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Digital Sports Photography

Lesson 11 of 33

Action Image With Shadows

Dustin Snipes

Digital Sports Photography

Dustin Snipes

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Lesson Info

11. Action Image With Shadows

Lesson Info

Action Image With Shadows

So, we moved over to a white wall We're gonna just do some flunges. Copyright Miles. It's a flying lunge. We're gonna try to capture him and throw his shadow on the wall. With one light, it's gonna be a very hard shadow. I'm gonna show you how you can really make that really crisp, by moving it far away. But we're gonna get right into it. So I'm talking to Miles now about exactly how he would do this. Again, we wanna utilize our athlete. He knows this much better than me. I don't know this sport as well as he does. Clearly. Yes. We're gonna have you jump from right to left. Uh, what I think we want you to try to do is, so where would you be standing at? How would your starting position be? On guard position. On guard position, okay. And then basically, into that, like you need to take a step into it, or do you need Yeah You can take a step into it? What would be better to give me more oomph, or power? Step into it. Let's do that, then. But I think let's have you start r...

ight where you are. So, if you need to step into it, mark that spot and we'll try to get that area. I'm gonna take a test shot really quick. Right, take two steps forward, or about where you would be in the air at. And then, uh, just stick out your arm really fast. And pull it more this way, actually. 'Cause we're a little but further away from the wall now. So, and then pull back right about where Chelsea is. So right know what we're doing, we're moving the light back really far because the further you get it back, the harder your source is gonna be. If we moved it in really close, we can actually just show you really quick. Ken, just push it right in here. You can see kinda like, well yeah, a little bit It kinda softens up, gets bigger. Keeps getting bigger, it's not necessarily gonna super soft, because it is a hard source anyway. But the further we get this back, anyway it's gonna be a lot easier and cleaner for those edges. So we're gonna move it back pretty far. We don't need it to be super soft. Actually for this shot, I think it would be better He has some really cool tattoos, I think it shows off a little bit more of his personality, if we did this without a shirt on. So, uh, yeah okay. That was pretty easy, actually. I thought we were gonna have to coax him a little bit. So this light is really good. Hard light is really good for muscles a lot of times. You can really sculpt it. And it gives it a nice shine to it as well. Especially with tattoos, tattoos really shine up. Looks really cool. This is great. So uh, we can also use a little spray bottle if we wanted to, to get him a little more glisten on him, but I don't think that's necessary right now. Plus, you might be a little cold from that. Yeah, unless it's warm water. It might be warm water, we can probably get that. If we had a little spray bottle with (mumbles). Alright, so let's get ready. Stand there for a second, I'm gonna do another test shot on you. What's the power at right now? Five five. Five five. I'm gonna change my frame rate to high, so I can get it a little bit faster. See how fast these lights will actually fire. Let's see, are we in high speed? Can you turn on minimum, uh minimum flash duration? And recycle. Still working on exposure. You're doing great, Miles. Solid. Solid job. Great. Yeah, we're getting a little bit of bounce up from this silver on the wall. No we want it off. High speed off. We're good. Cool. And then, I think what we wanna do, You wanna leave the light at that level? Now, the light is basically just straight on at him. The shadow's gonna be just off side. You can see it really close right now because the modeling light's on. We're gonna try one test one more time. So I'm ready for ya. I need to just see one, so I can see how far your spread is gonna be. He's a very tall individual, I wanna make sure that I'm not gonna cut off any limbs or anything like that. So we're gonna do one practice one, I'm just gonna squat down like this, and whenever you're ready sir. What's that? Whenever you're ready. Okay, I'm ready right now. Yup. Cool. Let's check that. That's great. Uh, I like what's going on with the picture. I like the shadow going behind him. It's kinda cool, it just adds another layer to it. It's getting a little bit of reflection and killing the shadow, which I would probably lay some black down or something like that. This is what you use for fencing, right? The metal on the ground? Yeah it's called strip. A strip? That's for a a piste? Fun fact of the day. And uh, flunge is also French, right? Yeah. Got it. So right now basically what I'm gonna do is lower the light a little bit more so I can get that shadow off the ground. And then I'm gonna get a little lower so I can make sure his feet are solidly in the white area. Currently my settings are 250th of a second, 5.6, and my ISO is at 400. We're trying to just play really bright right now. Again, it's just sort of white and we're just throwing up to get a shadow. Let's see here. I like how it's going up. You see how it's coming up above him now? I would say even a little bit lower. Let's try to get up even