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Thread: NFL Photographer Describes Shooting Game without Auto focus.

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    NFL Photographer Describes Shooting Game without Auto focus.

    http://blogs.delawareonline.com/firs...nd-snow-oh-my/

    This is a fascinating article about an NFL game on Sunday which was played through a small snow storm.

    The snow plays havoc with autofocus, so the photographer flipped to manual. The results are fantastic!

    Edit: title should say autofocus. Stupid autocorrect.
    Last edited by Sdison; 11-12-2013 at 7:04am.
    I'm Sam.

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    Member adza's Avatar
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    He sure nailed some of those shots - nice stuff.

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sdison View Post
    Edit: title should say autofocus. Stupid autocorrect.
    Will fix the thread title for you.
    Andrew
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    Photo Bizarro nimrodisease's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting, that was a good read.
    My name is John.
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    Wow, who wouldhave thunk that you could ever possibly taken photos of moving objects without AF.... And here's me thinking that all those images of car racing before the mid 80's were mockups taken 10 years ago with a 1D....

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    Ausphotography Veteran MattNQ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoffy View Post
    Wow, who wouldhave thunk that you could ever possibly taken photos of moving objects without AF.... And here's me thinking that all those images of car racing before the mid 80's were mockups taken 10 years ago with a 1D....
    All photoshopped they were
    It's funny, so people whinge when a new Nikon has 'only' 39 AF points instead of 51. I always laugh heartily and wish they'd get over themselves
    I reckon if someone can't get good sports shots on manual focus they are missing an essential photography skill.
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    Ausphotography Regular NRandall's Avatar
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    i'm going to go out and sell all my AF lenses now and start over...
    Main Body D800E plus a bunch of other Nikon stuff
    "The eye sees what it wants to see and the camera sees the rest" Nick

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    From Sdison's link;
    "As I mentioned before, cameras today are heavily built on their autofocus abilities. Ask any photographer about the drawbacks of a particular sports-built body and their first critique is bound to be a complaint about the autofocus system. Lenses aren’t built to be relied on for manual focus anymore either. In the golden era of film photography when legends like Neil Leifer and Walter Iooss were documenting football games from the sidelines they knew the feel of exactly how far to roll the focus dial to get the shot. They weren’t spoiled by AI Servo Tracking AutoFocus technology like we are today."

    So are we spoiled or just using the tools at our disposal?
    Good on the photog for remembering there's another way.

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    I am not going to disagree that the tools are designed for quicker auto focus - a focus movement that is a quarter of a turn from closeup to infinity is not like the movements on a manual focus camera.

    Yes, you are going to get more keepers with a camera that has a quick and reliable AF system...but the way I have seem some shoot, they might as well be taking video! Taking 1000 photos and filing 5 just seems a bit like overkill....but, of course, they have more chance of getting 'the one' when the shoot like that

    That being said, you should know how to use manual focus. Not that I am anywhere near the likes of these guys, but I have used manual focus a lot when I used to go and play around on the side of car tracks. I suppose car racing is a bit easier, in the fact that generally time and time again, the cars will take the same line, so its easy to set the focus manually and wait for the car to come to you.

    Just a side note, but not really sports related. I have found that with shooting film on older manual focus cameras, I tend to get a higher success rate of pictures in focus. Yes, I do agonise over focus and take my time, but something has to be said for a lens with a nice smooth movement, and a bright viewfinder with a split prism image.
    Last edited by hoffy; 12-12-2013 at 9:07pm.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoffy View Post
    ....... and a bright viewfinder with a split prism image.

    Nice bright viewfinder with split prism AND auto focus are features that clash ... a balance needs to be made to suit both applications.

    Your old film camera probably doesn't have AF.

    If manually focusing and auto focusing are both important to you in your modern camera, I can highly recommend a Katzeye focusing screen.
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    To me, the most interesting aspect of this 'story' is that any one actually gives a rats. It's as though manual focus had never been used before.

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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    Nice bright viewfinder with split prism AND auto focus are features that clash ... a balance needs to be made to suit both applications.

    Your old film camera probably doesn't have AF.

    If manually focusing and auto focusing are both important to you in your modern camera, I can highly recommend a Katzeye focusing screen.
    Its crossed my mind many times, I have to admit.

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    Ausphotography irregular Mark L's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjphoto View Post
    ...... It's as though manual focus had never been used before.
    That may be the case for some.
    And some people tell me it's time I bought a mobile phone.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjphoto View Post
    To me, the most interesting aspect of this 'story' is that any one actually gives a rats. It's as though manual focus had never been used before.
    It's all about hits ... that's it. Nothing more nothing less.

    Someone posts something on their blog other than a selfie, or a shot of what they're having for lunch ... and the world stops and gasps in amazement!


    A section of the author's text says:

    " I decided to switch my 400mm lens to manual focus, and literally try my hand at focusing on my own ... "


    seriously?

    firstly he needed to switch the lens to manual focus .. why?
    If he was as pro as a proper pro .. firstly you'd expect he'd be using AF-On for focusing, and that he'd be using a pro long lens with full time manual focus override anyhow ... why the need to switch to manual.

    I've spent the last few years filtering out the AF-D(Nikon speak) lenses which don't allow full time override of focusing.
    Only one(lens) more to go where my lens collection is completed (Tammy 70-200/2.8) and full time manual focus override is simply a matter of tweaking the focus collar.

    I seriously doubt that he's using a screw driven lens in this day and age for his line of work.


    .. just a thought that crossed my mind.

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