Coventry City VS Wolverhampton Wanderers – 26th April Reflection.

On the 26th April, I was given the opportunity to photograph Coventry City VS Wolverhampton Wanderers – possibility one of the most exciting days of my life. Not only had being able to photograph Coventry City been absolutely brilliant but being able to photograph the game against the team I follow, Wolverhampton Wanderers, was just unreal. Whilst I was beside myself with excitement for this match, the nerves were also on an all time high.

Despite trial and error of using the different camera and lenses, I was prepared with the equipment I knew and needed – Canon 5D, 100-400mm lens, monopod and stool. I had also purchased a lens cover so I was prepared for any unexpected rain as the weather forecast wasn’t looking too promising. Following photographing my previous 4 games for Coventry City, I was now confident about the whole process particularly after the success of the game against Swindon. I pre-prepared all my equipment before hand making sure the settings were appropriate and transport arranged.

With an early arrival and a few hours to spare before kick off, I was given an ‘access all areas’ ticket with the opportunity to photograph all around the stadium and outside with the guidance to get some images of the family zone for promotion and images of the fans arriving at the ground. Considering this meant I would also get to soak up the atmosphere from the fans and see the players arrival, the day was feeling more unreal by the moment. As I identified in my SWOT analysis, one of my weaknesses is not liking to take the lead role and I felt this opportunity held a lot of responsibility as well as going out of my comfort zone of what I had gotten used to when arriving and photographing at Sixfields. Therefore this made me a little apprehensive to begin with however it was important for me to take full advantage of this situation and produce some unique, interesting images to expand on my portfolio.

For these images, I used my own Nikon D80 and 18-200mm lens to take these photos which I had brought as a back up. This meant I had a nice zoom range and could save the 5D for the match. Firstly, I took a few shots within the ground while there were no fans inside. I have always found that I have struggled with landscape photography therefore I found this quite challenging particularly as the largest stand with no fans in was quite impressive and I wanted to be able to portray this through my images. As fans began to arrive, I took to outside the stadium to see what sort of photographs I could get. I tried to capture a number of players arriving and signing shirts/programmes of the fans along with shots of the fans arriving building an atmosphere. I found this quite challenging to be in the right place in the right time and often I could end up being at the wrong angle but I was able to get some suitable shots. I then went inside to get some shots of the family zone – whilst I initially thought I would struggle with this, there was quite a bit going on which allowed me to think on my feet and capture a few moments. I felt the nerves get the better of me when a group of fans asked me to take a picture for them, particularly whilst there were others watching. However with my confidence developing throughout the placement and my improved management of my nerves I was able to get a good shot of the group whilst under pressure, taking into consideration lighting, their positioning and communicating with them quickly and efficiently.

With the sun shining, through the game my shutter speed readings were coming out well meaning I felt positive and confident about my shots whilst also being completely star struck at the fact I was photographing CCFC and my own team! At half time, I took the opportunity to take a couple more shots of the family stand to show more of the fans and atmosphere. Overall it turned out I was quite snap happy resulting in a total of 1,085 photographs which meant both a lengthy selection and editing process especially as I also had the photographs from before the game too. However I more than enjoyed myself looking through what I had produced and once again the photos had come out pleasingly well. These are the selection of images which I sent to the club.

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After I had selected, edited and passed on my images for Coventry City I went through my images again and selected a number of photographs for my own personal use of Wolves. Rather than looking for action appropriate images, this selection feature more visually pleasing for myself.

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Overall, I couldn’t have asked for a more incredible day and I am still overwhelmed by the whole experience. Taking photographs before the game gave me a broad scope as to what I could do and take my own approach. It also meant I could think more creatively rather than looking for action shots like during the game. I was so pleased with how my shots of Coventry City turned out at felt I got some good action shots as required, particularly following my knock of confidence following the not so successful games against Crawley and Stevenage – from here I feel as if I have come on leaps and bounds. When the image gallery was released, I was even more overwhelmed to see that a good percentage of my images had been used along with those of the Press Association. This day will certainly be one to remember.

My images can be seen on the Coventry City website here:

http://www.ccfc.co.uk/news/article/picture-gallery-coventry-city-1-1-wolverhampton-wanderers-league-one-280414-1516489.aspx

A couple of my images have also been included in the following articles:

http://www.ccfc.co.uk/news/article/supporters-cup-final-coventry-city-west-brom-070514-1541255.aspx

http://www.ccfc.co.uk/news/article/family-excellence-award-1314-coventry-city-080514-1541174.aspx

http://www.ccfc.co.uk/news/article/family-excellence-award-thank-you-coventry-city-080514-1542572.aspx

Travel, photographing, selection process and editing = 2 days for 201MC Professional Experience.

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~ by victoriasimkissphotography on May 2, 2014.

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