lower. Miles, let's do a test again. So we can see if this light's in the right spot. Let's start a little bit more this way. Yeah, right there I believe. Let me get in location. I'm gonna get down pretty low. What's that? Okay, you're gonna do one and then? Whenever you're ready, sir. Wait, wait, wait, sorry. Oh my goodness. We raised his foot off the ground, you can actually separate it as opposed to before when it was like this. So now it's this. Do we have the gold spray bottle? Is that okay now? That's pretty legit Yeah. That's good man. We're okay. Cool. Yeah, just spray once or twice. Okay. Sweet. Okay. So we did a little spray, so we can catch a little more light on his arms, and on his muscles there. I think it'll look really nice. Alright, so let's try this again. Push back just a little bit towards the wall. Right there, yup. And let's scoot a little bit more this way. Great. Actually, you know what? Come step towards me a little bit. One more, step in the middle of the strip. Sorry, the metal strip right here. Come up, towards me, right here. Yeah, let's try that. I wanna see what this looks like instead. So it's making a little bit bigger obviously because we're bringing him closer to the light. So I'm gonna see if I like that a little bit more. Now that we're bringing him closer, can you bring it right about where Charlie is. Right there. Okay, let's try this again. Yup. Just like that sir. My settings are still at 250th of a second, 5.6 aperture and ISO 400. And I'm shooting at about 35 mm right now. My frame rate's at high, but I'll probably will only be shooting one frame. And my hard light over is set to five five. Yup, exactly. Okay, Miles. Let's do this. Ready? Yup. Cool, let's check that out. I like it. It's cool. I like the separation, I like everything else. I think I want to I want to move the light a little bit again and I'll tell you why. And I'll tell you guys why, too. So basically, right now I have his arm leading into his arm pit. Like it's a really weird kinda shadow action there, so I actually, can we try it this way once? Yeah. I just wanna see what it looks like. So, a lot of times just try something to see if it works a little bit better if you're running into an issue. And I'll just try it really quick and if it doesn't work, you can always go right back to it. So, uh, same spot as before. We're just starting left side instead. Same light. Tilt up just a little bit. Watch that cut right there. And now the light is coming from the same side but he's facing the other direction. Can you come in just a little bit? Right there is fine, yeah. Okay. Whenever you're ready. Yup. Cool. I like this. I mean, I think the only problem is I wanna see more of you. So I think because you're right-handed we wanna open you up still. We wanna keep you at that thing, that same area. I do like that now it looks like the shadow would be in the opposite direction. So let's try to go left, from left to right again. And see if that works. Let's go over towards my bag, right over there. Or towards that black C stand. Looking good. I would start a little bit more to your, forward that way. 'Cause the shadow is thrown a lot farther. Actually a little bit more, go this way a little bit more. Even more, right there. That's probably good. Let's try this out. Let me get a pre focus in there. 'Cause you're just moving on a plane, so again, he's in motion. I'm just gonna pre focus my shot. Take my focus out of the equation, and just worry about capturing the moment. Whenever you're ready, sir. Cool. Let's go back, do it more time. Let's take a half step back before, behind you. Actually take six more inches back. To your right. To my right, I apologize. There you go, perfect. And whenever you're ready, sir. Good. Let's move the light onto this side. Over to the other side. Again I'm still having the issue with the sword going into your arm a little bit. Into my arm, what do you mean? Like, it's basically just because the light is What's that? The shadow in the arm? Yeah. It's just a weird, awkward shadow basically. We're just gonna change positions with the light. I think it's the same sort of concept, except for the shadow is going to be in front of you now, so you won't be fighting with it too much. Okay, sir. I am ready whenever you are. Cool. This time, take more steps back so I can keep you right in the middle during the jump. 'Cause the shadow now is getting little bit off this way now, because it's in front of you. So, uh, take even further steps back. There you go. Let me pre focus again, and check my focus. I don't wanna leave it in manual the whole time in case I'm moving. Okay, whenever you're ready again, Miles. Cool. Great. So now I kinda like this more. You guys can see it. I don't have to fight with the other thing. This isn't as bad, because it's not going into his actual body, it's going into the shadow. So before, again, we go back and we have this. You know? It's pretty cool, but again, it just bothers me a little bit from that right there. Looks like he's getting stabbed. So, again, to switch it, we just switched it over to the other side. That was a little too far over. But now that works a little bit nicer. So, let's do two more of these in a row and then we're gonna throw on a tighter reflector two more, and then we're gonna move on after that. Sound good? Yeah. Cool. Ken, get the 45 ready for throwing that on