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Want to upgrade to dslr to take horse racing action photos, need recommendations

ilzho
Rising Star

Hello:

 

For years I have had my Powershot G10 to take general pictures and it has worked well.

 

I am a huge fan of horse racing and I'm lucky to have a track, very close by. 

 

I want to be able to 'freeze' a horse and jockey racing among other types of photos.

My G10 cannot take these kind of pictures 'well'.

 

I am not looking to become a professional as I am not an expert at all, but I would love to have some proper equipment to take realitive good photos of horses racing/Equine. Yes this takes a lot of knowledge and practice/experience. All of which I do not have enough of.

 

I am looking to stay in the Canon family and would like some recommendations on a good DSLR camera and some lenses.

My budget is about $1500.

 

Any help and guidance is apprecaited.

 

Thank you,

David

79 REPLIES 79


@ilzho wrote:

Ok, so I finally made it to the track to see if I can start to practice what i've learned in the manual.

It's official, it's hard :).

You all have given me great advice and there are still 100's of things that I do not understand, but hopefully with more practice it will start to sink in. Trying to stop action and motion blur, is challenging.

Here are a few photos. I used a Canon Rebel Xsi and 100mm lens that my brother let me use for the first time.

  


Keep playing with your shutter speed, the last two, might be a bit too slow.

 

While it would be next to impossible to do for all the jockeys in a race, if there is a particular horse and rider you are focusing on, take advantage of the natural pause the jockey makes at the top or bottom of his motion, right as they are transitioning from moving up, to back down or down to back up. I think you caught that moment for the one jockey in the blue silks in the last photo. Really a very good start. With practice you'll get more and more keepers. Enjoy!!!

Thanks.

I'm usually near the 3/16 pole to allow me to get a few more shots, to tryto get the hang of all of this.

**bleep**, it's additive.... 🙂

I have many more shots, just playing with the different settings......

The motion blur was at 1/30, without a tripod......

Feel free to critique.....

It's the only way I'm going to get better.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10153659509428575.1073741842.723213574&type=1&l=2ac5f30886

 

It's primarily a practice your panning thing but a lens with IS that can be used in panning mode (not all IS lenses have that) helps too when using the lower shutter speeds.

"A skill is developed through constant practice with a passion to improve, not bought."

"....  The motion blur was at 1/30, without a tripod......"

 

Depending on available light, yeah, that's probably a bit slow.  However, I kind of like the effect you have nearly captured.  The jockey and body of the horse are frozen, while the legs and background are a blur.

 

If you haven't already gotten up to speed on the "Exposure Triangle", now would be a good time.  What camera shooting mode [and camera settings] were used for the first shot, the one where the horse's motion is frozen?  Note those settings, and use them as a rough baseline. Try making 1 or 2 stop adjustments to leg of the Exposure Triangle, and note the changes.

 

--------------------------------------------------------
"The right mouse button is your friend."

Thanks.

Yes I need to learn the exposire triangle, for that matter, I need to go to the libraby and check out some books, read articles, etc..... Maybe join photo meetup group.

Anyway here are the specs on the 4 photos on the previous page:

 

I shot the photos in tv mode, AI servo, continuous and I think all 9 af points on.

The first one:

ISO 320, 100mm, f 2.8, 1/4000

The second one:

ISO 320, 100mm, f 3.2, 1/4000

The third one:

ISO 200, 100mm, f 32, 1/30

The fourth one:

ISO 200, 100mm, f 25, 1/30

Here is a good place to start, the Canon DLC, Digital Learning Center.

 

http://learn.usa.canon.com/photography/photography.shtml

 

Click on the "EOS 101" link on the right side of the page.

 

http://learn.usa.canon.com/resources/articles/2015/understanding-exposure-triangle.shtml

--------------------------------------------------------
"The right mouse button is your friend."


@ilzho wrote:

Thanks.

Yes I need to learn the exposire triangle, for that matter, I need to go to the libraby and check out some books, read articles, etc..... Maybe join photo meetup group.

Anyway here are the specs on the 4 photos on the previous page:

 

I shot the photos in tv mode, AI servo, continuous and I think all 9 af points on.

The first one:

ISO 320, 100mm, f 2.8, 1/4000

The second one:

ISO 320, 100mm, f 3.2, 1/4000

The third one:

ISO 200, 100mm, f 32, 1/30

The fourth one:

ISO 200, 100mm, f 25, 1/30


With a crop sensor camera, anytime you stop down past f/8 your sharpness really starts to suffer. Avoid using f/16 through f/32!!!

I just noticed Canon Direct is running a sale on the refurbished EF-S 55-250 IS  STM lens. $129 includes a one year warrenty. And yes, it will work with your brothers Rebel XS.

FYI.

I contacted my track and they said they are ok with cameras as long as you do not have a tripod or a zoom lens over 15" in length.

So I'm good.

I also asked if they need a free assistant as I would love to learn the ropes 🙂 haha....

TTMartin it all depends on what features are important to you. That is why there are so many choices available from Canon.  Each and every one is a very capable tool for photography.  I have recommended mine and you have done so for yours.

 

BTW, MTF charts prove little about how a certain lens will compare to another in real worldly use.

EB
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