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Summer Box Lacrosse

Nikon D3S; f/4.5, 1/250, ISO 1250 - shot with one speed light.  For these shots I was on the floor, so excellent lighting and access made all of the difference.

Photos

Nikon D3S; f/2.8, 1/500, ISO 1600 - shot with one speed light.  For these shots I was on the top of the stands, with two mounted speed light flash on wireless remotes.  I was using my 400mm lens to capture these images through the protective screening around the rink/floor.


Photos

High School Boys Lacrosse

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lens

Night-time game settings under field lights: 1/500, 2500 ISO with f/2.8.   I used one TTL flash setup 2' below my camera, mounted onto my monopod and with high-speed-sync set.  The field lights appeared pretty good, but I wanted to play with high-speed-sync some with higher shutter speed.

Since I was setup on the same side of the field as the player benches, I setup around the 20 yard line (half-way between the top of the box and the GLE [goal-line extended]) to cover one side fully, and then as much of the second side of the field as possible.

The second two photos were shot at a park field (not as good lighting as school football field).  My settings here were 1/250, f/2.8, 1600 ISO on my D3S with flash.  Here I was only able to take action photos from one half of the field.

Photos

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lens

Bright sunlight day-time game settings:

The first game photos were taken at 1/1600, 200 ISO with f/4, while the second game photos were taken at 1/1250, 200 ISO with f/4 and the third game photos were taken at 1/2000, 200 ISO with f/4.5.  The issue with bright sunny days in Arizona, is that the sunlight can be too bright, and wash out the images.  Therefore, you need to offset that bright light with your settings.

I was setup on the opposite side of the field as the player benches (sun was overhead), half-way between GLE and the top of the box.  From there I could cover the entire field, except where the parents blocked the close corners of the field.  This also allows me to get some photos of the teams in their bench areas from across the field


Photos

High School Baseball

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lens

Night-time game settings under field lights: 1/500, 1600-2500 ISO with f/2.8 on my D3S with 400mm lens.   No flash is allowed for baseball.  The field lights were pretty good at the ball field for these first four images.  I like to keep my shutter speed up to a minimum of 1/500th.  I like to switch sides of the field about half-way through the game (typically near first and third bases), so that I can get different vantage points. 

The second set of four photos were shot at two ball fields with less adequate lighting.  My settings at the start of the games were 1/2000, f/3.5, 800 ISO on my D3S with 400mm lens.  As the night fell, I started at 1/640, f/2.8, 6400 ISO.  As the night wore on at these two fields I tried shooting at 8,000-10,000 ISO, to keep the shutter speeds about 1/500. 

The third set of four photos were shot at the Chase Field - Arizona Diamondbacks Stadium.  The first game was under sunlight, as the roof was open, with some parts of the field in the shadows.  The first game photos were taken at 1/800, 1250 ISO at f/5.6, while the second game photos were taken at 1/1600, 250 ISO at f/5.

The fourth set of four photos were shot at the Temple Diablo Stadium (Angel's training stadium).  The first game photos were taken at 1/1000, 200 ISO at f/4-5.6 while still daylight, while the second game photos were taken at 1/1000, 1000 ISO at f/4 under the field lights.

Photos

High School Soccer

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lens

Night-time game settings under field lights: 1/250, 1250-1600 ISO at f/2.8.   I used one TTL flash setup 2' below my camera, mounted onto my monopod and with high-speed-sync set. 

For the boys game photos I used 1250 ISO, while at the girls games I used 1600 ISO. 

Soccer is a similarly challenging game to photograph at night since the action is so fluid and dynamic.  I typically setup near the 20-25 yard line (about 1/2 way between the top of the box and the goalie line).  It is difficult to move up and down the field since the game is so fluid.


Photos

High School Boys Basketball

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 70-200mm lens

Every gym has different lighting available: The first two photos were at the Phoenix Suns Arena.  Due to the lighting I did not setup any remote flash like usual.  For the first two photos my settings were 1/500, 2000 ISO at f/2.8.   I set myself underneath one of the hoops and along the baseline for these shots.

For the next two photos I used two remote flash setup at the top of the bleachers on one end of the court.  This adds fill light for the action photos (but parents are not allowed to use flash at High School events).  My settings were 1/250, 800 ISO at f2.8.

For the last two photos I used two remote flash setup at the top of the bleachers on one end of the court (actually in this gym the second flash was on a light stand on the floor pointing at a 45 degree angle towards the ceiling).  This adds fill light for the action photos (but parents are not allowed to use flash at High School events).  My settings were 1/100, 1000 ISO at f2.8.  This added a little more motion blur.


Photos

High School Girls Basketball

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 70-200mm lens

Every gym has different lighting available: The first four photos were at the Phoenix Suns Arena.  Due to the lighting I did not setup any remote flash like usual. 

