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|| News Item: Posted 2006-11-29

Sports Shooter Academy IV Set For April 4 - 8, 2007
By Sports Shooter Staff

Photo by Jordan Murph

Photo by Jordan Murph

Sports Shooter Academy instructor Wally Skalij leads a group at horse racing during Sports Shooter Academy III in November of 2006.
See Better, Shoot Better is the theme for Sports Shooter Academy IV, to be held April 4 - 8, 2007 in Southern California.

The Sports Shooter Academy is a hands-on workshop that gives participants an opportunity to gain experience, improve their photography, learn new techniques and spark their creativity by covering NCAA Division I sports events through an arrangement with the Big West Conference.

"The Sports Shooter Academy is exactly how it is in the real world," said instructor Matt Brown, "You drive to the event. You shoot it. You get back. You edit."

Faculty members accompany participants to events, offering advice and information on lens selection, lighting, positions and how to creatively cover the sport. Participants edit their work under the guidance of the faculty and critiques are held at the end of each day of shooting.

The Sports Shooter Academy IV schedule at this writing will include college baseball, softball, men's volleyball, tennis, crew and water polo. Additional sports include: professional beach volleyball, boxing, rugby, and horse racing.

"The best thing about Sports Shooter Academy is being able to shoot sports you don't usually get to shoot," said Marilyn Chung, a staff photographer at the Palm Springs Desert Sun who attended SSA III. "Also getting the hands on experience from the faculty. A lot of times when you shoot for a paper, you don't really get feedback, you're just doing the basic stuff. This kind of opened my eyes to looking at sports in a different way."

Photo by Jordan Murph

Photo by Jordan Murph

Sports Shooter Academy instructor Matt Brown talks to workshop participant Prashant Singh at a Big West Conference volleyball game during Sports Shooter Academy III in November of 2006.
The Sports Shooter Academy IV faculty includes Brown, a Southern California freelance photographer, Seattle Times staff photographer Rod Mar, Los Angeles Times staff photographers Wally Skalij and Myung J. Chun and Robert Hanashiro, USA TODAY staff photographer and Sports Shooter founder.

Classroom sessions at previous workshops have included: using remotes, digital workflow, lighting basics, arena lighting and sports picture stories. Additionally location portrait lighting sessions will be on the workshop schedule where participants will help set up and photograph an athlete.

"I learned so much from these amazing photographers that were here," said Will Godfrey who attended SSA III and is a student at Georgia College and State University. "Just to pick their brains I was able to ask all the questions I've always wanted to ask."

"All the photographers were there at the events and when you want to ask a question, like teaching me how to set up a remote. I'd done remotes but nothing at sporting events. I really learned how to do that and can't wait to take it back home and really implement it at the college I'm at," Godfrey added.

To apply for Sports Shooter Academy IV, download an application form: Participants must also submit a 20-image portfolio as part of the application process.

Sports Shooter Academy IV is reasonably priced at $450 for full-time college and university students and $550 for working professionals. After Feb. 14, 2007 the registration fee goes up to $ 500 for full-time college students and $600 for working professionals. Payment deadlines and other details will be emailed to applicants once they submit their application forms and are accepted into the workshop.

The application has an essay writing requirement and past applicants have been accepted just on the strength of what they wrote in their essays. The workshop has a limited number of spaces and once filled, a waiting list will be started.

More details on previous Sports Shooter Academy workshops are available at these links:

Photo by
"Sports Shooter Academy is more about seeing the picture as much as it is about shooting it," said Michael Goulding, a staff photographer at the Orange County Register and a instructor at SSA II and III. "The process you go through as a participant in The Academy is great. You're on site with good photographers ... and you talk about the picture you want to shoot there and how to see them. Then you go into the editing room and then into the critiques with them and follow that evolution all the way through."

"I think it really grounds you in the idea you have to see the picture before you really make the picture. When you see better, you shoot better," Goulding added.

Supporting Sports Shooter Academy IV are Canon USA, Think Tank Photo, Apple Computer and Samy's Camera.

"This is an experience that you cannot pass up. Nightly critiques are especially important because the experienced faculty provide essential feedback and advice that you cannot get anywhere else," said California State University, Fullerton student Carlos Delgado who attended SSA II and III. "Shooting events alongside professionals who are willing to answer any question you can think of, as well as one-on-one critiques, let me walk away with tons of valuable information and experience."

Related Links:
Sports Shooter Academy

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