Action Photo Tips – Terrain Mud Run

On Saturday May 12th the Terrain Mud Run descended upon Camp Harlow in North Eugene. With several great obstacles and lots of mudĀ  a messy dirty amazing time was had by all. I had the pleasure of photographing the event for the organizers. I usually am posting to show off my latest wedding photography album or a really neat set of senior portraits, but I also love to get out and capture some action! Below I’ve outlined a couple quick tips for making sure your action shots turn out as crisp and clean as possible.

  • Most sports shots will require a fast shutter speed. I rarely go below 1/500th of a second. If your photos turn out too dark at 1/500th then boost the ISO to compensate.
  • Consider using flash if you are within 15 feet of your subject. Just enough to light the face of your athlete will help even the exposure.
  • Position yourself to avoid background clutter. Safety nets, cars, advertisements, etc. can draw attention away from your subject.
  • Use a long lens if you can, it will make your subject stand out from the back ground.
  • Turn your camera to ‘burst’ mode. Things happen fast in sports, make sure you can keep up!
  • Think about your angle, will shooting below the athlete make them look ‘larger than life’ or is it better to shoot from above and display them as part of their environment.
  • Most importantly, timing is EVERYTHING! Anticipate movement, use predictive focus and wait until the peak of the action to shoot!

On another more specific note, if you’re going to be shooting anything muddy and dirty wear clothes that can get messy and use the longest lens you can. I was zoomed to 200mm most of the day on Saturday and I still ended up crusted in mud from the tip of my lens hood all the way down to the insides of my socks. If you do not have a weather sealed camera you might consider an easy trick that I use – grab a clear plastic bag and make a poncho with just the lens sticking out. On most cameras you will still be able to manage the controls even with it bagged up. good luck on your action endeavors, happy shooting!

To see more of my mud run photos visit the album

To check my availability for your sporting event contact me here!

Lacey LaDuke Photography

Call me: (541)954-2458 or (509)954-3885

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