Photo Focus: Feb. 12

(Photo focus will run every two weeks or so on Rattling Chains. The idea is to focus on disc golf photographs submitted by staff members and readers. To see the guidelines for submitting a photograph for this feature, click here.)

Disc golf silhouette. (photo by Ben Honey)

Disc golf silhouette. (photo by Ben Honey)

I see a lot of photos of winter warriors playing outside in the cold and snow — and I respect them for their love of the sport and their fortitude.

However, I don’t think I can say I envy their winter wonderland as I’m down in Houston, Texas. Don’t you guys lose your discs in the snow? The average high temperature on the day of this year’s Houston Ice Bowl is 67 degrees.

Brrr!

The weekend leading into Martin Luther King Jr. day was no different. It was stunning for January and I was able to play more than 54 holes over three days. On Sunday afternoon, me and my friend Jon drove to Hitchcock, Texas, to play the challenging 36 holes at Jack Brooks Park.

With a healthy mix of open holes, tight wooded holes and long bombing, but tight, wooded holes (no joke), it took us more than three hours for our two-round outing.

We were coming around the first lake on Cedar Hills — hole No. 13 — as dusk quickly came upon us. We had five holes remaining, including the 700-foot 15th, but we figured we could finish if we threw only our brightest-colored discs. As we threw over the lake on hole No. 17, there was but a small amount of light left in the sky. It was hard to see our drives. I took the left route over the long part of the lake and Jon took the safer route, to the right.

My 300-foot drive skipped too much to the left and went out of bounds on the edge of the water. As I retrieved my disc, I turned and saw Jon putting out for his four as the basket, which was on the side of a hill. The silhouette of the hill and basket and Jon setting up his shot against the remaining light among the wispy clouds surprised me.

I had to pull out my iPhone to snap a picture. After Jon putted, I had him fake it a few more times to try different timing, but the first photo was the best. A disc golfer can’t ask much for a better weekend and I think this picture captures it well.

Techie info:

  • Camera: iPhone 4
  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Exposure: 1/15
  • Focal Length: 3.9 mm
  • ISO: 1000

– Ben Honey

If you have any comments, questions, thoughts, ideas or anything else, feel free to e-mail me and the crew at: pj@rattlingchains.com. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Photo Focus: Jan. 29

(Photo focus will run every two weeks or so on Rattling Chains. The idea is to focus on disc golf photographs submitted by staff members and readers. To see the guidelines for submitting a photograph for this feature, click here.)

P

P

Disc golf is a sport consistently growing to new heights. It’s a sport with a variety of differently styled courses around the globe. And it’s the sport we love so much.

A friend and I decided to take a trip to Sandy Point Resort Disc Golf Ranch in Lac du Flambeau, Wisconsin. It was a four-hour drive to Northern Wisconsin to play a round. My disc golf group and I love traveling around the Midwest, finding new courses on which to challenge one another.

With our first round coming to a close, we stepped up to hole No. 25 with high hopes. A huge American flag was in the background of the basket. There was a pretty wide fairway and the hole measured in at about 250 feet. But with a handful of scattered trees, the drive would be nearly impossible to reach the basket without finding wood.

Originally, this photo was only going to be of the flag. But, I thought to myself, I should draw a connection between disc golf and America. I had to make sure I got the right result and I believe I did just that. With the basket complimenting the flag, I thought this image had a lot of symbolization. It displays a unique expression of patriotism and shows how great this sport truly is.

Techie info:

  • Camera: Sony SLT-A55V
  • Aperture: ƒ/4.5
  • Exposure: 1/50
  • Focal Length: 30 mm
  • ISO: 125

– Kevan Greunke

If you have any comments, questions, thoughts, ideas or anything else, feel free to e-mail me and the crew at: pj@rattlingchains.com. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Photo Focus: Jan. 15

(Photo focus will run every two weeks or so on Rattling Chains. The idea is to focus on disc golf photographs submitted by staff members and readers. To see the guidelines for submitting a photograph for this feature, click here.)

Hole No. 22 at DeLaveaga. (photo by Jack Trageser)

Hole No. 22 at DeLaveaga. (photo by Jack Trageser)

The trees at DeLaveaga Disc Golf Course — especially the oaks — provide all kinds of unique framing opportunities for disc golf photography.

The original shot of the hole. (photo by Jack Trageser)

The original shot of the hole. (photo by Jack Trageser)

This particular photo of hole No. 22 was taken on a cold — for Santa Cruz — morning at about 10 a.m. It’s of the gap through which I had just attempted a birdie putt.

