Behind the lens at Stephen Strasburg's debut

Thursday, June 10, 2010; D05

Staff photographer Jonathan Newton received dozens of e-mails about his photograph of Stephen Strasburg that ran on the front page of Wednesday's Sports section. Newton was positioned in the photographers section next to the visitors' dugout along the third base line at Nationals Park. Here's how he shot the picture.

I'd photographed Strasburg in spring training and during his starts in the minor leagues. The challenge I faced was to come up with something different. I wanted to create a sense of energy that would capture the excitement at the ballpark.

I was using a Nikon D3 with a 200-400mm zoom lens. I set the shutter speed at 1/30th of a second, with the aperture setting at f11. The ISO rating was 200. The slow shutter speed created the blur and I rotated the lens just slightly -- about 10 degrees -- to create the motion in the photograph. I focused the camera on Strasburg and when he pitched, his head remained still enough to keep that part of the photograph in focus.

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