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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old Yesterday, 04:37 AM Thread Starter
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Camera position

Watch this clip and let me know how it makes you feel...

I found it thrilling. I LOVED the close camera angles and actual close ups DURING the point. You can actually see the players faces during the point. When did cbs quit using these techniques? Was it only cbs that did this? I'm watching the garbine/kerber match right now and the camera is so high and far away it looks like two stick figures on a long thin rectangle. There's no way to tell the spin, pace or variety of shot. I often wonder if this is why interest and ratings have declined so much since the boom of the 70s. I know there are literally hundreds of channel options that didn't exist back then but I don't think any casual channel surfer would be drawn into a match glimpsing a few seconds/minutes of the modern game. But they just might watching this.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old Yesterday, 01:19 PM
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Re: Camera position

Excellent find. Yeah it's great to watch. I think this type of camera work makes you feel like you're watching it live courtside more than the normal camera work we see these days where it's like a fixed position/angle that captures the entire court. Here you follow the ball and your vision is more focussed around it.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old Yesterday, 03:08 PM
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Re: Camera position

All the American networks that covered tennis either with their own cameras or with some kind of ability to select camera angles from the native source (NBC, CBS, ESPN, USA, and even ABC) would sometimes switch to a lower camera angle during play and definitely on replays. I am surprised if it is not used that much anymore, especially in the new-fangled venues.

The camera work in other main sports has advanced by leaps and bounds, even compared with the 1980s. Believe it or not, back in the 1950s being able to show both players and the ball simultaneously made tennis the most television-friendly sport, along with boxing. But then the technological limitations were overcome, and in a lot of other sports, The Powers That Be are constantly looking for ways to make the TV-viewing experience better, so they aren't afraid to experiment with cinematography and sink some money into gadgetry. Tennis could certainly afford to be a little more creative with the game's TV presentation, especially with all the time between points. No reason they couldn't show just how high a serve kicked up or just how barely a slice cleared the net while the players are fiddling around. Of course, this requires directors who understand the game well enough to know when a point was spectacular because of the players' court positioning and/or when a point was spectacular because of ball altitude. And when to just show a nice tight butt shot.
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