I just got back from my daughters Junior High School Basketball double-header.  2 games in a row is a lot for a junior high school student – especially starting at 8:00am on a Saturday morning.

The first game was tough.  There were a couple of really athletic girls on the other team and a really tall girl – almost 6′.  Very tall for a 14 year old!  It was a hard fought game.  Lots of traveling, double dribble and fouling going on.  The ref’s did a pretty good job, but it is hard when the parents are calling every foul, three second lane violation, and traveling call from the stands.

Whew – it was a tiring morning that started way too early (for her and me :-)).

After the second game, it was Picture day.  All the girls were looking great (sweaty, red faced, and tired), but looked cute for the picture.

As it is customary, the picture format featured an individual shot of each girl and a team picture.  The end result will be a printed 8×10 with the picture of my daughter in one of the upper corners with the league logo, year, team name, etc. in the opposite upper corner and a team picture below.

The studio that took these pictures does all the youth sports pictures for the city.  They shoot basketball, football, soccer, baseball, softball, etc. and have for years.  The photographer that owns the studio has young teenagers doing the actual photography. I haven’t seen him at Picture day for a couple of years. The process is well tested, all the equipment is digital, and I know he makes a bundle every season.

They pass out forms a couple of weeks before the picture with a schedule of when the team and individual pictures will be shot. At the prescribed time, the team assembles and the teenager presses the button for a team shot (they take two shots just in case) and then they shoot the individual player shots.

The order form is an envelope that contains an order form printed on the front for the players and parents to choose what package (~$7-$25 depending on the number of images, sizes, and # playing cards). The envelope is for the payment which is due when the pictures are taken. The whole process is barcoded and automated. It is a pretty slick process.

I peeked at the laptop that all the images are automatically downloaded to after every image.  They are using a combination of Nikon Capture and some custom software that the photographer’s son wrote.

I have seen catalogs that contain the equipment needed to do this type of photography. It comes complete with cameras, computers, bar coding equipment, printers, and the software needed to make it all happen. If I remember right the equipment packages start at about $6000 on up.

I will try to find links and contact info. Anyone have details?