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Zooming in on the detail – Bradford City FC’s photographer gives masterclass on snapping the perfect shot.

Bantams photographer Thomas Gadd gave tips on the three key elements needed to master the art of photography when he spoke to students at Leeds Trinity University’s Journalism and Media Week event.

The first was composition.

“Choose a subject, don’t try and throw things in that you don’t need to.

“Silhouettes, patterns, textures in the foreground and in the background. So you can really point towards the main part of your subject.

“Fill the frame, you don’t want people to be looking around for what you’re trying to show them.”

Gadd also said the key to a great image is to use the rule of thirds. This is making sure your subject is placed on either the left or right third of the image, so that it will remain the sole focus.

The second element was lighting.

“With lighting you’ve just got to mess about with it, get your subject facing towards the sun. There’s various ways you’re able to make the photo change, just through using the light.

“It’s kind of just trial and error really, just looking at your camera, looking at your phone and if it’s not right, change the settings.”

Working predominantly with Bradford City football team, Gadd said sometimes it is difficult to gain the perfect exposure for instance, when the floodlights are on full beam.

Thomas Gadd (Right) with Leeds Trinity lecturer Darren Harper (Left)

The third was Timing.

“With sports it’s pretty obvious, you’re always expecting something to happen, and hopefully it happens at your end, but a lot of the time it doesn’t.

“Timing has got to be there, it’s not always about the things that are happening right in front of you, you’ve got to be looking about for various things that are going on.

“It’s not always just about the sport that is being played on the pitch, it’s all the stuff around it as well, like people in the crowd.”

He showed students a photo he had taken of a Bradford fan who arrived at the stadium with her pet cat.

Gadd also mentioned one aspect of photography that he particularly enjoyed was travelling to different venues:

“There are quite a lot of places with good atmosphere actually, it’s quite hard to narrow down.

“Trips to Wembley, trips to Stamford Bridge and beating Chelsea.

“Going to Wembley was a mad day, we were up there enjoying the day, but not so up there in terms of the result!”

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