Monday, November 12, 2007

They play it on horses, right...

One of the greatest parts of photography is going to different events, covering different sports, doing different things. As a friend pointed out, covering the same old sport, getting the same old photos, must get kind of boring. And it does. And that's why I try to find different angles on things, different approaches.

Or just try a different sport all together. So that's how waterpolo came up. I'll be honest here: I've probably seen waterpolo maybe once flipping through the channels during Olympic season, so I had a vague idea that it was played in water. A friend informed me that it's a cross between basketball and water. This should be interesting.

I've never shot water sports before, so I expected some cool effects. I was not let down. Water has a reflective effect, a certain surreal-ness to it, that is truly neat.

Waterpolo is also different than any other sport I've covered in another way. I watch lots of football and baseball, so I know what to expect when framing a shot: the quarterback's arm raises a certain amount and he releases the ball, same with a pitcher. I know that if I set up the shot and take at a certain point, the whole body of the player will be in the shot. But with waterpolo, there is a bobbing head that suddenly pops out of the water--the whole body, that is--with a ball in hand. I took dozens of shots of cut off arms, cut off balls--no good. There is a learning curve here.

I've been through wind and heavy rain, never snow, but my subject has never splashed me before. It's a new field.

This shoot taught me a hard lesson, though. The reason I only have a few shots up here is because I only have a few shots in general--my memory card was "corrupted" and the majority of my shots were lost. With the aid of a miracle-working image-recovery software, combined with the fact that I shot a few pix on another camera, provided me hopefully with enough pix to run a spread in the paper. Lesson: always go through pix, or at least download them if you don't have time to go through them, immediately--that night.

But, overall, it was a good time; next up in the pool: swimming.

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