Everyone always says the best way to improve your skills is to practice, practice, practice so I decided to take that advice and practice my baseball photography. I checked out a few of the local high schools to get their schedules and made a plan to attend several games at a couple of different schools.
As with anything there is always lighting challenges and with baseball it is ball-cap shadows on the players eyes and harsh bright sunlight. The challenge is learning to deal with the given lighting conditions and make good images that viewers would like to purchase.
Bright sun and high-fives
Bright afternoon sun and nice purple colors really make this shot pop for me, but I wish the kid didn’t close his eyes.
To see more of my high school baseball images click on the more link below.
I was finding it difficult to get the player’s eyes in my shots because most of the time the players never look up, well unless they hit a pop-fly.
I am struggling to get the perfect moment with the player’s face, eyes and peak action in the same shot, not always an easy task for me.
I even tried to work the follow-through angle, but still I ended up with player’s eyes closed or half-open.
Every once in a while I would get a nice swing with the player’s eyes in the shot, but I’m still looking for the ball-on-bat and player’s face shot.
Sometimes it’s cool if you get the coach and team in the background of a shot.
You can’t see the player’s eyes in this shot, but a good brush-back at the plate is nice, but much better if the ball is in the frame.
I can’t blame this player for closing his eyes, in this shot the ball is just a tiny bit out of the strike zone.
In this shot the ball is almost there, but the player’s eyes can’t be seen, so I’ll keep trying to get that ball-on-bat shot.
Sometimes a good follow-through shot is nice, but maybe it is just this player keeping his head up for his swing.
I like to shoot some of the action in the dugout or off the ball-field and this shot-within-a-shot stood out for me.
Getting a nice shot of the players leaning on the dugout wall is something I look for during games.
At one of the schools the afternoon light comes in at just the right angle to highlight the dust from the ball and the catcher’s glove and it can make for some fantastic images.
Getting good shots of the catcher in action is always difficult because most of the time they have masks on and are in the shadows.
There are always those players that show the proper tongue-out technique for baseball, and getting clean shots of them is important.
Doesn’t really matter what position the player is, utilizing the proper tongue-out technique is a very important fundamental of baseball.
If you are lucky you can even get a shot of the catcher using this important technique although the mask can obstruct you from getting the tongue-out shot at times.
Good isolated pitcher shots should sell well. Any parent would be proud to have a nice big print of a shot like this on display for family and friends to see.
At one of the schools the lighting is tough because from one side of the field you end up shooting almost directly into the sun, if you can work with it you’ll make some nice images, but it can be a real challenge at times.
If you shoot from the other side of that same field you tend to get a real harsh shadow line right down the middle of the player’s face so you really have to be careful with your exposures and metering.
In the end you just do your best to deal with the harsh shadows and bright light and try to get good shots for the players.
This player had a great look back at first base that put his face in the shadows and it made the shot for me.