there. Yup. Thanks, Caleb. And then I'm gonna move over just a tad bit this way. It's the one, right there, yeah. That's the shot, Miles. Let's pull the light back just a little to the right. There you go. (laughs) So let's do Yeah, so basically where I want you to jump is kind where you are right now. Okay So, You want me in the air here? No, I think leaving from that position. Actually, no, yeah. Leaving from that position. Because otherwise you might get in the scoreboard behind ya. That'll take a little post work. Cool, let me re focus my camera. Don't move just yet. And now I'm ready. Whenever you are. Good. Good. Let's check that really fast. Nice. Okay. Let's raise it up just a little bit. Let's do it overhead almost, so the shadow Well, no, I like the shadow lifted off. Let's scoot in and scoop under. So, we'll show the difference between this it might get a little softer on the shadow but I kinda wanna see if I can get the shadow to come up and over a little bit more. Even closer. Let's get in there. Let's really scoot in. Yeah, and now let's get over to the right more. You see how it feathers a little bit more? To the right, perfect. Nice and big. Too much, come back. Oh, no no, sorry, towards me. Man, how tall are you? 6'4". How tall is that guy? 13 feet. Yeah that's about right. That's crazy. So our power's a little high now. So we're at five five, since we're closer in we wanna knock it down to like three five probably. Take two stops off there, and see. Little too dark, let's go to four five. Little softer on the shadow, but I don't mind much. Let's get ready, Miles. Feather a little to you right. There you go. And whenever you're ready, sir. Okay. Can you jump back, take two steps back and start right That's where I want you to be in the air. Right in front of me. Yes Okay. Cool. Kay one second, let me pre focus. Good, and whenever you're ready. Good, let me check that out really fast. Great, let me do Get back just a little bit more, Ken. Pull back. Pull back just a little bit more. We're getting the wires up top, so we wanna minimize that. Go back another two feet. We're shrinking your 13 foot guy down to 11. And now, I am ready whenever you are. Same takeoff, right? Same spot, yeah. Same spot. Yup. Cool. Great. I like that one. Lower down though, I want you still low. Same shot, let's do it again. Go ahead. Kay, now let's go back to the original positioning. And put the 45 on there. So, we're gonna try a more spotted effect with a tighter grid. We're just gonna try a couple of these shots and see how it varies from the loose grid and see what kinda shots we can get from it. It's gonna add more of a spotlight and still throw that nice shadow on there. One more test, there Miles, and we'll get goin. I'm gonna go a little loser. It's not as tighter I was hoping for. So, uh let's go even further that way. Just get over there and let's get a little wider. Right there, stop. Okay, ready whenever your are, Miles. Kay. Uh, feather more to the right. There you go, stop. That's about where I want you to, I want you to take off about a foot in front of that. If you can. And whenever you're ready. Cool, let's check this. Let's do another one. Let's get it lower. Try to get as low as you can, and if you need to in a little bit more, you can. If you need to, just scoop under a little bit but, just to get his shadow off the ground. Okay. And let's check exposure again. Great. Good. Okay, don't move. I'm gonna pull back even more just to show the entire wall here. I'm gonna pre focus again, and Miles, whenever you're ready. Kay. One sec. Actually you know what, hold it, yep, there, I'm ready now. Go ahead. My second shot is just an after effects shot. Pull one more foot over to the right. Okay. Gettin' loose. Okay. Let's live wild today. You ready for this, Miles? Okay, ready. Whenever you are. Good. Let's check that. Sweet. I'm gonna move over just a little bit to my left. I want you to do the exact same thing, where you were before. And this is going to be our last shot. Let me pre focus. Okay, whenever you're ready, Miles. Cool. I like it. Let's go all the way up against the wall. All the way up there. Let's just stand right on the wall. And look, kinda look cool. There you go. There you go. Look to your left. Look to your right. Let's see this really quick. Okay I wanna do one more shot of you jumping, but really close that way. Okay? So, same thing we were just doing a second ago, the flunge? Copyright pending. Then we're gonna just move on after that. 'Cause, I really like how this is looking right now. Right, that area. And whenever you're ready, sir. Yup. Pull to the right just a little bit more. Let's do it one more time. Actually two in a row. Let's do two in a row really quick. Uh yes. No, two in a row, just jump twice. Cool, actually jump this way now. Go the opposite way. Yup. Cool. And one more the opposite way and we're good. And I wanna give you a good look at these. How you doin'? Oh I'm good. Cool. Cool. Let's take a look real quick. Show you some of these shots. So these are tighter shadows, just a hard shadow on the wall now. So, really tight. Gives you a nice contrast on your body, especially with the dark shadow on the wall. Nice. Thanks man, it's all you, dude. Look, that looks pretty cool right there. I like the two face kinda look, it's great. And then we were doing some wide ones. That's sick! Just to kinda show Thank you my friend.

