Grappling with light


I’m just going to rant for a little while Some days I won’t know where I’m going to be shooting until a couple hours before. I have to carry what I need with me and work with the lighting situations before me. Some gyms and football stadiums are fantastic. The lighting is nice and even. However, a large majority of mid-sized to small towns just aren’t going to spend the cash on good lights. Couple this with the fact, using a flash is frowned upon by most high school teams.

So fast lenses, high ISOs, and some white balance acrobatics is necessary. White balance is sometimes a foregone conclusion as many of these stadiums use lights that emits widely varying lights wavelengths at a rate fast enough for the eye not to notice, but a shutter will catch it pretty consistently when you’re trying to take photos fast enough to freeze action. I’ve shot three or four frames and each one be completely different colors. There’s not a lot I can do about it. Shoot RAW and hope for the best.

High ISOs only get you halfway to a great photo. Depending on your camera body, the high-end ISOs can getting fairly ugly, but if you’re exposing correctly they’re okay. Underexposing at a high ISO will likely cause you fits while post-processing. If anyone out there has a magic-bullet fix for this, let me know.

Good, fast glass get you the rest of the way. Buying that nice pristine glass can hurt the wallet, but in the end, you’ll be glad you did. Even though I know this, I still haven’t shelled out the dough for some much-needed purchases and have instead been making due. Life is about compromise right?

I’m not a great sports photographer, but I try. With all these variables, I have to try very hard.