Sport Photography Photo Critique
action at the plate
by vincent brown
Category: Sport Photography
Lens: Telephoto: 50-200mm
Exposure time: 1/1200 ,
Description: action at the plate
Subject of photo
Composition & Perspective
Use of camera, exposure & speed
Color & Lighting
The idea of shooting a ladies game of baseball/softball adds a uniquely feminie perspective to a typically masculine sporting image. The drama of the action adds to the shot which was only possible thanks to your patience. Many congratulations are due on a number of levels.
Shooting at lower level brings the viewer directly into contact with the action. There's also an element of uncertainty regarding the runner's fate - was she in, was she out? This is often the turning point of a game, and you've captured it extremely well. The positioning of the players also adds to the composition wonderfully well.
As with many sports images, the focus is firmly on the ball. Positioned on a horizontal third, it has enough space to catch the viewer's eye, but is close enough to the action to feel connected to it. You can almost hear the thud of the ball hitting the glove. If that wasn't enough, you've also got the players' expressions which show just how much effort is being exerted. Brilliant stuff.
A key element of good sports photography is being able to freeze the action (unless you are deliberately looking for blur of course). On this occassion, you've done that as well as stopping the sand as it sprays upward. If I could offer some advice, it would be to use a monopod or, if space allows, a tripod. By setting the ISO at 1200, you've been able to get the necessary shutter speed, which is vital. I prefer to use a support and drop down to a lower ISO value if possible to give lLess noise, smoother colours etc.
What a great time of the day to shoot - late afternoon, with warm light saturating the scene. Excellent. You've also chosen a good angle to shoot from so you get drama but still plenty of colour. Well done.
Really a very impressive shot. If I were asked to find a fault, I would say the spectator behind the fence is a little distracting. Either incorporate him into the image (the passive onlooker) or remove him from view by positioning yourself at a slightly different angle that doesn't compromise your angle with the sun. Ultimately, this is an excellent shot, taken at the right time of day with interest and action aplenty. Very well done indeed.
How to improve your photo
If possible use a support - ideally a monpod, or a tripod.
Try to bring down the ISO as much as possible so you can capture the best colours and smooth transitions.
Watch your backgrounds. These can be an integral part of the image if done correctly. If not, they can distract from the real star of the show - the action.
Get feedback on your photos from Pro Mark Alexander