Canada Games Athlete Portraits-Baseball Player Sean Silliphant

Today’s portrait is of baseball player Sean Silliphant.

Similar set up as many of the other images. Set the subject up in front of a bright background, expose for the background to make them a silhouette, and add light on them with the flash.


Sean plays a number of positions, including pitching, so I started off with him on the mound.


The light on Sean was a bit too contrasty, so I moved the light to the right to shine more onto his face.

An idea I had from the start for this shoot was to have his face lit up by a flash in his glove. The problem was that I couldn’t really fit a flash with a pocket wizard into the glove, so that left me with two options.

1) Attempt to use the Canon wireless flash system to trigger the flash in the glove. I did not bother however, because one of the main problem with the Canon wireless flash system is that the off camera flashes have to be able to “see” the flash from the main on camera flash to trigger them.

so that left me with option

2) Use my Nikon Sb800 flash, which has a built in optical slave that will fire off of any flash it detects! I angled the sensor towards Sean’s face, and used the Canon flash on the camera at very low power, and the light reflected off his face enough to trigger the Nikon.



Also tried a few with the TUNGSTEN WB/Warming filter on the flash trick to get a bit bluer sky.


Then I decided to try so head on shots using the flash in glove technique.


Did some experimentation with the shutter speed to make the ambient light darker. Picking a higher shutter speed made the sky go a bit darker.


I ended up with some shots of Sean as the shortstop, and figured the neat play to shoot would be him tagging second base and throwing to first for the double play.
Flash was set up to my left, the sun was backlighting him(notice the double shadow)



To see more in this series, head to my Canada Games Athlete Galleries on my site that contains more images from this shoot.
To see the full series of posts in the Canada Games Series, click here.

To read the story by Telegraph Journal sports editor Randy O’Donnell, click here.
Next up….beach volleyball!

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