Highlight Plays during this NorCal SoCal Basketball Match

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Cal Poly Pomona Broncos vs the San Francisco State Gators on Friday, January 5, 2018 at San Francisco State.

This was the first time we watched the Cal Poly Pomona Broncos in San Francisco.  It was an impressive game where the Broncos were consistently ahead of the Gators.

I had a great time shooting a lot of action photographs.  I learned from this session that I need a faster lens with a bigger aperture to capture the action shots.  My 100-400 mm zoom lens was great when I was photographing across the court but was not wide angled enough while I was near the basket.  I also had to boost the ISO to 32000 because the lens aperture was f/4.5 at 100mm and f/5.6 at 400mm and I needed a fast shutter speed to capture the action. Shooting at ISO 32000 will degrade the picture quality compared to shooting at a lower ISO like 1000. If I were to use a f/2.8 70-200mm lens, I would be able to lower the ISO and improve the quality of the pictures.

Even though I have been a photographer for a while, I still am learning how to improve.  I am starting to shoot sporting events and hope I can improve in these action shots.

The next game for the Broncos in the Bay Area will be on Friday, January 26, 2018 at 7:30 pm.  The Broncos will be playing against California State University East Bay in Hayward.  If any of you are free, it should be another fun game to watch.

Below is a link of their Basketball Game Schedule –

Cal Poly Pomona Broncos Game Schedule

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Remember the Temporary Overflow Press Area at Candlestick Park?

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Welcome to Candlestick Park for Game 4 of the National League Championship Series with the San Francisco Giants facing the Chicago Cubs.  The date was Sunday, October 8, 1989, and the weather was very comfortable on this Fall late afternoon.  It was such a big event that the Goodyear Blimp was flying over Candlestick Park for the game.

It was fun to photograph the additional temporary press area to accommodate the extra sports commentators.  There were no ushers or guards to keep fans away from the area.  If I were bolder, I could have went up closer to this area.  But I did not want to enter this area where I felt I did not belong.  Below this press area, there was a walkway where I set up a tripod to photograph.  This walkway was between the upper box and the upper reserve seats.  This press area was in upper reserve area behind home plate.

Notice there are parts of my press area photographs which are blurry – mostly the people.  Those were the days when we had to photograph with film.  Since the sun was setting in the late afternoon, I had to photograph with a slower shutter speed because I was using a slower speed film.  If I hand held my camera,  everything would be blurry.  But since I used a tripod, everything not moving in the picture was sharp.  I used a slower speed film to get richer colors and a sharper image.  When I used the tripod, I had to photograph quickly to stay out of other people’s way.

These press area photographs were the best that could be taken with the type of camera equipment, film, and lighting during this event in 1989.  Today, with my modern digital equipment, I could photograph better pictures at this location and circumstances due to the improvements 29 years later.  But of course, the Stick is gone, and I cannot go back to reshoot!  So even with the imperfections of these photographs, I’m glad I can look back at these photographs to remember my earlier experiences shooting at Candlestick Park.

 

How to do a Nice Scoring Drive Past 2 Defenders

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Cal Poly Pomona vs SF State on Friday, January 5, 2018 in San Francisco, CA

Last Friday, I got a text from my cousin that her son, Phoenix, would be returning to the Bay Area to play against the SF State Gators.  So we decided to attend the game, and I was excited to take photographs of Phoenix in action.

It was a fun game with the Cal Poly Pomona Broncos team ahead all during the game.  They held a good lead in the beginning.  But as the game continued, the Gators did close the gap.

I took this sequence of Phoenix’s scoring drive eluding 2 defenders.  In the beginning, Phoenix started to approach the 1st defender.   He managed to drive around the 1st defender.  Then the 2nd defender sought to help the 1st defender.  But Phoenix continued to persevere against the double team and took a shot over the defenders.  He banked the ball off the backboard to score for this difficult play.

So what is the key to obtain a successful scoring drive?

  • Perseverance to drive around the defenders.
  • Lots of practice of dribbling, wind sprints, & basketball drills
  • Team work

Our family and friends were very proud to watch Phoenix at this game!  It is not about which team won the game or even the skill level of the players.  We are proud of these players who work hard to excel at a game they love.  They can all be proud of their hard work to strive to improve and be their best.

Cheap Seats at Candlestick Park

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Classic view of the general admission area in the foreground of Candlestick Park during a SF Giants game. You also can see the press box at the top of the stadium in the center of the photograph. The Giants played the Montreal Expos on this comfortable Friday night on May 20, 1988.

The cost of the general admission ticket was $2.50.  The general admission area was behind the fence.  There was a fence separating the general admission seats from the rest of Candlestick Park.  Fans who bought seats in this area were not permitted to walk past the fence to go to the other side of Candlestick Park.  The ushers did not allow anyone with a general admission ticket to leave the area.

Occasionally, I sat in the general admissions area.  Since I was restricted from going to the other areas of the Stick, I bought a 2nd ticket in the lower reserve area for this game.  I wanted to go to the other areas of the stadium to take pictures.  Lower reserve was not too far away from the general admissions area.  The 2nd ticket was only $8.00.

