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3.2 Strategies for Sports Assignments

In this lesson we cover gear selection and working tips, and we go behind the shoot on two sports assignments. You'll also learn what is expected from assigning editors for sports assignments.

3.2 Strategies for Sports Assignments

Hi, welcome back! Now we're gonna take a look at some of my sports photography. Again, we're gonna go through the raws of one game to give you an idea of how I was shooting, and then we're also gonna see the edited photos. Let's get started. So again, here we are in Photo Mechanic, my favorite program, which I promise to get to shortly. This is a junior hockey game assignment that you might all see as you're starting your career as assignment photographer. As you can see, I'm shooting at the glass level, at the ice level here. You could also have the option of shooting from above. Shooting from above is a little bit easier and a little bit easier to get cleaner backgrounds and catch the action. But from the ground level, it's cool to make in your face action photos like this. We can easily crop these photos, blow them up, and transmit them. I'm shooting down the ice with a 300 millimeter lens. Here you see a goal. An I also have a 7200 zoom lens in my pocket or in my lap as well, for closer action. Basically, my technique for hockey photography, and most photography, is keep my camera pointed at where the action likely will be. For instance, I had aimed here at the goal, somehow the puck snuck by, where did it go? You can see the puck sneaking in here, not a great photo. It's a nice jubilation over here, but still not a good photo. Swing my camera, look for the goal winner, here he is. Here's a photo we can use. Cropped, we can use this photo. Thanks ref. You ruined that one for me. But hopefully their will be more goals. Jubilations like this happen almost after every point in any sports event. Knowing when they are coming is an easy way to get some solid photos. So again here, you see some game action. You see some nice crunches on the boards. We can crop in here and make a nice photo. Make a nice vertical out of that. Although it's not the most exciting photo, I'm hoping we'll get more. Going through, watching the crowd for interesting photos, this one didn't work, but you never know. Just be shooting, shooting, shooting. Sometimes I'll shoot JPEG for these assignments and break my rules of only shooting raw, just because you're shooting so many photos so quickly. If you set the exposure and the white balance fairly well beforehand you can get away with it. Here we see another goal. I didn't see a great photo in that one. This is where shooting at the ice level takes your percentages down. It's tougher to get the shot, but when you do it's great. So, cutting through here, game action, few hits, you can see I'm just shooting, shooting, shooting like crazy looking for photos. Nice save there. Few black frames. Here we go, we got a little closer action. This is in the closer end. Still, a goal, where's the photo? Okay. I have a photo here. We can create a vertical out of that. Still hopefully not the best photo of the game. So, yeah, this is kind of an overview. Just shooting heavy on the motor drive looking for photos. We'll switch over from the raws to the actual photos that I filed. This was the championship games, so there was a lot of jubilation afterwards. So this is an okay photo, not the best. A little soft, but it'll still work well. Okay action shot, not the best. You always wanna keep the puck in the frame. Hit shot, jubilation shot, another jubilation shot, save shot. I think I had that one earlier. Goalie save shot and the cup. The cup is always great when you are shooting sports because you know there is going to be a guaranteed jubilation photo after the game. And the action photos don't even really matter that much. So we got some good action shots here, some nice jubilation shots. Always a classic photo of the team with the trophy. Another action shot. Here we are. Always fun to get on the ice, get right in the face. Some sad dejection shots always good. Home team loses. This guy's happy, so is his mom. And this guy is saying goodnight. So that's it. That's a basic hockey game. You can see the lighting situations aren't the best in here. This isn't a professional rink, this is an amateur rink. Professional rinks, the light is a lot better, but most people will be starting out in this style of photography and this style of rink. Next assignment we're quickly gonna go through here is baseball. Standard Toronto Bluejays game. They have a lot each year, and a lot of them need coverage. First off, we start with the pitcher. He may be a story, you never know. Get some actions shots of him. And he's not doing the best. Looks like he's getting pulled from the game. That could be a story. He could be an up and coming pitcher. We got a new pitcher who could be the story now. Visiting team pitcher. Pretty straightforward. Key for pitcher shots is to pay attention to what side they're throwing from. This guy is left handed, so you're going to get this kind of shot. Not the best, from this side for this shot, but when he is following through you get more of a clear shot of his face and his body and whatnot. And vice versa with this guy. Cool shot when he is starting his pitch, but when he follows through it's a little tougher. A couple of hitting shots, wait for a big home run. If there is no one on base, train your lens on the batter and this is what I was talking about before. Dramatic action shot at second base. This guy says good job. Again this guy's sliding in. This guy gets clipped by the ball, happens every once in awhile. Mad coach, and again another dramatic action shot at second base. And they win, everyone goes home happy. So that's it. An overview on two different types of sports assignments. You can get an idea of where I was shooting from and how I approached the events. Hopefully these will help you with your next game. Up next, portrait photography. Keep your eyes on the street. [SOUND] Now, bring your chin a little bit towards the window. Good. [SOUND]

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