Sports photography. If you can master it, you’ll improve every aspect of your shooting. Much of your success will depend on what you do before you release the trigger.
1~ Pay attention to the background
More than anything else, this will take your action pictures to the next level. I can tell if a photographer knows what they’re doing just by looking at where they position themselves to shoot. Any busyness in the background will camouflage the action.
2~ Use fast telephoto lenses wide open
Shooting wide open helps to clean up the background and isolates your subject with shallow depth of field. Sports photographers generally do not use a lens slower than f 2.8.
3~ Keep alert
Expect the unexpected. You never know what’s going to happen at a sporting event. Avoid chimping! (editing your photos in camera)
Great shots don’t happen all the time. When they do, you not only have to be there to capture it, your camera skill has to be impeccable so you don’t miss it. It takes thousands of hours to build a portfolio.
5~ Try a wide angle
Any chance you get. Most sports pictures are telephoto. They all begin to look the same. Ask any picture editor. Stay low to the ground to clean up the background.
6~ Look for something different.
Quirky is what you want. Strange things happen when you freeze action. When shooting and editing, look for unique images that still show both teams and include the puck or ball.
This is the first post I’ll be doing for those of you who want to start a career as a photojournalist.
You never know what extremes in life you’ll be facing day to day as a newspaper photog. One minute you’re photographing a 108 year-old’s birthday and within an hour you’re at a murder scene. It’s the same with the equipment you need to have. You’re going to have to be heavily stacked in the extreme focal lengths.
In order to get close to the action and tell the story in one image, you need an extreme wide-angle lens. You need to have images with impact, and you can’t rely on Photoshop in post. A wide-angle gives you this. The perspective let’s the viewer walk into the frame to feel what it was like to be there.
Canon EOS 7D, EF-S10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM~ 1/250 sec,f/5.0, ISO 500.
You’ll be shooting lots of sports and concerts. And in the darkest places imaginable. The average high school gym is as bright as your living room at night. Minimum shutter speed to freeze action is around 1/500 sec. So you’ll need a fast extreme telephoto. Industry standard is a 300mm f2.8.
Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, EF 300mm f/2.8 L IS USM, 1/1250 sec., f/4.0, 1600 ISO
Another workhorse is the 70-200mm f2.8. You’ll be using it all the time. A great investment. Stay away from the IS (image stabilizaion) version of this lens. You don’t need it and it will save you 500 bucks. Learn to hold still and use the proper stance for shooting with a telephoto. In news your subject is always moving so IS won’t help there either.
Canon EOS-1D Mark III,Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L USM~ 1/320 sec, f 2.8 ISO 3200
Invest in fast, extreme lenses. And lenses ARE an investment. You can use them for decades. Technology doesn’t advance for lenses like it does with camera bodies.
Try to buy new. If you have to, you can find used lenses. Get the three lenses mentioned here, you’ll be set. Lenses are expensive. But it’s a good test to see who’ll sacrifice life’s spending temptations to get into the biz. No snowboards or motorcycles for you!!!!!
This is a shot from the first period of Victoria Royals Jesse Zgraggen getting dumped onto Kelowna Rockets goalie Jordan Cooke .
EOS-1D Mark IV
EF300mm f/2.8L IS USM