How to take better photos at sports events

motor racing

Sports photography is filled with many movements and actions. It’s important to know the tricks on how to capture a moving subject using your camera. Sports are unpredictable which means capturing the image can be challenging. For instance, movements in sports games can cause blurry and unfocused photos. That’s why it’s essential to know the tips on how to take the perfect shot during live actions.


It’s important to find the perfect spot to capture your images. Your location can make a massive difference in your image regarding angles and the view. Pick an area where you can get the best angle and allows you to capture the actions before they start.

Adjust the ISO settings

Your camera settings need to be adjusted before the game starts. Adjust your ISO depending on whether the location is indoor or outdoor. For indoor games, the ISO needs to be increased and vice versa for outdoor sports. Bear in mind that increasing your ISO can make your photos grainy. Make sure the ISO aren’t too high.

Take lots of pictures

One of the tricks to sports photography is taking as many photos as you can. Professional sports photographer will tend to have their camera settings set to rapid shooting mode. Using this setting will allow you to capture every shot when capturing the best moments of the event.


You can up your skills simply by practising your craft. One of the most popular shots in sports photography is capturing the subject in detail while the background is all blurred out. This technique will take a lot of practice to perfect. The tip here is to adjust your shutter speed.

Avoid flash

Flashing cameras are not allowed in sports events as it can distract the players from the game. Flash is not ideal for taking continuous shots it can causes lags between the shots.

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What you need to know about sports photography

sport photography

If you’re new to sports photography, it’s ideal to know more about the field before venturing to become a sports photographer. While becoming a professional sports photographer is exciting, it’s good to know the good and the bad things that come with it.


The sports photography is never boring as you’ll be able to capture different images from different kinds of sports events. As a photographer, it will allow you to be creative with your craft as you’ll have plenty of opportunities to try and discover new photography techniques.

There are various kinds of sports, and you can try all of them and see which sports are most suitable for your photography. You can choose from multiple sports including motor racing, football, swimming, running, cycling and many more.

Sports photography doesn’t always require taking shots of movements like running, kicking, shooting or jumping. There are other important moments that you can capture and they are the rare moments filled with emotions. It could be taking a photo of an athlete after winning or losing a game. Some scenes could be capturing an athlete as they prepare for a competition.


One of the disadvantages of being a sports photographer is that you will eventually have to buy better gears to help you have an advantage when taking the shots. The gears include long lenses and autofocus lenses which tends to be expensive. The long lenses are useful when taking photos far from your subject, and the focus lens provides a high-quality, detailed image of the subject.

During the sports event, you may have to compete for the perfect spot with other photographers who are doing the same thing as you. In large events, the best places are normally reserved for hired working professionals only.

Some sports events are held in different countries which means you will have to travel out to see the most significant events. This may not be a disadvantage for other photographers who love to travel.

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The Best Cameras For Sports Photography

Canon EOS 7D

Sports photography is not the same as a regular photography as it involves a lot of movement and actions on the scene. We’ve found a list of the cameras below that is most suited for sports photography. Using the right camera for your subject can be a big help especially when it comes setting your camera to fit your needs.

Canon Powershot G10

The Canon Powershot comes with a 5x wide angle lens with an optical image stabiliser that makes it ideal for your subjects that are moving. It can also produce a high-quality image as it contains approximately 14.7 of megapixels. Furthermore, the camera is attached to a textured grip which is great for holding a camera for a long time.

Canon EOS7D

The EOS7D is well known for its maximum shutter speed of 1/8000 per second. The fast shutter speed is what most sports photographer look for in a camera as this is perfect for sports photos.

The camera contains an 18 megapixel which produces a stunning quality of images. It also has a useful feature for night photography which can be used for night events in a sports game.

Nikon D7000

The Nikon brand is ideal for sharper image compared to a Canon camera. One of the best characters of this camera is that it has a 39 focal points that enables you to focus on your subject on your screen. This is great for taking shots or close up pictures of the athletes during a game.

Pentax K-5

The Pentax K-5 is a camera that’s very easy to use compared to the other camera brands. It’ displays a large LCD screen with a shutter speed of 1/8000 per second. Ideally, the number 1/8000 shutter speed are known to have the best image results for fast subject movements. What makes this different to other camera is that it can shoot up to seven frames per second.

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How To Become A Sports Photographer

sports photographer

The sports photography industry can become competitive especially during this era with lots of sports events are held everywhere in the world. So it’s important to be prepared if you want to be a professional sports photographer.

Learn from your competition

Like most creative fields, photography is very competitive indeed. One of the steps that you will need to take is to learn from other famous sports photographer who is out there and getting published in magazines and billboards. Researching about their photography will give you an idea on how to take great images, and it will also set a standard for your work. If you want to make it to the top, your craft will always have to have a high standard for you to be recognised as a professional sports photographer.

Take a course

As much as self-teaching yourself is good, you can learn even more from taking a course on the subject. The course can provide you with lots of knowledge on what exactly you need to learn. You can also practise takings lots of photos of fast moving subjects to be able to take the perfect shot.

