Sunday, February 9, 2014

Women's Snowboard Slopestyle Finals - My first time shooting this type of event

Today was an amazing day of photography, as I spent the entire day shooting sports that I have never photographed before. I just love the challenge of capturing something different, not only for my portfolio, but also to share with all of you.

The first event that I photographed was Slopestyle. If you have never heard of this sport before, then we have something in common. This is the first year that the Winter Olympics has included this sport and it was fun to watch. The girls had to do big jumps on their snowboards, but also perform other tricks as well.

In order to find a good shooting position, I hiked up a pretty steep mountain in my hiking boots. I really could have used some cramp-ons, since getting up and sliding down, afterwards, was a challenge. But being in that position, made for some cool shots.

Catching big air!

Not only is she grabbing the board, but she is wearing perfect colors against the white background.

At first I was trying to zoom in really tight to isolate the athletes, but then after a while I thought it would be better to zoom out a bit and show a little more of the scene.

And then I turned the camera in portrait mode and took some this way.

My goal was to show the snowboarder over the flags, and this worked out a couple of times.

Here is the American who ended up winning the Gold.

She nailed her run!

Here is the British girl who won Bronze. As you can see, she was very happy to win an Olympic medal, no matter the color.

And then it was time for Jamie Anderson to stand on the podium as the gold medal winner. Initially I was upset that I was on the side of the podium (since it took me a while to slide down the mountain without falling), but as I was shooting, I knew that I was getting reactions that I would not have gotten from the front-on position.

All choked up.

Luckily, after myself and other photographers yelled for them to turn our way, they did and we got this shot.

And then Jamie stepped down off of the podium, but the smile sure stayed with her!

These are moments that us photographers love to capture... you can see in the photo above.

I shot this photo as I was leaving the venue. All the Americans were cheering and dancing in the stands. I saw this guy and yelled for him to turn round. Too funny.

Next blogs will be luge and ski jumping. I would post them tonight, but since it is already 1:30am, I need to get some sleep and be ready for the woman's big hockey game tomorrow. Good night (or good morning) everyone from Sochi.


Unknown said...

Love these photos! Thank you so much for sharing. With all the snow and cold weather here in Kansas City, I feel like I am right there with you. You have captured some incredible shots.

Jack Nevitt said...

Love the reflection in his glasses, was that planned?

Frederick said...

I just wanted to say how much a appreciate you posting all these photos for us to see, It's truly amazing to se the olympics from your point of view! and I'm learning alot about framing the shot and other photographic advices! again! thanks alot!

Greetings from Frederick in Norway!

Jeff said...


These are more than great shots, these are artistic! The color contrast and placement of the athletes is just terrific. Thank you for sharing these wonderful pictures and moments of history!

Haydn Mowbray said...

Hi Jeff

The reason the British girl, Jenny Jones, was so happy wasn't just that she got a medal, it's actually the first UK winter Olympic medal on snow ever. We don;t get much snow in the UK so it's quite a big deal.

Keep up the great work, this is the fourth Olympics I've followed with you

Anonymous said...

Good pictures!
Technical question. What lens and what settings was used to take skaters pictures while they where doing they tricks in the air?

Suzanne said...

Thank you! Your photos are wonderful!

Dawn Gail said...

Awesome pictures. Watched the men do this slope the other night and was amazed by their jumps. Love the picture with the flags showing.

Anonymous said...

Great shots! Thanks for sharing : )

Dale G said...

Jeff, thank you so much for all the blogs about getting to Sochi and all the events so far. Great photos from slopestyle. Watching the replay on NBC and visioning where you were located.

Gi2 said...

Great photos. Thank you for staying up half the night to do this!! I am enjoying the games vicariously through your Blog.


Brenda J said...

Jeff, I just want to say that I am thoroughly enjoying your posts. I can't wait to read them. Thanks for giving up some sleep to keep us in the loop!

TIna Case said...

This is one of my favorite posts so far, I love this slopestyle sport, you captured amazing shots of the girls and I love the expressions you captured. I also love the very last frame with the sunglasses and reflection of the flags. Love it!

Anonymous said...

Great photos Jeff...Enjoyed the ones of "my" Brit. Well done to J. Anderson too.

lf1881 said...

As always great pictures and great job Jeff!
I happened to be in London during these days, and Jenny Jones' bronze medal - the first in a winter Olympic Games for UK - was well covered by all the media, but your tight shot while she's grabbing the board beats all the images BBC has been broadcasting!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting your fabulous photos and comments from the Olympics. Can you advise what Canon 1DX AF settings you used for hockey?

Thanks and keep up the great work.

Dave B.

Unknown said...

Thanks for posting your fabulous photos with comments from the Olympics. Can you advise the Canon 1DX AF settings you used for hockey?

Peggy said...

Love the photo with the guy with the sunglasses with the reflection of the flags! Is it possible for me to share that on Facebook?

Bizzle said...

Love your blog and following your photos of the Olympics. Thanks for sharing and inspiring me. I also watch your videos on Youtube.

Unknown said...