Photo – High School Football Punter

by Mike on December 20, 2009

Photo of the Day – Osceola High School Punter in Action

Osceola vs. our local Mainland High School Bucs. The punter, David Bracy, is fully extended after punting the ball away. The game was played September 18, 2009. Mainland won the game 26-21 after trailing 21-0 at halftime.

Osceola Punter vs. Daytona Beach Mainland

Osceola Punter vs. Daytona Beach Mainland

The game was pretty amazing. Osceola was crusing along. When all of a sudden Mainland woke up and put on an incredible comeback. It was some of the best entertainment I’ve ever had, and for $6.

The photo was a bit of a challenge because I was sitting in the stands about 25 rows up. I had to use a longer lens, my 70-300mm telephoto lens at 215mm. The problem is that without a tripod, without the best of light conditions, I wasn’t sure I could get a wide enough aperture and fast enough shutter speed. I was able to shoot at 1/100 second shutter speed with the aperture fully open at f/3.5mm.

The rule of thumb is that to shoot hand held, the shutter speed should at least match the focal length. In this photo that didn’t happen. The focal length was 215mm and shutter speed 1/100 sec. Not even close. What I did, was put my elbows on my knees, held my breath and press the shutter button. Not bad considering.

A fast lens, one that would give me fast shutter speed and a wider aperture, for shooting sports is expensive. I priced them at a little under $10,000 for my camera – Not going to happen. These lenses are big and need their own monopod. You can see them at big sporting events, particularly in the end zone. Those shooters are lugging around about $30,000 in camera gear. The cameras they are using are in the $7,000-$12,000. I don’t think I’ll become become a sports photographer any time soon.

The result is what I was looking for. There’s a little blur with the Mainland player in blue, but that’s OK because he is not the main subject in this photo.

Photo Details: Olympus E-520,  1/100 sec, f/3.5, ISO 400, 215mm.

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