Choose the right equipment

When selecting a camera, you need to understand what specification you should be looking out for as sports photography requires some specific settings and features as you are taking shots of fast moving objects. One of the specs you should be looking at is the shutter speed of your camera. According to professionals, it’s vital that you get a camera with at least six or seven frames per second to capture your subject. Investing in a good quality lens that has a good aperture and focus length is also a must for every sports photographer.

Practice at a local sports event

Practice and experience can take you very far! So start with practising taking shots of your subjects at a local sports event or other small sports event. You can learn a lot from the hands-on experience.

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Tips For Aspiring Sports Photographer

sports photographer

Being a sports photographer can come with many opportunities, one being your passion turned as a career. Other opportunities involve your work being published and recognised in magazines or websites.However, there are many things you need to learn to become a great professional sports photographer. Just like with other similar passions or careers, to be successful means to be on top of your game whether it’s learning more or looking for more experiences in your field.

To help you with your journey, we’ve found some helpful tips from a professional photographer named Jordan Weeks whose had plenty of experience in sports photography including cycling, surfing swimming and much more.

Learn your camera

Sports photography involves a lot of action and movement. Therefore, it can be difficult to shoot your subject when they are in action. However learning the settings of your camera can be helpful and make it easy for you to capture your subjects. When your settings are correct, you’ll be able to take a shot quickly and easily as well. Keeping in mind that being fast is an advantage as you want to keep up with your subjects so that you won’t be missing anything!

Find inspiration

Find something that sparks your creativity whether it’s looking up to someone you aspire to be or simply finding inspiration through other people’s work. As much as inspiration is important, make sure that you still applying your personal touch in all your work instead of copying someone else.

Shoot closer

Close-up photos can give you a dramatic result. You can try to experiment with taking a close up shot of different parts of the body especially on your subject’s head as this is where you will capture facial expression or feelings from a person.

Learn the sport

Knowing how the sports work and how the game transitions, you will always be one step ahead as this will give you a chance on moving to an area where you will get more actions from the scene. Jordan also recommends trying the sports to find where the most actions are.

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Tips For Water Sports Photographers

Sports on the water are usually some of the most dynamic, and if you happen to spot someone water skiing, windsurfing or otherwise riding the waves it often presents a great opportunity for a photo. These aren’t the easiest subjects to shoot, however, so you should be prepared if you hope to get some really impressive shots. Consider the following…


Firstly, you’ll probably need some specialised gear if you want to capture the best water sports photos. A study tripod may be a good idea to keep your camera steady on land, although this depends how long your subject stays in one area. Using the correct lens is crucial, as you’re likely to be quite far away and you’ll need to zoom in so as not to make your subject a tiny dot on the ocean.

If you do manage to get nearer and take some close-up shots, you may want to experiment with different lenses. At this point you should also consider how water resistant your camera and accessories are. If they need to be protected, be very careful and test your gear before going near deep water.


Generally speaking, water sports are all done at high speeds and it can be hard to predict where your subject will go next, so photography isn’t made easy. Try starting off with a slower paced activity to get some practice before trying anything too challenging to keep up with. It will be easier to get good results if you stay focused on one person.


Of course, your skill level will probably show in your final photos and it’s worth practising different techniques as much as you can. Remember to think about…

  • Shutter speed – Increasing this to 1/100 or more may be necessary to get those “freeze frame” shots of fast-paced action
  • Focus – If you continuously pan to keep up with your subject, you should be able to auto-focus on them fairly easily while blurring the background
  • Framing – You should usually try to fill the frame as much as possible, rather than leaving too much plain water and sky with a small subject in the middle somewhere. Try to keep the camera straight, but don’t be afraid to try taking some portrait-oriented shots.
  • Exposure – On a bright and sunny day, reflective water can trick your camera into underexposing your photos because it thinks the light is brighter than it is. Looking into compensating for this with your settings.

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Bad Habits That Ruin Sports Photography

Even talented sports photographers can pick up bad habits that are hard to shake off. Do you have any of the ones in our list below? If you do, it’s time to starting thinking about breaking out of them.

Forgetting your camera – Invested a lot of money in a professional camera? Great, so where is it? If you leave your camera at home you might as well not own it. You’re not always going to capture a career-defining sports photo every time you take it out, but if you leave it behind you’re guaranteed not to get any material at all.

Running out of storage – One memory card can set you back a hefty sum, let alone thinking about buying more than one, but that’s the only way to make sure you don’t run out of space exactly when you need to take an amazing shot.

Not backing up your work – As an amateur or professional sports photographer, you need to make sure you save your work in at least two places, preferably three. The worst thing you can do is leave your photos on memory cards and never copy them.

Basic composition mistakes – Ever heard of the rule of thirds? If you haven’t, we can assume all your photos have the subject dead centre (or at least they’re supposed to). This ultimately makes for a lot of similar shots without much artistic flair. Frame your subject differently to achieve more varied and interesting images.

