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Old Mar 4, 2008, 12:38 PM   #1
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Hi,

Any one doing indoor sports ( or outdoor for that matter ) with a off camera flash.

Months ago I know I came across some info on doing it with a couple of flashes and some radio slaves ( might have been on the strobist.com form ). Now I have some of that gear and I want to read up on it again.

Also -- my kids are small so I would be practice shooting high school or collage kids that I don't know. Is this a problem that I should address with an athletic director or smoebody first.

And lastly-- if they came out good ( big If ) what would you say is the best way to sell them to parents? I was thinking smugmug or dot photo.

Thanks

Bob:-)


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Old Mar 4, 2008, 2:56 PM   #2
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Bob,

Before shooting in any venue I recommend speaking with the appropriate athority. If it's high school then definitely speak to the athletic director. Even moreso when you're talking about strobing the gym. They might get a little uneasy about you clamping equipment that might have the potential to fall and produce a big nasty lawsuit. Also to get good shots you want to be on the floor - so even without strobes it's best to have approval before shooting on the floor.

As to selling the images, there are two parts you need to consider:

1. Supply chain - i.e. how parents will order, how you collect payment, how you print and ship the orders. Smugmug can help you here - but it costs $150 per year for a pro membership and they take 15% of your PROFITS (so that's 15% off your bottom line). So, it's only a good solution if you're going to sell enough images. There are other companies that will allow you to handle the back-end yourself - i.e they are just an image display / order portal. And you must handle the order fulfillment yourself. My experience is with smugmug so I can't comment on the others. There are a couple downsides to this. One is: I have had people tell me they are uncomfortable ordering over the internet. Another is: there is a built in delay in the process. You have to process the pictures put them up on the web and your customers have to remember to actually look for them. BELIEVE ME, that delay costs sales. People are on to the next event in their life and a majority of them simply forget about photos being available.

2. Marketing. This is the bigger problem. This will have a greater impact on your success. Whatever supply chain method you decide upon, it doesn't do much good if your customers dont know your product is out there. So you've got to develop a way to market to them. For instance the local HS I shoot at also has other freelancers. The school likes the competition and doesn't want an exclusive contract. BUT they also dont want us handing things out at events - we're not allowed to put up signs or hand out flyers. Basically they don't want us being a nuisence to the fans - and I understand that. So, you'll have to thinkk of some marketing approaches and talk to the AD and see what they will allow you to do.

I would also recommend seeing what the competition is. Is someone else doing sports shooting? If so, can you produce a more saleable product (note that doesn't necessarily mean a better photograph - if a team parent is giving away decent quality shots it makes it very tough to try and sell shots from standard games. In which case, playoffs offer better sale opportunities - but then the AD may no longer be the governing body- you might need permission from the state high school athletic commission).
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Old Mar 4, 2008, 3:26 PM   #3
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hey
thanks for the input. Lots of help.
I found the other article I was talking about also.

http://strobist.blogspot.com/2006/04...asketball.html
and
http://strobist.blogspot.com/search?q=bogen+super+clamp


enjoy
Bob
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Old Mar 5, 2008, 5:51 AM   #4
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I saw a photographer from a statewide newspaper using such a set-up at a state tournament last week, but I can't imagine how it might be used effectively in most of the high school gyms across the state, simply because of the difficulty of finding an effective place to clamp the lights that would not be accessible to students, i.e. safety and vandalism concerns.

Regarding permission.....ABSOLUTELY! Schools are getting increasingly sensitive on this issue for two reasons--one reasonable, the other greedy. Athletic directors are concerned, justifiably, with simply turning the sidelines loose to everybody because of security problems that can result from unlimited access, not to mention problems with obstruction of view (basketball particularly), etc. However, in Arkansas, the state activities association has passed a ruling that allows schools to collect a percentage of any photographs that are sold. In the words of one athletic director I know, "They're our games. We deserve a piece of the pie." The status of the rule is currently in limbo because it would also apply to newspapers that sell excess prints online. The state press association has vowed legal action to get the rule thrown out.

Paul

BTW, Bob.....I'm assumign your log-in indicates you're a fan of Bob Lee Swagger. I'm just finishing re-reading the Hunter novels for about the fourth time.
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Old Mar 5, 2008, 7:06 AM   #5
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Trojansoc wrote:
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BTW, Bob.....I'm assumign your log-in indicates you're a fan of Bob Lee Swagger. I'm just finishing re-reading the Hunter novels for about the fourth time.
Some excellent books. The ones about Earl got a bit ludicrous so I stopped reading. But the first couple were excellent!
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Old Mar 5, 2008, 1:17 PM   #6
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hi guys,

yeah -- that is where bobthenailer name came form. Love point of impact and time to hunt. Black light was ok. and I to am not a big Earl fan.

I just got this new one though. Its big on Japaneese /swoard culture ( picture bob as a samari) . Its ok so far, not great. Hunter def does his research. I'LL let you know when I am done, but take a look.

Bob


http://www.amazon.com/47th-Samurai-B...170&sr=8-1

this was good also. hunters inspiration

http://www.amazon.com/Marine-Sniper-...742&sr=8-1



and if you go to the stephen hunter site you will find a great article and salute to hathcock by hunter
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Old Mar 6, 2008, 7:02 AM   #7
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LOL....looks like we're all in agreement about the "Earl" books, although I have to admit I loved "Hot Springs," and some of the Birds-Eye locations simply for the fun of trying to match actual places I see every day with the locations he describes in the books as well as matching the actual turbulent history of the city to his narrative, which tends to be almost a parody.
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Old Mar 6, 2008, 8:17 AM   #8
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One thing that I don't think has been covered, what is your reason for thinking of using strobes? Have you shot anything there as yet? What other kit are you working with? You might find you can get usable, saleable shots without the need for strobes.
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 9:14 AM   #9
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Good Point. No I have not tried it yet. All just reading.
If you look at this like though...

http://strobist.blogspot.com/2007/02...llege-gym.html

look down in the article and see the difference between the lighting with and without the strobes ( the ref shots ). I guess shots without strobes are what parents get, mine would then be superior (As to lighting I would hope.)

bob
ps got an email from dotphoto.com yesterday, they went free for photographers selling pictures. nice coinsidence

ohhhh and "47 samurai" starting to get better... Go Bob Go



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Old Mar 7, 2008, 9:22 AM   #10
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Quote:
LOL....looks like we're all in agreement about the "Earl" books, although I have to admit I loved "Hot Springs," and some of the Birds-Eye locations simply for the fun of trying to match actual places I see every day with the locations he describes in the books as well as matching the actual turbulent history of the city to his narrative, which tends to be almost a parody.


hey,
I got half way through that one, then had to start a lot of work reading and got distracted, then lost it for a while so I never finished it.
But send a link of some shots of Hotsprings Ark would love to see them.
Bob

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