Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Playing with Speed (Photography lesson)

Part of the assignment for the Get out of Auto Mode photography class this week was to shoot in "shutter priority" mode at a low and a high speed, to see the different effects.  I decided to complete the assignment at DS Henry's baseball game on Saturday. For the photo above, I set the shutter speed to 1/40 (the camera set F25 and ISO 400). I like the effect of the blurred bat and hands.  For the photo below, I set the shutter speed to 1/1250 to freeze the action and you can see the ball coming in clearly (the camera set F8 and ISO 400):
 It was a good experiment, but I had trouble getting a really clear focus for the higher shutter speed.  Frankly, I think I just do better shooting in "sports" mode.  For example, this pitcher:
So, the next day when I went to DD Clara's swim meet, I put the camera on sports mode and got this nice picture of her best starting dive ever:
I'm glad I learned about shutter priority mode and can definitely see myself using it when I want a blur; but, for freezing the action (which tends to by my preference), I think I'll stick with sports mode.  Do you think that's wimping out?  Or just being smart?  Do you prefer sharp pictures that freeze the action? Or pictures that give you speed and movement through blur?
By the way, if you come back tomorrow, you'll see a cool (IMHO) art journal page about change, and be able to read a big announcement!

15 comments:

Amy said...

I like both forms of capturing movement and I absolutely DO NOT think you are wimping out. These days cameras are so sophisticated they are made to do what we want really well - you get fabulous results and it is less stressful and the shots are sharp - what more do you want? No one would know with the end results anyway and the specs are not plastered all over the image so I think it is perfectly ok! :-)

helena said...

agree with Amy - we see the end result not how you got to it so whatever works for you then that it fine. I like both the blur and the sharp frozen - good to have the choice of variety

debs14 said...

I think each has it's place and sometimes if you are playing with exposure meters etc you actually miss the action yourself as you are too busy worrying about shutter speeds. My husband is a VERY keen photographer, and I have spent many an impatient hour hanging around waiting for him to find the perfect shot! The worrying over the 'right' exposures at the aquarium in Valencia are still a source of friction in our household! I managed to get round the whole of one section on my own while he was trying to isolate a particular fish in one tank!

Sian said...

A big announcement? Sounds intriguing! No I don't think it's wimping out either. All photographers have personal preferences and the good ones are clever enough to use what they know works for them :)

Cheryl said...

the way I see it your photos are amzing you just carry on doing what you do, you must be doing something write x

Cheri said...

Rinda - these photos are great - love the bat blur! But I really appreciate the crispness of the photos you took in action mode. I agree with everyone else - do what works for you! I haven't done this assignment yet. I'm glad to be learning the different stuff and how it works but if, when all is said and done, I find I get better pictures in auto and pre-set, then so be it!

Julie said...

Wow, these are great Rinda! It makes me really want to learn more about my camera and what it can do.

humel said...

Great pics, RInda :-) And personally I think that the way to get the most out of these classes is to learn how all the different modes and settings work and figure out when (and if) to use them. Sometimes that will mean going back to certain presets that you know work well! But there's a difference between using presets because that's alll you know, and using them because you know they're the best choice in a particular situation. So no, it's not wimping out! xx

humel said...

Also meant to say - ooh, big announcement? Exciting!! xx

sm3wkl said...

Your pictures are wonderful! I really like the shot of your DD diving. Thanks for sharing your class experience with us. I've been thinking of taking a photo class and it's nice to see what your doing in yours.

Karen said...

I say use what works! But I do love the blurred motion of the bat in the first photo. But I do understand that what you want of your kids is a sharp, clear photo so I'd stay with the sports mode!

ComfyMom~Stacey said...

Great shots! I like both kinds, sometimes the blur is nice to have, like with batting & sometimes the freeze action is nice like with her dive

Heather said...

You are not breaking any laws by settling for what works easiest for you! Your life, your camera & your choice :)

Lizzie said...

I agree that it's not "wimping out" to use pre-sets on your camera. If they give you the shot you want, then why mess around with all the other buttons? I too prefer the "frozen action" shots generally - and I have problems getting them, so I think you're doing okay!

Interesting news... hmmm, I'd better come back tomorrow then!

scrappyjacky said...

I tend to agree with Amy....though I do love that first shot.
Am intrigued by the 'big announcement'.
Would love to come to the art show.....but a tad too far to travel, I think....but am very impressed by Clara's piece....she obviously takes after you.