Varsity: Oxford V Cambridge

Sports photography is always something I have wanted to try, so when the Oxford trampoline team captain asked me to photograph their varsity match, (only the most important match of the year) I was excited and nervous at taking up the challenge.

I had no idea how I was going to go do it, so I went to one of my university tutors for help. He told me to put my camera onto Manual- something I had been avoiding since picking up a DSLR six months ago, keeping my appeture wide to let in as much light as possible for the high shutter speeds, to capture the fast movement of the trampolinists, and low ISO to avoid grainy images.

As I was using a Canon 5D Mark 2, its biggest appeture setting is 4, meaning that the higher the shutter was, the darker the images came out. Slowing down the shutter created the correct exposure, but caused the fast moving trampolinists to blur slightly, the only way round this problem was to increase my ISO, but this added grain onto all my pictures, and I still had to lighten the images in photoshop.

At the end of the match Cambridge had won, and I had learned a lot without realizing. I really did enjoy the day, and being in a working environment shooting constantly for 3 and a half hours, capturing every person competing, this is something I had never done before and found it a positive challenge.

I am not entirely happy with my photographs, but I guess its all trial and error, and as I’m only in my first year at university, I am still learning.


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