Cheerleading Nationals in Nashville

Discussion in 'Photojournalism, Candids and Street Photography' started by Kevin Scott, Jan 3, 2006.

  1. Just returned from spending a week in Nashville attending the WCA Cheerleading Nationals. Our gym brought 3 teams to compete including my daughter's Senior team. Here are a few shots from the competition.

    I was anxious to try the D2x in this environment. Last season, I used an S2 and was shooting Aperture priority @ ISO1600 to get fast shutter speeds. To be honest, I was terrified to shoot that high ISO with the D2x but had to see what it could do.

    Prior to my daughter's performance, I did some test shots and found that I could get away with ISO 400 and still get decent shutter speeds (~160/sec or a little more). So I decided to stick with those settings using the 70-200/2.8 VR.

    No noise reduction and I have to say I'm pretty pleased with the results and the performance of the camera.

    Anyway, here are some shots from their routine. I sent some to the gym to post on their website and didn't spend a tremendous amt of time pp these. Basically a slight levels adjustment and slight USM sharpening.

    Their opening
    [​IMG]

    Then they go on to this
    [​IMG]

    Close up of their dance portion of the routine (my daughter is in the middle of the shot, of course :wink: )
    [​IMG]

    Then a hitch pyramid
    [​IMG]

    And finally the ending
    [​IMG]

    It's probably hard to tell just from the shots but their routine's theme was a parody of a beauty pageant queen.
     
  2. dbirdsong

    dbirdsong Guest

    Nice work..
     
  3. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Wow Kevin,
    Nice shots..

    They did not let you get very close did they... grrrr
     
  4. Steve S

    Steve S

    Feb 1, 2005
    SE Florida
    Terrific shots, nice work Kev. So, how'd they do?
     
  5. WOW incredible shots and they look so proffesional in their routine. So how did they place?
     
  6. Thanks everyone for the kind words!

    Gale, you can see in the 1st 3 shots that you could get pretty close. For the 1st day's performance I sat way back in the bleachers in the top row so I could get squad shots and group stunts. My plan was for the 2nd day to sit up front and get some shots of my daughter. The only problem is when I shoot I don't really get to enjoy the performance. I asked my daughter if she minded if I didn't shoot the 2nd day and she didn't really care. This was their first competition so I'll do up close and personals another time. (These were shot manual with the 70-200.)

    I've copied this explanation from another thread:
    "Well, technically they came in 3rd place out of 9 teams. There were 9 points separating 1st and 3rd place. When the coaches picked up the score sheets after the awards, they noticed they were penalized 10 pts for a safety violation due to the tiaras (made from pipe cleaners). Our coach spoke to the head judge the day before and got a signed off approval for the tiaras. Apparently the 2nd day judges were unaware. When brought to their attention, the 2nd day judges refused to make any corrections so we had to settle for 3rd place. Girls from the winning team left comments on our team's website saying we should've won so in a way, we were victorious."
     
  7. Leigh

    Leigh

    Feb 19, 2005
    Alabama
    Great shots, Kevin. It might have been a parody, but those girls are just so cute, any of them could win a pageant! :smile:
     
  8. Thanks, Leigh! You're right...some of them are really pretty. I think they like getting all "dolled up" too! Our gym is known for having big hair on competition days! :)
     
  9. Hey Kevin,

    Those are really nice. There was some nice light in there. Was it lit for television cameras? I know they televise these sometimes.

    Very clean, crisp and clear shots. Great job!
     
  10. Hi Ty,
    Thanks for the comments! The lighting is pretty good at most of these competitions but especially so for the Nationals. Yes, it is being televised and will be on FoxSports in March but there wasn't special lighting just for that occasion.
     
  11. eng45ine

    eng45ine

    May 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Those are very nice captures, Kev. It is amazing just how well the X performs in low-light situations. I can guarantee that my H could never perform nearly as well. I have a 70-200mm VR...what a lens! Your X and the VR...what a combination. Great shooting, Kev.
     
  12. Hi Frank,
    Thanks for the kind words! To be honest, I was a bit apprehensive of shooting high ISO. But I keep hearing the experts say if you expose properly it's not bad. So I shot manual and took quite a few test shots adjusting aperture and shutter speed until I got a workable combination. I probably could have gone even higher with the ISO but got very few spoiled shots due to too slow of a shutter speed. It definitely built my confidence level in the camera. It's just such a pleasure to shoot...never seems to let me down.

    Sports shooting is a totally new experience for me!
     
  13. Very nice Kevin. Having had several daughters that were cheerleaders I know how much work that was for your daughter and the entire squad. I have had a daughter and a granddaughter go to nationals. Congratulations to them all.
     
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