Top Ten Sports Photos Of 2020

My Ten Favorite Sports Images Of 2020

This was an interesting year to say the least. It started off great, and then of course all went crazy in March. I still had a very fun year making sports images. A lot of my year end galleries could not happen this year because I just didn’t make enough photos of that sport. Volleyball is one good example of this. I only photographed one volleyball match this year. It was a fun one, but not enough for a gallery. This year that is one sport that I really want to photograph more of. Baseball and softball are sports that I just want to photograph again. It is hard to believe that I made it a year without any baseball photos. That is the case though. I still was able to put together a fun list here. I hope you enjoy it.

10. This was the year of slow shutter speeds. In 2020 I kept playing with this idea to come up with new ways to see sports. I used to use my double exposure function on my Canon gear for this, but Sony has not figured out how to do that yet. Slowing down the shutter allows me to try and create a little more.

9. By now this story must be getting old on the blog, but this photo appeared on the cover of the media guide for this year. Back in the day the great couple that sat behind me convinced me to start buying the media guide every year. This photo being on the cover is an amazing way to show just how far I have come. From making photos in the stands for nearly no audience to making photos for the team. Of course the virus came and wiped all of that away. I will be starting from scratch again, but hopefully we can get back there again.

8. This is why I put a camera at my feet at games. You can make the tight action photo, but you also get these great scene setter pictures. At a big event like the Big Ten Tournament you can make twice as many photos and give yourself some options for the gallery.

7. I still profess to know nothing about how to make wrestling photos. I do know though that I love tight photos of the wrestlers with my 400mm lens. They are so intense out there and the 400 lets you get right in there to see that.

6. Every year I come away with photos that I like for Purdue when I am making photos for the other team. Here Matt Haarms gets excited about a big defensive play. I thought that everything came together here for an interesting image.

5. I like to think that the thing that I do best is to capture moments. Here a small slip led to my favorite swimming photo of the year. The reaction was priceless, and made for a nice photo.

4. As I said in the intro I only photographed one volleyball match this year. Harrison beat rival West Lafayette and the emotion was high. That is where the good volleyball photos will be made. Who knows what volleyball will look like in 2021, but I hope that I get to see more of it.

3. Photographing football up high does not lend itself to the best photos. They are just usually not that dynamic. You have to get lucky and have the action be at that perfect angle. Here this stretch for the goal line by Zander Horvath was a play where I had a lot of luck on my side. Everything worked out for a nice image.

2. I think I like this header image so much because it meant that I was back. I had not photographed sports in over six months when I made this image. I went to the soccer match at Harrison not sure what I would be able to do. I knew there would be rust. I started off the match safely by using my 200-600mm lens and shooting a little loose. Right after going for it and grabbing my 400mm lens I made this tight image of the header.

  1. This photo is what it is all about. The emotion and bringing your audience someplace they cannot be. Photographing from the stands is hard because you are where the fans would normally be. You are not showing them something different. Back before March I could get right in the huddle with the team to do something special. The spotlight came in at the right time as well to help me make a good image. The fun is what makes this my favorite photo of the year.

When you start off in sports photography you want to capture the peak action all of the time. Looking at this list I can see three real action moments. The rest of the photos are ways to show the emotion and action in a new way. If I get the chance to get back out there again I can’t wait to try and build on this. When everything shut down I felt like I was on a level that I had not been on before. I was making photos better than I ever had before. Working with some great people help you push yourself to get better and better. We were just getting ready to start spring sports too where I think I excel even more. I will be rusty when things get back to normal for sure. You get better by staying busy, and I have been far from busy. One thing that I will have on my side though is a hunger. I love photography. I love it so much it was my job and my hobby. Having it taken away just made me hungrier to make sure that this thing happens. When I get another chance again look out.


3 Replies to “Top Ten Sports Photos Of 2020”

  1. Like you said on ‘This photo is what it is all about. The emotion and bringing your audience someplace they cannot be’. It is tough to capture that moment but you have delivered it well. All beautiful photos.

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