Sometimes you an assignment that reminds you of how good you have it!
Last night I covered a game for a friend of mine - regional football league final, which really made me realise how good many professional photographers have it in regards to the conditions (read : lighting) they have it. And despite all of that, many of us still like to complain a little about it, either in silence or to fellow photographers.
Football is something I tend to stay away from covering in England, but this week I covered two games. One at St Andrew's (home of Birmingham City FC) and another at Boldmere. Game at St Andrew's I managed to cover using ISO3200-5000 at 1/1000 and f3.2-f4.0, game Boldmere, well - ISO was upped to 12800 and 1/800 and f2.8-f3.5 and even that was only in few spots of the ground.
These two experiences just made me think how things actually get a whole lot easier for photographers as they move up to cover more professional leagues. Looking at a Premier League game on TV and seeing 8 photographers sitting next to one another, pointing their lenses the same way, with identical focal length lenses.. in a well light stadium. Now where is the challenge in that :-) (apart from the game being extremely boring!)
Sitting in a misty, partially light non-league ground, with possibly not the most expensive camera body and no f2.8 lens at hand - now that is where you challenge to get some good images.
So - respect to the photographers who go to these poorly light venues with a Canon 400D and a Sigma 18-200mm lens (camera and lens mentioned just as example - and it was also what I started with myself!) and come away with good photos. And note to self - do not complain next time the light is just a little bit off 'perfect'!!
Due to images from both games being sent for clients - unfortunately I am not able to post samples of images, but here is an image of the Boldmere ground in five images, taken in little over a second at f4, 1/640 and ISO128000, to show not only that the light isn't the brightest - but that it also comes in waves.
As for the game covered last night, definitely more entertaining than the professional level of the game in this country....