October 19, 2015

Take Better Action Shots of Your Kids

[part of the Monday for Moms blog series – small tips and tricks that will make big changes in photos of your children]

Kids…they are so quick!  One minute they are doing something super cute and a moment later they are done.  One of the things I loathed most about my point and shoot camera was the snail’s pace boot up time after hitting the power button.  Even slower were the seconds that passed between hitting the shutter button and the picture actually being taken.  I always managed to catch closed eyes and awkward motions.

When I upgraded to my first DSLR, the Canon Rebel t2i (I HIGHLY recommend the Rebel camera series to anyone dipping their toes in the DSLR ocean) I was most impressed with the instantaneous reaction of the shutter after pressing the button.  I was finally able to capture the moments as they occurred, and not just a few seconds too late!  The feeling was amazing!

Another great capability of DSLR cameras is action shots. Which, lets face it, is pretty much most of toddler life! 🙂  From toddlers to sports this tip will help you capture your kids in motion.

Consider this: your child is moving quickly.  A slow shutter speed allows light to enter the camera’s sensor for a longer period.  The camera will capture an image of your child moving across the scene = a blurry image.  To freeze the action, use a high shutter speed.

1. Use full Manual mode or Shutter Priority (S or Tv, depending on your camera make).

2. Just how fast the shutter speed needs to be changes depending on how quickly your child is moving.  Start with around 1/500th of a second and work from there.

He’s still a cutie, but my shutter speed was only 1/200th of a second in this image.  See the motion blur?

Shenandoah National Park Photographer Big Meadows8

The shutter speed for these images was 1/1000th of a second. MUCH better!  This image is still a little out of focus – the focus landed on his head/hair instead of eyes.

Shenandoah National Park Photographer Big Meadows11

Shenandoah National Park Photographer Big Meadows12

Happy shooting! 🙂

Have a topic you’d like to see me cover?  Mention it below in the comments!  I love to hear from you!

– Nikki

Virginia Photographer | Harrisonburg Photographer | Charlottesville Photographer | Staunton Photographer | Luray Photographer



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