Remote cameras are nothing new to sports photography. In fact, for major publications and news agencies, remote cameras are a regular part of shooting an event. A little over a week ago I shot a basketball game between UW-Green Bay and Valparaiso for UWGB. I had an opportunity to borrow a fellow photographers Canon 1Dx for the game, giving me three bodies at my disposal for the night. (I currently have two Canon bodies that I shoot with that are my own). I thought, what a good opportunity to set up a third camera as a remote for the game. I like to take every opportunity possible to give my client a different angle than what they are use to getting from shooting a basketball game.
The only issue I had that day with getting a remote set up for the game was the time crunch I was under. I started game day by waking up a 4am to go shoot B Camera video on a shoot an hour south of Green Bay. I knew as soon as the video shoot was over, I would only have a small amount of time to drive back home to shoot the basketball game. Normally one of my favorite remote camera positions is to shoot directly down on the basket from the rafters of the Resch Center in Green Bay. The only problem with this position is it takes about a half hour to get a camera set up, ready to shoot in that position. Instead I decided to take a quicker route and set up a floor remote.
The set up I used is fairly simple. I use a ground level light stand with a ball head attached. I set up my Canon 1D mkIV with my wide angle zoom lens and set up the camera to fire every time my main camera fires. I used Pocketwizards to trigger the camera remotely. I composed my frame, locked down my focus and was ready to shoot. I like this set up because not only is it quick, but it’s also easy to set up. It also allows the remote camera to sit next to me while I shoot the game. I can keep an eye on it, making sure it is triggering and its not getting messed with by fans.
A frame from my main camera, a Canon 1Dx with a 70-200mm lens.
The corresponding frame from the remote camera. Canon 1D mkIV shot at 17mm.
The floor set up worked out very well for the game. This angle allowed me to piece together in Photoshop, a 7 shot sequence of UWGB’s Keifer Sykes on a break away dunk all in one shot (first photo of the post). It was a picture that my client had never gotten before and they were very excited about it.