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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Sports Talk 
Thread started 20 Jan 2012 (Friday) 07:55
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Shooting other people's kids at HS Sports

 
boufa
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Jan 20, 2012 07:55 |  #1

I enjoy the hunt for the shot. I really don't do much with them, occasionally I post here, I have a website (zenfolio) and facebook, both of which get few visitors. But the main the main thrill for me is the shot. Even if no one ever see's it.

I can imagine going to a HS sporting event and trying to get one of those sweet shots you all sometimes post. A long jumper in flight, a football player making a catch, etc. But my kids are in elementary school. Is it wrong to go to a HS sporting event as a spectator and try to take (non-professional/not for sale) photos of the event?

College does not give me the same "Do people think I am creepy" feeling, however I am much more limited in my opportunities to shoot college sports. I have not shot HS sports before, but think it would be an interesting experience... if its appropriate.

Me personally, I don't care who takes pictures of my kids. I don't understand the issues that many other people have along those lines, but I respect that some people do have an issue with it.


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AB8ND
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Jan 20, 2012 08:30 |  #2

THe problem you are going to have is access to the spots to get these shots.You either need to be in one corner off to the side under the basket or somewhere mid court (under the scoring table is good). Unfortunately for you schools usually restrict this access to their school photogs or legit media people. Things get crowded at games, with the cheerleaders taking part of the space and the officials taking some more of the space under the basket. There just isn't enough room to have every parent or spectator with a camera running around the court unrestricted. I'd call the AD, tell him/her what you want to do, otherwise with all the rules to protect the kids you might wind up in a room answering a lot of questions.

Jack




  
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boufa
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Jan 20, 2012 08:40 |  #3

AB8ND wrote in post #13737022 (external link)
THe problem you are going to have is access to the spots to get these shots.You either need to be in one corner off to the side under the basket or somewhere mid court (under the scoring table is good). Unfortunately for you schools usually restrict this access to their school photogs or legit media people. Things get crowded at games, with the cheerleaders taking part of the space and the officials taking some more of the space under the basket. There just isn't enough room to have every parent or spectator with a camera running around the court unrestricted. I'd call the AD, tell him/her what you want to do, otherwise with all the rules to protect the kids you might wind up in a room answering a lot of questions.

Jack

The question was is it appropriate for a random photog to go and shoot, without a contract, without an interest in sales, and without having any of their own kids in the activity. I am in no way asking about access other than spectator access. I also would not shoot indoors, I don't have the equipment to waste my time with it.

on an aside... does anyone donate their photos to the schools in exchange for access. I am hoping (as a tax payer) that my district is not spending money on a pro-photog for anything other than team photos.


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dwarrenr
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Jan 20, 2012 09:18 |  #4

It all depends on the school. I've read where photographers are not allowed to shoot at schools unless they have a reason (read press, team photographers or parents.) It's their house, so it's their rules. The best option is to do as AB8ND stated and contact the AD prior to the game and see what he says. Some schools are so laxed they give access to anyone. Most schools will not care if you are shooting from the stands. Another option is just to show up, pay your way in and shoot from the stands. If asked just tell them the truth, that you enjoy shooting sports and are there to practice.

And a lot depends on the sport. Some soccer at small schools I have been to I have the same access as any parent. Some baseball fields are the same way, depending on the size of the fence.

As far as images for access goes, it happens all the time. Parents donate their time as team photographers at most schools. But it would be more difficult for an unknown person to do this, but again each school may be different and does not mind (or think about) the risk involved to do so.


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Joe300
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Jan 20, 2012 10:02 |  #5

Hello,
OP, you have some nice work on your website, do you put those out there for sale.?
As far as shooting sports in your area, like others said talk to the AD of the school. if there is a house photog like someone who shoots and also is a member of the booster clubs,etc. check with them too.
if there is someone shooting there then ask them if they are shooting for the school and if they dont mind if you shoot also.
I went to a middle school game just to shoot and there was a house photog there so I ask him if he minds if I shoot some action stuff then post to my web site he said sure... then said you might get shoots I miss and the parents might want to have your photo instead...
He shoots then prints them out and places the images on the tables before the game.
I just post to my web site. HS sports is the same and if I get anything good keepers I will donate back to the school for year book , etc.. and you get you face and name out there....

happy shooting,
Joe


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snyderman
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Jan 20, 2012 10:02 |  #6

down in Medina county, here. I shot HS sports for the Suburban League for 3 years. Football and basketball. I also had a son who played football. Met and talked with the Athletic Director of my son's school and worked out a deal with him. If I shot the boys JV and Varsity basketball program, he'd make sure I had sideline privileges during Friday night football games.

Wonderful experience and got a HUGE number of great shots for the kids, parents and fans during that time. After shooting games, I'd process the shots and post them to Shutterfly where images could be purchased.

As others have mentioned, having a valid reason to be there is the first step in gaining access to school property and admission to the games. Paying for a ticket and sitting in the stands isn't going to get the kind of shots you'd want.

As far as creepy goes? During last season's basketball playoff games, an older guy sat on the first row of the bleachers and at point blank range, shot the cheerleaders for the entire first half of the game. A couple of girls sat down until the A.D. removed the guy and his camera! No idea who he was and it was the first time I'd seem him there all season. Girls can, and most definitely will, get really creeped out by what that guy was doing. The boys don't even notice you while they're playing and really couldn't care less that you are there or not. I know because I asked them. But they really DO appreciate the good shots.

