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From the author of Capturing Outdoor Sports

Capturing Outdoor Sports

It's bright! It's daytime! Bring on low ISO and the high shutter speeds!

Use these settings:

  • White Balance: Set to the sun icon if it's sunny, or the cloud icon if there's mostly cloud cover or rain.
  • ISO: 100 or less for full sun, or 200 for cloudy/rain.
  • F-stop (if available): Start around 5.6, adjusting as needed.
  • Shutter speed: On a sunny day, you could be up at 1/1000, or you might be between 1/200 to 1/500 in clouds or rain.
  • Flash: Save the flash. However, it should work nicely outdoors between innings or quarters, if you're close to your posing subjects and there's bright light behind them.

When you're outside, light conditions tend to stay pretty consistent unless you're in a stadium that has a severe shadow encroaching across the field, or drastically changing skies with direct sun and then heavy clouds. Usually, in full manual mode, with the ability to change f-stops and shutter speeds, you'll be able to arrange your settings once and just keep them there. With sports, the higher the shutter speed, the better (for example, 1/1000 second), since those kids will be zipping around out there with their soccer balls, lacrosse sticks, and high jumps.

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