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Old 11-08-2014, 07:34 PM
Jabumbo Jabumbo is offline
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Default Tournament Photography

Does anyone here routinely shoot for local events? Or have some general tips to how to get good shots without causing a disturbance to the players?

I love to shoot stuff but action and human photography are my weakest subjects. Looking at my shots from the one event I did shoot at, I started to notice I have a lot of the same shots/angles. Tee shots in particular tended to be very similar and boring.


Can we get some discussion going on this? Any pointers are great and I know there are some solid photos out here!
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  #2  
Old 11-08-2014, 08:12 PM
mullethead326 mullethead326 is offline
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I don't have any input on the photography side, but I can tell you what I'd prefer as a player:
-Stand far away. I can't comment on what quality of lens is required to get a good photo from 200 feet, but at that distance your movement and noise are minimally distracting.
-Don't EVER click in a player's backswing. Wait until the disc is completely released.
-Be very attuned to where you're standing, especially on putts. In general, stand where the rest of the card is.

All that said, I really do appreciate when a photographer comes out to shoot. Looking through the photos later is a cool reminder of the tournament and who was on various cards. Many of my favorite shots aren't throws or follow-throughs at all... some are getting discs out of a basket, the scenery, or cardmates laughing during downtime.
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Old 11-08-2014, 08:15 PM
elmexdela elmexdela is offline
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yeah use your cell phone

its simple really
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Old 11-08-2014, 10:17 PM
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DavidSauls DavidSauls is online now
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I'm a big fan of still photography, not so much of video.

Most of the action pictures I see for disc golf are goofy-looking. If you're a disc golfer and know what's happening, maybe they're not too bad, but if you look at them objectively, they don't look so much athletic as just strange. Particularly follow-throughs of putts.

Tips: Get a big enough lens. Digital cameras have progressed so much that you can crop heavily, and you should.

Instead of action, catch moments before the action, such as lining up a putt or contemplating a drive. Or, reaction shots, after the follow-through. Watch the background; as often as possible, make sure the background makes clear how the shot is played.

For being non-distracting, be still. Since you're often setting up some distance from the player you're photographing, be careful not to disturb other players on the course. Especially as you're hustling ahead to get into position, and right after you take a shot when you're only concentrating on the player you're photographing.

If it's something official, players should be told they'll be photographed, and to waive off the photographer if he's a distraction. Photographer, of course, should move if waived off. If the photographer is still and the player is distracted, the player has himself to blame.

Take the "experience" pictures---the stuff that's not actual play. Players meeting, awards, players talking, etc.

If possible, gain some elevation. Of course, you're not going to get blimp shots, or high angle shots like pro sports get from platforms and upper decks. But you can shoot from the top of a hill, or even standing on something 2-4' high. It gives a much better perspective of the fairway, and more resembles the shots you see of major sports.

And all the other rules of photography. Framing shots, Rule of Thirds, large apertures to give shallow depth of field, catching good light (especially backlight), keeping the background uncluttered, etc.

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Old 11-09-2014, 12:58 PM
Jabumbo Jabumbo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elmexdela View Post
yeah use your cell phone

its simple really

oh brother...


i am a big anti-phone photo guy. so many times i will be at some nice location/event and see people holding up their phones and it makes me cringe. the absolute worst is when someone is taking a group shot with a real camera and someone in the group inevitably asks for one on their phone as well. can't stand it!
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Old 11-09-2014, 01:04 PM
Jabumbo Jabumbo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidSauls View Post
Most of the action pictures I see for disc golf are goofy-looking. If you're a disc golfer and know what's happening, maybe they're not too bad, but if you look at them objectively, they don't look so much athletic as just strange. Particularly follow-throughs of putts.
I think this has been my biggest issue. I look at my results and think back to how much better that shot looked than something I would be able to do and smile. But for someone else, especially not knowing the course, it's pretty worthless!

I think the only action shots that look good are when you can capture a nice long putt in series. The hard part is getting the player and the basket in the frame while still making out the disc as it tracks to the chains.


Quote:
Tips: Get a big enough lens. Digital cameras have progressed so much that you can crop heavily, and you should.
Tips on lens size? The only zoom I have is pretty standard (200 I think?) so it does alright but I don't know that I could get a worthwhile shot from all that far away.
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Old 11-09-2014, 02:10 PM
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I looked through the pictures in the PDGA magazine and think, they're well-done but 90% capture players in really goofy postures. It bugs the daylights out of me. I'm not blaming the magazine or the photographers; I just think disc golf motion doesn't photograph well.

I think 200mm on a digital SLR is fine. Unless you're printing posters, you can later crop it and get---approximately---what a 500mm lens would have.
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Old 11-09-2014, 02:23 PM
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Here are a couple taken with a 200mm lens (and not cropped). They're not particularly good, but they show the perspective possible.
IMG_0718.jpg

IMG_0841.jpg
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Old 11-09-2014, 03:11 PM
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WhiteyBear WhiteyBear is offline
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#1 talk to the td and ask permission to take photography (especially if it's sanctioned).
#2 do not approach the players during a round, for any reason, unless they approach you.
#3 seems dumb to say, but do not take pictures for "evidence" of OB rulings.
#4 know your course, route, and where you plan to go ahead of time. Staying away from the lead card helps too. Less crowd and you can capture better moments without people in focus.

Get a solid editing platform, post production goes miles.
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  #10  
Old 11-10-2014, 12:27 PM
Steve West Steve West is offline
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Turn off all the noises your camera can make - shutter sound, warning beeps etc.
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