Assignment, editorial and commercial photographer Tony V. Martin lives in the Midwest.
Go on, shout at him, he likes it (773) 550-1007

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Hoop Girls in the studio-or not...

Oddly enough, while I don't have a strong interest in sports per se, I get assigned to shoot sports figures fairly often. (Full disclosure-the sports I do like are bull riding and sumo wrestling, similar actually.) Shooting sports folks can be fun because of the dynamics: flashy colored outfits, graphic action, etc. Like any location portrait the limits of time and setting dictate a lot of the image. This assignment of a hot girls prep basketball team was in a kinda dull gym during practice before a big game, so little time and no juicy background
I scouted a corner with white cinder block walls a decided to create a white out background effect. Using two small radio triggered strobes I washed the background and set up two more as edge lights slightly behind the subjects. I set up one strobe in front in a white umbrella. I got the coach to release the top players for 9 minutes and got shooting. ( I like to tell them and odd short sounding time like "9 minutes" or " 4 minutes" so it sounds like they won't be gone long. Often when the shoot gets going I can get a little more time.) I arranged the ladies and got them to give me a serious "game face" series of shots. (not easy cause some of them where outgoing while some were shy.) The "game face" look gets them unified to make the group portrait look the team is of one mind. (And kinda moody-tough-cool too.) I then grabbed individual shots that showcased the individual personalities of the players. All done shooting in less than 15 minutes and they were back on the court. Happy coach.
Post production in PS was minimal as the background whited out pretty clean. I jazzed the contrast a little to bring out the glowy edge light, but no tricky "find edges" or "high pass" was needed. The final images look like a cool studio shoot without the massive background, big lights or catering table. I actually miss the catering table a little.

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