The Touchdown, Canton, NC - 2013
(Click on photo to enlarge.)
Friday night I once again experienced the frustration of trying to take photos at a high school football game at night, in a poorly lit stadium, with a relatively slow lens. I've tried to make the point many times before that equipment isn't what makes a good photographer. I think I'm ready to concede that night time sports photography may be the exception.
Of the 87 exposures I made Friday night, all but a handful were too blurred to be usable. Even at ISO 3200, my camera's upper limit, I was still forced to shoot at shutter speeds of 1/125 or slower with my slow lens. That's just not fast enough. Some of my shots were excellent examples of capturing peak action, except that the peak action was blurred.
I was able to salvage some shots that were only a little blurred with some creative post processing - thank goodness for software! On the photo above I decided to go with a more pictorialist look since the stadium light caused contrast to go south, and created a lot of grain in the shadows. I exaggerated the loss of contrast and increased grain to get an effect I liked. Believe me, this looks more interesting than the original color version. As the old saying goes, "When life hands you lemons, make lemonade."