Any tips for shooting sports?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Alison, Feb 11, 2005.

  1. Alison

    Alison Swiss Army Friend Supporting Member

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    I'm taking some photos at a high school basketball game for a friend tonight. I assume I'll have to look carefully at the white balance to compensate for what I predict to be garish lighting. Fast shutter speeds...1/250th & ISO 400 seem about right? I'll probably be using my 70-200 Canon though I also have a 50mm and a 20mm available for use. I've never done any sports shots so if there's any "must knows" let me know :mrgreen:
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    First advice for shooting basketball...If Denis Rodman is playing...don't piss him off. :lol:

    I have shot very little sports but one thing that I think is important is to follow the game and anticipate the action. If you don't anticipate, the critical moment might happen so fast that you don't have time to point & focus the camera. If you can anticipate the spot that some good action may happen, you can prefocus and then just fire away when the time comes.
     
  3. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Are you shooting film or digital? Be sure and use continuous ai servo as your focus mode, and if you are shooting digital use high res jpg so you can maximize your fps, and shoot in multishot and shoot several frames for each action sequence. You never know what you'll get. You might want to use a monopod, if possible. Chances are you probably won't need a 50mm or 20mm lens, unless you are right on the sideline.
     
  4. Alison

    Alison Swiss Army Friend Supporting Member

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    I'm shooting with the 10D so I'll make sure to change the focus mode. I might be right on the sideline, it's a favor for one of the mothers who has a daughter on the team (it's senior night where they honor the graduating seniors on the team). I've got a regular tripod (Bogen) but not a monopod. Thanks for the tips!
     
  5. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    If you don't have much space, just keep the legs folded up on the tripod and use it as a pseudo monopod. If you happen to get several shots in a row of the girl shooting or something, it can be neat to make a panoramic border for 3 or 4 4x6s in a sequence of action. I've made several of those at work for parents of HS atheletes.
     
  6. Chase

    Chase I am now benign! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    There is a lot to be said for zone focusing in some cases as well if you run into any problems. Block out an area where the subject is likely to go, prefocus and let them come to you. Generally that works fairly well with basketball if they all are playing their positions. Its always easy to be a second late on the shutter, too...so some continuous shooting that starts just before the key moment is a good idea.

    Good luck!
     
  7. wxnut

    wxnut TPF Noob!

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    Hope you have a 2.8 lens and even then shoot at 800. Otherwise, I liked the advice of knowing about where the action happens and have the camera focused for that area. Thats what I do. Also, move around. Take some under the basket, and then a couple different views in the stands.
     
  8. spike000

    spike000 TPF Noob!

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    Get along at practice and beg until they give you an idea of the lighting. If you're lucky they will even drop the lights for you. Ideally I'd have a 70-200 IS USM f.2.8 on one body round your neck and a 200mm (fast as possible) on a monopod with another body. Pick your location very carefully and take the 50mm in your pocket (you never know).

    If you can use film - do!! You will find that a 10D will struggle with noise at higher ISO ratings.... If not then just ignore the info below!!

    As for film - take as much as you can possibly get your hands on. Print film like Fuji Superior 800 and even 1600 are worth having (poss. 2 rolls of each) and as much NPH 400 or Kodak Portra 400 as you can lay your hands on.

    Since they may have the lights up for presentations etc. later on grab loads of 160 NPS or 160 Portra and ditch your 200mm for the 50mm at the time.

    If you can move around to either end and midway you'll have more variety and people will be more impressed.

    TOP TIP: Get a monkey for the day to carry your gear, make you look important and, most importantly take a lot of work away from you!!!! Easily available at any photographic college for free!!
     

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