Photography is a skill that many learn and few master – seriously, do you know offhand what all the settings do on a DSLR? Photography isn’t difficult if you’ve got some practice and whatever you are trying to capture isn’t moving. However, when events are in motion, usually shots will be smudged messes – or, if your timing is perfect, they’ll become legendary and some of the best known images online.
We’ve collected 25 of the best known photos shot with impeccable timing, immortalizing fleeting events that easily could have become a defocused smudge.
It should come as no surprise that the world of extreme sports produced many of these photographs. Velocity is usually what adds that “extreme” part of the equation to these activities, with things happening so fast that without these photos we’d never know they happened at all.
Even more extreme than sports, and infinitely less entertaining, is warfare. War photography is a dangerous trade, as in the heat of battle you can’t bet on the opposing side being able to identify you as a non-combatant – or caring about it, even. While expert timing has produced some of the most shocking, graphic and controversial images in the realm of professional photography, we decided to skip those and instead focus on shots that managed to catch another breed of ‘shot’ entirely.
Even more often than capturing impressive feats of athletic performance or snapshots of combat, perfect timing produces images of comedic situations that give the best written sitcoms a run for their money. The common adage states that fact is often stranger than fiction – in this case, we’d amend it to being funnier. These can involve both human blunders, as well as the unusual reactions of animals to the world around them. Sometimes both.