When watching Alpine ski coverage TV, doesn’t it always appear the athletes are skiing on the flats? What is up with that?
One of the things I have always been told when snapping photos is to make sure there is some frame of reference so the viewer can gauge the reality of what they are looking at. Notice in the video how at the opening the cinematography flattens the hill but the second perspective gives a more realistic portrayal of what the skiers are going down.
People game photography with many tricks. Fisherman will use wide angle lenses and hold the fish at arm’s length from the body. The fish is small but the optics with the arm stretch make the fish appear bigger than it really is. A person standing in front of an object gives one a good idea of how big the object is, naturally we can estimate the size of the object. However, when watching ski events I get the feeling the competitors are skiing on flats.
When watching ski competition the competitors are skiing on what probably amounts to a good portion of nasty steeps. The YouTube video above demonstrates that effect That terrain was NOT flat, but quite steep, but unless the filmmakers take the effort it is hard to judge. The way they are skiing also gives leads one to believe they are on steep terrain.
Watch the Olympic ski coverage and I bet there will be about zero camera work that will adequately demonstrate to us how steep the runs really are. We will hear the commentators tell us how this or that section is very steep but that is something I really want to see. I would be quite happy seeing a practice run that give us the proper perspective on the steepness the competitors are skiing on.