Windham High senior Holden Anderson is a standout lacrosse player and an avid photographer. Gregory Rec/Staff Photographer

On a lacrosse field, 17-year-old Holden Anderson is one of the best in the state at a distinct individual skill: winning faceoffs. He’s been doing that since his freshman year at Windham High. So far this season, he is winning the key 1-on-1 battle for possession over 85 percent of the time.

Away from the field, Anderson likes to take a broader view, especially when it comes to his growing interest in the visual arts as displayed on his Instagram account @haproduced.

Q: When I watch a faceoff in boys’ lacrosse, it reminds me of sumo wrestling. What is the process out there?

A: It’s funny you say that because a lot of the faceoff guys are also wrestlers because of the rotation. I’m not a wrestler but a lot of people are. It’s about hand speed but it’s also about strength. The (referee) says ‘Down,’ and then ‘Set,’ and then they blow the whistle and once they blow the whistle both the guys go at the ball. So you just go at it.

Q: What’s considered a good percentage for a faceoff guy?

A: My sophomore year I finished with about a 67 percent faceoff rate. If you’re winning more than 50 percent I’d say you’re winning for your team because possession is such a key for lacrosse. But like the top collegiate Division I faceoff leader is (winning) about 80 percent.

Q: Do you plan to play in college?

A: Yeah, I’m committed to Vassar College to play lacrosse. They play in one of the toughest Division III conferences in the country, the Liberty League.

Q: When it comes to your interest in photography, I’m wondering: We all carry around a pretty nice camera in our phones. So why did you decide to go old school with a full-body camera?

A: I didn’t originally start off in primarily photography. I like to make videos, like outdoor videos, and just some compilations of my friends and I mountain biking, surfing, doing outdoor stuff. Hiking. But I found that my photos were coming out pretty well, too. So this camera serves a dual purpose. It shoots in pretty good framing for quality video and photos. And, I also find with a camera like this you can get more quality and detail.

Q: So video is where it started for you. Was it making YouTube type stuff?

A: It was more Instagram type stuff. I pretty much started officially doing this over quarantine. I would go on drives around Maine, to the beach, and fly my drone and I put together a video that did pretty well on Instagram and it was just talking about Maine during quarantine.

Q: Do you see this as a possible career?

A: I’m seeing this as a hobby right now. … I’ve printed a lot of my aerial photography of the Scarborough beach area and I’m planning on maybe trying to sell them but just trying to get my work out there. I may minor in something to do with photography and I applied to college with an art portfolio with my photos, so just having that option is nice.

Q: You attended and photographed one of the Black Lives Matter rallies in Portland. Why did you think it was something you needed to do?

Holden Anderson took this photo at one of the Black Lives Matter rallies in Portland last year. Holden Anderson photo

A: Well, first of all, it’s a movement that is really important and I think my generation, especially during this time, has been very vocal and very active in those sorts of situations. I just wanted to be able to capture it and kind of be a part of history and help make a difference in the movement as a whole.

Q: Did you have some work you were proud of?

A: I had about four photos that I shared with Black Lives Matter Maine and (similar) accounts. They recognized it. So that was my goal, just to help make a difference.

Q: What do you think you learned through the process, in general and as a photographer?

A: I would say in general I learned that I’m part of a community that is vocal when they need to be and feels empowered to make a difference. So it was really interesting and amazing being a part of that and to learn about that. As a photographer, I learned kind of what it’s like to capture moments in high-stress situations – not necessarily high-stress, but I felt a little weird about taking photos of people who were expressing their feelings. But I was able to capture those feelings, so it was interesting.

Q: You’ve had two school years interrupted by COVID. How has that impacted you?

A: Obviously it has been tough some ways, socially, but it has been maybe beneficial for my self-growth. I was able to discover that photography side of myself over quarantine and I felt it was a really good escape to go and take photos outside and kind of just appreciate Maine a little bit more. Also, that’s really when I started to realize I really wanted to play lacrosse in college and I got focused on my goals and was able to do a lot of work on that. I would say there was some good self-reflection from the quarantine process.

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