Third go at Rugby - Got to keep trying

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#1
I found another free Saturday afternoon and the 1st team were playing at home, so I thought I'd give it another go. The light was very flat, so challenging from an ISO perspective. It's good to push myself though, as generally I wouldn't have taken the camera out in those conditions.

Hopefully taking on board some of the stuff you guys have been telling me the seat came out and off I went.

Shot in manual mode, using auto ISO and with a touch of negative exposure compensation due to the amount of black out there.

On to the images.

1. Come here you
Andover Rugby Jan 2019
by Gary Kinghorn, on Flickr

2. Not sure what kind of tackle this is
Andover Rugby Jan 2019
by Gary Kinghorn, on Flickr

3. Gotcha
Andover Rugby Jan 2019
by Gary Kinghorn, on Flickr

4.
Andover Rugby Jan 2019
by Gary Kinghorn, on Flickr

5.
Andover Rugby Jan 2019
by Gary Kinghorn, on Flickr

6. This one made me laugh - where's his head gone too?
Andover Rugby Jan 2019
by Gary Kinghorn, on Flickr
 
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Name
Seba
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#3
Vast improvement on the first lot! Well done, mate.

No.8 I would bin. The half-a-human on the right ruins it. There are nice scrum half shots to be had coming out the ruck like that but the ball needs to be in flight.

Keep plugging away. Get them wrong to get them right!
 
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#4
Two bits of advice I can offer ...

Where possible - get as low as possible. The perspective change will make the players seem more ‘hero’ like.

Secondly - with any pitch sport - wait for the action to come to you. It will do, be patient and wait for your frame to fill and your shots will look dramatically different. Sometimes - it doesn’t happen that way, it’s a midfield game - that’s just how it goes.
 
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#5
Picture 8 certainly isn't ruined. Definitely don't bin it, it's fine and offers a nice bit of depth with the out of focus player. When you go for scrum half shots like that, try and get them just after the ball has left their hands. Much more dramatic than them just holding it though.

The one I would bin is 6.

I'm surprised by your comment that the flat light made things trickier. Flat light makes things much easier to shoot, you don't have to worry about where to sit to get the best light. If you mean you had to dial up the ISO to compensate, then fair enough but doesn't seem much of a problem with the above shots.

The perspective, cropping and exposure is all good. The part where you need to improve is capturing peak action. 3, 5, 7 the moment has passed. 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 are all very busy and cluttered. It's hard to know without having been at the game, but try and sit in field a bit (behind the try line) so you can get cleaner shots of players running at you, with one or two tacklers, and not 7 other bodies in the frame.

If 2 is a try then that's a great shot, the best of the lot.

7 needed a split second earlier where they're both going for the ball, rather than both got there.

5 and 6 aren't really up to much.

Where possible - get as low as possible. The perspective change will make the players seem more ‘hero’ like.
As seen in the above images, he did.
 
OP
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Gary Kinghorn
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#6
Thanks for the comments.

I only put 6 in because it made me laugh. I didn't consider it to be a particularly powerful image.

As for my comment about the light being flat, what I meant was that on a day like that when it is flat and dull and getting late on where it would only get worse, for other types of photography I wouldn't bother taking the camera out. However, shooting these for the last couple of weeks it is made me shoot with much higher ISO then I would normally have been comfortable with. It's made my push things further than normal, which is great.

What I really need is a game where there are some great one on one flying tackles, without loads of other distractions in the image. I haven't seen much of that yet.

Back out there in a week or so to have another go....
 
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Name
Mark
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#7
I’ve dabbled in a bit of rugby photography with my old club - one thing I will add is don’t be afraid to crop in if the IQ will allow it. No.2 especially I would crop in closer to the player diving over the line. Scrum half one I would crop in closer to him.

As someone who played the game for 16 years best advice I could give you (assuming this is your team) is learn who the play makers are , 9, 10, 13 number 8 etc and follow them when they have ball in hand. Learn some of the line out calls or even moves from the scrum etc. Who are the teams big hitters or carriers. Who likes to kick and chase or run with the ball in hand a lot. I shot my images on a Nikon so would set the minimum shutter speed to 1/1000 and the ISO to auto-iso. Personally I preferred to shoot in raw because I just didn’t like my cameras jpg conversion.
 
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#8
Definitely don't crop closer into shot 2. It's perfect as is. The whole point is to tell a story through your photos, having 5 players in the background looking gutted to have conceded a score is great. Likewise the scrum half shot is good as is. The problem with that one though is it should have been half a second later with the ball flying through the air. You want to get peak action, not too early or too late.

If it's an evening game with terrible floodlights then 1/1000 is fine, but a day time game 1/1600 is better. I also wouldn't bother using auto ISO as it never gets it completely right, put it on full manual and adjust the shutter speed/ISO yourself for the best result.
 
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Name
Mark
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#10
Definitely don't crop closer into shot 2. It's perfect as is. The whole point is to tell a story through your photos, having 5 players in the background looking gutted to have conceded a score is great. Likewise the scrum half shot is good as is. The problem with that one though is it should have been half a second later with the ball flying through the air. You want to get peak action, not too early or too late.

If it's an evening game with terrible floodlights then 1/1000 is fine, but a day time game 1/1600 is better. I also wouldn't bother using auto ISO as it never gets it completely right, put it on full manual and adjust the shutter speed/ISO yourself for the best result.
I actually like the expression on the scrum half's face, the look of concentration with ball in hand, hence why I would crop in. Never said the shot wasn't fine, but everyone has their own tastes. I'm offering another idea, which the OP is entitled to ignore.
 
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