How To Take Action Shots: A Quick Guide For Beginners

Capturing action shots can be tricky, and it isn’t a skill that comes intuitively to many. Taking action shots involve a sense of timing and feel for what’s happening, then snapping a photo at just the right moment. Let’s look at a few tips to help improve your action shot game.


Shutter priority is key


Capturing motion on photos is all about either freezing the action or trying to portray what’s happening using a long shutter speed. Often enough, you’ll want a sharp and crisp image of the scene. You’ll want to use a quick shutter speed to do this. How fast you’ll want your shutter speed will depend on how fast your subject is moving.


Try bringing up the ISO if you’re having issues with light. If this doesn’t solve the light issue, you may want to switch to manual to get control over your aperture. Go wide, trying f2.8 or even f4 to let as much light in as possible. Going up to the highest workable ISO, or widest f/stop, allows your shutter to go as fast as possible in the given situation.


Always be ready to shoot


Always try to anticipate your shots. Have your camera primed and ready to shoot all the time so you can nab that elusive action shot.


Always be aware of what’s happening, and try to have a basic understanding of your subject. This will help you in anticipating when to take photos.


Pre-Focus your camera


Most times, you’ll know where the action will happen, particularly in sports, where most of the action happens on the court or in the ring.  Focus your camera on the area before the action happens. This way, all you have to do is to wait for the right moment to snap your photos, and not have to waste precious seconds focusing your camera lens.


Get the best vantage point


To get the best possible shots, then a good vantage point is necessary. Not only is a clear view essential, but being at the proper level is also important in getting the shots you want. Always try to be at the level of your subjects to see their reactions and movements.


Keep on taking shots


Once you’re in position, take your shot, and keep on shooting! This means you’ll be less likely to miss that one shot. Keep your eyes on the action, and resist the urge to check your camera’s LCD screen. Try not to get distracted and don’t miss that shot you’re waiting for.


Pan your shots


A useful technique to use in taking action shots is panning, or moving the camera in tandem with your subject, allowing you to get a sharper image of your subject. Try it out!


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