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Any sports photography workshops anyone can recommend?
Darrin Spencer, Photographer
Corbin | Ky | USA | Posted: 12:14 AM on 02.09.14
->> Before anyone says anything thing, I already know of the workshop associated with Sports Shooter, but that one won't work for me (as much as I wish it could). So with that being said is there any other workshops that someone might now of that might be pretty good. I always am looking for a way to continue to do things better and learn. Any help would be appreciated.
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Corey Perrine, Photographer
Naples | FL | USA | Posted: 12:25 AM on 02.09.14
->> If you want to be a good sports photographer become a better story-teller.

In my personal dealings, my favorite workshop has been the Missouri Photo Workshop.

When you can tell a story effectively, you can communicate best what you are trying to say (in the visual sense).

Then I'd recommend the Kalish Workshop for editing thereafter.

Shooting great photos but not being able to identify, pace, string together images, can be an Achilles heel.

Hope this helps.


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Brad Mangin, Photographer
Pleasanton | CA | USA | Posted: 1:25 AM on 02.09.14
->> Darrin- the awesome folks from Western Kentucky- right there in your home state- put on a GREAT workshop each fall.

Check out the Mountain Workshops:

Good luck!
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Ting Shen, Student/Intern, Photographer
Chicago | IL | U.S. | Posted: 5:01 AM on 02.09.14
->> Peter Read Miller of SI runs a sports workshop too.

I heard it's pretty amazing too.
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Darrin Spencer, Photographer
Corbin | Ky | USA | Posted: 9:33 AM on 02.09.14
->> Thanks everyone! Ting I have looked into the Peter Read Miller workshops and I am considering it possibly. Brad I have heard a lot of great things about the one in Western and as much as I would like to maybe do Peter Read Miller the location for this one might be a better option (although Atlanta isn't but a 5 hour drive). Corey I am going to check these out and look more into the workshops you recommended. Again thanks for your advice.
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Anthony Soufflé, Photographer
Chicago | IL | USA | Posted: 10:38 AM on 02.09.14
->> Rich Clarkson puts on a very rad sports photography workshop in Colorado Springs every year. It's a little pricy, but comes with a great faculty.
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Ben Mackey, Photographer
Columbia | MD | USA | Posted: 7:57 PM on 02.09.14
->> +1 for the Clarkson workshop.

It is really 3 workshops in one. You can shoot sports you've never seen before while being coached by great faculty members/mentors, learn new techniques you've been meaning to try for too long, or network with fantastic people.

The challenge is figuring out what do you want to do - there isn't enough time to get everything out of it that you can. When I went a couple of years ago, I saw it as an opportunity to shoot like crazy and didn't realize what else I was missing until late in the session.

Ron Taniwaki from NPS brings crates of gear to borrow and Robert's and others build the manufacturer's room next door with you can use with no pressure to buy. IIRC, NPS is also at SSA and CPS sets up during Peter Read Miller's workshop.
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Wade Payne, Photographer, Assistant
Knoxville | TN | USA | Posted: 6:59 AM on 02.10.14
->> Hi Darrin! Can't say enough good things about Peter Read Miller's workshop! Would LOVE to go again! I think he now teaches on the East side too...closer to home, although I must say, the Colorado Mtns. are STUNNING!
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Darin Sicurello, Photographer, Assistant
Gilbert | AZ | USA | Posted: 4:29 PM on 02.10.14
->> If you don't mind flying to the west coast. I highly recommend it.
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Mark J. Terrill, Photographer
Simi Valley | CA | USA | Posted: 7:37 PM on 02.10.14
->> I highly recommend Rich Clarkson's Sports Photography Workshop as well as his other workshops. I say that not because I'm one of the instructors, but I also attended as a student.
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David Seelig, Photographer
Hailey | ID | USA | Posted: 8:02 PM on 02.10.14
->> I did Rich Clarkson's workshop and got a lot out of it. I fi had the money knowing Peter, I would do his as well. You could not go wrong at either one.
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David Seelig, Photographer
Hailey | ID | USA | Posted: 8:04 PM on 02.10.14
->> PS I learned a ton form Mark J Terrill
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Robert Hanashiro, Photographer
Los Angeles | CA | | Posted: 11:05 PM on 02.10.14
->> Sorry your schedule won't allow you to be a part of THE coolest sports photography event of the year..

You can still learn a ton about sports and photography by checking out the wonderful photographs made during the workshops and cool, fun educational videos we have produced over the years at the SSA:

(Just go to the "Portfolios" and "Video" tabs on the website.

Also, the SSA Facebook page has lots of posts and behind-the-scenes things that you can learn from.

If you change your mind, applications will be accepted for SSA XI beginning next month.

We are considering holding a shorter program this summer (2/3 days vs. 5), email us to get on the advanced mailing list for that.

