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Old Jul 18, 2011, 11:59 AM   #1
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Default Prime Lense question

I was sitting behind home plate at my sons 13u baseball game. A photographer was taking pictures with a 300 2.8 lense. Now, I don't know if he was taking pictures of the batter or of the pitcher. My question is...Would he be able to take pictures of the batter or the pitcher and get good results? Doesn't a prime lense mean that 300 is all you get? you can't zoom in or out? Could someone explain this to me? I was under impression that a 300 would be for long range shooting like maybe the outfield and not at closer range.

Thanks,

wolves
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Old Jul 18, 2011, 12:26 PM   #2
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You are correct in your assumption that a prime lens cannot zoom. Which player the photographer would be photographing depends, in large part, by his position relative to the field. For example - if he's behind the back-stop, he's at the wrong angle to get photos of the batter. From that position he is most likely shooting the pitcher or another infielder. A couple other points worth mentioning:
Don't assume that every photo needs to get the whole body in the frame - so don't assume 300mm is "too long". Especially depending on the camera being used. If the photog is using a d3 or d700 300mm isn't long at all. In fact it's a bit short for even covering the full infield if the photog is ON the field - much less behind the fence. That not withstanding, some of the more compelling sportrait style shots (shots where there isn't a lot of action - shots of pitcher or batter for instance) are shot tightly - not full body shots. That creates much better bokeh in the background - just like a portrait shot would.

Usually, a pro will shoot with 2 bodies: 300mm 2.8 or 400mm 2.8 on one body and a 70-200 2.8 on the other for really close work. But more often than not those long primes are used predominantly.
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Old Jul 18, 2011, 6:16 PM   #3
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I was right behind the backstop. So Im pretty sure he was photographing the pitcher. So, assuming that, would that mean more than likely he was getting facial shots or the upper half of the body?

Thanks John.
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Old Jul 19, 2011, 6:22 AM   #4
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no. not necessarily. If he was shooting with a D3 or D700 full frame he could be taking full body shots of the pitcher. 300mm isn't as much focal length as you thik - certainly not when you consider the size of a baseball field (and all the space behind home plate).
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