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Got You Sucker !

By MediumSizeUnavailable
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Ta-Kraw is usually played 3 against 3. Best to consider it as foot-volleyball. A small rattan ball is used. It can be quite spectacular and is hugely popular in Thailand.

Taken in Bangkok, Thailand.

Technical details :

Camera Model Canon EOS 5D
Shooting Time 5:26:33 PM
Shooting Mode Shutter-Priority AE
Tv( Shutter Speed ) 1/2500
Av( Aperture Value ) 2.8
Metering Mode Spot Metering
Exposure Compensation -1/3
ISO Speed 250
Lens EF24-70mm f/2.8L USM
Focal Length 70.0 mm
Image Quality RAW
Flash Off
White Balance Mode Auto
AF Mode One-Shot AF
Picture Style Faithful
Color Space sRGB
Noise Reduction Off
Drive Mode Continuous shooting

Thank you for your critique

Tags: Sport General Bangkok Urban Sports Men Thailand Block Jump Smash Ta-kraw Portraits and people Sports and action

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


POOCHIE 11 21 6 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2007 4:42PM
What was the air temprature, and could we have the available light measured in Lumens please, and also what colour shoes were you wearing at the time of taking the picture 5.26:33 PM lol. good action shot Koen and the colour and detail is probably the best I've seen of all the Ta-Kraw shots I have seen you do.


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12 Jun 2007 4:47PM
Lol... hey ! The critiquers asked to give them some information, so I indulge them. The colour is for a great part due to the weather at the time... for previous shots it was often very cloudy and even raining, whereas here they were drowning in that low late afternoon sun.
The skin tones are not too yellow then ? Was a bit worried about that to be honest.
forgot to mention... it's straight converted from RAW to jpeg through Picasa.
xinia 12 54
12 Jun 2007 5:14PM
Must say Koen that I find this very busy - the eye darts around all over the place -Not helped by the net - the wire fence - the cables above and others.......intersecting the elements + fragmenting the image.

Great capture of the players though in mid air -
If it was possible to limit the depth of field and fuzz some of the b.ground - think this would help but technically I'm not one to give advice here Smile

just noticed the low aperature here Koen - Im stumpped Smile
12 Jun 2007 5:26PM
valuable advice Maggie. Thanks. I think most people feel the same way you do... probably too busy. That's my problem lol... I like the inclusion of the bg (okay, perhaps not the wires) to be honest (not that there would be much I could do about it if I didn't lol). rather than purely a sports pic I see these more as documentary style photos with sports in them, which makes the shabby setting kinda relevant. But it's good to know that most viewers probably don't share my view.
Don't think there's much more I can do about the dof. The camera was already on 70mm and 2.8, which is as much as I can get out of it. Don't want to resort to PS (must be hell with all those holes in the net lol), and don't want to buy another lens either.
Thanks again for taking the time to comment Smile

lol... just noticed your edit Smile
NevP 12 853 13 Canada
12 Jun 2007 6:53PM
I just love this Koen, and for me this is the stuff of sports photography. Great timing, all the action contained in one spot, tight, dynamic and lovely light.

With regards to the bg, as you know I also have these issues and finding ways of minimising this has been a challenge but has also been an exciting learning process. As it stands I really like it, if you wanted to move it more into the realms of "art" or whatever then I believe you will need to spend time in ps working on layers etc. to fade or disguise the unneccessary elements that would stop this from being considered an "art" image. As a documentary shot it works, as a sports shot it works.
catnappin 10 666 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2007 6:56PM
I must say, as the ex-guardian of 2 Hong Kong boys for 8 years (they are both past age 18 now) I find this tremendously interesting! One played piano to grade 8 standard and the other was a black belt in martial arts. I have video footage of a triple kick (kick, spin, kick again without touching the ground - only black belts can do that!). To me the background is very important, it sets the scene...the tyre in concrete and the seedy cafe or whatever behind says 'Urban sports' to me and this shot would be poorer without them.

You have given many many setting, your shutter speed is hellish fast and your iso is set a little faster too which I guess did the job in freezing these guys mid air....... what I dont understand as you have not asked ..... what do you need help with ????? Looks great to me and exactly what I saw when viewing 'my kids' in action!
adtiles 12 3 United Kingdom
12 Jun 2007 8:17PM
brilliant shot
User_Removed 11 7 8 Netherlands
12 Jun 2007 8:23PM
I love it Koen. I like busy backgrounds for the context and there is actually a very good dof in this. The dark blue of the guys' shirts sets them apart from the background. The colors in this are great. Regards, Bert
oppo 11 6 2 Scotland
12 Jun 2007 9:26PM
This has got to be the best one in the series. Everything looks perfect here. Very sharp and at the peak of the action. The lighting looks good too.

Paul Morgan 16 18.8k 6 England
12 Jun 2007 10:43PM
This is very good Koen. A little suprised of how much dof there is for the aperture used.

There`s nothing here that I can really critique, its a great shot.

I`ve had a play with post processing to see what kind of effects can be achieved, playing with depth of field etc. Not to improve the pic but to just give it a different look. Uploaded a mod.
John_Humphreys 11 69 2 Ireland
12 Jun 2007 10:43PM
Hi Koen,
My initial reaction was to criticise this for a distracting background but then I thought better of it. The background, whereas it distracts a bit from the 'pure' action of the shot, nevertheless puts what the guys are doing in the context of their environment. This game is not played in a stadium but on the streets in front or back of their homes. THE BACKGROUND HAS TO BE THERE! As far as a regular 'sports' shot goes, you have 'frozen' the action and captured it at the right moment. Well done on all fronts. John
John_Humphreys 11 69 2 Ireland
12 Jun 2007 11:13PM
I've just been reading all the comments above and could add something to the dof discussion between yourself and Xinia if you are interested. If I interpret your discussion correctly I think what you are both saying is that you are surprised at the large depth of field even though the aperture of the lens has been opened up to the full extent at f/2.8. By extending your lens to its maximum focal length, 70mm, and opening its aperture to its maximum, f/2.8, you are indeed setting your equipment to narrow down the dof, but dof is also dependent on one other critical element - the distance between camera and subject. The closer you get to your subject the narrower the dof.

