use this image of mine was mind-blowing."

Here are some of the other photos the Seahawks have used of his:

Well, that was fun. Let's do it again next Sunday. #ChampionshipOpportunity

Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) January 12, 2014

The Russell Investments Center, managed & owned by Common Wealth Partners, wins our #Hawkitecture contest!

Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) January 10, 2014

@Xbox #AchievementUnlocked #TouchdownSeahawks

Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) January 11, 2014

It's go time! #NFLPlayoffs #NOvsSEA

Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) January 11, 2014

Last #TGIBF of 2013. Be yourselves. Be #LOUDER.

Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) December 27, 2013

... And goodwill to all 12s.

Seattle Seahawks (@Seahawks) December 25, 2013

"I've been a life-long Seahawks fan and to now be working for the team, documenting this special season, and creating images that my fellow 12s enjoy has been awesomejust freakin' awesome," Poss said.

We can only imagine!

You can find more of Dan's general work on his Dan Poss Photography blog (some of his Seahawks prints are for sale) and you can see galleries of his amazing Seahawks work here.

And yes, he'll be there Sunday for the big 49ers game. Look for his work on social media!