Seeking advice from the gurus..

Discussion in 'Sports Photography' started by Seth, Apr 16, 2007.

  1. Seth

    Seth

    317
    Jun 6, 2006
    Tulsa, OK
    Hey guys I've been checking out this forum a lot lately and am always impressed with the quality of images you guys take. However, I haven't been able to get out and shoot in a couple weeks. So, I was going to see if you guys would take a look at the EM gallery linked below and maybe give me some pointers. Feel free to tear apart the images I've done so far (if they are bad) or just offer some comments and suggestions based off of the images I've done so far and what should be done to improve them.

    I'd love to hear what you guys have to say as I admire your work and hope to obviously keep improving as I get out and shoot more and more. I've had several teams ask me if I'd come shoot action shots for them here within the next couple weeks.

    Here's the link: http://prints.sethlikens.com - I've not passed this out to any parents or anything like that yet. I've only thrown a few shots up there and setup pricing so I can get a feel for how ExposureManager works before I start getting serious.

    Also, I'm mainly shooting with the 70-300 lens listed below. That's all I've got to do these with right now.

    Thanks!
     
  2. topher04r1

    topher04r1 Guest

    seth, you are doing a LOT of things right, your shooting from a good low vantage point.... your cropping nice and tight.... (could go a bit further if you wanted though) and you are are including the three most inportant things.
    Face, Ball and action ! ....only tips i might think to throw in would be move a bit down/up field and try to get them running @ you ... that's allways helped me ....also on a lot of your photo's they seemed a bit overexposed ... what settings are you using ?

    ---topher
     
  3. Seth

    Seth

    317
    Jun 6, 2006
    Tulsa, OK
    Thanks for the tips and it's good to see I may be doing some things right. Unfortunately it's been a while since I shot those so I don't remember the settings but once I get home I can check EXIF and see whats up. I do know I was using AF-C but as far as what mode or metering mode.. not sure. What settings do you find work best for you?

    Thanks again.
     
  4. twig

    twig

    745
    May 23, 2005
    the second set is an improvement in the first.
    I like sports images a touch over -exposed,

    You have to be more cognizant of your backgrounds, and your f stop. The most impressive pictures have a distant and non-descript forest background. Some of the others have a parking lot in the background and personally I hate that. Just work on positioning yourself to get more of the trees in the background shot (they are farther away as well, so they blur out better).

    I would charge 15-20 for an 8x10, that is a large photo. One rule of thumb I like is 25 cents per square inch of photo. What resolution is your camera? If you have 6 MP or more I would sell 20X0 posters as well, plus exposure manager has a ton of other kitchy products that people might buy (mouse pads, mugs, keychains, etc.) that you might want to offer.

    From batch 2: DSC 2513 2511 - these are the shots you want more of
     
  5. Seth

    Seth

    317
    Jun 6, 2006
    Tulsa, OK
    Great info! I agree on the backgrounds being very distractive with the parking lot, other people, etc. Tonight I'll try to position myself better to shoot into a better background. I'm pretty familiar with these fields and this shouldn't be a problem. When I use the 70-300 at 300 I'm at f/5.6 but shooting into the woods behind the field should give enough distance to help on the blur as you mentioned. This will also put me in a position to catch them running straight at me much better than where I was previously.

    So do you sell many 8x10s at $15-20? Just curious.. It seems most of the guys I looked at in our area are selling 8x10s for $10. When I start getting better shots I may be able to raise the price up a bit. I'm shooting with a D50 (6MP) so I guess I could throw a some even larger prints on there. I've never printed anything more than an 11x14 so I'll have to print one first to make sure I'm comfortable with the larger print. 6MP should be able to produce a 20x30 print? Also, I'm currently using self-fulfillment on EM just because I'm still figuring out the EM workflow for their pro-lab fulfillment so my options on what I can offer will be somewhat limited.

    Thanks for all the info so far guys - can't believe I didn't already think of most of this. =]
     
  6. topher04r1

    topher04r1 Guest

    seth honestly 80% of my sales are photo's that are 8x10 and bigger .... i just had a mom order two 24x30's the other day ...

    as far as mode's go... i use AFC ... center weighted meatering, and usually have the middle focus point selected .... works for me....

    Recently i've been shooting in full M mode.... set things at arround f5.6 (when i shoot with the 300 f4) and meter the background off of something bright (player in white or whatever) ......also make sure your ISO is in a good range to give you clear quality but a fast enough shutter sped (800~1200) should be fine for soccer
     
  7. twig

    twig

    745
    May 23, 2005
    Seth,

    I don't sell ANY 8x10's or any other prints, my work is for magazines or private clients primarily.

    Pricing is of course a very regional specific thing, and you want to comp[ete with the local shooters, however an 8x10 is a LARGE print in my opinion, really shows the quality fo your work and distinguishes your images from the parents p&s shots. Most shooters that I see selling event shots make the majority of their money off these 8x10 and larger prints, and do charge a decent amount for them.

    The one time expense is not going to put off customers who want the shot you have, and provides you a real opportunity to make back your equipment investment.

    When you start making some money, consider a 180/2.8 or similar lens (USD 450). While you give up a bit in ultimate reach the wider aperture will produce more professional looking shots.
     
  8. Seth
    Your second alblum is much better try moving around the field and try to get distracting backgrounds out of your shots you want to try and isolate your subject. The more you shoot the better you will get
     
  9. Seth

    Seth

    317
    Jun 6, 2006
    Tulsa, OK
    I finally had the chance to get out and shoot some more. I'm more pleased with these shots. They are cropped some though. I'm also thinking about getting an 80-200 2.8 AF-S that a local guy has for sale.. I'm sure I'll have better luck focusing with that over my 70-300. =]

    I've sold around $90 worth out of this new gallery.

    http://prints.sethlikens.com/g/050507_-_chaos

    Comments and criticism welcome.
     
  10. nipprdog

    nipprdog

    Jun 8, 2006
    IN
    think about, and keep your eyes open, for a 300f4. I recently got one used for $475. the only time now that I use my 80-200 2.8 is the late games in which I need the light. almost everything I shoot now to put on my site is uncropped. saves a lot of time.
     
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