Jeff, I appreciate the look at my photos. I believe the event photographers were Lightspeed. My daughter, who is 8 and a flyer, competes in the Midwest. The Gym travels to Indy at the Convention Center (WSF), Cobo Hall at Detroit (GLCC), UIC and Navy Pier a couples of times each a year, and NIU in DeKalb. I am completely self taught, and trying to learn more each day. Sometimes I know just enough to be dangerous.
I shot the event in shutter priority (400) on most of the pictures, which looking at my camera monitor, gave me he best pop on the uniform colors. I have since learned not to trust 100% your cameras monitor. The lens I shot with was the Kit lens that came with my 7D Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Lens. Not my lens of choice, but I had just spent $1900 on a new camera and to rent a lens for the event would have been another $150. I pretty much have no problem renting something once to try it than I typically buy, I had already rented one for Indy and my wife would have had a cow on the spot.
Prior to this year I was approached by many of the Gyms parents to set up a website to purchase the photos I had been taking for free to this point. Up to the National, sales had been less than stellar, and after I had trashed my camera in just 2 years, it was time to see if I could make any money doing this. I could not afford to be replacing or fixing a camera every 2 years. I changed my pricing structure, got rid of the website, went to a slide show presentation or kiosk with my laptop at the gym and placed some time constraints and the results were much better. I am pouring every dollar I make back into equipment.
I have not done any pp to the images other than to resize them. I shot the event in jpeg rather than raw, only because I had to buy 8 new CF cards and could only afford 4G. I suspect the images are a bit soft too, after learning about some 7Ds can have a soft focus issue and some lens may need to Micro adjustment. I played around with that at my nephew’s birthday party and got sharper images.
I don’t know how close you are to the girls when you shoot, I would say at over half of our events, at times during the routine I am only 5 feet away from the girls. Most times I am shooting next to the event photographers. At that distance would you be able to get all the stunt groups (as many as 6) in one picture with 70-200 mm 2.8? Most of the parents in the gym prefer seeing the entire, stunt or pyramid and I tend to get my close ups during the dance and cheer portions of the routine.
Over our 2 day Nationals, I shot, approximately 6,000 photos, of 8 teams, roughly 300 to 350 per routine, not hard to do with the occasional 8fps bursts of the 7D. Jeff at events, how many pictures do you average per routine?
The Gym has approached me about possibly doing the team and individual photos next year .While I am flattered and know I could do a decent job. I really want to do a great job and need to learn more before that next step. I know very little about PP, need to learn more about lighting and want to take a class with the possibility of some workshops. My eventual goal is to continue doing cheer competitions, branch off eventually into team photos. I thought, high School senior portraits would be a natural dovetail, from the families at the gym.
Thanks for the look
7D / 28-135, Canon 50mm f/1.8, 85mm, Canon 24-70mm 2.8 I, 50-250mm IS, (3) 600ex-rt