Lighting with Flash: Sports, from Action to Portraits

with David Hobby
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Lighting with Flash: Sports, from Action to Portraits
Video duration: 0s 1h 31m Appropriate for all


In this installment of the Lighting with Flash series, photographer and publisher David Hobby demonstrates using strobes when shooting sports—in this case, some kids playing soccer. After providing an overview of his lighting strategy, David shoots some action shots of goalkeepers diving for the ball. Next, he shoots some portraits of the soccer players, employing a compact softbox attachment as a key light.

In the second half of the course, David photographs a group of fencers, transforming the bland lighting in a gym and freezing the athletes' action as they leap. Afterwards, he shoots a group portrait of the fencing club.

Topics include:
  • Setting up a multi-strobe shoot
  • Capturing athletes in action
  • Balancing fading daylight with flash
  • Tips for using color gels and flash accessories, from cold shoes to softboxes

Setting the stage: Soccer kids

- So a couple years ago, I decided that I wanted to primarily do two things with my camera. Number one, have fun. That's always an important thing. And number two, to make pictures that were a value to the community around me. So to that end, we are here today at the Soccer Association of Columbia at Covenant Park, and we're going to be shooting pictures of goal keepers, and that brings on its own challenges when you're shooting outside in, well, not full daylight, but most daylight at this point. We've got strobes wrapped up around the goal, and we're going to be doing some tricks with high-speed sync to help extend the power of our strobes going into the shoot.

Hopefully we'll be able to over-power the sun a little bit, shooting into the net, lying on the ground, right in front of the goal keepers, and bring them up in a little studio every time they go to make a stop.

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