February 2019 | Issue no. 35 | by mark shaiken

“Faces are one of the most important things in a sports image. Faces personalize and humanize the image; they connect the viewer to the moment and draw them in.”  fstoppers, 11 Easy Ways to Improve Your Sports Photography. In addition, the expression tells the viewer what is going on – anguish, joy, concentration, and intensity, all play out in the athlete’s face.  When you capture the expression in an image, nothing more needs to be said about the moment – the face tells all.

This issue, do :: or :: diso takes a look at the importance of facial expressions in telling the story.  In doing so, since it is that time of year, the article focuses on basketball.

A number of “under the hoop” images yield great facial expressions.  Sit close to the hoop and shoot wide.

Dunks reveal a combination of intensity and a certain “take that” attitude as the slam is executed.

Dribbling past a defender or through a crowd is hard work.  Hard work can be seen on the athlete’s face.

Surprisingly, there is less emotion during a jump shot, but that is not to say that shooting in a crowd or over a defender is easy, and the contested shot usually yields some looks.

The use of the tongue by some of the players is another intensity giveaway.

The box out is great for eyes expressions as the gaze is upwards before the rebound can be pulled down.

And then there is the “take that” look on the cover photo when a rebound is pulled in, or just before it is pulled in.

Watch for the up close and invasion-of-personal-space look.

The bench can reveal some celebratory intensity.

A smile can say it all.

Or be on the look out for the expression that cries out for a caption contest.

Next issue, dunks and more dunks,



Mark Shaiken skylineDenver based, mark shaiken :: photography
contact me at: markshaiken@fastmail.com
or by calling 913.530.6539