Shooting People So They Don't Die, Part 1

March 09, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

By Terry Carter
UDPhotos Editor

Everyone with a camera raise your hand for a second.

Ok, that's more than good. I couldn't see the trees for all the arms waving. But why do we all have cameras? Is it because we all want to take memorable photos of great or historic moments in our family? Most likely. However people can struggle to get good photos. And great ones can seem completely out of reach until you practice every day for months and accept the fact your images may not be stellar when you start.

Some also want to hit the jackpot with an photo Sport Illustrated or Time magazine will pay handsomely for assuming you consider a few hundred dollars a jackpot. But even if the media paid $10,000 per premium image, how do you shoot them?

This blog is explore how to make award-winning, cash-producing and creative images for either your amusement/pleasure or that of an editor in some distant city.

As I specialize in the near-impossible images other photographers avoid in the over-crowded world of sideline photography, I make it my business to experiment with new technologies, techniques to find ways to succeed on tough assignments

Take this image for example:

A Tale of A Mustang, 2 Screaming Cats21112REG3wrestleC-100


After working professionally with a camera for close to 25 years, I can assure you that wrestling photos like this can happen. They are generally ignored by elite photographers unless they are looking for symbolism, synchronicity, juxtaposition and a dozen other terms translated into an unusual, eye-catching photo.

This wrestler simply had a head-to-head contest with a red-faced, 2-dimensional Wildcat with fangs bared. Oddly enough, the Katy Taylor Mustang grappler in blue, Geovanny Alzate, used nearly the same expression while flexing his muscles during a fireman's takedown. To Alzate's benefit, he was the only one of the two animals with blood on his teeth. So apparently Geo got the first blood in this battle.

It was a nice moment and easily stood out in my mind due to Alzate's dramatic expression. In reality, a boring face would have made this image just another in-focus extra shot. But as it is, the photographer knew this one was special before he left the wrestling arena.

Technical Data on this image:
This was shot at 1/500 at f2.8 with a Nikon Nikkor 80-200mm AF-S lens on a Nikon D7000 body. The image was taken at 2:10pm on Feb. 11, 2012 at the Region III Wrestling Championships held in Katy, Texas.


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