Do you want to improvise your skills in photography? Photographing the Sporting Actions is one of them to improve. It is challenging but, you will certainly get a good chance to capture the movements of the subjects and experiment them with different shutter values to increase quality in your images. Another challenge that you must observe in sports photography is the subject movements which will vary in each sport.’ So, it is one of the platforms, you must never miss to photograph in your photographic career. This article explains the key techniques which you can implement them in your next sporting photography session.
Utilize faster shutter speed to freeze the action
If you want to fully freeze the action of the moving subject, then test it from minimum shutter value of 1/1000s and so on.
Camera Settings for Sports Photography
If it’s a bright day, set ISO 100 and if it is cloudy, set the ISO to 200 or 400. Using lower ISO is the best practice and traditional way of photographing the subjects. Normally, each photographer just loves to focus at the specific point of interest and unfocus the spectators for more dramatical and actions in the images. Hence, utilization of lower f/stops like f/2.8, f/4 or f/5.6 is significant. Higher the f/stop gives more clarity and visibility in unfocused subjects. We recommend f/4 or f/5.6 for sporting actions during the day. As said earlier, shoot at shutter value more than 1/1000s to be on the safer hands. If it’s a bright sunny day, you can also capture with shutter values more than 1/1500s and even maybe 1/2000s to freeze the actions.
But, for capturing night event sporting actions, you need a camera which has the maximum aperture (fast lenses) to utilize faster shutter values.
Reach early and test your shoots with Camera settings
Before reaching the sports venue, set the probable camera settings in the home itself. Mostly keep it as ISO 100, shutter value ‘equal to or more than 1/1000s,’ and the aperture with f/4 or f/5.6.
Test it when you reach the venue. If you feel it’s cloudy or little less light available due to some mist, keep up the ISO to 400 or have a try on with the shutter values slightly slower. But, ensure the clicks don’t turn blur. So, test with the shutter values carefully. Always make a mind to set in one f/stop unless and until the lighting conditions change. If it’s a night event, you may need to lower the f/stop to f/2.8 for enabling faster shutter speed during the night.
Set your camera to Burst/Continous shooting mode
Capturing various clicks with burst mode on for a particular moment would end you up getting stunning and surprising visuals for at least a few pictures out of several which you had clicked for that particular moment. Also, you get a chance of choosing the best picture. But, not in the case of single frame release mode. In this mode, you wouldn’t have got the moments alike in burst mode and would have lost several important moments as well. So, when you see actions coming to you, always shoot in continuous shooting mode. Ensure you have sufficient space available in the memory card and also carry additional memory card if in case needed for replacing the filled one.
Continuous autofocus mode Makes Easier
Sports is about movements and actions. Continuous autofocus mode would make the moving subjects in focus.
‘When the subject (players) is moving around keeping in continuous autofocus makes you the process easier’
Have the right gear for photographing sporting actions
You need longer focus lenses since you’re capturing sporting actions from longer distances, which is, ‘off the field.’ Hence, you need magnifying features in your camera to capture the dramatical moments. You need either one of them in your camera 70 -300mm, 100 – 300mm lenses, 100 – 400mm lenses to freeze sporting moments.
As said earlier, for capturing night sporting actions you need to have a gear which has the ability to capture at higher f/stops like f/1.8, f/2.8 to accumulate more light through the lens. If you’re having a budget-free camera, then increase ISO until you get the right light, but ensure the noise is moderate. Also, slightly reduce the shutter values too. Some of the modern cameras nowadays have the ability to withstand higher ISO and create good quality images.
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Wait for the right moments by observing the actions carefully in the field
Moments cannot be recreated. Hence, observing the sports carefully, and click the stunning moments which comes to you.
Ultimately, ensure you have the right gear with you before going for a sports photography session. Customize your probable camera settings at home and reach early to the sporting venue before the actions start. Test with few shots and check whether the values which you have set is right. Set your camera in burst mode. Stay calm and wait for the right moments.
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