During the inning breaks, I went to the other areas of the stadium to take pictures.  At this game, I walked to the lower reserve behind home plate to take photographs of the scoreboard and the lights.  I also shot the rest of the stadium from this location.

It is interesting how it was so easy and cheap to buy tickets to watch the SF Giants, and how I could buy 2 tickets just for myself to enjoy roaming around the Stick.  It’s too bad cheap seats are just a good memory from the old days at Candlestick Park.

Close-Up of the Sony JumboTron at Candlestick Park in 1988

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I spent endless hours photographing Candlestick Park.  I would roam all around the Stick before sitting down to enjoy the SF Giants games.

The Sony JumboTron was one of the highlights at Candlestick Park.  Of course, it is natural for all the fans to be focused on the JumboTron during the game to see the video highlights, News of the Day, and clips from movies.  But I went a step further in my photographs of the different perspectives of the JumboTron.

I’ve always liked large televisions even before our current big flatscreen televisions existed.  So I was drawn to the JumboTron since it was the ultimate big screen TV for that era.

I also loved photographing different aspects of lighting.  With the JumboTron, I focused from the bottom to the top and the different sides.  I used a 300 mm zoom lens to take the close up photographs of JumboTron.  The close-up photographs show the detail of the grid with the different lighting underneath.  The detailed structure of the JumboTron gave interesting patterns.  In photograph #10, I walked underneath the JumboTron to show what was underneath.

To be a good photographer means to examine your subject from top to bottom, from one side to the other side, and from inside to the outside.  I’ve learned to pay attention to the details.  Art can be found in these details.  Often times, we miss the art in the details.  Candlestick Park was a wonderful stadium for the SF Giants and the 49ers.  But it was also a place where I found fine art in this stadium’s details.

Did You Listen to the Polka Band at Candlestick Park?

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This was a rare treat to listen to this Polka Band performs the pregame show in the stands before a night SF Giants game. It was fun to listen to them play their music, and they added a festive atmosphere to the old ballpark.

They were performing during batting practice as they moved around the stadium in the lower box section behind home plate.  Candlestick Park was not a picture perfect stadium. It did not have nice warm weather during night games and was often cold and foggy.  But the Stick did have a special charm like the Polka Band.

I took this photograph in the late 1980’s with a Canon camera using Kodak 35mm High Speed T-Max 3200 Black and White film which explains for the high amount of grain in the picture.  This film was necessary for the night games where there was less light, and I used this film for my SF Giants night game pictures.

Does anyone remember this Polka Band at Candlestick Park?   I would love to hear about your memories during this evening at the Stick.

Young SF Giants Fan at Candlestick Park

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I was attending a SF Giants game at Candlestick Park in the late 1980’s with some co-worker buddies and saw this young fan who was quite a character. He was having fun during most of the game.  At this point, he was a little upset about something.  During most of the game, he was walking up and down the aisle with his bat.  Does anyone recognize this little young SF Giants Fan?

We were seated in the general admission area behind the left field fence. In 1994 they constructed new metal riser bleacher seats in front of this section. It reduced the total capacity of the ballpark but brought fans closer to the field.

I used Kodak 35mm T-Max 100 black and white film with a Canon camera and developed the film in my darkroom at home. When developing the film, it had to be completely dark with no light leaking in from under the door or else the film would have been ruined. I had to transfer the film in total darkness into a light proof film processing canister by touch with my hands.  Those were the days.

Detailed Views at Candlestick Park’s Scoreboard and Beyond in 1988

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I was always impressed with the scoreboard at Candlestick Park when I was a kid and as an adult when I went to SF Giants and 49’er games. It was very interesting to see the scoreboard up close and behind the board. All of the photographs taken underneath and behind the Scoreboard were taken in the General Admission area at Candlestick Park. Candlestick Park was a very unique and one of a kind stadium before it was torn down.

Candlestick Park before the Fans Arrived

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Quiet and serene Candlestick Park on a sunny afternoon in 1991. The photograph was taken from the upper deck down the right field line before a night game. Candlestick Park used to be one of the largest capacity ballparks in Major League Baseball as it seated 62,000 people. I took the photograph using Kodak 35mm T-Max 100 black and white film with a Canon camera. T-Max 100 was my favorite bright daylight film as the grain was very fine.

Exciting Fireworks at Candlestick Park

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Opening Night on April 15, 1991 at Candlestick Park with the LA Dodgers squaring off against the SF Giants. Giants vs Dodgers games always generate excitement but it was also opening night which made the game extra special. It was quite a sight to see the on-field fireworks show during the pre-game ceremony.

I like the fireworks in this black and white photo since it emphasizes the splattering of the firework specs throughout the air.  It shows the spray of the fireworks with a different appearance.

When I was a small child, we had a black and white television.  When we received our first color television, it was so magnificent to watch programs in color.  The color television was far superior than the black and white.  Now as an adult, I realize that black and white images are not inferior, but can provide a different dimension to a picture.

If you have old black and white photographs, take time to go back to look and enjoy the old images.  See if you can notice any different nuances in the pictures.