Post-Production is a Sports Photographers Best Friend

Editing a photo in Photoshop. Photo by Brian Lewis.

A sports photographer’s job is to tell a story by capturing a memorable moment at a sporting event. While this is their objective, their job consists of a lot more duties then just showing up to a game with a camera to take some photos. For most photographers the real work is done after the game is over.

When the game is complete the photographer then begins the process of post-production that consists of editing any mistakes that were made when shooting the photo. This can include color correction, cropping, leveling the horizon and many others.

“When I edit photos I look to see if I have to do any color correcting, minor cropping, and any other minor adjustments such as brightness and removing any artifacting,” Santa Clarita Valley TV photographer Cory Rubin said.

Editing a photo can be a very tedious and a time consuming project depending on how in-depth the photographer gets. This process has gotten a lot easier in the digital age because there are programs such as Photoshop and Adobe Bridge that allows a photographer to just drop the photo into the program and click a couple of buttons if they are making simple corrections. Sports Photography Success goes into detail on how to make advanced corrections on a sports photo and gives good examples of how an ordinarily dull photo can be brought to life.

While the ability to edit a photo after a game is helpful it’s not always feasible.

“I have to be able to produce my work right away,” Arizona State Olympic Sports Producer Rob Roberson said. “I don’t have the luxury of spending a lot of time in post-production so I make sure I get my colors right the first time.”

In Photo Tuts Plus, Russell Tracy gives beginners a guide on how to shoot sports photos correctly the first time so they can avoid a lot of editing in post-production.

The time the photographer has will depend on what he or she is going to use the photo for. A photo journalist with a deadline might not have the time to do an in-depth edit on a photo but a photographer who plans on using the photo for a different purpose such as a magazine or a website will have more time to use advanced editing tools to spice up the photo. Article Click discusses some of the advantages that image editing allows photographers to do to their photos.

Whether a photographer has time to edit a photo or not he or she wants to produce the best quality of work that they can. Digital editing has changed the photography world to where photos are so real looking that the audience feels like they are a part of the game.


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