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Old 3rd of September 2009 (Thu)   #16
Geoff Lees
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Devon United Kingdom
Posts: 61
Default Re: First ever sport photo

Originally Posted by namasste View Post
Geoff, here's a really quick go of it. I'm at work so I wasn't able to put a ton of time in and since I was working with an image that was sharpened already, I wasn't able to add any sharpening to it which can really make a tremendous difference. In this case, I would have liked to sharpen a lot more locally than it looks like you may have. There are some strong signs of oversharpening when cropped down like I did. Regardless, it'll give a basic idea of what I might do (sharpening aside, of course)

Wow this is fantastic. I apologise for catching you at a bad time. If you have not been able to do some things that you would have like to have done perhaps I can send you the original and you can have a go at that. Would it be better for you to let me know when it is more convenient for me to let you have it. I am really impressed with this and it has made me more determined to get to grips with PS.
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Old 15th of September 2009 (Tue)   #17
Big Hands
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Southern California
Posts: 1,464
Default Re: First ever sport photo

OK, I was led here from your other post.

Scott (namasste), as is usual for him, and Kevin have you going in a great direction.

It looks as if you were fortunate to have a bit of cloud present for this shot, but as was noted, you did quite well with it technically 'in-camera' (the accidental "-1/3"slip up aside).

I can add that I have had a 20D since they came out and had the 70-200 f/4L and a Canon 1.4x TC. First of all, my experience with the TC it was better to shoot without unless I had a situation similar to yours in this pic where I could actually prefocus on a spot or subject well before I shot.

I set up my 20D and a 70-200 f/4L with 1.4x TC on a tripod aimed at the batters box (softball) and I would pre-focus on the batter as they stepped into the box and then turn the AF off (on the lens). I then could sit back in a lawn chair with a remote shutter release and just work on timing the pitch right to get "BOB" (ball on bat) shots and it worked out really well.

Conversely, using the TC in a fast moving environment like HS school age soccer, it just could not focus fast enough and my keeper rate suffered with the TC compared to without it. I found I was merely trading the ability to shoot one part of the pitch for being able to shoot another part of that was merely further away and not appreciably larger. And since the TC hindered AF speed, it only resulted in less keepers.

The other negative with the TC is that when you have the aperture set to shoot as wide open as possible, you're losing a full stop with the 1.4x and two full stops with the 2x so you'll need decent light or you'll be into ISO's above 400 which may start to degrade image quality (introduce 'noise').

So, the TC may have a place in some sports shooting situations, but the advantages may have a negative associated with them. You just have to decide if it's better for you.

I ended up selling my 70-200 f/4L to get the f/2.8L. I had to sell the 70-200 f/4L, my Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 and add another $200 to get the 70-200 f/2.8L. I wanted better low-light capability and I wanted to get more "OOF" (out of focus) backgrounds. The first issue was significantly remedied and the latter issue was made better, though the difference wasn't huge, it was enough to make it worth it (better separation of subject from background). If these are not a concern to you, the 70-200 f/4L is an excellent lens as you've so aptly demonstrated with thew pic you've posted here.

The suggestion I have that I have not seen mentioned is that while the technical qualities of the shot are quite acceptable to say the least, I would suggest that you make an effort to time your shots to include a ball, preferably as it strikes a bat of just before someone catches it.

So long as you maintain the attitude you have about accepting help, your learning curve will be much shorter.

Canon 20D w/grip, 300D, Powershot SX100 w/HF-DC1 flash, Canon 70-200 f/2.8L, 85 f/1.8, 17-55 f/2.8 IS, 50 f/1.8, 580EX and some other stuff...

Last edited by Big Hands : 16th of September 2009 (Wed) at 14:21.
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Old 15th of September 2009 (Tue)   #18
Cream of the Crop
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: NE Ohio
Posts: 6,720
Default Re: First ever sport photo

Great points Jeff and an interesting take on the TC. I too have been toying with the TC/ no TC debate and still am undecided. You point about trading areas on the pitch is right on though. To go further, the farther images obtained by using the TC are ones where its tougher to isolate the athletes as the focal plane/distance math comes into play. I find that with the 300 and the 1DM2, I can crop significantly if necessary so the TC isn't as necessary. It does have its place for sure (love it for baseball where I prefocus a large % of my shots) but really don't care for it with soccer where I am all over the place and can't really prefocus.

Just thought I'd add that to your points above since I think you are spot on.
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