I do have to humbly suggest that the SSA is the best program our there in terms of events to shoot, faculty, pricing, accessibility and coolness!

Students: There will be as usual a number of slots that will be tuition-free.

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Peter Lockley, Photographer
Washington | DC | usa | Posted: 11:24 AM on 02.12.14
->> One more vote for the Clarkson workshop. I was a student at the Sports Workshop as well, and I eventually landed a job with Clarkson.

There are two photo contests sponsored by the Clarkson series of workshops, with the prize for each being free tuition to any of the four Summit workshops, including Sports.

For pro photographers:

For amateur photographers:

Feel free to hit me up through my member page for more details.
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Joey Terrill, Photographer
Tarzana | CA | USA | Posted: 7:17 PM on 02.12.14
->> Depending on what you wish to achieve while there, each of the above mentioned workshops can be amazing. I have direct experience with teaching at two of them—the SportsShooter Workshop and the Clarkson Sports Photography Workshop—and they are each beneficial in their own way. They each strive for different things and place emphasis on different outcomes for the attendees.

Part of what can make or break a workshop is what you expect going into the first day. If you want the opportunity to shoot a particular sport or try out some long glass, that’s a different emphasis than making connections with people who might hire you sometime down the road. I’ve met some students who want to shoot every event they can attend and improve their portfolio or website. Then there are others who never pick up a camera the entire week and want to learn more about how to safely mount a remote camera, light a portrait, or get feedback on their portfolio.

Whichever workshop you attend, be prepared for it to impact your career in ways you can likely predict, but also in ways that you might not predict. Sometimes one connection with someone can take your career to places that, looking back on it, was really very fortunate. If you can pursue these kinds of connections in advance, the workshop can have a tremendous payoff.

Awhile back I wrote an article about how spending $1000 to attend a workshop led to a single relationship that ultimately grew into many connections and hundreds of thousands of dollars in work.

Workshops are amazing opportunities to shoot what you love, take risks, experiment, learn new techniques and hopefully develop long relationships with people who can impact your life and career.
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Darrin Spencer, Photographer
Corbin | Ky | USA | Posted: 9:03 PM on 02.14.14
->> Thanks again members! I have some looking into to do before I really decide on which one might work for me.
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Michael Der, Photographer
Los Angeles | California | | Posted: 12:39 AM on 03.18.14
->> Hi Darrin,

I totally understand if your schedule conflicts with certain programs but I'll vouch for the SSA workshop whole heartedly.

That's not to say others don't provide good mentorship, but the SSA is as much as 1/3 the price of some other well known workshops, filled with incredible instructors and great sports to shoot.

I think what separates SSA from the rest of the pack, to me, is how consistently they ensure a serious and competitive group of participants. I'm not here to offend anyone else, but I have met several people that have attended other workshops and come away disappointed because of the quality of the participating student body. There's nothing wrong with a beginner photographer looking to jump into a hands-on sports photography workshop, in fact I think that's fantastic and I fully encourage it. Just make sure that if you're looking for something with more professional standards from the participants, then you should look for a workshop with a stronger screening process, if at all possible. For what it's worth, SSA places a real premium on the application process.

If you are seriously on such a workshop time constraint that you need to attend before the November, then by all means certainly explore your options. But to me waiting for the next SSA workshop is well worth it. Here are a couple of my blog posts regarding last spring's SSAX and this past November's SSA Mini;

Best of luck Darrin, and have fun!
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Robert Seale, Photographer
Houston | TX | USA | Posted: 10:11 AM on 03.19.14
->> +1 for both Sportsshooter and Clarkson's workshops. I've taught at both (actually, i spoke at Sportshooter back when it was the big Luau thing prior to the creation of the SS academy).

I've also attended workshops in the past in Santa Fe, and elsewhere, and the main thing about workshops that is a universal truth, is: you have to be proactive and make things happen. Decide what you want to accomplish and go after it, because it will be so intense and busy, that there is little time for hand holding. If you want a portfolio review - you have to make it happen. If they run out of slots, ask the instructor if you can show them your work in the bar later. If you want to shoot something, you have to schedule it. If you want to ask a question - follow somebody into the bathroom if you have to. Well, maybe not.

I'm not saying to be so pushy that you come off as a jerk, but often times the structure of these events is pretty loose and you can take in as much or as little as you wish. Just because there's no pre-arranged session between 5-7am, doesn't mean you can't go out and shoot a great sunrise photo if you want to.

I've seen a lot of wallflowers go to these things over the years, and you can't be that way if you want to maximize your investment.

Just my 2 cents.
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Keith Kountz, Photographer, Assistant
Fresno | CA | USA | Posted: 1:41 AM on 03.25.14
->> Just found out about this workshop. If it is anything like his Yosemite workshop this will be a great one for anybody.
Here is the link:
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Thread Title: Any sports photography workshops anyone can recommend?
Thread Started By: Darrin Spencer
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