I shoot a lot of rugby with my lens set at a focal length of 200m and f/4 and I limit my picture taking to action that takes place only a set distance from the camera. For example, if I'm behind the dead ball line, I only shoot action that takes place between the goal line and the 22 meter line. If the action is further out the field I don't bother snapping as dept of field will be too wide and the backgrounds will be sharp rather than out of focus.

The only thing you could have done with your equipment to limit the dof of this shot would have been to move closer to the players.... but then you would have run the risk that a misplaced kick might have knocked that expensive new 5D out of your hands.

13 Jun 2007 3:26AM
thanks. really delighted with the comments. Most usefull.
Jacqui, I posted some ta-kraw shots before, and the reactions I got were a bit cooler than for my usual shots. Wasn't sure why though... merely because they were sport photos (I think they tend to be less popular on the site), or was there something in particular about them that people really don't like (the background for example). Or both lol. So I thought I would put one up in the C gallery to here some other voices and perhaps get a few pointers.
Neville, I see what you mean with the different approaches. Allthough I like very much what you did in your rodeo shots to neutralize the backgrounds, I think I'll stick with the documentary-look. For some reason - after a while - I start to dislike my photos with which I fiddled too much (not so much because the fiddling is badly done, but rather because I know I fiddled with it).
Thanks John. As you have some more experience on this, could you tell me something. For this shot I wanted the depth of field as narrow as possible, so I went for the most extreme (70mm and 2.8) with my lens. Because I needed to have both players in the frame (not evident with limbs scattered all over it lol) I actually stepped back from the court a few metres. As you say the distance from lens to subject is important as well. So, would it have been better - dof-wise I mean - if - instead of stepping backwards and use the 70 mm - I would have stayed closer and worked at - let's say - 50 mm ? I suppose not, but not sure, so I thought I might ask.
Stepping in a few metres and work at 70 mm would be possible, but the rate of missed shots (cut off feet or hands, ball not in the picture) would probably rise a lot. perhaps I should try that anyway and concentrate on the ones that come out well. I'm not going to step on the court though lol.

Thanks for the mod Paul
clevercloggs 13 237 2 United Arab Emirates
13 Jun 2007 4:58AM
First I thought you'd used the flash but then I saw it was off. Well done on capturing the action without it. Good reflection of the sun on the boys.
I agree on the busy bg but the boys seem to me enough in focus to take centre stage. You wil look at them first before the eye starts wondering but will always come back to what the boys are doing.
Interesting techno chit chat. Will read it some other time. Smile
13 Jun 2007 5:17AM
There is no built in flash on the 5D Robert. Never really considered bying one either.
imagio 11 12 1 England
13 Jun 2007 7:50AM
Good action shot..
TommyStr 11 9 3 Norway
13 Jun 2007 11:32AM
This has the nicest light and colours so far, and the scene is also different, as you think, as the title says; he got you there, instead of waiting for someone to land upside down. Can't offer any critique for this one so got nothing better to say...Super sports-documentary shot

Maybe you can help me out with a few tips though? Thinking of starting shooting in RAW, is it timeconsuming and have you tried ps to convert it?
13 Jun 2007 2:46PM
had a few tries at raw Tommy... also in PS. Until now I find it frustrating lol. allthough the first stage where you can adjust exposure and such can be really usefull... you really reset your photo so that highlights disappear for example. It is pretty time consuming, but not really more time consuming then working on a jpeg with PS. And I am extremely slow anyway. I suppose others manage things in 10 minutes where I am struggleling 2 hours. Why don't you ask Pooch (sorry Pooch Smile ). He's more used to it and seems to control it very well.
The first sentence of your comment is very interesting btw. Have been struggleling for 3 hours now to put the sentence parts in the right order... no success so far... but I'll crack that code Wink
TommyStr 11 9 3 Norway
13 Jun 2007 6:26PM
Little sleep, thanks for info, or not enough sleep, did i mention a few beers or was that yesterday, ?, by the way, i might give it a shot, soon, or two, cheers! (now that's a nutcracker)
John_Humphreys 11 69 2 Ireland
13 Jun 2007 11:49PM
Koen, I'm not sure if I can answer your question correctly but (without being absolutely sure) I suspect that the longer focal length will probably give you the shallower dof. I think the best advice I can offer is to experiment and to really get to know your equipment well. You're absolutely right to leave a bit of space around the players when shooting so that you don't cut out arms, legs etc. John
14 Jun 2007 2:29AM
Thanks John for the advice and Tommie for the nutcracker Smile
User_Removed 12 825 Lithuania
14 Jun 2007 5:19AM
Hmmm... i think i would have taken it at 5:23:34!?!

...but seriously... action is captured nicely but feel its lost a bit by such cluttered bg!?!... sorry if this has been mentioned above... happy clickin` Koen!... Wink
14 Jun 2007 5:54AM
lol... usually when I copy/paste the properties of the photo I delete the seconds, but forgot it this time
HowardA 10 231
25 Jul 2007 2:14PM
The timing is superb and the background puts it perfectly into context so don't have any probs with it at all. As John mentioned, if it's just the action you want then I guess you need to get right amongst them to minimise the dof - hazardous stuff.

The thought of landing on that hard surface sends shivers down my spine...quite literally.

Excellent timing, good light..


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