Nikon D3, 80-200mm, 200iso, f8, 1/10th

It was a relatively light day of two events to be covered. Began the day shooting some volleyball. When I arrived at the venue I noticed one of our other photographers there so I left the standard action images to him and attempted to do some blur shots. A lot of people hate blur shots where you don’t have something tack sharp but I was really enjoying the flurry of blurry players jumping and the ball streaking off their hands.

Nikon D3, 80-200mm, 2500iso, f4, 1/1000th

I also spent a few minutes working the black backgrounds to find something interesting but never really got anything good.

Nikon D3, 400mm, 2000iso, f2.8, 1/1250th

Nikon D3, 80-200mm, 200iso, f7.1, 1/13th

My boredom grew as the game went on so I busted out the cliché star filter to see if there was anything worth shooting with that.

Nikon D3, 24-70mm with star filter, 1600iso, f2.8, 1/1250th

Finished up there and headed back to the main press center where I had a few hours to kill. Worked on images, posted a blog and it was a quick walk over to gymnastics.

Nikon D3, 400mm, 2500iso, f2.8, 1/1250th

It was another standard evening of gymnastics pretty much. I don’t care how good of a photographer you are, after shooting the same event at the same place for over a week straight you run out of different artistic images and just become stagnant with the whole process.

Nikon D3, 400mm, 2500iso, f2.8, 1/1250th

Then we had a bit of controversy arise when China was awarded the bronze medal in the vault. Prior to Chinas attempt, USA vaulter Alicia Sacramone performed her two vaults and landed both of them perfectly. Then China vaulted and this was the result.

Nikon D3, 400mm, 2500iso, f2.8, 1/1250th

On her second vault she fell down onto her knees at the end of the vault. Yet somehow she scored higher than the USA’s two clean vaults and ended up with the bronze medal. Needless to say you could hear grumbling of judges being influenced by either the Chinese fans or the Chinese government. The head of US Gymnastics was far from happy as he leaned over the railing above the judges table to give them a piece of his mind.

Nikon D3, 80-200mm, 2500iso, f2.8, 1/800th

Nothing like a little controversy to make a boring day entertaining.

Nikon D3, 400mm, 2500iso, f2.8, 1/1250th

Posted in China, Olympics   | 4 Comments

4 responses to “More Volleyball, More Gymnastics”

  1. Andrew-Bede Allsop says:

    Can’t believe that you were bored at the Olympics!

  2. Steve says:


    Really enjoying your coverage and frequent updates. Although I’ve never shot the Olympics I can imagine that it can become repetitive even for the best of you. Still an amazing opportunity though. With regard to your last comment concerning the controversy. It’s ironic that the Chinese, during the demonstrations over Tibet, announced that the Olympics were no place for politics but yet seem to have no problem using it to their advantage when convenient. Either way, nice job.

  3. Mike says:

    I will be shooting gymnastics with a D3 this weekend. Can you give me some other camera settings you recommend, focus, white balance, and more.

  4. Mike,
    It really is dependant on the light (its brightness and bulb type) The D3 is pretty spot on with auto white balance but keep in mind some arena lights flicker very fast and the colors will be different in your pics from one to the next. I always try to keep shutter speed at 1000 or more. Anything much slower will give most your images motion blur. I focus with gymnastics the same I do with anything so there’s really nothing different to worry about there. Look for clean backgrounds so it doesnt ruin your shots.
    Good luck!


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