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Archive 2012 · First time at the skatepark
  
 
SBnone03
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · First time at the skatepark


I just got my camera the other day and went out the skatepark. Here are some of the shots I got: (it's ok to be C&C is encouraged as I have a long way to go)



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So if you guys have any tips let me know!
Thanks for viewing



Mar 07, 2012 at 12:57 AM
TanouyeChris
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · First time at the skatepark


the second image looks soft or may be me, and personally I like to have the jump in the picture to tell a story and give a sense of what the rider is going off of. Other than that not too bad, better than my first shots at a skatepark (don't ask to see the shots)





Mar 07, 2012 at 01:24 AM
Jefferson
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · First time at the skatepark


Not bad...I think a faster shutter speed would help sharpness with a wider aperture to get some background seperation, blurr the background, for a start.

I think I would try to go for a different angle to get the ceiling beems out of the shot...don't like those lines...

Post the exif data with the shots...

Jefferson



Mar 07, 2012 at 03:00 AM
SBnone03
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · First time at the skatepark


TanouyeChris wrote:
the second image looks soft or may be me, and personally I like to have the jump in the picture to tell a story and give a sense of what the rider is going off of. Other than that not too bad, better than my first shots at a skatepark (don't ask to see the shots)



Thanks for the tip. I do believe I have a few of the first picture that shows where the rider came in and rode off. I'll have to find them. As for the second image that was my fault. I wasn't fully focused when he did the trick and messed that one up.

Jefferson wrote:
Not bad...I think a faster shutter speed would help sharpness with a wider aperture to get some background seperation, blurr the background, for a start.

I think I would try to go for a different angle to get the ceiling beems out of the shot...don't like those lines...

Post the exif data with the shots...

Jefferson


thanks for the tips! I'll definitely try them out the next time I go. I have a few more angles that I just thought up to try out.



Mar 07, 2012 at 03:41 AM
P Alesse
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · First time at the skatepark


Actually, the first two images are soft. On the first, the focus is on the skateboard. I'm no expert in skate, but these images are doing little for me. The action is okay, but aside from maybe the first one, the images are underexposed with faces in shadow. Have you experimented with any off camera lighting?


Mar 07, 2012 at 11:19 AM
SBnone03
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · First time at the skatepark


Not yet I'm not even sure where to start looking for off camera lighting. Is it possible to get a flash that is triggered by the cameras flash?


Mar 07, 2012 at 02:52 PM
P Alesse
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · First time at the skatepark


Yes, just about anything and everything can be achieved with on and off camera lighting. What does your budget look like?


Mar 07, 2012 at 03:53 PM
SBnone03
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · First time at the skatepark


I would like to keep it around $350- $400 if that's doable.


Mar 07, 2012 at 04:57 PM
Caleb Williams
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · First time at the skatepark


You have a good start here.

The one thing about skateboarding photography is that it's about perspective. Unlike traditional sports photography where you can have a tightly cropped subject and the story of the photograph is in the action itself, skate photography doesn't always work that way.

If you are familiar with this famous photograph, you see the story isn't the action of shooting a three pointer itself. The story in this photo is told because of perspective. You can see that the period is it's final seconds (you don't know if this is the end of the game or not) because he shot clock and you see the face of the crowd all on the action, generally meaning that it's a close game.

http://a.espncdn.com/travel/090312/travel_g_chalmers_800.jpg

The story in skate photography is told the same way and most successful skate photographs contain the following elements:

* The photographer is either extremely close to the subject with a very wide lens, often a fish-eye, or
* The photographer is farther away with a lens in the range of 35mm to 50mm (on a full frame camera).
(* Telephoto lens can also be used, often when it's harder to get closer to the subject, but the perspective part is just as important.)

Unless you are in the former (wide-angle lens), you should consider shooting with a tripod (at least to start) to get your composition set and then allow the skater to come to you. That doesn't always work when you're dealing with a free-for-all skate park environment.

I don't have as much to reply as I thought when I started, but keep in mind that with most rail tricks and many tricks in the air over any kind of terrain obstacle needs to show a minimum of the starting point and move being performed or the move being performed and the ending point and hopefully all three.

Paul can help you learn more about how to best utilize off-camera lighting to enhance your subjects but keep in mind that in some cases, the skater is just a very small portion of the overall composition.

See this snowboarding image:

http://images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/0-999/659/800/Copyrighted_Image_Reuse_Prohibited_491860.jpg

Hope this helps.