I used my Samsung Galaxy S3 Android phone using a simple auto focus setting.

This image is cropped in. The original provides a better idea of the true shape of the tree. By cropping the shot as I did, I thought it created an image that invokes the possibility of an entire mystical disc golf course, accessed through the knothole of an old, gnarled oak tree.

Techie info:

  • Camera: Samsung Galaxy S3
  • Exposure: 1/180
  • Aperture: F/2.6
  • Focal length: 3.7 mm
  • ISO: 80

– Jack Trageser

If you have any comments, questions, thoughts, ideas or anything else, feel free to e-mail me and the crew at: pj@rattlingchains.com. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Rattling Chains Photo of the Week: June 2

Ken "Tank' Franks (photo by Jack Trageser)

Sometimes, the “accidental” photos come out the best.

This is Ken “Tank” Franks, a professional player from Roeland Park, Kansas. The image was taken on the 13th hole at the Winthrop University Lakefront course in Rock Hill, S.C. The hole is a 432-foot downhill shot to a precise green, which is surrounded by out-of-bounds areas.

The story (from the photographer, Jack Trageser):

I arrived a couple of days early for the United States Disc Golf Championship in 2009, my first time playing in the event. I went out to practice on the course and ran into Ken. He had already played the event numerous times and graciously invited me to join him and take my time throwing and taking pictures.

I had accidentally set my camera on a setting that gave it the effect you see, with most of the colors changed to black and white, but they yellow remained as a selective color. The pic is an enlargement that focuses on the intimidating, focused look of a guy who actually has a great sense of humor and big heart, and the basket more than 400 feet away.

Techie info:

  • Camera: Canon Powershot SD 790 IS
  • Shutter speed: 1/640
  • F-stop: F/3.2
  • ISO: 80

Why we chose to use this photo:

Sometimes those “ooops” shots give you some of the best results.

Would this have been a good shot if Jack had taken it without the setting being as it is? Probably. The colors would have been there and it would be nice. But would it focus on things the way it does as it is? Not likely.

This is a really cool image. Jack notes that Ken has even used it as his Facebook profile photo for ages.

Have some great images you want to share with the Rattling Chains readers? Please e-mail pj [at] rattlingchains.com with the subject “Photo of the Week.” Please note that we can’t guarantee all images will be used. Send as many as you would like as if the photos are top notch, we’ll use more than one from you!

When sending in images, please remember to send the story about the photo, the location and any technical information possible! The story can be as long or as short as you like, but please make sure you give some details!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Rattling Chains Photo of the Week: March 31

Image by Kevin Morrow; at the Hawk Hollow Open (October 15, 2011).

The photo is of Tom Edwards, throwing a Wraith with a chicken-wing throw off the No. 1 tee. Hawk Hollow No. 1 is a 429-foot open shot from a highly elevated hilltop with an out-of-bounds creek 10 feet behind the basket.

Tom threw the wraith low and hard, in a high crosswind. The disc flew straight to the pin and landed about five feet from the basket for an easy birdie.

Kevin says:

My process for this image was in my head and I had to practice it a lot in my back yard since I would not be looking through the viewfinder.

I used a Nikon D2x with a 10.5mm lens. I mounted the camera on a 4-foot scissors tripod with a remote trigger. The camera was set at 5000th shutter and f4.5. I wanted to get as much depth of field as I could with a shutter speed high enough to stop the disc in flight. I placed the camera about 6 feet in front of the end of the tee. I covered the camera with a towel to hide it and muffle the sound a little.

When a group of players arrived, I would fire off a couple of frames to make sure the noise of the camera would not distract. I had to stand off to the side so I would not be in the frame or in the view of the player. When the player began his throw I would press the remote trigger and began firing off frames until the disc was down range. I averaged about 30-40 frames per player. Out of the 30 or so players that I shot this way, only about 10 had the disc in the frame coming off the throw. Of those I was only able to get two that were good. Tom’s throw was the reason behind this image looking so good. His chicken-wing style threw the disc down the middle of the frame combined with my timing on his throw to get a great disc golf image.

Techie info:

  • Camera: Nikon D2X
  • Shutter speed: 1/5000
  • F-stop: F/4.5
  • ISO: 400

Why we chose to use this photo:

If you take photos and appreciate photos — especially sports action photography — there are images that make you drop your jaw and scream “Holy crap!” This shot is one of those.

