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» Volleyball

Archive for the 'Volleyball' Category

Daily Photo – The AVP in Color (Sean Rosenthal Passing)

The Daily Photo series focuses on the two or three key creative choices, in terms of composition and processing, that go into creating an image.  Specific technical details about the shot have been left out — you won’t hear me talking about tone curve adjustments and whatnot unless it was a key component of the end result.

Sean Rosenthal passes the ball during the 2007 AVP Dallas Tournament, part of my series on professional beach volleyball. The rest of the series, so far, can be found on my flickr account.

Exposure

  • Shutter:  1/2000
  • Aperture:  f/4
  • ISO:  100
  • Camera:  Canon EOS 5D
  • Lens:  Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM

Composition and Processing

  • As with the previous beach volleyball photo, I shot this low, matching the vantage point of Rosie.  I then cropped him to the right since the entire motion and the direction of the play (including the movement of Jake Gibb behind him) is toward the left.  Any time you have suggested motion in a particular direction, it helps to give the subject room to move.
  • I intentionally gave this a high contrast yellow-ish cast, using the bleach-bypass filter in Nik Color Efx.  The sand at this event was very yellow and close to the skin color of the players (not to mention the fact that Rosie is covered in it from previous digs), so by processing the entire scene in that direction I thought it might abstract the color to another level, changing how we perceive the color of individual elements.  Sure, the sand is yellow in this shot — but do we think it’s actually that color, or is it white and the overall scene is simply cast yellow?  Hopefully the color is now just an artistic choice, much the way black and white is.  Setting aside the somewhat noisy background (I really should have shot this at f/2.8), do you think it works?

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April 09 2009 | Photography and Volleyball | No Comments »

Daily Photo – Chrissie Zartman Awaiting Serve (The AVP in Black and White)

The Daily Photo series focuses on the two or three key creative choices, in terms of composition and processing, that go into creating an image.  Specific technical details about the shot have been left out — you won’t hear me talking about tone curve adjustments and whatnot unless it was a key component of the end result.

Another shot of Chrissie Zartman from the 2008 AVP Dallas qualifier, part of my series on professional beach volleyball.  I’ve been sorting them into four sets:  “The AVP in Black and White”, “The AVP at Night” and “The AVP in Color” (two sets for that last one).  Those can be found on my flickr account, although I may find a way to arrange them here on the blog at some point.

Exposure

  • Shutter:  1/1250
  • Aperture:  f/5.6
  • Camera:  Canon EOS 1D Mark III
  • Lens:  Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM (at 200mm)

Composition and Processing

  • I shot this fairly low, below the height of Zartman (who probably isn’t much over 5′ tall).  Besides increasing the apparent height of the subject, it makes the shot more personal.  Shooting from a higher vantage point would have turned the viewer into an observer;  by staying close to the subject’s eye level we feel more like a participant, like we’re seeing the world the way they are.
  • This was taken with the subject in the middle of the frame (lazy focusing on my part).  She was looking slightly to the right (of frame), so I cropped her to the left.  That gives her space to look into and removes and visual competition between the left and right had I stuck with a centered crop.
  • The tree behind her was ok, except for the branch sticking out of her head.  That got removed in Photoshop, a task made easier by the common tone of her hair and sky.  The tree itself, plus the metal spikes supporting it, created an odd framing of Zartman that was unintentional — I haven’t decided if that works in the picture’s favor or not.

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April 07 2009 | Photography and Volleyball | 1 Comment »

Daily Photo – The AVP in Black and White (Angie Akers Waiting To Block)

The Daily Photo series focuses on the two or three key creative choices, in terms of composition and processing, that go into creating an image.  Specific technical details about the shot have been left out — you won’t hear me talking about tone curve adjustments and whatnot unless it was a key component of the end result.

More from my series on professional beach volleyball.  I’m sorting them into four sets:  “The AVP in Black and White”, “The AVP at Night” and “The AVP in Color” (two sets for that last one).  Those can be found on my flickr account, although I may find a way to arrange them here on the blog at some point.

The shots themselves are from the 2007 and 2008 Dallas AVP tour stops, along with the 2007 Las Vegas AVP God and Goddess of the Beach tournament. I’m planning to attend and hopefully shoot at the 2009 Houston AVP tournament in mid-May.

This shot:  Angie Akers waits patiently at the net while the other team receives the serve (2008 Dallas AVP Tournament).

Exposure

  • Shutter:  1/3200
  • Aperture:  f/2.8
  • ISO:  200
  • Camera:  Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III
  • Lens:  Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM

Composition and Processing

  • I took a number of shots at this tournament trying to capture the interaction of near and far subjects.  That can be a bit tricky with four players running around the court obscuring each other, but everyone tends to be relatively far apart during the serve (the receiving team needs to cover as much court as possible;  the serving team has one player outside the court while the other is at the net half the time).  I chose to focus on Akers in this shot, partly because I think motion is tolerated in soft focus better.  More important, I think fewer sharp subjects (relative to out-of-focus ones) help draw the eye better and don’t compete for attention.  Imagine this shot reversed, with the receiving team sharp and Akers out of focus.  It might still work, but the eye would have a hard time latching onto either of the receiving players and the out-of-focus Akers would be a distraction between them.
  • That said, the movement of the receiving team is very important in this image, regardless of how soft.  Akers is standing perfectly still — it’s almost as if she’s part of the same solid structure that is the net and ground.  That suggests a certain amount of control over the scene, which contrasts well with the two players scrambling to pick up the serve (not to mention the crowd in the background, also moving).
  • I cranked the exposure on this one.  The primary subject is Akers, so she’s the one I wanted sharp and reasonably well lit.  Washing everything else out doesn’t hurt the shot;  in fact, it further isolates the subject and draws the eye to her.

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April 05 2009 | Photography and Volleyball | No Comments »