A Historic Pitch

Sports Photo of the Day

Yesterday I was in heaven. I was in the sun (at the beginning) shooting a baseball game. To top it all off I have a media pass to allow me to get where I need to be to make some interesting pictures. The funny thing is that the picture that I liked the most from the day was not taken from a camera well. It was taken from one of the chair back seats sold to anyone. Purdue was finally opening it’s new stadium so the first pitch was going to be important. When I walked into the stadium I was trying to think of where I wanted to be to capture the first pitch in the new stadium. I wanted something to tell why this picture was important. Standing behind home plate this composition came to mind. I liked that you can see the scoreboard, and know that this is the first pitch of the game. It is a simple move to get here, but I think that it paid off. I won’t talk about the outcome of the game, but maybe the Boilers can do better tomorrow during the doubleheader.

Technical Data

This picture really shows how far I have come in a year. One way is in equipment. I had a lens that would have probably not taken this picture. The other way is how I learned to shoot through objects to get the picture that I want to make. This was shot with a high aperture through the fence that covers most of the seating in the infield. I would never even try a shot like this because the fence was always in my way. Now I know that I have the lens to get it. I used the 70-200mm lens with the 1.4x extender on it to get this picture. With the extender I lose a stop, but it still gets me pretty close to where I need to be. I would love to blur the background more, but in this case I think it was perfect. During the game I toyed with the idea of taking the extender off, and just cropping in so that I could move to 2.8 instead of an aperture of 4. I figured that there will be plenty of games this season to experiment if I want.

As far as post-processing goes if you read this blog regularly you probably know what I used in Lightroom to start off. I used the light sports preset by Matt Kloskowski to get the picture close. I always undo a couple of things to the preset though so at some point I should just make my own preset that will save me a bit of time. With the light conditions that I saw today I could come up with a couple of presets I think. In the picture above everything was in the sun. By the end of the game the field was a checkerboard of light and shadows. If I was there to learn I had good conditions to do so. It was a challenge, but in the end not too difficult. I walked away today very happy with my results.

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