Ignoring your settings – You might be happy with some of the shots you can on automatic mode, especially with a more advanced camera, but you’re then restricted to taking shots the way the camera works best. Instead, you should be able to manipulate the camera to suit your situation rather than the other way round.

Rely on editing later – Sure, there are a lot of sports photography mistakes that are minor enough to be edited later using software, but you’re probably going to be sacrificing quality in order to achieve this. It’s easier and more effective to get the right shot when you take the picture, once you learn enough about photography to do this.

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8 Tips To Perfect Your Sports Photos

Are you looking to make 2017 the year you finally start to earn some real recognition for your sports photography? It’s a great field to be in if you’re willing to put in the work and develop your skills over time. Here are 10 top tips for getting the best out of your efforts.

1) Know your sport

Don’t bother trying to get great pictures of a game you don’t fully understand. You’re more likely to catch the real crucial moments if you truly follow what’s happening, and understand what’s coming next. You have to be ready and in position before the action happens.

2) Use back-button focus

Auto-focus usually happens when you start to press down the shutter button. This is handy for most situations, but for intense sports action you might need more control. Try switching to the focus button on the back of your camera, if you have one.

3) Stop checking every photo

You might have picked up a habit known as “chimping”, which means checking every picture you take on the screen immediately after taking it. This can mean you miss a lot more great opportunities. If you missed the shot, that’s tough… finding out now won’t let you go back in time to catch it.

4) Get unusual angles

If you can show familiar action from a new angle, this adds a lot of depth to your sports photography. Get to a position that spectators and TV cameras rarely see, and you’ll be more likely to capture some amazing and unique images.

5) Storytelling is key

It doesn’t matter much how expensive your camera is, or even how technically knowledgeable you are, if you fail to tell a story with your photos. Capturing a narrative and conveying what’s really happening is the most important aspect of getting those truly memorable shots.

6) Keep shooting during breaks

When the action is paused or even at an end, this is when many sports players will finally let their emotions show, meaning you have some amazing photo opportunities. Moments of victory always come just after the whistle blows, so don’t miss out on these.

7) Faces are important

If you manage to capture a face in your shot, it will almost always help you tell that story more effectively. Having said that, it can sometimes be more important to catch the exact game-changing moment and sacrifice the visible reactions from the players.

8) Critique your own workspace

The only way you’ll really learn how to improve is to learn your own bad habits and iron them out. Everyone takes some bad pictures, so don’t be terrified to admit when you do.

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Product Photography for Sports Equipment

Product photography is always going to be a difficult aspect of selling your product to someone who can’t physically see or touch it for themselves. With e-commerce gradually becoming even more important to the majority of businesses, this is a problem most retailers of sports equipment will have to overcome. How do you show off your items in the best possible way? A professional product photographer that specialises in e-commerce photography will go some way towards making it happen, but here is some general analysis of what makes it a little different when it comes to sports, and what you should be aiming for.


1) Focus on fine details

Cheap sports equipment may look the same from a distance, but compared to fine quality alternatives it’s not going to make the cut as long as the potential buyer can see the details up close. If your products are high quality and you want to advertise that, your photography will need to highlight extremely fine details. You can show the quality of stitching on clothing or gloves, or give a close up look at the surface of a ball if that’s what makes it unique.

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Ideas For Sport Photos

Have you ever wondered how the best sports photographs are produced?

It is not always how fantastic and expensive your camera is, a lot of the time it is just about being in the right place at the right time. Although there are advantages to having a more technology savvy camera, a budget camera if used at the right moment with right level of lighting and composition settings can get a perfect image.

Planning ahead is another feature to achieving great sports photographs, making sure you know when a sporting event will take place early can get you into an ideal position to take snaps. And if you can plan ahead and get that ideal position rather than having to jostle with crowds that can be a big factor between a great photograph and obscured visuals and blurry shots.


There are many great tips and tricks that can be used to bring out fantastic quality in you photographic work. Here are just some of them:

• Planning your location – If you are to visit a venue, or for example be at the side of the road when athletes run past then location is important. In a venue you might wish to try and get as close to the action as possible. You don’t get without asking, so try asking the venue if you can have things such as a trackside pass, it is always worth the extra effort and you might learn how to get a pass the next time round.

• Your camera settings – making sure you take a few shots prior to a sporting event can help you gauge the lighting and settings required to take high quality images.

• Shutter speeds and multi-shots – making sure you have the correct shutter speeds are vital for fast action photography. If your camera has the ability to take several shots at once then use the feature as there are shots you can miss if you only take one at a time.

• Make sure you have enough space to store photographs in your camera memory, or take plenty of film. There is nothing worse than running out before the event has finished.

• Tripods – If you wish to take a shot that is very stable, then a tripod can be an advantage.

• Zoom – Although some cameras do not have great zoom capabilities many do so try out a few zoomed shots prior to an event, use props such as trees in the distance or a distant moving object.

Overall with a bit of practice you will start to understand your camera’s capabilities and in time you will be able to take some great snaps. Remember that even the best photographers can get some terrible snaps, so don’t be put off if at first you and your camera do not succeed just keep trying.

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