Going Steady

A monopod is a must for better shooting with a long lens.

Here are a few quick tips that can add to your youth sports photography success.

Got a long telephoto lens? Buy a monopod! As the name suggests, this essential accessory has one leg that helps you keep the camera steady, even if you have plenty of light for a fast shutter speed. Adding your own two legs turns it (and you) into a steady tripod. It also makes shooting less tiring, because the monopod holds up the heavy camera and lens combination, not you, plus it helps you keep your dSLR level.

Another added benefit? It makes you look more professional, which can help convince security guards that you belong inside the fence. And that gets you closer to the action!

Want to make the pro and semipro photogs laugh? Use a tripod at a sporting event. Nothing yells “amateur” more than that!

Be sure to turn off your lens’ VR or IS setting.

If you’re fortunate enough to have a Nikon VR (Vibration Reduction) or Canon IS (Image Stabilization) lens, be sure to turn the setting to off when you’re shooting action pix. VR and IS slow down the ability of the lens to focus, and that’s the last thing you need when you’re trying to capture the bat on the ball or the high jumper in the air. Just be sure to turn it back on when you return to your regular shooting.

Lens hoods come in very handy.

Finally, be sure to put your lens hood at the end of your lens when you shoot (don’t keep it backwards on the lens). Not only can it stop the sun’s flare from ruining your photos, but it acts as a protector for your expensive lens. I’d rather have my lens hood get hit than my glass.

Plus it adds to the lens’ length, which makes you look more professional, which helps convince security guards that you really belong. Size really can matter when you’re trying to capture better photos.

Good, steady shooting this weekend!

2 responses to “Going Steady

  1. ha ha, I love the idea of looking like a pro to convine the security peeps you belong. I really want a monopod.

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