My Twenty Favorite Basketball Photos Of 2020
When I was getting ready to start these countdowns I promised myself that I would just do a top ten for each category. It would be far easier and stop things from getting out of control. Then I went through my basketball images from last year. I had trouble taking it down to twenty let alone ten. I really had fun last basketball season. More fun than I have had before. I think what struck me the most as I went through the photos were the photos where I was up close with the players. I really miss bringing people into the huddle so I may have included more of those photos on here. As I write this I realized that I have not included any stadium photos on here. They will get their own post coming up in the future. I also realized that I never photographed a game away from West Lafayette in 2020. That is amazing, but also part of the fun that the virus brought to us. This year the countdown features mostly photos made from the court except for #20 which was made during the pandemic. Hopefully the countdown for 2021 shows photos from the stands and then ends up back on the court. Here are my twenty (plus 3) favorite images from 2020.
20. Here is the view from the top. You can definitely make some interesting images from up above. It is a good way to supplement a photo gallery for sure. You can add additional angles of the big play. You lose the emotion of the game from up there though. I do like this photo showing Tre surrounded by the entire Purdue squad.
19. I had my 12-24mm lens out before the Purdue game against Indiana waiting for one photo. I made that photo and I liked it, but then Pete gave me this one which I liked much more.
18. Another Tre on the countdown already. Here Trevion Williams get a congratulatory high five as he shoots and then flexes for the camera. I love how things work out sometimes.
17. Sasha with a big drive to the lane against Michigan State. When a player that does not normally slash to the hoop does so it makes him so much more effective.
16. I really wish that we could have seen Nojel play his senior year at Purdue. he was so much fun to photograph. Here he makes a nice pass from the same game as the Sasha drive above.
15. With the rules that are in place now I will not get to make any high school basketball photos this year. That is too bad. I really have fun capturing these young athletes do their thing. This was my favorite image from last year as it has a bit of everything that I like. It is a semi huddle photo with a little emotion thrown in.
14. This is the year when we say goodbye to Coach Wood. Not being from around here I did not know much about him. As he coached my nephew I found out what a great guy he really is. I wish that I could photograph his last dance this year, but instead I will have this last photo of him that I made on senior day last year.
13. This is my favorite photo to make in Mackey Arena. You have the action at the hoop along with the Purdue signage in the background. Of course on this day I was photographing for Penn State so their player is the focus of the photo.
12. I am never in the right spot to make these photos. I was so happy when I was in the perfect spot to make this one. Four three years I never felt that I made a good photo of Ae’Rianna. This past season I was able to make some images of her that I really liked. This was one of them.
11. At some point in the game you decide to make some different photos. Last year it seemed like I would go to slow shutter speeds quite a bit. My old go to of the double exposure is something that Sony apparently can’t figure out. This was my favorite slowed down photo of the year.
10. I love huddle photos. My job as a photographer is to bring the fans into the game and get to know the players better. Photos like these are a great way to bring the fans into a place that they can’t go. This might be the thing that I miss the most during the pandemic.
9. When I make photos for Purdue I am more propaganda than photojournalist. When the smoke and the jump are not timed perfectly I don’t have that photojournalistic guideline to follow so I can keep my camera still and just merge the two images together to make the photo that should have been made in the first place. This photo actually helped change the timing of the smoke which is a cool thing.
8. In the 90’s I loved watching Ron Harper help the Bulls win championships. My last game of the season I was able to watch his son play ball. Here he tries to throw down a dunk against then Purdue shot blocker Matt Haarms. He just missed it, but it was amazing to watch.
7. For Tommy Luce on senior day I wanted to do something special. You never know when he will get into the game so I made sure to make a photo of him during intros. I loved how this one turned out.
6. This year I loved my background for the second half of the Purdue women’s game in the Big Ten Tournament. The pennants gave the photo a great look. Here I had some action that allowed me to use the banners in the photo.
5. I love my camera on the floor. It gives me a great wide view of the action. Here it really worked well to give me a photo that I really liked.
4. When the video boards went down during a game this year people were worried and scrambling to fix it. I actually enjoyed it as it gave me a different background. I loved the large Purdue P in the background. It gave a much cleaner look to the photos than the stats on the boards do.
3. While people were in pain trying to get things back up and running I made two images that I liked when the boards went down. The tight photo in #4 and this photo a little wider. I love it when things work out.
2. I have already talked on this blog about why this photo is special to me. It is the cover of the teams media guide this year. Years ago I used to buy these things as a fan in the stands. It is super cool to be on the cover of the guide.
- This is by far my favorite basketball photo that I made last year. You have Dominique Oden having a great time in the pregame huddle with her team. These photos involve a lot of luck as you need the spotlight to hit the team at the right time. Here I was super lucky to make this image. I am more than ready to make these kind of images again.
There are my favorite basketball images from last year. Who knows what this year will bring? One thing I have learned this year is to be happy with what you have. I had a great year last year to look back on. Hopefully we can get back to doing this all again real soon.