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Modifications (2)
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Midfield Battle

By Philo  
Another from the local derby between Rothwell Juniors and Methley United Under 14's. Combative midfielder, Joe, executes a great tackle on the surging Rothwell player.
This is from later in the match when the frost and mist had gone but I was still using positive exposure compensation resulting in some blown highlights. So easy to get carried away!
Other than the usual background distractions, any other thoughts? I have had to crop some from the left, to remove half a parent, leaving the ball close to edge of the frame.

Tags: Football Tackle Methley United Rothwell Juniors Sports and action

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luckybry 12 3 Scotland
24 Mar 2013 12:49PM
grt sports image
mrswoolybill Plus
15 3.3k 2538 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2013 1:37PM
Like this a lot, it has a clear narrative, we can read exactly the brief sequence of events.
Interesting to read that you cropped a bit off the left, I was wondering. Cloning to move the ball or otherwise 'interfere' with the game would be a no-no, but cloning out half a parent would be acceptable I think... Wink
senn 11 5 1 Belgium
24 Mar 2013 2:21PM
a classy action shot .. stunning DOF management
rhol2 11 369 1 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2013 4:15PM
Excellent action shot..To leave the ball as shot, you could use cut and paste to remove the background figure instead of cropping, in my mod. above.

alistairfarrugia 10 164 88 Malta
24 Mar 2013 4:34PM
With such action shots, what you can also try to achieve is to have an image that isn't entirely frozen in time, but rather shows a BIT of motion blur to make it more alive. 1/800 is a very fast shutter speed so the action would be frozen for sure - particularly given the available natural light.

What I'm wondering now is why you were on Aperture Priority mode. For such action shots, and what I presume was a handheld situation, I would recommend using Shutter-priority and setting a speed of around 1/320 - 1/500, slower for more motion blur, faster for less of course. If you specifically wanted to have a blurred background as well, you should have opted for Manual Exposure and used f/4.0 or wider and a shutter of 1/320 - 1/500 for instance, given your ISO setting. This would require a bit more fiddling and I know it's not ideal when you're in the thick of it - took some action shots myself recently and you can easily get carried away. This only makes having the correct setting and exposure mode even more critical I guess.

Regardless of the above though, I like this - it has drama and interest. What could be done though is to try and place that ball on a lower/left third, by adding a bit more space to the left as some mods did.
pamelajean Plus
16 1.8k 2264 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2013 5:35PM
You know me, Phil, I couldn't resist a modification.
I used your V2, the original, and extended the canvas on the left to give a bit more space in front of the ball, and cloned out the people.
danh 12 61 36 United Kingdom
24 Mar 2013 5:44PM
Shutter priority is a no-no for me. I'd always rather have an absolutely frozen sports image rather than go for 'creative' blur and miss/ruin what might have otherwise been an excellent shot.

Sports photography needs a wide aperture for a shallow depth of field and if you shoot in shutter priority you have no control over the aperture and a sudden burst of sun causes your aperture to step down, gives you a massive depth of field, and kills your image. In aperture priority, the burst of sun just gives you a faster shutter speed.

Settings here are good, bar the absence of the widest possible aperture. For sport, 1/800th is getting near to the slowest shutter speed I would use and won't always freeze everything. 1/320th would be of little help to freeze sporting action I'm afraid.

I hope I cause no offence but I'd rather go with the technique illustrated by the photographer here, not that suggested by the member of the critique team. Sorry. Just my opinion. Smile
Philo 12 99 83 England
24 Mar 2013 6:00PM
Thanks for the mods, Roger and Pamela, both are an improvement but as said above I don't wish to manipulate my sports images as I feel it should be a true record of the match. Watch this space though, I may cave in, even if it is just for epzWink
Alastair, I agree with parts of your critique but I believe aperture priority is much better than shutter priority as I need to be in control of the aperture to minimise dof. Manual is of course an option.
I sort of agree with you regarding shutter speed, and in this instance much slower would have worked, but in general I like to be between 1/500 and 1/640 (usually this gives sharp players with blurred feet and ball). I struggled when I first used this lens so I aimed for a high shutter speed initially and then reduced it over time as I improved my technique.
Thanks for all the feedback, much apreciated.
Philo 12 99 83 England
24 Mar 2013 6:06PM
Sorry, Dan, your comments came in whilst I was typing (I got disturbed midway through). I knew you would push for widest aperture and may try it now that I am more confident with the lens but f/3.2 may be better in the trade off between sharpness and depth of field.
alistairfarrugia 10 164 88 Malta
24 Mar 2013 7:19PM
So long as your priority was the DoF choice, then by all means using Aperture priority was the way to go. There I'd agree of course, there's no argument there. My proposal was for the creation or addition of a bit more drama in the image (through some motion blur), but as I said, it's a question of choice - shutter priority might give you a very narrow aperture if the place was well lit, but given your exposure compensation and the ISO of 360 showing in the EXIF data, I think you could have managed settings that would give both subject isolation (say aperture of 3.5 / 4.0) and some motion blur (1/400 speed for instance). Admittedly, background blur on f/3.2 or 2.8 will look better than 3.5 / 4.0, so I stress it's a question of preference.

Ultimately, this is the beauty of photography - we all come with a baggage of preferences and try to give them life with the options we go for. So long as one knows what is to be achieved, and how to achieve it, then there's no right or wrong approach I guess. It's just a question of preference and priorities.
Philo 12 99 83 England
24 Mar 2013 9:01PM
Alastair, taking this shot in isolation then your suggestion may well have worked but it is very difficult to predict such situations in a match. I am not even sure that any blur would be noticeable at 1/400s. You are very right about the beauty of photography: life would be pretty boring if we all had the same preferences.
paulbroad Plus
15 131 1294 United Kingdom
25 Mar 2013 6:39PM
Try telling a sports editor you were after creagive blur and/or movement. Pin sharp and frozen where it needs to be is the way to go, and you have. First class quality and v1 fills the frame with the action as it should. Well done. Could only ask for the ball to be in the air.

Philo 12 99 83 England
25 Mar 2013 10:18PM
Thanks, Paul, I will instruct the players to try to lift the ball off the ground when tacklingWink

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