I love swimming, and I got to shoot one day of USA Swimming's national meet this past weekend, so I'm gonna give it it's own blog post.
I came on a day that was unfortunately mostly freestyle events - the women's 1500, men's 800, and men's and women's 50 freestyle - but there were also the men's and women's 200 Individual Medleys. I had come to the meet the few days before to spectate, and I noticed that photographers were avoiding shooting from the end of the pool, choosing instead to shoot from the side. I guess that works on a day that's mostly freestyle, but since I only had one day to shoot, I was going to make the most of it.
There were a few women I had to shoot in the first heat of the 200 IM, so I quickly made my way down to the end of the pool before it started. I asked the officials if I was allowed to shoot from there, and they didn't know. I just decided to shoot from there anyway until someone yelled at me for it. I loved the straight-on view of the faces during the butterfly and breaststroke legs, and I loved the clean blue background it provided. The swimmers really stood out. Turns out shooting from that area was fine, so I couldn't really understand why the other photogs didn't try to shoot from that angle.
But then... when I made my way back to the side of the pool, I understood why none of them moved. It was next to impossible to get good shooting position once I had left. I ended up shooting from the middle of the pool, which wasn't really where I wanted to be. But I also ended up with some photos I was pretty happy with, and I met several new photographers while I was there!