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VIP
Posts: 11,620
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

Just keep it simple Friday and do come back with some shots.  Good or bad.  You learn from the mistakes you make.

 

Set your Rebel T6i to Av mode. Use Raw file format, not jpg. Set your Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM Lens to AF. Fix the aperture to f4 in the T6i, maybe f5.6 if there is enough light.  The T6i will select the fastest SS possible to get  a proper exposure. The ISO needs to be quite high I will guess, so let's start with ISO 1600. If that works well try ISO 800, if not try 3200.  You can set the WB to average it doesn't matter with Raw as you will set it on post edit. Set the focus point in the T6i to just the center point.  Turn all the others off.  Use One Shot. 

 

 

 

Remember this........

1 Location.

2 Knowledge of the game.

3 Use Raw file format.

4 Av mode and adjust if necessary. Use higher ISO numbers.

5 Post edit the shots.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Occasional Contributor
Posts: 11
Registered: ‎09-01-2019

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

Will do...I will let you know how it goes-thanks again!!!

Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,065
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please


@ebiggs1 wrote:

Just keep it simple Friday and do come back with some shots.  Good or bad.  You learn from the mistakes you make.

 

Set your Rebel T6i to Av mode. Use Raw file format, not jpg. Set your Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM Lens to AF. Fix the aperture to f4 in the T6i, maybe f5.6 if there is enough light.  The T6i will select the fastest SS possible to get  a proper exposure. The ISO needs to be quite high I will guess, so let's start with ISO 1600. If that works well try ISO 800, if not try 3200.  You can set the WB to average it doesn't matter with Raw as you will set it on post edit. Set the focus point in the T6i to just the center point.  Turn all the others off.  Use One Shot. 

 

 

 

Remember this........

1 Location.,

2 Knowledge of the game.

3 Use Raw file format.

4 Av mode and adjust if necessary. Use higher ISO numbers.

5 Post edit the shots.


What's the point of using Av mode if you're going to set the lens to its widest aperture? I say use Tv mode to protect against getting too slow a shutter speed. You need at least 1/200, and at that speed at night on a high school field, the camera will almost certainly have to set the aperture to f/4 anyway.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
VIP
Posts: 8,575
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

“What's the point of using Av mode if you're going to set the lens to its widest aperture? I say use Tv mode to protect against getting too slow a shutter speed. You need at least 1/200, and at that speed at night on a high school field, the camera will almost certainly have to set the aperture to f/4 anyway.”

 

A similar argument could be against using Tv mode.  If you want 1/200 shutter with an f/4 aperture, I have little doubt the ISO will want to be 3200 to 6400 once the sun is completely gone.  I think Safety Shift is enabled by default, so it will kick in for either Av or Tv.  

 

In other words, making adjustments to exposure settings may not make a whole lot of sense once Safety Shift kicks in, whic it will.  If I were using Tv or Av, I would disable Safety Shift, and probably dial in -1 Ev of compensation so I could keep my shutter speed up. 

 

If I want a fixed aperture and control of the minimum shutter speed, to me that mean M mode and manual setting ISO or using ISO Auto.  The available light will be decreasing as the evening progresses, which means constant adjustments will need to be made to ISO and probably shutter speed.  Set ISO to Auto, and now the only setting you need to change is shutter speed.   If ISO goes too high, slow down the shutter speed.  It is a very simple approach to a complex problem.

 

The argument against using M mode has been you cannot use AEC.  Av mode is good for controlling strobes, and it allows you to dial in AEC if you want when you are not using strobes.  While the T6i probably does not offer AEC in manual, the more recent mid-range and professional DSLRs do offer AEC in M mode.  The trick is you have to use ISO Auto to enable AEC in M mode.

 

When it comes to manually setting ISO, some Rebels only allow you to adjust ISO in full stops.  The only want to set ISO in 1/3 stop increments is to use AEC, or set ISO to Auto.  The camera can automatically set ISO in 1/3 stops, but some of the low end Rebels only allow setting ISO in full stop increments.

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
VIP
Posts: 8,575
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

[EDIT]

When it comes to manually setting ISO, some Rebels only allow you to adjust ISO in full stops. The only [way] to set ISO in 1/3 stop increments is to use AEC, or set ISO to Auto. The camera can automatically set ISO in 1/3 stops, but some of the low end Rebels only allow [for manually] setting ISO in full stop increments.
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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
VIP
Posts: 11,620
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

Robert,

"What's the point of using Av mode if you're going to set the lens to its widest aperture?"

 

The reason to use Av is because the lens is usually the limiting factor. You set aperture and that's it. You'er done. One setting.  SS is not as limiting and generally will have more room basically because it has the camera behind it.  Now you may argue it will go so slow that the photo will be blurry and that is true but the result is you got a photo. If the camera runs out if aperture it will not fire at all.

This Mom needs to keep the situation simple as she starts this journey.  As she becomes more familiar with the camera and settings then we can suggest more advanced settings. My starting suggestions will get her a photo!

 

The only thing that will happen if all these advanced things are thrown at her, the more confused and overwhelmed she will be. You have to walk before you run.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Honored Contributor
Posts: 5,065
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please


@ebiggs1 wrote:

Robert,

"What's the point of using Av mode if you're going to set the lens to its widest aperture?"

 

The reason to use Av is because the lens is usually the limiting factor. You set aperture and that's it. You'er done. One setting.  SS is not as limiting and generally will have more room basically because it has the camera behind it.  Now you may argue it will go so slow that the photo will be blurry and that is true but the result is you got a photo. If the camera runs out if aperture it will not fire at all.

