Sports photography is arguably one of the most difficult types of photography to master. After all, you have to deal with erratic light conditions, fast-moving subjects, unpredictable play, and so much more. There’s a lot to consider when stepping into this challenging realm. However, with a little bit of know-how and the right equipment, you can start to capture better photography photos.
The following are some sports photography tips that will help you get in the game faster:
- Use a Fast Shutter Speed and a High ISO Setting
Sports photography is all about freezing the action and achieving clear, crisp shots and if it requires you to increase the ISO, then so be it. Sports photographers favor fast shutter speed and a high ISO setting which allows you to shoot at even faster speeds. Combined, both settings can help you capture sharp images regardless of the lighting conditions.
- Separate Your Subject from Other Distracting Elements
Sports photography usually features close-up shots of a subject mid-action. So, separating the subject from the distracting elements is the key. You can create a shallow depth of field to achieve this. This will blur the background and bring your subject in focus. It is recommended that you shoot in aperture priority mode so that you have complete control over aperture. Most sports photographers prefer aperture settings at around f/2.8–f/3.5.
- Use the Continuous Shooting Mode
Using a fast shutter speed alone is not enough in sports photography; you also need to be quick on the shutter button. It is recommended that you use the continuous shooting mode so that you can shoot a series of photos in a single hit and then choose the best ones. Most cameras have this mode and it allows you to simply hold the shutter release button to record several shots from a burst of action.
- Avoid Chimping
Chimping is a term in photography that refers to looking at the camera’s LCD after taking each shot. Since sports photography is all about freezing the action and capturing the key moments, you want to always keep your eyes on the action. There’s no need to look away from the game even if you think you have captured a masterpiece. You will have plenty of time to check your shots after the action has played out.
Sports photography is difficult. It is about knowing your surroundings perfectly, anticipating the action, and understanding the best settings to respond quickly to bursts of action. Professional sports photographers capture thousands of shots during an event, of which only a few make it into their portfolio. So, take as many pictures as you can and keep practicing as it is the best way to improve your sports photography.
If you are serious about sports photography and want to take better shots, then you need to do more than just attend a sports event with your camera. There are many things to consider and hopefully, the above-mentioned tips will help you improve in the realm of sports photography.