Hornsey Cricket

My first real venture into shooting cricket, invited to photograph Hornsey CC v’s Winchmore Hill CC in the Middlesex League. A wonderful sunny day, two competitive teams with high scoring batting, not a bad place to start. Still a lot to learn though this probably won’t be the last . A few notes more of interest for fellow photographers at the foot of this page.

For anyone who wants to learn from my excursions here are a few photographers notes.

Preparation as always helps. I didn’t know much about cricket or the ground though a quick look on Google maps allowed me to see the orientation and where it was likely I could shoot from,

I also checked out ‘Behind the camera – by cricket photographer Gareth Copley’ as a nice unassuming set of tips and insights from a professional in this field. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XxeVsGjvUxQ

If you just want inspiration try twenty five years of CRICKET photography by Philip Brown https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D8qgdppobjU its a visual masterclass – that took 25 years in the making!

Equipment was mainly my football and rugby ‘go-to’ kit primarily using a Nikon full frame with 300 f2.8 and a x1.4 extender. This proved ideal in terms of length and coverage. Depth of field is a tricky one balancing the ability to isolate your subject though show more interest especially when shooting down the wicket. Focus on constant with back button and shutter speed surprisingly high 1/1200th and more needed to catch the action.

Positioning around the ground was probably my greatest challenge and I moved continuously (though only on change of over) simply to explore, next time hopefully less so. Important aspects for me were, uncluttered backgrounds, capturing the stroke and players face, getting the ball in frame (often at odds with the ideal shot of the stroke), capturing a little of the setting eg club house, and of course catches, run outs and celebrations. Shooting close to the ‘sight screens’ at each end of the wicket demands extreme care as batsmen rely on these to focus

Next time a wide angle especially if there are clouds, and a few more incidentals, spectators and players in the field, as for capturing more incidents that’s just going to be about a little more knowledge of the sport and practice!

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