Thursday, March 11, 2010

Keep your eyes on the prize

Next time you're shooting a game try this trick.

Keep your eye on the viewfinder. Don't look up to see what's going on. Instead just zoom out while looking through the viewfinder. It works great with the 70-200 lens. Just zoom out, see where you need to go to, then zoom back into that area. The focus will pick-up the new area as well and you'll get more in focus shots as well as more peak moments.

These were all shot at ISO 1600 on the Sony A550 with the 70-200G F2.8.

Rob Skeoch


  1. Rob, I have a A700 and the 70-200 and I have problems with shooting action. I would like to know what AF you use or maybe you can explain more about how you make those great ice hockey shots. My e-mail is teamsno(at)planet(dot)nl
    Thanks! Anita Servaas

  2. I've tried all the different auto focus modes and I have the most success using the spot focus in the middle.

    If you use the general or wide focus, it will focus on any of the focus lines, sounds great but the camera is programed to pick the closest one to the camera... often the foreground grass in soccer or ice in hockey.

    If you use the local area the focus is too slow and the area is too small. I've tried this a number of times.

    So that leaves the centre spot focus mode.... keep the square on the face and crop later.

    I usually shoot wide open and try and keep the shutter speed above 1/800 second. The A700 is fairly good in low light but some rinks are more like caves... in which case I buy popcorn and watch the game.

    I do offer a few more tips on my sports website....

    Earlier today I was writing a third year college program on Sports Photography that will be offered next year.