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Old Nov 5, 2006, 2:55 PM   #1
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I attended an Ottawa Senators hockey practice this weekend. I tried taking some shots with my Canon Rebel XT using the shutter priority at 1/320. I'm using the Canon Zoom 75-300mm lens. Any thoughts on how these could be improved would be great.


It's tough with the lighting and fast action though.



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Old Nov 5, 2006, 5:30 PM   #2
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Looks good, make sure you have a tripod, this photo is crooked and a tripod could fix that.
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Old Nov 5, 2006, 6:43 PM   #3
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Hi RJKOOP and welcome to the forums!!

I personally would disagree with Sergeant and say don't bother with a tripod at all as you need to be fluid in your movements and a tripod will just get in the way. Also you are not really using a long enough lens to worry about it or evena monopod. I handhold 400mm all of the time so it will be fine. As for getting a shot straight it comes down to practise, however I have to straighten most my my shots by about 0.25 - 0.5 of a degree before posting on my site or printing.

Also I would suggest shooting manual for this sort of environment as the white of the ice is going to play havoc with your metering system which is has done slightly here as I would say you are a little underexposed. I would go for 3200 ISO and keep the 1/320th second and try it. If you can get good exposure at 1600 ISO that is better, but make sure you don't underexpose as that will be make the final shot worse as you will bring up a lot more noise when increasing levels.

Make sure that you are not cropping the subject, you have taken this shot a little too high and also too much to the left. I have given what I would class to be a more pleasing shot from what you had, although I would still have wanted to be a little more to the right. I have also adjusted white balance, increased brightness and shadows and finally applied some unsharp mask.

Looking forward to seeing what you get next time you are shooting hockey or any other sport/subject.

Happy shooting,

Mark


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Old Nov 5, 2006, 8:30 PM   #4
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Thanks for the great feedback. I'm new to Digital SLR photography. I've done a little reading on taking hockey pics and essentially they said to use an ISO >800 and a shutter speed of at least 1/320. The ice colour actually turned out better than I thought (not too yellow) but this is an NHL rink so I guess the light is better than local rinks.

Here's another shot that I thought was ok. Of course I took about 400 shots to get about 20 good ones!




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Old Nov 6, 2006, 4:47 AM   #5
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Nice captures,

and don't worry about the amount of shots you take, any percentage ofsuccesrate is goodyou can only learn by trying and taking shots.

This is true for any type of camera, doesn't have to be a dslr. - Ronny
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Old Nov 6, 2006, 4:47 AM   #6
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If this was your first time out then 5% of shots that you are happy with is not too bad, each time I shoot a new sport my keep rate goes down quite a bit. With things like field hockey which I shoot more than anything else I keep approx 30% of them.

This is a better framed shot although I would still like to see it further to the left.

I'm not sure what settings you are using, but I would go for AI Servo, centre point focus and keep your subject player (in these two shots the keeper) in the centre of the frame which will help the final shot look more balanced and give you more room to crop to the desired result if needed.

How did you get on when shooting moving players?

I will admit that you are going to be limited by your lens especially when going to a rink that is less well lit. Realistically you will want a f2.8 lens which is going to cost you bit but will really transform what you can shoot. The choices would be either the Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 APO EXDG Macro HSM at approx $900or the Canon 70-200mm f2.8 LIS USM at approx £2000. This will allow you to reduce the ISO and/or increase the shutter speed, you will also find faster focusing which helps when shooting sports.
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Old Nov 6, 2006, 12:37 PM   #7
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cool shots, one improvement that i would suggest is to take photos of the buffalo sabres instead :blah:
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Old Nov 6, 2006, 2:32 PM   #8
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Here's one of a player. I think for fast action and low light, like you suggest, I need an F2.8 lense.

The kids at the rink thought I was a photographer for a local paper because I was trying to shoot through the photography hole in the glass...

It was a great opportunity to get really close to the players.



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Old Nov 6, 2006, 6:05 PM   #9
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Yep low light does make it more difficult for a camera to focus as it can't see the contrast differences needed to geta lock. What mode have you shot in with this one for focusing as it looks as if it haspicked out the backgroundand focused on thatrather than the player.
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