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Anatomy of a HR and 10fps

Discussion in 'Sports Photography' started by Peter G, Jun 9, 2007.

  1. But still couldn't pick the ball in this sequence :frown:

    Wanting to freeze the ball in a frame can be tough duty. A 14yo throwing +70mph and a fast swing can make it a Holy Grail experience LOL.

    Here's 3 frames I shot tonight

    Starting the swing
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Squaring up on one :smile:
    View attachment 99681

    Watching one fly-fly-away!!!!! (Clearing the 300' fence with plenty to spare)
    View attachment 99682
  2. My experience tells me that you will almost never get the ball coming off the bat if you begin framing with the batter in the center of the frame.

    If you want a more dramatic shot and one where you give yourself every opportunity to "see" the ball leaving the bat, I recommend that you ignore the catcher in the framing. Set up your shot with the batter at the edge of the frame (in your sequence, that would be placing the batter on the left side of the frame). Then, as the swing is completed, you will have "space" in front of the batter; to my eye, this yields a "better" shot since, first, you have not bullseyed the batter in the center of the frame and you allow the eye to see the sense of the action as he drives the ball and second, you set yourself in position to catch the ball off the bat. And when I speak of "freezing" the ball, I am not looking to record it stopped dead. I MUCH prefer it when the batter's body is dead frozen and the ball is somewhat blurred. That is what makes the viewer feel the action. Best yet to me is a shot where the batter's body is frozen and the end of the bat and the ball both have a blur.

    Forget the catcher and the ump; it is the batter that you want (unless of course your intention is to spotlight the catcher, in which case the ball, frozen or otherwise, is irrelevant.)

    Edit: here is one I just grabbed from a recent hig school game I shot to demonstrate the idea.


    Try it this way -


    anyone know how to avoid the dreaded red X in the box when using the "add photo" icon above???
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 9, 2007
  3. GBRandy


    Feb 28, 2006
    Green Bay, WI
    Rick is correct...to get the ball in the frame you need the hitter to the left of the in the view finder. That fancy shamnsy camera you got lets you move the selected AF around. Push the FEL button and then use the control wheels to move it to left center....but you know that already :) 

    But still, those are nice tight & crisp shots...... I think I smell a 300 f2.8 in here somewhere.
  4. Thanks Rick and GBR for the ideas. Shots were past the 1st base bag along foul line and with 70-200. Cropped quite a bit, but good idea putting the hitter left in vew finder and play around with AF selector.

    300 2.8? Yeah, breaking that one loose today at my daughter's tourney. Hope I don't scare anyone with it :tongue:
  5. Try it this way Rick
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Direct link of file you're posting needs to end in .jpg. Hope this helps.

    e.g. [Insert IMG bracket]http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1409/536972910_77d91d7a08_m.jpg[close IMG bracket]

  6. Thank you Peter. I long for the days when one had to master ONLY photography, rather than photography and computer........
  7. niknd501


    May 13, 2006
    Peter just relying on the fps doesn't work for me...Too many shots wasted for me.
    I shoot single frame sometimes and just hope to catch that lucky shot.
    I have some that are really close but none with the ball compressed..
    Here is one that I got at a college game from behind the backstop.

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  8. Thanks Rod. I agree, and often take that approach as well. Wanted to see full burst of 10fps in the new body :wink:

    I like the angle from behind the backstop shot. Well done my friend.
  9. Amen my friend. Thanks for the chuckle Rick :biggrin:
  10. Larty


    Apr 12, 2007
    Good stuff guys!
    This just helps me stay away from the D2Hs that I lust after
    for now... I find 5fps adequate, but want the 8fps, but after
    some research, you can still miss plenty of shots even at 8fps
    when the action gets going fast.

  11. Thanks Larty
  12. eng45ine


    May 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    I have enjoyed this thread and offer my thanks to all who have participated. Frames per second, this is a huge advantage to those of us who shoot sports action. Is five FPS enough????? Is eight enough????? The only way to determine how many fps is adequate all depends on what exactly you hope to come away with. If you are trying to capture a ball on bat, then you will most certainly want as many frames per second you can get your hands on.....and the fastest glass out there. To be successful photographing a ball on bat will require extremely fast shutter speeds and perfect timing. The high frame rate will also maximize your ability to get that shot as well. Now.....how likely is someone to get that perfect ball-on-bat shot? Probably not likely at all and I say this with honesty because I try to get a quality ball-on-bat shot for each of the players that I cover. I have been successful in getting a few over the years, but that's just it....a few over the years. I have come to the conclusion that it is probably a better utilization of my time to be satisfied with a good follow-through swing of the bat and get the player's eyes as the ball goes in play, than to fill my memory cards with swing after swing of the bat trying to get the ball compressed.

    My preference is eight frames per second and ten would be even better at times, but the desirable frame rate is dependant on the sport and what the intended goal is for that capture.
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