I’m not much of a basketball sports fan, but the community in which I live has reached a fever pitch over March madness and the NCAA Basketball Tournament. The level of excitement is at the point where strangers are exchanging hugs. If this is the catalyst that can bring neighbors closer together, then I’m for it.
Not knowing a “Rim Wrecker” from a “Tap and Trap” I was curious to see what all this dribble talk was all about. Wow, a fast-paced game of elegant hoop thoroughbreds had me cheering, and wanting to don my earplugs and photograph courtside!
Inspired by the amazing athleticism of these players and their ability to hang-glide above the rim all day, I wanted to create a high-speed stylized image of a basketball player doing the same, under controlled conditions.
I began by borrowing all the flashes and studio strobes from my photographer friends. I used eleven TTL flashes and 2 studio strobes. Thanks to everyone who lent me their lights! Some were optically fired, others were radio synced. The technology used was the same as for my High-Speed Soccer Kick Photo Shoot – see the previous blog post.
Overcoming the ambient light in the gym with all this firepower was easy, but it soon became apparent that to sculpt the light for the floor, to keep the highlights on the basketball player where I wanted, and to isolate only the net and backboard, all in one exposure, was more of a challenge than I had anticipated.
To achieve the look I was going for, I ended up lighting the floor as a separate image, and lighting the net as another image, and then stitching the floor, player, and net together in Photoshop.