I know I’ve been dark for a while. It’s been crazy busy at my house with my new job, school starting, and then the holidays crashing down upon us. With the holidays comes the first gymnastics meet of the season. We were expecting Em to move up to level 8 this year but she’s had some setbacks on some of her skills so her coach decided to have her do this first meet as a level 7. The twist is that if she had moved up to 8, she wouldn’t have competed in this meet, so it was a bit of a scramble. I decided, from a photography standpoint, to consider this a “play” meet or a “practice” meet and I used the still/video combo capability of my camera, just to see what it did. I sometimes think I should be taking videos to do her more justice but, after this weekend’s experiment, I have changed my mind. For a large part of her bars routine I forgot to take still pictures. And the still pictures are not as good as when I take them in camera mode and can tweak in all the settings ‘just right’ but, for what it’s worth, here’s video. She started on vault, she got a 9.20.
Next was bars. She fell. She did not get credit for something hitting 45 degrees. She got an 8.20. Oh, and (as I said) I forgot to take still pictures, I have one… of her dismount.
Then beam. She fell on her full turn and she didn’t get credit for “connecting” her series, even though she tried to throw in an extra move to get it connected. But she pulled an 8.125, which is really good for her on beam, she’s not a beam person (generally). This is where I started noticing the disadvantage of video mode. My still photos were not shooting continuously so I didn’t get that exact perfect moment of her jump or her back walk over. And once i was home and viewing the photos on my computer, I noticed they were a bit grainy, and maybe more blurry than they should be (not sure on the blurry part, though… it is challenge to catch a moving body from 50 feet with no flash).
I don’t really think having the video makes up for the degredation in photo quality:
Finally, floor, she got a very commendable 8.55. This is what made me decide the video is not worth it. I have no amazing, gravity defying photos of her tumbling and leaping passes and no beautiful, perfectly timed photos of her dance poses. And I have to apologize. By floor I was tired and lost focus. After her first tumbling pass, out of instinct, I tracked ahead of her to where I usually get the next set of still photos, then remembered I was taking video, then almost dropped my scoring sheet and pen… you’ll see. But I guess I have her floor music… still not a good tradeoff, in my opinion. Stills: