Another Football Photo question


TPF Noob!
Sep 6, 2010
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My question is how do I get vivid colors on my photos. When I take them they do not look like they have any color depth. They are not crisp or sharp. I use a Canon T1i and a 700-200 mm 2.8 IS lens. With the equipment i thought i should be able to take great photos at college games. But i run into problems like thier faces are lit up enough to see in thier helments or thier hand is blurred just a little. I took both of these on the same night on the sidelines of the miami hurricane game. Critique and Help... Thank you.

The first link is how the action shots come out, they suck any advice??

Jacory Harris, 12, QB | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

This is how I want them to come out, but I don't know why this is good and others are bad.

IMG_1736 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
Simple answer-Underexposing will saturate the colors more. So just bump up the shutter speed. This will also freeze the action better.

They are wearing helmets so their faces are going to be cover with shadows from the overhead lights. To have their faces visible you either overexpose, which will likely lead to blurred hands/feet(as you experienced), use a flash(which is ugly), or do it in post processing with dodging(the best option).

As far as the focus, that could be any number of things. My guess, only knowing what you've typed above, is your focus is set on Single shot and you're not refocusing as the players move. I'm not sure if rebels has continuous focus(I'm a Nikon shooter), but if it does set the focus mode to that. In this mode the camera will continually focus if the shutter release butting is pressed half way. That way in constantly stays focused on the moving action as you move along with it.

But like I said, the focus could be a number of other problems too.

Second shot looks good.
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Night shots are always rough...Luckily my school only has one night game that I will have to deal with...

When I shoot football (or any sport for that matter) at night or indoors I never go below 1/500th...Almost always I end up at ISO 3200 depending on what time the game started, but you need to compensate somehow.

Hope this helps.
Thanks Holigan Dan and Kenny 32.
I was trying to get thier faces lit up, but if i can do that after then that will allow me to use a faster shutter speed. At 1/800, the fingers were still a little blurred. At 1/1000 or 1/1250 it stopped the action and even the ball, but the faces were too dark. I figured there wasn't enough light getting to the camera so I tried to lower the shutter speed down.

I had the camera set on continuos shooting. The problem I was running in to was it was focusing on something infront of the player i wanted or behind him, but it looked focused in my lens. I tried manual focus, but i couldn't keep up with the action, lol.

My ISO max is 3200 and with lots of noise. Luckily the college games are lit up well and i can use 800 with slower shutter speed or 1600 with a little quicker.

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