F-stop pro photographer Jeff Curtes is no stranger to the outdoors. Skiing, snowboarding, cycling, Curtes loves the world of outdoor sports and he loves photographing them. Starting out shooting photos of his brother, (who became a pro snowboarder) he was able to gain attention for the blossoming sport and became a favorite among his clients for his intimate knowledge & passion for the subject. Curtes’ latest project involves photographing cycling, one of his own favorites hobbies:
Tips for Shooting Sports:
- Know the Sport – It may sound like simple advice, but the more you know about the sport, the more you’ll understand what’s popular, easy, difficult, cinematic, boring, fun, etc. You’ll gain an understanding of what your subjects can/will do and what works best as far as photographing them.
- Scout Locations – Are you looking for a slightly urban scene for your cycling photos? or a beautiful countryside vista? Search for places by driving around and asking around. If you find a place you really like, visit it at different times during the day to see how the light changes.
- Practice Safety – Photographing some sports can be potentially dangerous if you’re not careful. Curtes had no problem hanging out the window of a car to get his shots, but he had safety measures in place to catch him just in case. For any sport, make sure that you’re a safe distance away from the action so that you don’t endanger yourself or your subject.
- Be Friendly with Flash – Flash can help make your sport photos pop, but make sure your subjects are cool with it. You don’t want to blind them and cause them to injure themselves.
- Be Aware of Your Shutter Speed – For the most part, you’ll want to have a high shutter speed to freeze the action. But sometimes a little background blur or movement blur can add to a photo. Actively think about your exposure settings. You can bump up your ISO to get that extra few stops of light and shoot faster, but don’t increase it so much that your images are over noisy.
“Surround yourself with great people and don’t be intimidated with projects that are beyond your scope of competency. It gives you the power to realize that you can kinda…achieve anything.”
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