Mar 07, 2012 at 05:06 PM
 

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Caleb Williams
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · First time at the skatepark


One more thing, with extreme sports photography (skating, skiing, snowboarding and blading, etc.) the rules can still be broken and just because one thing is on the cover of a magazine doesn't mean that you can't try something else.


Mar 07, 2012 at 05:11 PM
SBnone03
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · First time at the skatepark


Thank you very much for the lengthy and detailed reply. I spent the better part of this morning just researching various skateboard/snowboard photographs and I am getting a better idea of "telling the story". After looking around at various photos from some famous skateboard photographers I saw that each picture told a different story.

I am not getting a better idea of some of the things that need to be added into my photographs.


Thanks again!



Mar 07, 2012 at 07:38 PM
cocodrillo
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · First time at the skatepark


SBnone03 wrote:
I would like to keep it around $350- $400 if that's doable.



The budget route is to pick up 2-3 Vivitar 285HV flashes and some ebay/cactus triggers. The flashes will cost you about $90 each (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/61441-REG/Vivitar_233965_285HV_Flash.html). You can pick up the cactus triggers for something close to 100 for a set that will trigger all three flashes.

The vivitars are going to be totally manual and you'll have to dial in the exposures manually and figure out how to balance the light. This is a very good thing to practice with and will probably teach you an enormous about photography.

The other thing you want to think about is framing -- where do you want the skater and what background do you want. Look at the scene before you shoot. Do you want that street pole growing out of their ear (hypothetical, but I think you get my drift). Go high, low, left, right to get the framing you want.

Focus... what camera are you using? Some models will have a hard time with what you are trying to do. Others will work great, but you might want to start using single focus points rather than ring of fire.

Practice lots and be very critical with your own work.



Mar 09, 2012 at 06:16 AM
SBnone03
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · First time at the skatepark


Thank you for the reply. I've been doing some research regarding lighting and earlier today I placed an order for the exact setup that you mentioned (cactus v5 and two vivitar 285hv).

The camera that I'm using is just the entry Nikon D3100 with the 35mm 1.8G lens.

AS for being very critical with my work, that has definitely started to impact me as now I'm starting to actually setup my shots and spending more time in the editing process.

Thank you for the reply!



Mar 09, 2012 at 06:52 AM
rbianco
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · First time at the skatepark


The flash are also going to allow a higher f stop and better depth of field (sharper images).


Mar 12, 2012 at 04:15 AM
SBnone03
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · First time at the skatepark


I went out and tried again here is what I came up with:






(wish I had placed the flash on the other side here to light the bottom of the board)




Thanks everybody for your help and I realize that I still need to work on telling the story but in my opinion these are showing a lot more potential than my first ones.



Mar 26, 2012 at 02:14 AM
Rags Hef
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · First time at the skatepark


The ambient light in the first series looks real bad. Do you have a variable aperture lens?

If yes, you'll need the flash indoors. You might be able to adjust the intensity of the flash, check your cam menu. The flash strength for the night outdoor shots may be too much indoors

You're doing real good real fast

Rags



Mar 26, 2012 at 04:42 AM
dartheyeball
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · First time at the skatepark


Your second set looks much better. Out of all the images, #2 looks the best.

#1 - the skater looks out of focus

#2 - I'd crop out the skater on the left that is videoing

#4, and #5 - Nice action, but flash placement needs to be adjusted.

I am not an expert on skateboarding shots, so take my C&C with a grain of salt. But you have made improvement. Just keep at it and you'll definitely improve.




Mar 26, 2012 at 09:21 AM
SBnone03
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · First time at the skatepark


dartheyeball wrote:
Your second set looks much better. Out of all the images, #2 looks the best.

#1 - the skater looks out of focus

#2 - I'd crop out the skater on the left that is videoing

#4, and #5 - Nice action, but flash placement needs to be adjusted.

I am not an expert on skateboarding shots, so take my C&C with a grain of salt. But you have made improvement. Just keep at it and you'll definitely improve.


Thanks for the tips! I'll take the advise you gave me and employ them on my next set and I'll be sure to post them up!


Rags Hef wrote:
The ambient light in the first series looks real bad. Do you have a variable aperture lens?

If yes, you'll need the flash indoors. You might be able to adjust the intensity of the flash, check your cam menu. The flash strength for the night outdoor shots may be too much indoors

You're doing real good real fast

Rags


Yeah the light in that ware house is very bad. Unfortunately that skatepark got torn down so I won't be able to try shooting there again. The lens that I'm using is the Nikkor 18-70mm 3.5 - 4.5G.

Thanks for the encouragement!



Mar 27, 2012 at 09:41 PM





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