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Hey there, sports fans! Have you ever wondered what it’s like to capture all the action of a varsity basketball game on a Friday night? Well, I recently had the chance to do just that at my local high school, and let me tell you, it was a night filled with excitement, cheers, and some pretty decent shots (I think).

While I didn’t have the privilege of being on the court to take pictures (not sure where I can acquire a courtside pass), I found a few different sweet spots up in the stands with all the other fans. And let me tell you, the energy up there was electric!

First things first, if you’ve never been to a high school basketball game on a Friday night, you’re missing out. The gymnasium was packed with students, parents, and community members, all eager to support their favorite team, the Allen Eagles. The sound of sneakers squeaking on the polished court echoed throughout the gym with lots of background cheering and shouting. It was the perfect setting for some action-packed photography.

Basketball is a lightning-fast sport, and trying to follow the action through your camera lens can be a real challenge. Players dribble, pass, shoot, and sprint up and down the court at breakneck speed. It’s like trying to capture a blur of colors and movements, but that’s what makes it so exhilarating. Unlike baseball, the movements don’t seem predictable at all (at least to me).

My camera was armed and ready, and I started clicking away as the teams warmed up. There’s something about capturing those pre-game moments—the players stretching, the coaches giving last-minute pep talks—that adds an extra layer of excitement to the whole experience. And it gave me an opportunity to mess with my camera settings. As we all know, the lighting in gyms is not the best, so I had to mess around with things to get the pictures to look right.

Once the game began, it was a whirlwind of action. The players were so quick that I sometimes had trouble keeping up (and so did my cameras focusing system). But I soon found my rhythm and started getting some pretty awesome shots. There’s nothing quite like capturing a slam dunk, a three-pointer, or a perfectly executed steal in mid-air. The reactions of the players and fans in the stands were priceless too, as every basket was met with cheers and applause.

As the game went on, I realized that the key to getting great shots was to anticipate the action. I had to keep my camera trained on the players (or a specific player in many cases), ready to press that shutter button at a moment’s notice. It was like being in a constant state of alertness, and I loved every minute of it.

Of course, not every shot I took was a winner, but that’s all part of the fun. In fact, lots of times when I focused on a particular player thinking he was about to get the ball and break-away down the court, the ball was passed in the complete opposite direction, and I missed the shot. But photography is about experimentation and learning, and each missed shot was a lesson for the next one. And trust me, there were plenty of incredible moments to capture—fast breaks, dramatic steals, and nail-biting buzzer-beaters.

As the final buzzer sounded and the game came to an end, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of satisfaction. I may not have been on the court, but I had been a part of the action in my own way, capturing the excitement and intensity of a Friday night varsity basketball game. And I just know that one of these days, I’ll make it down either to the basketball court to get a different view of the game…

So, if you ever get the chance to photograph a high school basketball game, I highly recommend it. It’s a fast-paced, thrilling experience that will test your photography skills and leave you with memories and images to treasure. And remember, even if you can’t get on the court, shooting from the stands can be an absolute blast! So grab your camera, find your seat, and get ready to capture the magic of high school basketball. You won’t regret it.

Do you have an athlete in y our family that you’d like me to photograph? If so, you can reach me over at Paula Mason Photography! And if you’d like to see the rest of the pictures from this game, just visit the Allen Varsity Basketball Gallery. Pictures are free to download!

Until next time…

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