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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #1
Zweihaender
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Default Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

Until yesterday I have never shot Motorsports before, but I always wanted to try some panning shots. So I went to a local bike event to give it a try. As it turned out, panning shots are not that easy with a heavy lens. I did some, but I could already see on the LCD most of them were not good. That's why I decided to shoot wide open.

I showed some of my photos four non-photographers (regular people) this morning and asked them if they can see a difference (panning/non-panning) and which they like more. It turned out, all four of them prefer the photos with the short shutter speeds, where the wheels are frozen.

So I wonder: Why do panning shots at all, if your potential customers (I don't work for money) prefer photos with short shutter speeds? A photographer or a magazine won't agree, but I'm talking about the drivers who don't know anything about photography.


5D3, 300mm, f11.0, 1/50, ISO 100



5D3, 300mm, f2.8, 1/5000 & 1/4000, ISO 200



5D3, 300mm, f10.0, 1/60, ISO 100
5D3, 300mm, f8.0, 1/80, ISO 200



5D3, 300mm, f2.8, 1/1600 & 1/2000, ISO 200


I cant't edit the typo in the title/header. Would be nice if a moderator edits it.

Last edited by Zweihaender : 15th of July 2012 (Sun) at 07:21.
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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #2
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Default Re: Do non-photographers don't value difficult shots?

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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #3
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

Your frozen action shots have other things showing the dynamics of action that even to me are more preferable than a standard panning shot. Flying mud and water for example. You've also captured the frozen action at more pleasing angles than you did the pans.
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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #4
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

To convey the sense of speed, motion blur is appropriate. But as you have seen, it's not easy. If you showed your shots to a driver, I think they'd like the blurred shots better as it better conveys the sense of the activity. An untrained eye will focus on features that are not necessarily essential to what you're trying to convey. Buy a motorcross magazine and see what kinds of images they favor.
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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #5
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

Not only Non-photographers, other photographers dont care either. Technique and effort does not sell a photograph. They just dont. How compelling is the photograph is what will make it sell. Spinning wheels or not.
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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #6
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

I have to agree with this.
Quote:
Your frozen action shots have other things showing the dynamics of action that even to me are more preferable than a standard panning shot. Flying mud and water for example. You've also captured the frozen action at more pleasing angles than you did the pans
.

Now if you could get the blur of movement and mud/water flying everywhere I think they would sell
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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #7
Rob Stewart
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

cdifoto hit the nail on the head above. When you are photographing motox or rallying it's easier to get a sense of speed and excitement using a faster shutter speed because of all the cr*p flying about, mud, water, snow etc all show that the vehicle is moving at a pace. Try the same shutter speed on a sunny day at Silverstone however and you'll end up with a tedious shot of a car seemingly standing still on the track (except head on or going away).

Motion blur and spinning wheels are only two of several ways of getting some interest in your subject and conveying what you saw when you observed the subject. They are not the be all and end all of motorsport photography, just a couple of 'tools' you can use in some situations.

Regards,

Rob.
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Old 15th of July 2012 (Sun)   #8
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

I thought there were some good shots there.
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Old 30th of July 2012 (Mon)   #9
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

I shoot drag racing, but I almost never sell a panning shot. I sold one once that I recall. They like the exploding power at the starting line. I think road racers and oval track folks are most into panning.

One of the things I remember from my earliest days in photography is that the only person that cares how hard the shot was to get is you. Your client or editor doesn't care at all. They only assess the value the finished product has to them. This is why I think photographers shouldn't edit their own work. We know how hard a shot was to get and give it extra points for degree of difficulty, so to speak. A dispassionate outsider will do a better job of editing.

Last edited by Jim M : 31st of July 2012 (Tue) at 00:04.
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Old 10th of August 2012 (Fri)   #10
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

It comes down to taste. Personally I like the frozen shots better, most panning shots are hard for me to stare at for more than five seconds.
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Old 10th of August 2012 (Fri)   #11
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

Maybe, most non-photographers shoot pics that have some sort of "blurring" whether it be a good pan shot or just insufficient shutterspeed so they are used to that look...

Then, BAM! here you come with a shot made at a shutterspeed of say 1/800 (which their camera is incapable of achieving, let alone them knowing what short SS would do) so they say, "you're a GREAT photographer! "
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Old 11th of August 2012 (Sat)   #12
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

I've seen people at dirt tracks wet their pants over a high shutter speed shot of a car that looks like it is parked under a red flag, where you could tell every person sitting in the stands, and those same people will dismiss a pan shot that rips your eyes out with colour and blur.

I think they love the word "HOOSIER" on the tires......LOL
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Last edited by Bosscat : 11th of August 2012 (Sat) at 16:25.
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Old 12th of August 2012 (Sun)   #13
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

Personally, I like the panning shots better. Frozen spokes on an obviously moving motorcycle are as weird as a frozen propeller on a flying airplane. That said, there is an appeal in a photograph of something you can't see with your eyes, frozen spokes and propellers. Or a bullet going through and apple. Try shooting that at 1/50s. Shoot both, sell what the customer wants.
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Old 25th of August 2012 (Sat)   #14
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

It is a little unfair act like non-photographers are somehow beneath photographers and have bad taste when it comes to "difficult shots". A difficult shot isn't always the best shot. To assume that a shot is somehow automatically better, just because it was harder to take, is silly. I personally also like the "frozen" wheel shots. They are more exciting to me.
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Old 26th of August 2012 (Sun)   #15
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Default Re: Do non-photographers not value difficult shots?

Different forms of motorsport suit different styles of shooting,mx and freestyle look better frozen or with slight wheel blur as its more about the body language of the rider.Circuit bikes work different with frozen head on pics or slight angle being frozen but pans work great to show speed.
Cars are a complete different subject than bikes and also benefit from the above general rule depending on circuit or dirt etc.
Most people look at a picture and as long as its sharp thats all they care about where as a magazine or editor will look for a picture that conveys the best capture for the story and shows the action or style of sport and rider.
If your selling at an event to mums and dads or riders as long as its sharp they dont care in all honesty but to a magazine etc you need to combine all of the above and more.
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