Today we are starting a new series on sports photography. It is certainly a challenging time for photographers as a whole, but sports photographers had an extra challenge as many of them had to face either complete cessation of activity or major changes including games without crowds and social distancing. In the video above photographer Billie Weiss from Boston provides some of his insights about these challenging times and also what he has done to stay creative and relevant for his team during CUVID 19.
We are starting this new sports photography series of articles with Weiss’ perspective on what has been going on in Baseball in the U.S. in 2020 and how he and his team at the Boston Red Sox (Weiss has been the senior manager of photography for the Boston Red Sox for almost 9 years) acclimated to the situation. On this video (posted a couple of months ago), Weiss talks about the changes he went through due to CUVID 19 and how he built a special remote photo/video setup for capturing some of the players as they walk into the stadium for a game or practice.
Contrary to what some might think, the work of professional sports photographers (especially those who work for different sports organizations) are not all about the games and events but have a lot to do with what is going on behind the scenes as well as the day-to-day routine and helping the marketing departments promote different activities that are important for the organization.
In this case, finding a way to capture pictures while keeping a good distance and minimum interaction with the players was the goal (this is a more spontaneous type of shooting – it wasn’t designed to look super professional and that was fine for this type of work that is likely going to be shared on the Red Sox social network channels).
The setup itself included a light stand with a GoPro attached to it for video and a Nikon DSLR with a wide-angle lens and a nice sign that asks the players to say hi to the fans. Weiss also marked the spot where the players should stand (supposedly for shooting with manual focus with a remote so the AF won’t be all over the place).
Weiss ends the video with a clear message, sports photography (especially professional sports) has changed with CUVID, it may or may not return to what it was in the future but for the time being, photographers will have to adapt and reinvent themselves and their profession.
Bonus video: Billie Weiss on making a killer sports photography portfolio and what you should know
You can watch more videos of interesting photographers on our photographer section here on LensVid. For more on sports photography please check out our special sports photography subsection (and you can also review previous videos aimed at helping you make photography your business).
- Article thumbnail photo credit: Photographer Billie Weiss (in the picture, Xander Bogaerts of the Boston Red Sox reacts as a tub of Powerade is poured on him following a victory against the Houston Astros on May 12, 2016 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts).