Archive for Action Photography

Photo of the Month Hits Newstands!

Posted in Action Photography, Perfect Game Photos, Scary Moment, Sports Photography with tags , , , on May 25, 2013 by bobshank

Inside Pitch

Some of you may not know that I have another website called Perfect Game Photos. This site features my sports photography, which is a fast-growing area of my photographic interests. Six of my photos were published in our daily newspaper, The Pocono Record, this past week!

The Perfect Game Photos website is a collection of my favorite sports photographs captured at exciting moments. I believe that each game has a unique story to tell and it’s our job as sports photographers to capture the exciting action of the players and the plays as they unfold.

The name, “Perfect Game Photos,” comes from two similar and connected ideas. First, and most obvious, a pitcher in baseball can pitch a perfect game. This is a very big deal for the fans, the team, and especially, the pitcher. Similarly, as a sports photographer I try to have a perfect game behind the viewfinder every time out. What I mean by this is I try to capture the exciting moments of the plays as they unfold and I want to capture the action in clear focus to help make the play a memory for a lifetime! Second, when I played ball back in the day, I set a high goal for each game: I wanted to bat perfectly at the plate, getting a hit every time at the plate, score a run every time I got on base, and play error-free in the field. I’m not sure I ever once met this high standard, but it was a great motivator to help me play at my highest level. Now, when I am shooting a game, I want my photography to be at the highest level, too! So, these are the two reasons why my sports photography website is named Perfect Game Photos.

Each month I try to post the best photo of the month. It’s not a fancy name, but I hope it displays some of my best work and shows my ability to capture the exiting action on the field. You can see the current photo of the month to see what I am talking about.

Take a moment to check out my sports photography website. And if you get a chance, drop me a line to let me know what you think about it. I am continuing to hone my skills in capturing the action and I am beginning to gain wider exposure by working with the Pocono Record. Some day I hope to capture the perfect photo!


Photo of the Month Posted

Posted in Action Photography, Photo of the Month, Sports Photography with tags , , , on November 10, 2012 by bobshank

I posted the most recent Photo of the Month on my Perfect Game Photos website.

This monthly feature shows a sports photograph that I like with a story behind it. I simply show a photo and then add some text to help tell the story why this particular photograph made the cut. It is a feature I enjoy including on my sports site and I find it encourages me to keep trying for better photographs month after month.

You can see more of my sports portfolio here.


Ball in the Action

Posted in Action Photography, Allen, Ball, Football, Pleasant Valley High School, Sports Photography with tags , , , , , on October 22, 2012 by bobshank

Some of my favorite sports photographs include the ball in the action!

It is exciting to pony up to the challenge of capturing these shots and while it might take a great deal of effort and good timing, the success is rewarding! I always believe that every game has a story to tell and part of our job as photographers is to capture and tell the story through our lenses. I will take this even one step further: each and every play also has a story to tell! Think about it… a quarterback drops back to attempt a pass, the line is fighting off the pass rush and maybe even a corner blitz, the receivers are running their routes, and the defensive backs are defending their territories. Isn’t there a fascinating storyline in here?

One of the best ways I find to tell the story of a play is to include the ball in the image. Not only does this help tell a specific detail about the play, but it adds action to the photograph like nothing else can accomplish. All eyes are on the ball–both in the field and in the image! Now this might sound easy, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Just try to capture a sharp image of a moving ball on a Friday night under the lights! The challenge is still worth the effort, however. That’s why you will see me along the sidelines week after week trying to get to capture the ball in the action!

New Photo of the Month

Posted in Action Photography, Baseball, Photo of the Month, Pleasant Valley, Sports Photography with tags , , , , on June 4, 2012 by bobshank

Now that May is over, I posted a new Photo of the Month on my Perfect Game Photos website.

Each month I sift through all my sports photos and present one of the best as the Photo of the Month. I then post the photo on the website and add a description about the photograph. This past month’s photograph is Pleasant Valley baseball player, Howie Stevens, laying down a bunt.

Bunting might seem rather mundane and unexciting, but look at the action in this photograph. The dust cloud coming off the bat dispels the rumor that bunting is boring. I believe the photo shows the drama and excitement in the ordinary bunt. What do you think?

Sports Photography – Sometimes It Just Clicks!

Posted in Action Photography, Baseball, Peak Action, Pleasant Valley, Sports Photography with tags , , , , , on March 19, 2012 by bobshank

I enjoy sports photography. I like sports, I played sports, I coached sports, and now I photograph sports.

Sometimes, every once in a while, things just click in sports photography. Yes, need to know the game we are shooting, try to anticipate where the action will be next, obtain the absolute best shooting position–you know, the whole nine yards. Even then, when all seems to be going just right, a photo can be out of focus, or an umpire or coach steps right in the way of the action. I know because I’ve experienced this more times than I can count.

But then, every once in a great while, things just click in sports photography!

The above photo was captured at the Pleasant Valley vs. Northwestern Lehigh high school baseball scrimmage. The weather was gorgeous and it was a perfect day for baseball. Spring has about sprung, and the new baseball season is nearly under way officially. How could a sports photographer complain on a day like this?

One of my goals in sports photography is to try my best to get the baseball in the frame of the photograph whenever possible. This helps to show the action even in a still photo. It’s even better when the player’s eyes are focused on the ball and the ball is in complete focus in the frame. Of course, this just doesn’t happen all the time, but it is a worthy goal in my humble sports photo opinion.

On this particular swing, I knew the batter broke his bat. Everyone could hear it and one fan even said so to me. Yep, the bat was broken, but I did not realize I capture “the moment” until I was editing the shoot on my computer back in my office. Then, as soon as my eyes saw this photo, I knew I had captured “the moment.”

Let’s first talk about what’s wrong with this photo. First of all, it contains that dreaded baseball background–the chain-link fence. I hate these backgrounds. It looks more like a dog fence than something that ought to be in a photograph. Who let the dogs out anyhow? Secondly, the baseball is not in focus, not even close. Third, the catcher’s arm is cut off and appears to be floating in the air all by itself. Yuck!

But even with all that, I like this photograph. The player is in focus and the ball leaving the broken bat tells the story well and almost exudes action! As a matter of fact, when I look at this photo I swear I can almost hear the crack of the bat hitting that baseball!

Now the next photograph wouldn’t mean much without seeing the one right before it. But now this last photo helps to tell the story of this at-bat. And you thought you carried a big stick!