For the first four photos my settings were 1/500, 2000 ISO at f/2.8.   I set myself underneath one of the hoops and along the baseline for these shots.

For the next eight photos I used two remote flash setup at the top of the bleachers on one end of the court.  This adds fill light for the action photos (but parents are not allowed to use flash at High School events).  My settings were 1/250, 800 ISO at f2.8.


Photos

High School Hockey

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 70-200mm & 400mm lens

Action photography on the ice is challenging in new ways.  The ice can play tricks with the light metering, and then shooting through the face cage can add shadows on the face, especially at the far ends of the ice.  First of all is the positioning for where to setup.  In the first couple of games, I was on a ladder behind one of the benches.  I used my D3S with a 70-200 mm 2.8 lens and a 1.4 tele-converter to get more reach, but afterwards was told by my MaxPreps editor that the 70-200 lens does not work properly with a tele-converter (which is what I purchased it for in the first place. 

My settings for the first six photos were 1/1000, 3200-4000 ISO at f/4 with my 70-200mm lens and the 1.4 TC attached.  That did not provide as clean an image as I desired.  

The next four photos were 1/1000, 4000 ISO at f/3.5 with my 70-200mm lens.  For these photos I was shooting over the glass closer to one goal.

The next six photos were 1/1000, 3200 ISO at f/3.5 with my 400mm lens and 1/500, 800 ISO at f/2.8 with my 70-200mm lens.  For these photos I was shooting over the glass closer to one goal.

The last four photos were 1/1000, 2500 ISO at f/3.2 with my 70-200mm lens.  For these photos I was shooting over the glass closer to one goal.


Night-time game settings under field lights: 1/500, 2500 ISO with f/2.8.   I used one TTL flash setup 2' below my camera, mounted onto my monopod and with high-speed-sync set.  The field lights appeared pretty good, but I wanted to play with high-speed-sync some with higher shutter speed.Since I was setup on the same side of the field as the player benches, I setup around the 20 yard line (half-way between the top of the box and the GLE [goal-line extended]) to cover one side fully, and then as much of the second side of the field as possible.The second two photos were shot at a park field (not as good lighting as school football field).  My settings here were 1/250, f/2.8, 1600 ISO on my D3S with flash.  Here I was only able to take action photos from one half of the field.Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lensBright sunlight day-time game settings: The first game photos were taken at 1/1600, 200 ISO with f/4, while the second game photos were taken at 1/1250, 200 ISO with f/4 and the third game photos were taken at 1/2000, 200 ISO with f/4.5.  The issue with bright sunny days in Arizona, is that the sunlight can be too bright, and wash out the images.  Therefore, you need to offset that bright light with your settings.I was setup on the opposite side of the field as the player benches (sun was overhead), half-way between GLE and the top of the box.  From there I could cover the entire field, except where the parents blocked the close corners of the field.  This also allows me to get some photos of the teams in their bench areas from across the field


Photos


High School Football

Sunset Adjustments

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lens

Need to adjust the color settings, see the samples below.

Daytime

Photos

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lens

First game of the new season I had my camera set to 51 focal points, but in low light (under field lights), that is not appropriate as the camera cannot focus properly.


For my second game of the new season, I changed my setting to 21 focal points, but again was not fully satisfied.  For the next set of games I will push this down to 9 focal points.

Photos

Camera: Nikon D3S with F/2.8 400mm lens

For daytime I shot in Aperature mode. I tried again using the 51-point, 3D tracking with mixed results. The results appeared best when shooting with the sun at my back (Matrix, AF-C with Back Button focus). Best results when shooting players up to about 50 yards away (longer than that appears to produce softer images than desired).

Camera: Nikon D5100 with f/2.8 70-200mm lens

For daytime I shot in Aperature mode. I tried again using the 11-point, 3D tracking with mixed results. I used AF-C with Dynamic focus. I also tried using DV-Crop for longer range (uncertain of the benefit other than a bit longer range). Switched to this camera body for action closer to me. Still have issues with the Focal Point moving (apparently when I grab this camera body I have a tendency to hit the Multi-point selector button on the back, thus changing the focus point).

Under Stadium Lights

Photos

Camera:  Nikon D3s, 400mm f/2.8 lens

9/10/2018 - Football under stadium lights with flash. With the F/2.8 that allows the best light into the lens, the flash mounted low on the monopod on TTL and the camera set to Spot focus to cover the action most consistently.

Camera:  Nikon D3s, 70-200mm f/2.8 lens 

10/07/2016 - Football under stadium lights with flash. From the start of the game to the end of the game the lighting situation is constantly changing. Depending on the lighting, use the flash mounted low on the monopod. My primary camera for action is the Nikon D3s set at f/2.8, ISO 1600-3200, SS 500-800. Anticipate the action. With the 400mm lens, you need to be up-field 20 yard from the line of scrimmage, with the 70-200mm lens you can get closer. I also started to use my second body, Nikon D5100 with flash mounted on top of camera. This camera is used to capture the sideline action. Set to matrix mode, f/4.5-5.6, SS 200, ISO 500-1000 depending.

