By Jeanette Larson
Length of Program
60 minutes plus optional follow-up
This program will focus on sports photography, allowing teens to explore sports and activities in their own community while expressing their interests artistically. Provide teens with disposable cameras or ask them to bring cameras. After listening to booktalks about one or more sports photography books or hearing a photographer talk about how to take good photographs, the teens will take their own photographs. Teens may display their photographs in the library, on the library’s web site, or take them home. If possible, provide them with a list of organizations that accept the work of teen photographers for publication. For example, VOYA regularly solicits work by teens to include in this publication for librarians who work with teens.
Purchase disposable cameras, or borrow enough digital cameras for the teens to use. If your programs attract large groups, you may register teens for this program or encourage them to bring cameras from home. Invite a local photographer to provide tips on how to take good pictures. Gather photography books from the library collection for teens to peruse during the program and then check out. Prepare booktalks on one or more of the titles.
Books to Display
- Boxing in Black and White by Peter Bocho.
- Seeing for Yourself: Techniques and Projects for Beginning Photographers by Roger Gleason.
- Sports Illustrated: Hot Shots: 21st Century Sports Photography by the Editors of Sports Illustrated.
- Sportscape: the Evolution of Sports Photography by Paul Wombell.
Books to Booktalk
- Birdland by Tracy Mack.
- Hold Fast to Dreams by Andrea Davis Pinkney.
- Last Shot: A Final Four Mystery by John Feinstein.
- One Shot by Susan Glick.
- We Skate Hardcore: Photographs from Brooklyn's Southside by Vincent Cianni.
Ask a camera shop, local newspaper, or a photography buff to loan a variety of cameras to display so that teens see how the technology has changed over time. If you have trouble finding a source, check the media department at the local high school or college.
Give participants a bendable sports character picture frame to display a photograph of their choosing. They are available from Oriental Trading Company for about $0.33 each.
Games and Activities
A Picture’s Worth…
Invite a local photography buff or someone from a camera store to demonstrate good techniques for photography. Purchase or borrow inexpensive cameras or digital cameras for them to use, or ask the teens to bring a camera from home. On-line, try Freestyle Photographic Supplies for high quality inexpensive 35mm cameras such as the Bell and Howell M1300 or Holga 120 CFN. After reviewing the basics of camera use, composition, lighting and focus, give the teens time to take photographs of local sporting events and activities. Suggestions might range from kids jumping rope to a baseball game. After the teens have taken photographs, have them developed or, if they are digital, let the teens select the best ones for printing. Then mount the best shots, using black construction paper for an inexpensive mounting material, and display them in the library. Alternatively, include digital photographs on the library’s web site.
If you do not have display space or want the teens to be able to take something home, purchase the Sport Ball Photo Magnetic Craft Kit from Oriental Trading Company and let each teen create a frame for a favorite photo.
Invite a sports photographer from the local newspaper, radio station, or television station to talk about covering sports events. Ask the photographer to bring sample photographs or video of sports events and talk about working as a sports photographer. Topics might include how he or she got into the business, what challenges are faced when covering sports, and what he or she enjoys about the job.
Videos/DVDs to Show or Display
1000 Sports Bloopers and Antics. (120 minutes)
- Outdoor Photographer.
- Popular Photography and Imaging.
- Baseball: A Film by Ken Burns
- The web site for the public television program features a variety of historical photographs.
- Kodak E-magazine
- This on-line magazine offers tips and feature stories. Check out “Your Olympian,” which provides information on shooting great pictures of athletes.
- Short Courses
- Free on-line courses offer solutions to every photography question.
- Sporting News
- Check out “The Vault” for photographs of players and events from a variety of sports.
- Freestyle Photographic Supplies
- This store sells quality supplies for teaching photography.
- Oriental Trading Company
- This standard supplier of novelty items sells a variety of inexpensive sports themed picture frames.
- Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)
- The magazine for librarians serving young adults sponsors teen photography contests throughout the year.