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Blurred action pictures

Trying to take pictures at my grand daughters basketball game and it blurs the motion of the hands, feet, ball, etc . I have it in the sports mode but it still blurs when they are playing on the court. Any suggestions.

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  • turbocat Feb 10, 2008

    Is that my ISO Adjustment, apeture mode, or shutter speed? (as you can tell, I'm just learning all this stuff, but sure do enjoy taking my pictures. Thanks for your help.

    CAT

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Not sure which camera you are using, but you'll need to be shooting at 1/250 of a second or faster to freeze action like basketball

Posted on Feb 09, 2008

  • Kevin Pettit
    Kevin Pettit Feb 10, 2008

    For 1/250, I was referring to shutter speeds with maximum aperture (the smallest number your camera can achieve, ie. f5.6-.63) for sports. ASA/ISO setting usually limit you too 400 for higher resolution settings (also dependent on your camera model)

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Action photos blurred using the zoom lens.


When shooting pictures, always check the length of the lens. Take the length in mm to decide how fast your shutter speed should be. When shooting 200 mm, the shutter speed should be at least 1/200 of a second. For a 400 mm it should be 1/400 of a second, and so on. With indoors sport, you need a lens with a huge aperture like 2,8 or better and a high ISO setting, to reach the speed needed for a long lens.
Modern lenses can have vibration reduction, and with these sometimes you can shoot 3 to 4 full stops sower.
A 200 mm lens with vibration reduction can be used then at 1/25 or even 1/15 of a second and still don't need to worry about motion blur.

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1 Answer

I have a Nikon D5000 and my daughter is a competitive cheerleader and every competition the lighting is always dark and on the stage is really bright. My problem is i can't seem to get good pictures with...


Photographing in low-light situations is always problematical. I'm going to assume you can't add more light, and go on to other things.

The blurring is caused by subject motion. Because the light level is so low, the shutter has to remain open for longer and thus a moving subject blurs.

Raise the sensitivity of your camera to light. Turn the ISO up. This will lead to digital noise, looking something like film grain. However, given the choice between a grainy picture and no picture...

Use the fastest lens you have, and open it up all the way. Switch to the Aperture-priority mode by turning the mode dial to A and turn the command dial to get the largest aperture (smallest f/number). This will give you the fastest shutter speed possible under the conditions. Unfortunately, the kit lenses usually sold with the D5000 are not very fast. If you see professional photographers at a basketball game or a night football game, you'll notice they're using big lenses. Unfortunately, such lenses cost $2000 and more.

Try to catch the action at its peak. For example, during a jump there's a brief instant when she stops going up and is yet to start going down. You may have to take dozens of pictures just to get one good one, but you're not paying for film and printing the bad ones, so take pictures. Lots of pictures.

Nov 25, 2010 | Nikon Digital Cameras

1 Answer

I just purchased a new Olympus E 420 I am trying to take pictures of a basketball game and they are blurry. Can you help me select the correct mode and shutter speed.


I assume you're shooting indoors and that you can't rig additional floodlights. Unfortunately, you're probably not going to eliminate all of the blurring. Here are some tips on reducing the blur.

Raise the ISO. This will increase the noise, and you'll have to make the call as to the trade-off between noise and blur.

Set the exposure mode to Aperture-priority. Open up the lens as far as it will go. This will guarantee the fastest shutter speed under the circumstances.

Anticipate the action and time it for the peak. A player driving the lane will blur. A player hanging at the top of his jump shot won't.

If you're sitting in the bleachers, forget about using flash: you're too far away for the flash to reach the subject. If you're on the sidelines (and flash is allowed), you can experiment with flash.

You didn't specify the lens(es) you'll be using. One of the things that separate the professionals from the rest of us is the speed of their lenses. Of course, if Sports Illustrated is paying for the pictures, the photographer can afford $2000 lenses.

Feb 20, 2010 | Olympus E-420 Digital Camera

2 Answers

I have a nikon d60 and my basketball pictures are blurred. I am using the 55-200 mm kit lens and am wondering if I need a faster lens. What do you recommend?


Turn on the sport program or manually use faster than 1/250s exposure. Your 55-200 lense has the f-value of 4-5.6 which is quite enough for the indoors photograhy. Better to use a flash though if you're gonna take some less blurred pictures of the hectic actions of the game.

Dec 02, 2009 | Nikon D60 Digital Camera with 18-55mm +...

1 Answer

How can i change the exposure time on my pentax istD digital slr to get motion blur etc.?


OK that was a lame answer up there! If you want to add motion blur to your photographs there are several ways. There are two main motion blurs that can be achieved. One is the background blur to give your subject a fast motion feel while being able to identify your subject, like a race car. The other is subject blur to give a motion effect to your subject. NOW THE FUN PART - Doing it. The first one is the panning technique, set your camera for the proper exposure for your subject, frame your subject, as it passes by shoot and pivot at your waist while following the subject in the viewfinder, avoid up and down movement, with practice you will figure the right exposure and movement to achieve this blur effect. The second is the subject blur, this is simply adjusting your shutter speed and exposure to allow your subject to pass by with the shutter open long enough for it to leave a blurred image.

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1 Answer

Blurr and dark pictures, ISO setting at highest, TV mode,


the picture are blurred because you use probably a tele lens, you need a pod. Picture are darkbecause there is not enough light. increase time (you need a pod)

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1 Answer

Blurred motion photos


Sorry, I didn't get those pages. You can set the shutter speeds for the higher settings using the M or S mode on the camera. You can also adjust the ISO settings to increase the light sensitivity for proper exposure at the higher shutter speeds. I would shoot a few test shots before the action starts to see if any adjustments are required.

The built in flash on the camera won't be of much help in a large room like a gym. It only has a effective range of about 10 feet.

I laugh every time I see the flashes going off at a large sporting event with folks in the upper seats firing away....

Feb 11, 2008 | Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W55 Digital Camera

1 Answer

D50, blury pics


Blur can occur if the shutter speed is too low relative to the degree of movement of your subject(s). While the 'sports' mode favors shutter speed and adjusts the focus for moving subjects, you may still need to increase the ISO (I'm not sure the camera does that automatically), or use flash, if feasible.
Alternatively, try panning the camera with your moving subject. This should blur the background, but keep the subject from blurring.
Finally, keep in mind that in sports photography, blur is sometimes a desired outcome that produces a sense of motion in an otherwise static photo.

Hope that helps.

Nov 14, 2007 | Nikon D50 Digital Camera

3 Answers

Blurred images with no flash


First, try to get more light, particularly natural light (window); second, try using shutter priority (S mode), setting the shutter speed at not less than 1/50, faster if you are shooting motion/action (check the Properties of the blurred pictures that you've been getting in Camedia software - the shutter speeds are probably too slow because of the low light), and experiment with higher ISO settings (either 200 or Auto, not 400) though there's a trade-off in noise levels.

Sep 11, 2005 | Olympus Camedia C-3020 Zoom Digital Camera

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