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Old Sep 3, 2009, 3:50 PM   #1
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Default 5K Run help

Hi!

I'm an event photographer and I've volunteered to shoot a 5K charity run this weekend so I am looking for some tips on sport technique. I am A-OK for the general event shots, but would love some advice on finish line photos...

I shoot with Nikon D200 and D300. I have SB-600s if I need them, and I have a pretty general lens kit... Sigma 10-20 f4-5.6, Nikon 50mm f1.8, Nikon 70-300 f4.5-5.6, and a 28-200 f3.8-5.6 in my bag.

Thanks for any advice!
Greg
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Old Sep 3, 2009, 3:52 PM   #2
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Whoops - PS, there are going to be about 500 runners, so I know it will be pretty bunched up. The course and finish line are both very flat and open, and I will have access to the chute. There are some trees in the area, but at the time of day it should be fairly shadow free...thanks.
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Old Sep 5, 2009, 7:03 AM   #3
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Hi Greg, are you covering the event along the way & the finish or just the finish? who are you shooting for, media/single entities/corprate?. If media you deffo want the winners in each catogary ie mens ,womens, disabled etc (preferably isolated!). obviously you need the people paying you crossing the line if private. I'd shoot slightly wide to include any finish line banners if shooting corprate. I think they would be fairly spread out by the time they finish but get a good spot early for the finish line preferably looking down the chute & minimizing DOF. If there is a clock above the finish it's nice to include it if there is sales to entrents,so a wider angle would be better if this is the reason for shooting!. Good luck & look forward to viewing the results!. Kind regards Graham.
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Old Sep 5, 2009, 9:43 AM   #4
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Thanks so much Graham. I appreciate your time. I plan on getting the entire event. I also agreed to take some photos for the organizers to use noncommercially in a 'thank you' CD they are providing to the sponsors.

I think my biggest fear is camera settings. I am unaccustomed to sport photography. I typically shoot corporate events, weddings, etc. where the fastest thing I have to worry about might be the bride slapping the groom - and for some reason they never buy the 12x16 of that.

The finish line is literally wide open and flat - it's a road race. I will have great access to the chute, so should be able to get a nice angle. Based on previous suggestion, I will most likely use the 28-200 at the line. That should allow me to get the entire runner, their banner, and the clock in the shot.

What are your suggest for aperture? Should I go all the way to f3.8 and then play with ISO if needed? How about shutter speed? I'm guessing at least 1/250 but should I go faster? I usually shoot single area focus - should I change that for this type of event? The other thing is, since this is a 'live' event, I am not really going to have many 'practice' frames. That's why I want to get as close as I can on the first fire.

There will, I hope, be sales involved with donations back to the charity.

Wow - I'll bet you're glad you responded, eh? Thanks again.

Last edited by Greg Wolcott; Sep 5, 2009 at 9:47 AM. Reason: Forgot part of post
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Old Sep 6, 2009, 7:16 AM   #5
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Hi Greg, A shutter speed of 1/250th should be fine as the runners are comming straight at you anyway!. I'd suggest an apature of 5.6ish to get the banner,clock & runner sharp enough!. These settings should allow you to keep the central focus area which is better for sports shooting!. When you've got the winners etc in the bag try using the Sigma 10mm on the tail enders shooting up from the floor, (hope it's dry!!),close to the line to give a different perspective for the CD. Good luck. Kind regards Graham.
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Old Sep 6, 2009, 12:52 PM   #6
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Thanks for everything, Graham. Cool idea for the 10mm! We'll see what we get...now comes the fun part...
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