Sports photography is my passion. There is nothing more challenging, and thrilling, than trying to capture the action on the field. Today, I had the opportunity to photograph the 9/10-year-old All Stars between Pocono Mountain East and West End.
I really enjoy this age for baseball. The players are serious about the game and yet still want to learn the finer points of the game. They are plain down teachable! The games are fun to watch, too. Parents sit on the edge of their seat or pace back and forth like an expectant father in a maternity waiting room!
No, these Little League All-Star games are not for the faint of heart! And my job is to capture the action on the field with my camera. It is a challenge I embrace and enjoy thoroughly! Today I carried three cameras at times because a lot was happening and a lot was expected of the sports photographer.
Shooting sports is not only my passion, but I am learning it is one of my real talents in photography. I am not trying to brag; I am just learning more about myself and I am learning that of all the types of photography out there, sports photography is what I do the best. I believe my nine years of coaching Little League and three years of coaching Middle School football have a lot to do with this, too.
Serving as a freelance stringer for the Pocono Record and the Easton Express-Times teaches me a lot, too! I don’t get it right on each and every shot, but I am getting more consistent at getting it right at every game. The task of a sports photographer is to capture the action of the players and tell the game’s story in our photographs. Knowing the game is essential and learning each player’s tendencies is crucial. For example, when you are looking down the barrel of your zoom lens through your viewfinder, can you predict when the batter will swing his bat? If not, you will most likely waste a lot of shots, and worse, you might miss some key moments. Learn to pay attention to minute details like the slight twitch of an arm muscle. This might be all you need to know to make the best next great sports photograph!
Sports photography is one my photo passions. I do not shoot for Sports Illustrated or ESPN the Magazine yet, but I do try to celebrate the talents of the young players who play at the Lehigh Valley Baseball Academy. Think about this. The Little League World Series is now over. We watched the games for the past three weeks on television. Local Little Leagues need to end their season in the beginning of June in order to pick their All-Star teams and have enough time to play the tournaments. This means that most of the Little League players complete their baseball season in the beginning of June. Only a small number of players get onto All-Star teams and once you lose; you’re season is done, too. Very few players play all summer in Little League. What happened to the days when summers were for baseball?
For better or worse, things have changed. Now the baseball craze is travel and tournament baseball. Players who play on a tournament team often play 2 to 3 games on Saturday and anywhere from 2 to 4 or even 5 games on Sunday! Tournament baseball is very different from Little League baseball. The positive part for me is that I can shoot a lot of games in a weekend–mostly Saturdays for me. This past Saturday I photographed three back-to-back games. I averaged a little over 100 good photographs for each game. I am very particular about what I think is good enough and what I post on my website to share with players, coaches, and parents. I might not be submitting photos to the big sports magazines yet, but I still demand a lot of myself and have high standards.
I pick the best photos to display on my website and then share them with the teams and families. I use a simple protection protocol with a user name and password , which I mentioned in detail a few posts ago. It is just an effort to protect the photos of the young players, while still trying to share the photos with all those who might be interested in viewing or purchasing them. I find great joy in photographing the baseball games and trying to capture the exciting action on the field. Baseball is still our great American pastime and is worthy of being preserved in photographs. Besides, who knows when one of these young ball players will make it into the Bigs!
You can view my LVBA page and if you would like to receive the user name and password to view the photos, please send me an email message. Here are just a few sample photos.