So what do you mean by ‘work the situation?’ Well, when you come across a good moment or you know a moment is about happen, you want to: 1) shoot as many frames as possible and 2) cover the moment in all different angles. These seem like obvious tips, but it can take your images to the next level and make them compelling for your viewers. You want to strive to get the photo that represents that moment the best, and make the viewer as much a part of that moment as possible. In this post, I will show you two situations where I was presented a moment and worked the situation to get the shot.
In this sequence, I knew exactly what frame that I wanted, and it’s only because I missed it during the last game. This was the Class 1A high school baseball state championship game. It was the bottom of the sixth inning, and we all knew at that point that Naches was going to come away with the victory. I waited by the fence and prepared to rush the field along with the team. I knew there was going to be a celebration shot somewhere in there.
The seventh inning ended, and I began firing away.
It took about 187 photos before they settled down to shake the other team’s hand. This all took place in a matter of seconds, but by firing away and relying on the sheer volume of frames that I took, I was able to grab THE moment.
In the next sequence, we will look at positioning. I was shooting the Civil War reenactment at Union Gap, and toward the end of the day I came across this moment where a mother and her daughter were petting the horses.
Notice in the sequence that I’m moving the camera in all different angles every couple of frames. Always approach the moment and begin firing away because you never know what angle might work. For this moment, the expression of the child was important.
(Above) I approached the moment from the mother and daughter’s right side, and I couldn’t get a good angle on their faces and their expressions. Although I like the layering, without the expressions and faces, it’s hard to read this frame.
(Above) I’m almost there, but not quite. This shot just doesn’t work for me because I’m shooting this at the soldier’s eye level, and I wanted to be on the same level as the girl.
I think that we have something here. I like how I’m on the same level as the girl. You really have a sense of the moment. Her shyness and curiosity is really showing. Although you can’t see the mother’s face, it doesn’t distract me from everything else. All my attention is on the girl’s expression and her interaction with the horse. The smile on the Confederate soldier is also a plus.
Well, there you have it. Work the situation. The images that I selected work, and there is and always will be room for improvement. However, this is my mindset that I have going into all situations.