Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Guest Blog - Jennifer M. Ramos: Top 10 most frequently documented, non-action derby shots

Jennifer M. Ramos is a brilliant photographer and a really cool soul.  She has been posting a 'top-10' on her Facebook feed for a couple of days.  Thinking it is brilliant and wanting to have it in one place so everyone can have the opportunity to enjoy it, I assembled it here.  So, here is my first guest blog of sorts.  Take it away Jennifer!  (oh, and by the way - you can check out her other stuff right here: Jennifer M Ramos - Photographer)

All photos and copy are copyright 2013 Jennifer M. Ramos, and are being used by permission.

 I want to compile a list of the top 10, most-frequently documented, non-action derby shots, then work on placing less focus on that subject matter, or considering a brand new perspective on the same.

10. Skates on the ground with floor reflection. (This was with the 70-200mm f/2.8 sitting on the tripod mount).

9. Equipment check. Who doesn't love looking down the middle of rows of refs and skaters facing one another.

8. Not sure of the name for this, but it seems like a mandatory end-of-bout shot. It's proof that you stayed the whole time

7. The National Anthem. It's hard to put your hand over your heart when you camera weighs 10 pounds and the grip is on the right side

6. The backs of fans (though these fans are special).

5. The ref when you really meant to get the jammer. If you're going to do this, make it look like it was on purpose. 
*See what I did there? It's not action, anymore, really.

4. Fans in the stands reaching for free merch being tossed their way. This is a ploy to generate excitement from said-fans. It always works, too.

3. Signs. People put a lot of effort into making these, and the people who do that are true fans. Yeah. I get as many of these as I can. It's better in action, than just sitting there, but whatevs.

2. Some random kid-fans. I always make a point to get pictures of kids, because families want to see some reflection of themselves when they're checking out roller derby as a potential family outing. Kids interacting with skaters or holding their own, handmade signs (whether *their mom did most of the work, not relevent), or dressed to support a favorite home team - all good stuff.
(*Metallic Sharpies kick ass!)

1. The Group Shot. This is not always easy, and I mess it up a lot. Not surprisingly, most teams are great at assembling themselves. Don't forget to adjust for a greater depth-of-field. If you have a full-frame sensor, leave room on the sides and crop later. It's easier to eliminate distortion that way. Some photographers have as much experience taking this shot, as the skaters themselves have holding that perfect expression. 

This is actually an important shot. When two teams have fought hard and only one team has been declared the winner, this is a way to show they're all still friends. No losers in roller derby. Good game.