 


Huh?? I don't believe any of the Canon DSLRs I've owned (XTi, 50D, 7D, 5D3, 5D4) have behaved that way. In Tv mode if there's not enough light, the camera will just choose the widest aperture available and let the chips fall where they may. The only time it will refuse to fire is if it can't achieve focus. I'm too busy (or lazy) to look it up just now, so I confess myself a jackass if I'm wrong. But I don't think I am.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
VIP
Posts: 11,620
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

"If the camera runs out if aperture it will not fire at all."

 

Of course I meant to offer, "If the camera runs out if aperture auto focus ability it will not fire at all."  My eye teeth got in front of my fingers and I couldn't see what I was typing!  I may have run out of auto focus!!!!  The fact remains that in this case Av is the best option. The main most limiting factor is not fast enough glass.  Which, BTW, is the same for most of us that shoot sports in the evening or under the lights.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
VIP
Posts: 11,620
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

"What's the point of using Av mode if you're going to set the lens to its widest aperture?"

 

Bob,

This is not just me but most all the pros I ever talked with use Av for sports, well football anyway.

A common setting for example is ...........

Av set at f2.8

Auto ISO 

WB auto

Ai-servo

BBF

High speed continuous

jpg file format, yeah they don't use Raw

 

The OP needs to start simple.  About Raw file format, it gives a greater latitude of adjustment and she likely doesn't have a deadline to meet.

 

 

 

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Reputable Contributor
Posts: 619
Registered: ‎01-25-2018

Re: Night Football Shooting-Need some help please

[ Edited ]

Learning to shoot football and shooting football at night are two practices with a big learning curve.  Since you are on the field, I assume you know the coaches and AD so ask if you can practice your football photography at some practices.  That will help you practice your play following skills without the added complexity of difficult lighting AND the players will love some of the photos you capture because you will have set up and lighting conditions that will never occur during an actual game.  This practice won't make a huge difference but it will definitely help if you are new to football photography AND you will start to learn some of the typical plays and moves of that specific team which will help you during the actual game. 

 

It may also help your play avoidance skills Smiley Happy   I always make sure that I know what is behind me so that I can clear out QUICKLY while still staying in place as long as possible to capture as much of a play as I can safely.  IF you cover a game with grass sidelines, consider wearing cleats if the field has recently seen heavy rain because you may be surprised at how poor the footing is on wet muddy grass.  One game I covered last year required the athletic trainer to tape up two officials who slipped and fell on the sidelines.

 

High school stadium lighting frankly sucks at most locations so try to get some good images during warmup and early in the game when you may still have some natural light to help supplement.  I shoot most of the game with a 300 2.8 on one body and a 70-200 2.8 on the other and most of the time they are set wide open. I developed different preference than many and shoot almost exclusively in manual mode.  Depending upon the field lighting, I like to fix ISO changing it as full darkness sets but some fields have very uneven lighting and I use auto ISO for those.  When there is reasonable light variance across the field, you can shoot fixed ISO and correct in post with your RAW files.  I reduce shutter speed as required to get a decent balance between sharpness reduced by noise and sharpness reduced by blur.  I have played a lot with different servo AF setups and I find my best hit rate is with a single point but that is going to vary by camera and person so experiment and see what works best for you and your equipment.

 

Because I do take a variety of photos during a game, I don't lock the control wheels for shutter speed and aperture but I do make sure to check the helpful information in the viewfinder.  You don't want to find after the fact that you accidentally shot an entire quarter with shutter speed set to max because you put a finger on the wrong control.  Some people like to lock the controls to prevent this but I like to be able to change quickly without unlocking.

 

As Ernie stated, location is critical and choose different places during the game to get an array of shots. You will get entirely different looks from behind versus down field of the offensive line and no matter where you are, sometimes you will just be in the wrong location to get a great shot.  Like the athletes, don't dwell on a missed opportunity because there are many photo ops during a game and if you are thinking about a missed one you will miss several more.

 

I will spend some time on the "opposing" sideline to get some shots and I will take a few with narrower aperture and reduced shutter speed to get a couple of the team with the crowd in focus behind it.  You will quickly develop a sense of staying out of the way and officials have zero patience for a non-participant who gets into their space and they do have to move quickly to follow the play.  Reviewing images during the game is something you should only do rarely and very quickly because you can easily become a hazard the second you stop paying attention.  

 

Football photography is a lot of fun once you get past the initial part of the learning curve but again I can't stress safety for you and the players enough.  Plays develop very quickly even away from the key part of the play.  You may be well downfield of the running back but a leading blocker many yards ahead may send a defender flying your direction as he clears the route.  It has been a LONG time since I played high school football and I have no desire to get tackled!  

 

Take plenty of photos of the warmup and throughout the game, review them in post and learn what worked and what didn't, and a few games in you will be amazed at how much progress you have made.  I shot soccer for years but first shot high school football last year and it took a couple of games to figure out what worked best for me.

 

And on edit, if you are shooting for the team be sure to get plenty of shots of the supporting cast on the field and not just the leaping catch or the killer tackle.  That catch wouldn't have happened without the offensive line giving the QB an opportunity and that touchdown saving tackle was likely set up by another defender.  Football is a team sport and all of the players deserve their moment in the sun (or in this case the dim stadium lighting).

 

A few from the first game I shot this season, it is really nice to have high school football starting again and I am looking forward to a game tonight!

 

Rodger

 

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