Top Tips for Sports Photography
Do you wanna take sports photos like a pro?
Capturing the heart pounding action, vivid colors and dramatic imagery is easy when you know how.
Grab your gear and let’s go. You’ll be the envy of your friends in no time!
Know Your Sport
If you’re going to photograph a sporting event you need to know the sport inside and out. We’re not saying you have to play the game yourself or even know all the rules, but you need to understand the strategy of the event, as well as be clear on how everything is going to unfold. You should have the ability to predict your subject’s next move and learn exactly when you need to hit the shutter to get the best results. With sports everything happens in the blink of an eye which means you can’t afford to take your eye of the ball for a second!
Use High ISO
If you’re struggling to get that perfect shot due to poor lighting conditions and fast paced action, raising the ISO to achieve a faster shutter speed may be just what you need. Professional sports photographers use a shutter speed of around 1/1000 of a second which allows them to freeze motion. Take this advice with a pinch of salt though – don’t be afraid to experiment with lower shutter speeds as they can help to emphasize movement and create lots of cool effects.
Shoot in JPG
Normally it’s all about RAW but when it comes to sports photography jpg can be your new best friend. To capture successful shots you’ll need to shoot continuously at maximum buffer speed. While your camera is attempting to process those advanced settings you’ve been shooting with you may miss out on the money shot!
Try Something Different
Just because you’re shooting sports, it doesn’t mean that every photograph has to look the same. Instead of shooting at eye level, try something different and get down low. Lay on the ground if possible! Why? Because shooting from new angles help you to tell the story in a unique and exciting way. Always try to be original when shooting and attempt to approach it in as many new ways as possible. Experimentation allows you to push yourself creatively and flourish as a photographer.
It’s All in the Eyes
The key to photographing sports is including the eyes of the subject. If you can get the eyes in the shot you can’t fail. If you find yourself focusing in on the back of a player, stop and wait for them to turn around first! Eyes show real expression and help to depict emotion within the frame.
Pay Attention to Your Surroundings
Although this can sound like an obvious point to make, you’ll be surprised how many photographers forget about their surroundings because they are too busy focusing on the sport itself. Your surroundings present a unique opportunity to capture the spirit of the game without actually photographing the action! Whether you’re in a bustling stadium full of cheering fans or standing front line at the race track, pay attention to what’s going on around you.