Count me in among the fans of auto focusing. My 56-year-old eyes don’t see as well as they used to, so why not use my Nikon digital SLR’s automatic features to get better photos?
But there are times when prefocusing on an object is a better bet when it comes to action photography. Like pole vaulting.
At the #2 son’s track meet last week, I found a perfect position to shoot the pole vaulters. Except that I had trouble keeping them in focus as they planted their poles and soared over the bar.
So I manually focused on the bar with my Nikon 70-200mm lens and let the athletes jump into the f/2.8 focal plane. Success!
Pole vaulting looks more like a vertical photo op due to the pole.
The vertical aspect does give more of a feeling of the heights the athletes cleared.
I prefer the horizontal perspective, though, because it makes it easier to see the pole vaulters’ faces.
Unfortunately, sometimes those faces gets obscured by the pole . . .
. . . or the athlete’s hands.
At least Michael’s face is in focus . . . what you can see of it!