Archive: ‘Basketball’


Monday, February 4th, 2013

It is time for winter basketball and I am having more fun than ever with these shots! I am setting my ISO to about 1600-2400, my f stop at 2.8 and my shutter around 1/600.. higher if the light will let me.

Gotta get that action!


and those shots..


and the ‘direction’…


and the naps!


and the little sister!


and the ‘watching’…


and the ball…



even when it is bigger than you are 🙂


and the hug..


and the handshakes…


and the victory!


and the swoosh!


And…don’t forget the …

looks on their faces and the magical moments that only your ‘mom ‘ eyes can capture…so be ready; because once those moments are gone..they are gone forever.


Get  your camera ready for the new year and for your kids next sporting event! You can do it!!!!

Happy shooting!

Basketball A-C-T-I-O-N

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

Another week, another game!

We are into sports at our house – – if  you haven’t figured that out by now! I believe that kids should do anything but play video games so we have a ‘video game free’ home.  (see my other site: if your child struggles with video gaming and/addiction).

The flip side to gaming is that they need to stay busy doing other productive things! So, we try to do a winter sport and a spring/summer sport. This makes for a very busy kid and  Camera Mom but I love it!

The twins just started basketball.

I am new at the whole ‘shooting-7-year-old-basketball’ thing so they are learning how to shoot and so am I!

I wasn’t sure where to start so I started with the ball; seemed like the most natural thing to do since it was the only thing NOT moving at the time! I think it is always fun to shoot sports equipment – -just to test the light and get started.


I realized quickly that unlike gymnastics, basketball is full of fast paced, unpredictable  ACTION. Here are some tips using A-C-T-I-O-N as my guide … remember that cheer from cheerleading? Stepping back on that high school basketball court brought back some memories for sure:

Here we go – – Give me an “A”!

A is for Adjust your settings! Fix  your camera and turn off that flash. Gym lighting can be really weird but using the flash with weird lighting is not so hot. I used a higher ISO and a low f-stop. Remember to keep the shutter fast because if you don’t  you will just get a blur with the movement. Take some test shots. One tip here it to set your ISO high then put your dial to the AV Mode (Aperture Priority) button. This setting will allow you to set your f stop but the camera will adjust the shutter speed as needed. I found this to be very helpful. You can also try the TV Mode which allows you to  set the shutter speed to be above a certain number and the camera will then adjust the aperture to get enough light. This is good if you are in darker settings and you want to be sure your shutter is fast enough to stop the movement. Be sure to keep it on Auto White Balance for now.

C is for Catch the Action: I try to get their faces  but that is pretty difficult as they are moving fast and I am not sure how to predict where they are going yet  – – their coaches aren’t sure either! So just click away and get the action shots while they are happening. Watch the game through your camera lens. If you try to watch the game with your camera in your hand hoping that you will quickly raise it and get the shot, you will miss it every time… watch the game through your lens and learn what I call ‘proactive shooting ‘. I will go into more details on that subject in an upcoming post. But generally it means to anticipate the shot ahead of time.



T is for Tilt your camera: the angle will allow you to get more of the subject in your frame and make things a little more interesting.


O is for Open your eyes for the detail: every sport has sideline details that are part of the story you are trying to tell with your photos.


Is he really showing them plays on a clip board?! Wow, my kids were doing well to run the right direction!


Do you keep your hands in your pocket for basketball?? I’ll have to check the rule book on that! Evan loves pockets!



N is for Never underestimate the power of the simple shots you get when the action is not happening. I love the way this shot shows that they are the little kids on the team. One day their shoes will be big, but for now, I will enjoy these little shoes.


There you have it. Maybe not the best shots but I know that I will get better as I understand the game and practice more … and so will my boys!

Next week we are going to talk about how to get your camera to focus on what you want it to focus on instead of something else in the foreground or background.

Have fun shooting action shots of your kids this week playing ball or just playing in the backyard!


Most of these shots were taken with ISO 1250, no flash, F stop 3.0 and shutter speed between 1/150-1/200 using my Canon 50 D and big lens (70-200)

Harder than it looks!

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

The twins are signed  up for winter basketball which means that they will (and I will) have to learn a new sport! So, we all went to a varsity basketball game at our school this past week and I tried to get some storytelling shots! Boy it is harder than it looks to catch these players. I was exhausted running around trying to get the shots, trying to stay clear of the very loud crowd while not stepping on the court  and not get hit by the ball! I will say that the team may have been better at getting their shots than I was at getting mine…but here are a few of my ‘beginner’ basketball photos. I will be working on some tips for you as I work through the season with the boys!

The beginning of the game:


Watch your background…I like this shot using the crowd for the background. Most of the backgrounds are usually the white gym walls… I like the mass of people better but you may have to get on your knees for these shots!


Of course you have to try to get the ball going in the basket!




and the action shot of the player taking the shot…


There will be plenty of action – -just start shooting, you are bound to get something!

img_0226   img_0225

When there is a time-out look for other details.


be ready for the end of the game…especially if your team wins!


I need to work on a few things.. but it was FUN!

Remember, photography, just like any sport or hobby,  is all about practice! Have fun shooting your kids life!


Most shots were taken with the same settings I use for gymnastics: high ISO: 3200, low f-stop around 2.8, and a fast shutter at 1/200 or faster depending on the light.


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