Saturday, July 31, 2021

BMX Freestyle for the first time at the Olympics: And a lucky shot!

Yesterday I went to the BMX freestyle park to try photographing this new Olympic sport for the first time. It was really hot and humid outside, but I braved the heat because I really love photographing new sports. 

The first thing I did when I entered the venue, was to scope it out for good backgrounds. The most obvious of these was the Olympic Rings which were at the far end of the venue. I positioned myself down in the Field of Play (FOP) area so that I would be photographing up at the bike riders.


I was hoping that some of the BMX riders would come over by the rings (many of them did not), and started shooting. I thought it would be a top notch shot with the rider right in front of the rings.


When I finally got this shot, I was not so sure. I like it, but it is a bit busy.


I could not decide which image I liked better, the entry, the centered shot, or this exit shot.


Then I climbed up the rafters to get some photos above the rings. The men were practicing, which gave me a chance to determine the best lens for this shot and frame it up. I ended up using the Canon R5 with the Canon RF24-105mm f/4 lens. It was wide enough to get what I wanted, but not too wide.


I stood in that position for about 10 minutes to get this shot and then left. It was too darned hot up there on the metal bleachers.


I moved around down on the FOP trying to find some good shots with decent backgrounds. That was a bit of a challenge. 


I got some peak of action shots of the riders, but the background was all media and volunteers.



Oh, and there were a lot of teammates at this venue. Hence the crowd you see on the left of the photo up top.


Not liking the other background, I moved to a position over by the rings.


This is one of the stronger images in the collection, with the rider filling much of the frame and the rings in the background.


I liked how the Aussie was straight out on his bike in this photo.


This would have been a much nicer photo if there were people in the stands watching the rider.


The only person in the stands was a TV cameraman. So sad. 


I got some nice photos of the Costa Rican rider. I spend so much time down there, I had to get some photos for my friends in that awesome country.


This next photo combines a little bit of skill and a whole lot of luck...


I got down low to try and photograph the Costa Rican rider in the sky, I tracked him and fired off a bunch of photos with him against the open sky and clouds. Seconds later, I looked in the camera to see if I got a good shot, and I saw the airplane in the background. Perfect timing! This was definitely my favorite photo of the event.


I also used a nearby apartment building as a background, since the muted colors really helped the bike rider pop out.

I was just about to pack up and head over to the water polo venue when I realized that I had not tried any motion panning at this venue. So, for the last rider, I slowed the shutter speed to 1/25 of a second and grabbed some images like this one. 

Overall, it was a lot of fun to capture photos on the first day of a new Olympic sport, and I was really happy with the results.


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3 comments:

Anonymous said...

SUPERB !! I too love the shot with the airplane in the background!!

Unknown said...

*Ahem*. that's Aussie. Just saying. 😉

Good man said...

Le polo est apparu pour la première fois en Perse il y a environ 2500 ans, ce qui en fait le plus ancien sportsd'équipe connu… et un pour les riches et les riches, car les membres de l'équipe devaient avoir leur propre cheval. Et ces jeux étaient énormes - les matchs d'entraînement d'élite avec la cavalerie du roi pouvaient voir jusqu'à 100 joueurs montés par côté