Personally, I ASK the girls if it's ok to grab a couple of shots beforehand. Plus, they know my son as a classmate and student-athlete and refer to me as 'Blake's dad' when shooting the games and activities surrounding each event.

dave


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boufa
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Jan 20, 2012 10:15 |  #7

Joe300 wrote in post #13737490 (external link)
Hello,
OP, you have some nice work on your website, do you put those out there for sale.?

No.. not really. I have in the past sold a few shots and I donated one to the State of Louisiana for some education/nature website that they were putting together (pretty sure it is no longer used). Not really committed to sales, but I won't turn down money either ;) . I think that by not trying to sell anything, I can always use being a non-professional as an excuse for ending up with no keepers.

Back on topic, thank you all for your advice.


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Joe300
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Jan 20, 2012 10:39 |  #8

"I think that by not trying to sell anything, I can always use being a non-professional as an excuse for ending up with no keepers.
boufa,
LOL... I am trying to sell / be a PRO by selling, but my keeper rate is very low when shooting too..LOL
but I only need a few good shoots of the ball players in order to sell...LOL

Do you have business cards? go out to the gym, find your AD for the school and hand him a card and say 'I am a local photog in the area and wanted to shoot a little here tonight... you shouldnt have any issues.. have fun.

Joe


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boufa
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Jan 20, 2012 10:48 as a reply to  @ Joe300's post |  #9

Totaly personal reply.. sorry.

I thought about it after my last post, and here is what it came down to. Back in college (almost 20 years ago) I got hired to audio record a piano performance, I forgot to turn on 1 piece of equipment and the show did not record. I had to tell her that her big concert moment was not recorded. It sucked. Because of that I hesitate to take money.

I realize it is silly, but it is what it is.


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12Rock
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Jan 20, 2012 10:57 |  #10

Boufa ... I shot at the local H.S. ..my son was on a couple of team a few years back ...I became close to the coach and after he graduated (my son) , I asked the coach if he minded i show up and shot the shots the following year . he welcomed me back as did the parents . At the end of the season i put them (pics) on a DVD with some tunes that the coach plays at an end of season diner . I asked for nothing in return ...I like you love to get that great shot and have the time . I know my shots went over well as other coaches told me i was welcome to any of their events to shot.
When i go to these events i keep my mouth shut, stay out of everyone's way and enjoy my time perfecting my skill & hobby .. Some of you guys will knock this but it's my thing in my life . Bottom line speak to the A.D. of the school explain your reasons




  
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Joe300
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Jan 20, 2012 10:58 |  #11

boufa wrote in post #13737732 (external link)
Totaly personal reply.. sorry.

I thought about it after my last post, and here is what it came down to. Back in college (almost 20 years ago) I got hired to audio record a piano performance, I forgot to turn on 1 piece of equipment and the show did not record. I had to tell her that her big concert moment was not recorded. It sucked. Because of that I hesitate to take money.

I realize it is silly, but it is what it is.

Sorry to hear about your lost audio mishap....
What was she going to do with that old tape anyway...lol she has that show recorded in your mine forever...and maybe other family meembers have a video somewhere.. its a bummer on the photog side of the house for us when that happens... but things happen...

ok...LOL... dont take any $$$ for anyone...LOL just shoot and maybe some will want a action photo for you and put $$$ in your hand..LOL


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WL x1600 etc.
Two Bronica SQ-Ai outfit too! 'Old School'
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boufa
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Jan 20, 2012 11:19 |  #12

Joe300 wrote in post #13737776 (external link)
Sorry to hear about your lost audio mishap....
What was she going to do with that old tape anyway...lol she has that show recorded in your mine forever...and maybe other family meembers have a video somewhere.. its a bummer on the photog side of the house for us when that happens... but things happen...

ok...LOL... dont take any $$$ for anyone...LOL just shoot and maybe some will want a action photo for you and put $$$ in your hand..LOL

Now that I can do!

Some succes without the pressure of payment woud help build confidence and bury that memory of the failure. Funny how that 1 mistake so many years ago has had such an influence today.

Not where I though this thread would go to when I asked the question initially, but that's o.k. again, thanks for your inputs.


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mobei
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Jan 20, 2012 13:10 as a reply to  @ boufa's post |  #13

So if you do this who is going to provide custom posters and various other accessories that a parent may want. How much of your free time are you willing to devote to doing things right?




  
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Joe300
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Jan 20, 2012 13:22 |  #14

Yes, supply and demand= $$$. for me its just one or two free low res images. a few 4x6, 5x7..but thats it for me.. just a taste of my work.
When parents ask about posters, accessories,etc.. I point them to my web site... or tell them to send me the image #'s and I will get a price for the custom stuff...
I use zenfolio for my web photo hosting and printing, etc..

Joe


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WL x1600 etc.
Two Bronica SQ-Ai outfit too! 'Old School'
www.joelaroccaphotogra​phy.com (external link)

  
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boufa
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Jan 20, 2012 13:28 |  #15

Joe300 wrote in post #13738531 (external link)
Yes, supply and demand= $$$. for me its just one or two free low res images. a few 4x6, 5x7..but thats it for me.. just a taste of my work.
When parents ask about posters, accessories,etc.. I point them to my web site... or tell them to send me the image #'s and I will get a price for the custom stuff...
I use zenfolio for my web photo hosting and printing, etc..

Joe

I too was gonna mention that zenfolio is my backend. I must say that if a parent comes up and unsolisited, asks for an unusual product then it is not embarasing to say that it is a product I cannot supply. I also realize that it might be expensive and not very profutible for me, but I know that Fuji does poster sizes and they can be ordered at many retail outlets.


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