March 2021 // The Senior Edition

Creating Dramatic Athlete Portraits | Matt Hernandez

Moving on, we headed out onto the field so I could get some shots of him with turf under his feet. Of the six photos on the field, what do you notice they all have in common? First, they all have a stadium light in the background. Do I have to have the lights behind him? No, but it sure does add interest. Personally, I don’t think you can ever go wrong with a nicely underexposed sky, but why not make it even better if you can? Second, I am positioned below him in all the shots. This angle really makes athletes look dominant and heroic, especially if you shoot with a wider lens. I see a lot of people unwilling to lay all the way down when they shoot. To me, that is just plain laziness. Try shooting the same photo standing, kneeling, sitting, and laying down with a focal length somewhere between 24-40mm. You will see a pretty noticeable difference in every shot, and a huge difference in standing or kneeling as opposed to laying down.

So, to this point we have a total of 19 photos from about five different setups and it only took me about 30 minutes to accomplish that. Again, maximizing every spot you move to by changing your angle and focal length can really cut down your shoot time. That’s a win for everyone involved.

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