Class Description

When starting out in Sports Photography it’s difficult to begin finding your creative style. Going out and practicing with friends or local athletes is the best way to start building your portfolio. But what happens when you want to take your images to the next level?

Join Red Bull Photographer Dustin Snipes, as he takes you on a journey through the creative process behind photographing 3 sports at 5 locations with 5 athletes. He'll be working with students to show the best ways to communicate and inspire the athletes he's photographing, as well as how to maximize time spent with them. Dustin takes students through the challenges of photographing in direct sunlight, at public locations, in parks with mixed light, and in water.

Dustin teaches:

  • How to photograph basketball athletes, triathletes, and a fencer
  • The pros and cons to working outside in direct sunlight
  • How to communicate with and work with professional athletes and non-pros
  • Working through unique challenges of on-location shoots
  • Lighting techniques to capture the athlete
  • On-location portraits
  • Freeze motion and capture water to get that hero shot
  • How to use motion blur to capture a moving bicycle
  • The importance of being flexible on location to maximize your surroundings

Do you dream of taking professional athlete’s portraits? Do you want to have your images on the covers of magazines? Then join Dustin Snipes as he teaches you his secrets to maximizing locations in short periods of time, communicating with athletes to get the most out of their movements, and lighting a scene to capture the frame you want. 



Loved all the ideas and why he's positioned his athletes the way he did, and positioned the lighting. I met Dustin a few years ago at and NPAC conference. It's nice to see him doing these teaching videos. His work is very inspiring to me.

a Creativelive Student

Less talk and all action.. This is the best no mumbo jumbo talks and straight to practical work..

Alexandra Schaede

I really enjoyed the multiple exposure video, the pity is that they are no videos to talk about the post processing of this image.