30 Photos in 30 Days — Day 18

Correct exposures with ice

On side — Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 70–300mm lens at 100mm, f/5.6 for 1/400 sec., ISO 6400

A couple of days ago I tried to get correct exposures with snow on a ski hill. Today I took my camera to the rink for hockey practice. Hockey rinks are another treacherous place to take photos as the ice and the boards are both white and the lighting, while fine for playing, is actually pretty dark. These conditions make it difficult to take action photos where the players are moving quickly on skates.

I started off by setting a correct exposure using a grey wall to calibrate. As in the past, the first few photos were too dark. I added one stop and then a second stop to the exposure. Even with the aperture at f/5.6, ISO at 6400, and shutter speed at 1/400, the shot is still darker than it should be. However, it is brighter than many of the shots that I’ve taken in the past. With my kids into a lot of sports, taking sports photos is high on my list to get right. I’ll continue working on it.

While I would have liked to have had Benji slightly lower in the frame, I do like the blue line in this shot, which gives some nice colour to an otherwise very plain ice surface.

What I learned

Even with the camera maxed out to allow light in, it’s still hard to get a clear action shot in an indoor rink. When I try again I’ll likely try with a slower shutter speed to try and get the right level of light. From there I can regroup and figure out my next step.

I’m shooting 30 photos in 30 days to jump-start my photography skills. If you missed it, check out my introduction in my day 1 post.