Knowing how tough it is to capture the “shot,” makes this even better. Sports photography is extremely tough and it’s a business where sometimes you don’t have time to set up and really get what you want. But Kevin captured something here that shows the beauty of how awesome a shot can be when you are given enough time.

This shot works in so many ways — editorial, feature, personal — showing how amazing it is. The fish-eye lens really works well here and the colors are dynamic. The orange disc with the blue sky in the background is really wild. The burning sun in the corner of the shot is simply awesome. But it’s the little things that really sold us, too. The farm all the way in the background, with the silo standing tall and proud.

Overall, what a great image! Thanks for sharing, Kevin!

Have some great images you want to share with the Rattling Chains readers? Please e-mail pj [at] rattlingchains.com with the subject “Photo of the Week.” Please note that we can’t guarantee all images will be used. Send as many as you would like as if the photos are top notch, we’ll use more than one from you!

When sending in images, please remember to send the story about the photo, the location and any technical information possible! The story can be as long or as short as you like, but please make sure you give some details!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Rattling Chains Photo of the Week: March 24

Note: We’re starting some new weekly features here at RattlingChains.com. These are going to be reader submissions, however. The first is a Photo of the Week. We’re looking for your best disc golf images. Not just the normal photo of people holding a disc or something like that (though, at times, we’ll use those) but some of your best shots. Artistic, action whatever — just make them your best. See the end of this post for how to submit images.

The other weekly feature is “What’s in your bag?” The first of those will run later tonight. Until we get a pretty good heap of each of these, we’ll probably rotate them every Saturday. Once we get a good crop of things built up, we’ll do two posts each Saturday.

Without further adieu, here’s this week’s Photo of the Week!

****

Photo by Jenny Cook

Taken at Idlewild in Burlington, Kentucky.

Jenny says:

I was awestruck at the contrast of the basket, power lines and trees up the hill and in the horizon. Even when daylight is just about lost, I still keep my camera in mind because I love the opportunity to photograph a disc golf basket as a silhouette.

This particular course and sunset marked the end of a fairytale two week disc golf filled honeymoon. My husband and I had traveled to North Carolina, Tennessee, and back to Illinois and played countless courses along the way.

Techie info:

  • Camera: Canon EOS Rebel T1i
  • Shutter speed: 1/40
  • F-stop: F/5.6
  • ISO: 1600

Why we chose to use this photo:

This image is one of those awesome disc golf shots that can make you stare for a few seconds. The colors, the silhouettes, the lighting. This is an image that would make for a great enlargement and frame to go on somebody’s wall. This is a beautiful shot from top to bottom. Thanks for sharing, Jenny!

See more of Jenny’s images on her website.

Have some great images you want to share with the Rattling Chains readers? Please e-mail pj [at] rattlingchains.com with the subject “Photo of the Week.” Please note that we can’t guarantee all images will be used. Send as many as you would like as if the photos are top notch, we’ll use more than one from you!

When sending in images, please remember to send the story about the photo, the location and any technical information possible! The story can be as long or as short as you like, but please make sure you give some details!

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Welcome to RattlingChains.com!

That sound is beautiful ... and this we're hoping this blog hears it often!

Hello and welcome to Rattling Chains, a blog that will be about everything disc golf!

Over the past few months, I’ve searched for a disc golf blog to read and it seems that many blogs were sporadic or weren’t fully disc golf based. There are plenty of forums out there for disc golf, but I couldn’t find a blog that would give me the type of stories and things I had hoped were out there in a blog.

The burning question here is whether or not the disc golf community and the sport in general is ready for a full-time blog on the sport?

After all, it’s played outside and not near the computer.

I hope so.

I found a bunch of disc golf blogs and sent the links to some friends, seeing what they thought and if they thought it would be worth going forth with a project like this.

The many disc golf blogs we visited included ones that were based more on certain stores, players, courses or brands. Though some we visited were updated on a regular basis, many of them were short or didn’t provide content to make us want to go back.

Some photos are nice, but if I just wanted photos, I could search disc golf on Flickr.

And it’s also nice to see what kind of new products stores are getting, but if said store is 500 miles from me, it won’t be easy for me to drive down and have a peek.

Then there’s the National Tour.

If you haven’t seen any NT events, the players are amazing. For this sport to grow, the NT has to take off because that’s where the real exposure comes from.

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