Football Having some issues with tack sharp focus on some images lately. I tried a secondary flash to add more fill light (Freshman vs Varsity games at PV High School), but same issue. I now believe I need to change the AF-Area mode setting (from Dynamic area to Single point). I will try that at my next night High School football game. I believe that as the nights get darker as the season plays out, that the lighting is impacting my ability to get continuous tracking accurately. See the sample images below as proof.


Girls Soccer

Camera: Nikon D3S with F2.8 400mm lens

1/19/2016 Girls Soccer at Horizon Two remote flash on monopod. Manual mode, f/3.5, ISO 1600, SS 1/250. Decent results, but not completely happy with all missed shots.

Issue: Still not completely happy with out-of-focus heavy action shots.

Possible Resolution: I was using Dynamic AF setting, and I am thinking that I possibly need to use Center AF or try Manual AF. Due to the low-light conditional of Field lights, during heavy action (multiple bodies around the ball), I either get the wrong person in/out of focus or a totally missed shot (fully out of focus).


Boys Soccer

Camera:  Nikon D3S with F2.8 400mm lens

1/13/2016: For Boys Soccer, at the JV game I started shooting around 4:30-5 pm while there was still the sun in the sky but setting. I shot in Aperature mode, f/4-f/5.6. The main challenge is the harsh setting sun on the players. ISO was between 400-800, so the Shutter speed was between 1/2000-1/8000. I was hoping to solve the harsh sun issue, but did not fully. For the Varsity game under the lights, I shot in Manual mode, f/4, ISO 1600 and Shutter at 1/250 since I had my two flash mounted on my monopod at 1/2 power. These settings work well for Football season, but I noticed some grainy images. Was I trying to reach too far, or is the lighting darker than in the Fall, and I need to correct for that. I am thinking that I either need to go with f/2.8, to allow more light in, or would a stronger flash provide the needed lift.


Girls High School Volleyball

First game of the new Fall season and I shot with my D3S camera and 70-200mm f/2.8 lens.  I decided to try some new settings this time out.  I shot at F/2.8, 1000SS, and 5000 ISO.


Some of the photos came out a bit too grainy, but overall I was pleased with the result.  I also moved around the floor a bit, trying different elevations since I did not bring my knee pads to stay floor-side the whole time.

Photos

10/07/2016 - Indoor Volleyball, no flash Without use of flash, these shots were made with Nikon D3s, 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. Anticipate the action to capture the best shots. Try to get the ball and face in each photo. In order to capture the action with minimal motion blur, they are shot at ISO 1600-3200 (depending on the gym lighting), SS 500-640, and f/2.8. Move around the gym to get different angles on your shots: floor level, low in the bleachers, mid-level in the bleachers and standing behind the scorer's table.


1/13/2016 & 1/15/2016: Boys and Girls Basketball at Horizon

Two remote flash setup.

Settings:

Manual mode, f/4, ISO 1600, SS 1/250 with two remote flash mounted high on one end of court pointing out at the top of the key.

Issues:

The only issues are if the flash do not fire.

Issue-1:

I tried to use the same batteries for two nights on the Flash units running out of juice in the last quarter of the Boys V game (Girls JV/V, then Boys JV/V).

Resolution-1:

Need to charge after every Basketball night's use.

Issue-2:

I had issues with the PC cable connector from the Pocket Wizards to the Flash not staying connected.

Resolution-2:

I purchase new PocketWizard HSFM3 Flash Sync cables that connect to the shoe of the Flash, which appears to work more consistently. The first night of use did present some issues, but since then no issues.

Issue-3:

Sometimes the Tip Off does not have enough flash reach, causing lower quality flash.


Boys Golf

5/14/2016: D5 Golf Championships Bright Cloudy day in Prescott, AZ. I shot with my D3s at ISO 200, SS 1/1600, at F 4.5. The action photos came out great! (first 3 shots below) with 400mm lens.


Track & Field

Track and Field:

Fill Flash when Bright Sky background Since on the prior day's shoot I did not produce the desired results on the Long Jump event, I wanted to try using a Fill Flash to address the lighting issues.

Here are the results, not fully what I was hoping for (wanted better face lighting). The first image was shot from across the track (D3s, 1/1250 SS, 200 ISO, f/2.8), while the middle two were shot up close with my D5100 (1/640 SS, 400 ISO, f/2.8) and the last one was shot up close with my D5100 (1/250 SS, 200 ISO, f/5.6) with flash.

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