Sports Photography Is Also A Sport
Is There Another Sport Like Sports Photography?
For the past few years I’ve taken advantage of my daughters soccer playing to see what sports photography was like and if I would enjoy it.
Through my readings of photography, every now and then there is a chapter or some verbiage on photographing sports. A few shots were spectacular and all about being at the right place at the right time. Others are nice shots.
For the past 2 years, I’ve been skipping the soccer practices for taking photos. I was making WAY TOO MANY images. I’m down to about 1,200 to whittle through and send to the parents.
I made a point this year to try to get ahead of the game and to catch at least one spectacular shot. When you are aware of the game you can, to an extent, predict there the action will take place. Myself, I found this difficult. Several times I was trying to be easy on the shutter release button, only to miss or lose out on some potential interesting images. After all, it’s not like I need to change out rolls of film or develop them afterwards.
Mid-season change in tactics
About midway through the season, I needed to change how I was taking my images. I was following the action sometimes too much and not seeing the candidness of the team on the bench or just messing around. (I’m not sharing those images as I do not have any releases to display other peoples children online.) Fortunately, I was able to catch a little mishap that did not result in any injuries.
My daughter was goal keeper so, of course, my camera was directed in her direction as the opposing team attempted a goal. They made a good try, Anik was successful in stopping the ball, but the orange team player she was not able to stop.
Know what your doing
As with the past seasons, I was using a Nikon D7000 with a 55-300mm Nikkor lens. I found shooting in Aperture Priority optimal on sunny days, usually using f/8 to f/11. On cloudy days I’d go to Manual and keep an eye on the meter.
Because of the experience on the sidelines, I’m not asked to move from the field and have been taking the Team photo. I’ve almost been hit by the ball a number of times. In such cases, as I watch the action approach, fast, I get the camera off my face and make a split decision if I need to keep shooting or not. So far this technique has worked.
Dabble in other sports photography
I’ve made a try at figure skating photos. Not evident at all. Some of the shots were nice and I would have benefited being rink-side with the pros. I faltered with my cheap slow lens. I didn’t want to push the ISO to HI-anything. Those arena are so dimly lit. Spot metering helped a bit but gave a feel to the images that I wasn’t looking for.
I’m up for anything. If it doesn’t break the camera, I could learned from the experience and keep going. If the camera does suffer a loss, well, at least I would have learned something and get a new camera out of it 🙂