As a photojournalist, I’m constantly presented with impossible lighting situations. Dark basketball gyms, dim living rooms, etc. I try, in most cases, to leave the strobe in my trunk. Adding artificial light, too me, takes the reality out of a documentary photograph. In recent years, the low light capability of high-end DSLR cameras has improved dramatically. But even cranking my ISO to 8000 didn’t give me the results I wanted in this photo of inline speed skaters. Pattison’s Roller Rink is a cave. Only minimal ambient light was available. Two get this effect I set my camera to 1/13 of a second for the shutter with 5.6 aperture at 3200 ISO. That gave me a normal exposure for the ambient light, but to freeze the action I set my strobe to rear-curtain shutter, which fires the camera shutter first, then at the end of the exposure the strobe triggers. This added the ghosting effect to the skaters. I also panned the action–where my camera matched the speed of the skaters as they rolled past. This effect made the background blur horizontal. I shot about 100 images and this one the best.
Members of Pattison Inline Racing, right to left, Michaela Roske,17, Haley Glatt,14, Jameson Dumo, 12, and Reece Dunlap,15, practice at Pattison's North Skating Center on Tuesday, March 15, 2011. Colin Mulvany/The Spokesman-Review