Skiing, Movement, Photography and Video

I continue to think about the challenge of digitally capturing ski days. Powerful, imaginative images can be a source of joy forever. But I don’t want shooting to diminish the ski experience for myself or others.

There’s something I like about this sequence of images. They’re sharp enough, the conditions were decent, and Rochester Mark is a great skier.

But there’s more to it than that. The series was taken with a continuous shooting feature. If you (click to) enlarge the panel above and glance from image to image, you can almost imagine Mark in action. When I run quickly through those photos in a digital album, it’s very evocative of skiing. In a rudimentary way, it simulates movement.

I ski with a point-and-shoot camera and I’ll admit that shooting stills does slow me down a bit. And while good video can take a TR to the next level, it takes even more time and preparation. For me, it’s not easy to shoot video and enjoy skiing at the same time. I started to wonder if there was some middle ground.

With some help, I turned the shots above into a short MOV file.

From a purely visual point-of-view, I think the original series of stills has a magic that the “still video” doesn’t capture. But it does takes a viewer’s effort and imagination to create motion with them.  On the other hand, while the automated version above isn’t actually video, it’s easy to do and it could add something to trip reports.

7 comments on “Skiing, Movement, Photography and Video

  1. I like it with the shots strung together. Even though I don’t usually ski with a camera (I should) I always enjoy looking back at the photos people take. It brings back the day and reminds you of the great times. I never mind waiting a few seconds for someone to get their camera out. A small price to pay for the memories!

  2. One thing I’ve learned with ski photography is to get in close. Its tough to capture action that way because people ski so fast and can go from small to overflowing the frame so quickly. But ski shots are so much better when you can see the skier’s face and their reaction. I tend to think front angle shots are much better than shots from the rear because rear shots lack a personality (i.e. a face). Its the same with landscape shots… they are much better with a smiling face in the foreground.

  3. @ Ted: I did see the Jay Pooler link, and I spent some time on his YouTube page looking at all of his stuff. It’s very well done, but I find it hard to watch. Not sure why.

    @ Steve: I’d have to agree – shots from the front are more interesting. But they are also more interruptive. I find it’s easier to hang back, let people go by and shoot vs “hey hang out here… I’ll ski down and you ski towards me.” If Rochester Mark has the patience, he should be one of my subjects. He’s got fire in his eyes and he attacks the hill.

  4. @Harv- Yea, I am not much for setting up shots due to that reason. I could certainly get much better shots with more setup. Basically what I tend to do is try to go first as much as possible, get a big head start, ski faster than any one else, and whip out the camera quick after a few hundred vert. This approach is most effective on a powder day. If you start asking questions about how to setup the shot, you aren’t going to get much fresh untracked.

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