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  1. Clare1991

    Clare1991

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    Name:
    Clare
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    My other half is a pretty keen mountain biker. I'd love to get some decent shots of him out biking. I am a complete beginner! I have a Nikon D3400 with a 15-55mm lens. I know I need to increase the shutter speed (maybe to at least 1/1000?) Does anyone have any tips on how to get some decent photographs?
     
  2. holty

    holty

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    i think the lens should read 18-55mm :LOL::LOL:
    try you tube for some vids of action photography then jus go and try it youself
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2017
  3. Clare1991

    Clare1991

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    Clare
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    Haha yes it definitely should! Clearly not great at typing on my phone:p:D:LOL:
     
  4. JJ!

    JJ!

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    AF-C mode and 1/1000 is fine. You can start to push the boundaries when getting more confident to 1/500 and slower to get the movement effect.

    I would consider a longer lens too. 18-55 is quite close for MTB action shots, but that might be where you want to be. Go get some shots and then post here for feedback!
     
  5. Clare1991

    Clare1991

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    Clare
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    Thank you! I will give it a go. What lens would you recommend? I'm just starting out and that is currently the only lens I have. I'm looking at getting another soon but not too sure which I'd like to get yet.
     
  6. wookie6262

    wookie6262

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    886
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    Simon
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    70-200mm f2.8 is a great starting point for sport.
     
  7. JJ!

    JJ!

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    The DX 70-300 is meant to be excellent on a budget.
     
  8. Clare1991

    Clare1991

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    Clare
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    I'll have a look at both of those, thanks!
     
  9. ah5168

    ah5168

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    Set the shots up first, get him to pose in the right position on the trail, pick somewhere with the sunlight you want, get your composition, exposure depth of field right then get him to ride backwards and forwards through the shot until you get the sort of thing you are looking for.

    Standing upright with the camera at normal eye level will not normally give you and interesting shot, try shooting from a low point or a high point etc.

    Normally a lower shutter speed is good what you are normally trying to do is get some motion blur on the wheels and background to produce a sense of motion but keep the rider sharp. To do that you need to focus on the rider and then pan with them. If you use a single focus point and say focus on his head then track through the shot keeping the focus point on his head as you fire of the shutter on a constant high setting.
     
    keeweeman likes this.
  10. Clare1991

    Clare1991

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    Name:
    Clare
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    These are great tips! Thank you! Aiming to get out tomorrow....depending on the weather...o_O
     
  11. posiview

    posiview

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    19,469
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    Andy
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    Practice panning Linky

    And enjoy.

    Cheers.
     
    Clare1991 likes this.
  12. Oliver Pohlmann

    Oliver Pohlmann

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    Oliver
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    Mountain biking photography is calling out for some fill flash whilst sightly under exposing the background.

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Tysonator

    Tysonator

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    785
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    Tyson
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    Mountain bike photography is actually a difficult job.
    The action is fast, poor low light in this country, or forest / wooded area, dark clothing, contrast on dark foliage bright sky, getting in to safe vantage point to name but a few problems.
    Fill flash will work great. Though I am not sure if 1/ 250th max snyc speed is going to be good enough. High speed sync my be a better option !
     
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  14. juggler

    juggler

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    Don't get another lens yet, there's really no need until you understand the limitations of what you currently have. The 18-55 will do what you need unless you really can't get anywhere near the track.
     
    Nostromo likes this.
  15. Tysonator

    Tysonator

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    Tyson
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    The Op needs a crash course !
    So go on YouTube watch a video then try to recreate the shot.
    Watch another then go and recreate the shot or effect.
    Join a local camera club is a good source of advice as there are mixed levels of experience in members.
    Just priactice, practice, practice.
    Op needs to live & breath DSLR !
     
  16. juggler

    juggler

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    I agree, but I don't think I'd suggest a complete beginner should start playing with off camera flash until they've mastered the exposure basics.
     
  17. Paddy McGovern

    Paddy McGovern

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    Paddy
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    That's a nice image
     
  18. Paddy McGovern

    Paddy McGovern

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    Paddy
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    That's a nice image
     
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  19. Tysonator

    Tysonator

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    I agree this type of photograph is advanced for a beginner.
    This should be the goal to aspire to, even i would have be glad to have taken a photo like this !
     
  20. Durbs

    Durbs

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    Paul
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    Ah - the beginners forum. Where people who are self-proclaimed "complete beginners" are advised to buy £1000+ lenses and use off-camera flash...

    Looking in cycling magazines, make sure you take on board that many of the "action" shots are staged and planned and will have taken several passes to get just right. Generally take note of what they're doing - camera height (often low down for drama), how close they are, where the sun is... and try and set this up.
    Also, they're usually not going as fast as they seem and are prone to over-egging the action through poses, bike angle and slow-shutter speeds to make things look fast.
     
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  21. keeweeman

    keeweeman

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    388
    Name:
    Col
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    as a former downhill mountain biker i would possibly suggest that a lot of the time longer isn't better lens wise for mountain biking in this country (unless you go somewhere really open like fort bill), most of the time you will be pretty close to the action dodging between trees in heavily wooded areas so fast zoom lenses with constant apertures are a good way to go, the nikon 17-55 f2.8 being a good example, this is a lens that would give an obvious upgrade on you current kit lens that you will quite possibly consider down the line anyway and it can be bought relatively cheaply second hand. Panning is a popular technique for mtb shots so look into some tutorials on that, getting some motion in the shot is always a good way to go and also try and leave space before or after the rider so it looks like they are riding into the shot or where they have come from (if its an interesting bit of trail that is).

    FWIW when i used to go downhilling and take my camera with me is was a nikon d90 which is a lot less capable in low light than your d3400, i also only had the kit lens at that stage and made a boat load of mistakes when trying to get decent photos with far more misses than hits. What i would say though is that it is perfectly manageable to get decent shots out of even a modest camera body and lens but you do have to put some work into learning a few techniques to help you. Figuring out good positions on the trail helps too, and as previously mentioned look to get low down or high up if you are happy to climb trees. Standing head on makes for very dull shots.

    A couple of other things, positioning yourself low down on the inside of a bend/berm can make for a good shot, if your other half is comfortable getting air and whipping the back end out/doing something other than a dead sailor in mid air then that works too. Also remember that things like rock gardens in trails will usually slow all but the fastest riders down so if you are struggling to get to grips with riders going at full pelt then they can make for a good place to try and get some slower speed shots.

    I have tried to keep these examples generic to most mountain biking places as you didn't specify what discipline your other half rides but most trail centres these days have jumps and drops albeit to a smaller scale than downhill courses do.

    One last thing, if there is places where it looks like people might crash make sure your camera is always ready to capture the special moment when you can see their expression change from "this is awesome" to "oh f**k"
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2017
    Matt-P, desf and Phil V like this.

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