Thursday, August 8, 2013

Memory Making - Basic Sports Photography Tips

As school starts back so do the fall sporting events. All the kiddos are back in action and you are wanting to capture moments for their new year...how can you get the best photos? Well, I thought I would share a few tips. This is not in-depth or exhaustive by any means. I also found some other great tips at the Digital Photography School online. I have referenced their great information before. Check it out for sure.


First of all, I wish I could share images I captured in high school with you all. I mean, the camera I used had a freaking floppy disc. Floppy disc. When I wasn't using that I experimented with my mom’s old film camera. Half of the photos were black with the film camera....The floppy camera--you can only imagine the lag time after pressing the shutter button. Bless it.


Thankfully technology is a bit more advanced and there are great settings on point and shoot cameras these days. One feature you might look for on your camera is the sports setting or continuous shutter. This will allow you to hold your shutter button down for any length of time for multiple photos; this is helpful when you are following big action in an event. Most point and shoots will automatically continually shoot while you hold the shutter button in sports mode.


ISO is something we have talked about before. Most of the time photographing sporting events can lead you into low-light situations...if you are able to increase your ISO do so. This will allow make your camera more sensitive to light and capture a clearer subject.


Now to actually finding the action. Unless you have great long lenses you will have to get close to the action to get the most bang for your buck. Do not use your point and shoot from the stands zoomed in as far as you can and expect greatness. It will not happen. On that note, remember, objects may be closer than they appear. I may or may not have had a camera rammed into my face by a high school football player once.


Follow the ball/action item with your camera as best you can. If you are shooting events with flying objects, usually the action that happens at the time the object is caught or lands. Of course the set up for the pitch, throw, punt, kick is great too but even more, the ending action.


One great tip I was reminded of thanks to the Digital Photography School was to not forget the action on the sidelines or time-outs. Great moments happen then too. Talks with the coach or teammates are just as much a part of the memories as is the game/activity.


Do not feel defeated if you are not happy with your photos from the first game. By the end of the season you will have everything figured out in addition to some great photos!


I really wish I had some great examples to share. I don’t go to many sporting events. Send us some photos you take this season so we can show off your skills!

-Alison

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