posted on 11th of may, 2007

Golf is no longer a game just for the plaid pants, country club set. Both ends of the financial spectrum have taken up the sport in big numbers. Not just bank presidents are rolling around the course; the fastest growing segment of the golf business is in the Arab Emirates and one of the current golf success stories in pro golf proudly calls himself a "redneck". Golf remains a big business all over the world with many secondary support products and services needing images.

© Schok (Help)

The image on the left is the most downloaded image directly related to golf. I believe it's successful for several reasons. First the image is a square format. This gives the image the maximum space on the search returns page. Whenever you can shoot to a square or crop or add to make a square format, you will have a slight edge. (This is what used to happen in the film days. 35mm format images were duped up to 60mm or 4x5 dupes so that they would stick out on a light table when someone was looking at a selection of images. Some things don't change.)

The other element contributing to the popularity of the image is that the golfer is shown full body not cropped at the waist. The form in the swing appears to be good. (I'm not a golfer so I can only guess but it looks very good to me). The light is early morning or late afternoon and the course is green and groomed.

Other successful images that will be downloaded repeatedly for use by manufactures of clubs, bags and other golf gear show amateurs enjoying the game. Golf is a great sport for metaphors too. The hole in one spells "success" as much as stuck in a sand trap stands for "challenges".

This week the world's best golfers will descend on my current location near Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida for the Sawgrass Players Tournament. You won't find me in the crowd, as I don't really understand the point of a sport that requires walking around all day in the sun. I feel the same way about tennis (to be discussed in a later blog).

If you go to the Players or any other golf tournament remember, you are there to enjoy yourself unless you have a press pass as tournament images can have complicated restriction issues. Better to go out to a course mid-week, early in the day with someone who has perfected his or her swing. Or concentrate on creating a close-up of a ball rolling into the cup or hands on clubs. Beware of trademarks!


•Golf is a sport that older generations can enjoy and many do. Older men and women on the course are useful for retirement communities to use in their promotions.
•Golf clinics are available for both adults and children. Golf organizations are trying to bring in younger players, as they know they'll have them for life if they get them young. Use models in the early teens or younger.
•We have few pictures of drivingdriving range activities and can use more.
•Try to avoid shooting in the bright sun of mid-day when the green of the course will wash out and the contrast will be harsh.
•Use courses that are lush and shoot on a blue sky day.
•Visit websites that concern themselves with golf for shooting ideas. http://www.golf.com

Comments (3)

Posted by Lensara on May 13, 2007
actually its a good reminder Ellen. Ive played county golf as a single figure handicap golfer for years and it never dawned on me to shoot golf pics,....duh! thanks for the tip
Posted by Has1sue on May 11, 2007
Well tried Golf....

Stoopid Game walking miles trying to get a silly little Ball in a Hole ;)

Okay so I could not get the Golf Ball of the Ground but hey I made contact lol


Posted by Fotogeek on May 11, 2007
I'm with you Ellen when it comes to golf. Right now, the only reason for me to be on a golf course would be to get a few good shots for DT.
However, tenis is a different story.
Funny thing with the square format. What do you mean by "maximum space on the search returns page" when it comes to square images?
Thank you.

This article has been read 3262 times. 1 readers have found this article useful.
Photo credits: Graham Prentice, Mary Katherine Wynn, Robyn Mackenzie, Evanovich Jones.

About me

I have written a about microstock photography released in 2010. I was the Director of Content at Dreamstime for two years ending in Feb, 2009. You can order my book from amazon via my website at www.ellenboughn.com/blog.

Bainbridge Island, US

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