Shooting International Basketball My Observations

Filming the FIBA ​​World Cup qualifying series at the John Cain Arena, Melbourne, Australia was a lot of fun. It was high quality basketball with big crowds. Here are some observations from the international basketball shoot.

What is the Task

This assignment is through my business, Melbourne Sports Photography. That involved taking game shots for an international photo agency, and sending pictures to them during the game.

I shoot a lot of basketball, but it’s unique to shoot international teams with lots of games in 5 days.

Observation 1 – The Higher the Standard, the Better the Facilities

It often seems ironic, and it is also obvious, that a higher sporting standard results in a higher quality facility. At John Cain Arena the lighting is excellent and it impacts the image quality.

At my local basketball stadium, I usually shoot at 1/800s, f2.8 and ISO8000. The high-quality lighting at the John Cain Arena meant I was able to shoot at 1/1000s, f4 and ISO2500.

This has a positive impact on image quality.

Great stadium lighting helps shoot international basketball

Observation 2 – Large Crowds Mean Limited Mobility

Large crowds bring great ambiance to the event, but they also limit where photographers can move. Also, having multiple photographers at the event also means there are several people competing for prime spots on the sidelines.

Observation 3 – High Pressure Environment

Shooting, downloading, selecting, and sending images to international agencies while games are in progress comes with pressure. I am grateful that there is a lot of action in international basketball. That allows action shots to be shot early in each quarter, leaving time for selecting and submitting shots. Teams taking time outs sure help when there’s time pressure too!


Observation 4 – Expect a High Energy Environment

Huge crowds and lots of action make for a great atmosphere. Throw in a vocal announcer and loud music and you have a high energy environment. Expect this and plan how you will work effectively in similar situations.

Thanks for reading my thoughts on shooting international basketball.

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