• Photo Diary: Basketball Courts


    The NBA basketball season right around the corner (tip off is October, 27th) and the weather is perfect for a game of outdoor pickup. To be honest, there’s just something beautiful about a basketball court. We collected some of our favorite VSCO photos to explore the lines and geometry of the blacktop and figure out what makes the iconic spaces so visually appealing to athletes and photographers alike. 
    Lead photo by Tolga Yilmaz

    Photo by Josh Anderson

    So what is it about the court that makes them so appealing? The simple answer: symmetry. But the beauty extends beyond the court itself. Within the bounds of the blacktop , the system of arching lines controls the flow of the game as players on each side pass, pivot, and drive to the hoop. On top of that, the plays themselves can create some of the most elegant and mind-bending patterns imaginable. 

    Photo by Mattia Dal Bello 
    Photo by Jon Paul Douglass 

    We asked Mattia Dal Bello, an Italian filmmaker and photographer based in Milan who grew up watching Michael Jordan what makes the basketball court so appealing to him. “There are always different geometries,” Mattia says. “Sometimes you find a pure basketball /playground court with his rules and his lines but sometimes you find a court that cohabits and talks with other sports like tennis, volleyball, street soccer; everyone with his own rules and symbolism, a multi layered rectangle with a tangle of stories, games, borders and possible movements.” 

    Photo by Brad Nickerson

    Photo by Tyler Hansen 

    For visual creatives, dynamic systems within a symmetrical field, combined with movement, energy, and passion for the game, it makes sense why so many eyes are drawn to the court. “Personally I think that there’s something magic in how lines and colors combine in basketball courts,” Mattia says. “Some courts are simply perfect, new and well-maintained and there’s a lot of contrast between the plane’s color and the lines. Some are ruined by time and above all, by the game. Lines may fade away, but the rules are still valid.”

    Photo by Mattia Dal Bello 

    From the VSCO hoops trend to the b-ball doodles of our good friend Will Bryant,whatever it is that makes the court so inspiring, we like it. See you out there. 

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