Going to the Races, Need Some Advice

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Robert R Kircher, Jr., Mar 17, 2005.

  1. Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted some
    general advice on what I should bring.

    1) I'm planning on taking my 300D of course along with my 100-400 and my
    28-135. I'll be taking shots from the stands and pit road. I'm hoping to
    get some good action shots; we'll see. In any event, unless some one can
    give me a compelling reason why, I hadn't planned on taking my 18-55 or my
    cheap 75-100. Thoughts?

    2) I have a Lowpro waist bag, similar to
    http://www.lowepro.com/Products/Beltpacks/classic/Orion.aspx,. It holds
    everything but the 100-400, however, I find it sort of bulky. I was
    thinking of stopping by the local shop today and looking at a belt solution
    with a lens case for the 100-400 and the 28-135, a top load case for the
    camera, and an additional case for accessories and CF cards. I'm thinking
    this will be easier to handle on the plane and at the track. Any thoughts
    or suggestions?

    3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    TIA

    --

    Rob
     
    Robert R Kircher, Jr., Mar 17, 2005
    #1
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  2. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Skip M Guest

    "Robert R Kircher, Jr." <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted
    > some general advice on what I should bring.
    >
    > 1) I'm planning on taking my 300D of course along with my 100-400 and my
    > 28-135. I'll be taking shots from the stands and pit road. I'm hoping to
    > get some good action shots; we'll see. In any event, unless some one can
    > give me a compelling reason why, I hadn't planned on taking my 18-55 or my
    > cheap 75-100. Thoughts?
    >
    > 2) I have a Lowpro waist bag, similar to
    > http://www.lowepro.com/Products/Beltpacks/classic/Orion.aspx,. It holds
    > everything but the 100-400, however, I find it sort of bulky. I was
    > thinking of stopping by the local shop today and looking at a belt
    > solution with a lens case for the 100-400 and the 28-135, a top load case
    > for the camera, and an additional case for accessories and CF cards. I'm
    > thinking this will be easier to handle on the plane and at the track. Any
    > thoughts or suggestions?
    >
    > 3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    >
    > TIA
    >
    > --
    >
    > Rob
    >
    >


    Tamrac makes lens cases to go with their top loader camera holsters, this
    might be less bulky than the belt pack. I have a Tamrac 519, which holds my
    20D and either my 28-135 IS or 100-400 IS, so a single lens case big enough
    for the 100-400 would be all you need. Be forewarned, though, the flash
    won't fit in the outside pocket with the 100-400 in the case. If you're
    taking a flash, you'll need a separate case for it...
    All of the images on this gallery were taken with the lenses you mention,
    except for the Stutz fuel tank:

    http://www.shutterspeedway.com/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?user=SkipM&gallery=My 20D images/Day at the Races

    Have fun!

    --
    Skip Middleton
    http://www.shadowcatcherimagery.com
     
    Skip M, Mar 17, 2005
    #2
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  3. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Alan Browne Guest

    Robert R Kircher, Jr. wrote:
    > Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted some
    > general advice on what I should bring.
    >
    > 1) I'm planning on taking my 300D of course along with my 100-400 and my
    > 28-135. I'll be taking shots from the stands and pit road. I'm hoping to
    > get some good action shots; we'll see. In any event, unless some one can
    > give me a compelling reason why, I hadn't planned on taking my 18-55 or my
    > cheap 75-100. Thoughts?
    >
    > 2) I have a Lowpro waist bag, similar to
    > http://www.lowepro.com/Products/Beltpacks/classic/Orion.aspx,. It holds
    > everything but the 100-400, however, I find it sort of bulky. I was
    > thinking of stopping by the local shop today and looking at a belt solution
    > with a lens case for the 100-400 and the 28-135, a top load case for the
    > camera, and an additional case for accessories and CF cards. I'm thinking
    > this will be easier to handle on the plane and at the track. Any thoughts
    > or suggestions?



    I'd take a max of two lenses. One for long one for medium. (28-135/
    100-400) although on a cropped camera you might find the 28 limiting.

    You might get the "no professional equipment allowed treatment" as you
    try to get in. Have a backup plan on where you can store your "pro"
    equipment if you get refused entry.

    Cheers,
    Alan

    --
    -- r.p.e.35mm user resource: http://www.aliasimages.com/rpe35mmur.htm
    -- r.p.d.slr-systems: http://www.aliasimages.com/rpdslrsysur.htm
    -- [SI] gallery & rulz: http://www.pbase.com/shootin
    -- e-meil: there's no such thing as a FreeLunch.
     
    Alan Browne, Mar 17, 2005
    #3
  4. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Pete Fenelon Guest

    In rec.photo.digital Robert R Kircher, Jr. <> wrote:
    > Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted some
    > general advice on what I should bring.
    >
    > 1) I'm planning on taking my 300D of course along with my 100-400 and my
    > 28-135. I'll be taking shots from the stands and pit road. I'm hoping to
    > get some good action shots; we'll see. In any event, unless some one can
    > give me a compelling reason why, I hadn't planned on taking my 18-55 or my
    > cheap 75-100. Thoughts?


    I don't think you'd get much from the 75-100. When I go racing (a lot) I
    find that most of my pictures are either paddock shots where I'm right
    down round 28mm trying to get as much as I can of a car in shot,
    trackside stuff at round about 100 where I'm trying to frame a car in
    the landscape, or stuff from stands or spectator areas where I'm out at
    200 or beyond. (All numbers equiv., as I use a Panasonic FZ-10.

    Personally I'd say the 18-55 for pitlane, "atmosphere" and detail shots
    (18mm gives some interesting options for wide-angle shots) and the 100-400
    for the race.

    >
    > 3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    >


    I've only photographed race cars once before from grandstands round an oval
    (Rockingham, but not the one you're thinking of, the one in the UK; most
    of the racing I attend is on road courses) -- fortunately ovals are
    pretty compact so you probably won't need to go out to 400 to get good
    action shots of the cars.

    I don't know how fast those lenses are - but for good action shots I
    find that having the lens wide open (so you get a good focus on the
    subject and a fairly soft background) and the shutter speed as fast as
    it can go is the route to decent pics.

    Finally, remember that your camera may well decide that it wants to AF
    on chain-link fence rather than what you're pointing it at. ;) You may
    find that working with manual focus helps. ;)

    pete
    --
    "Send lawyers, guns and money...."
     
    Pete Fenelon, Mar 17, 2005
    #4
  5. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Guest

    "Robert R Kircher, Jr." <> wrote:

    >Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted some
    >general advice on what I should bring.


    Two camera bodies. Then your lens concerns are not that much of a
    concern.

    Wes

    --
    Reply to:
    Whiskey Echo Sierra Sierra AT Gee Tee EYE EYE dot COM
    Lycos address is a spam trap.
     
    , Mar 17, 2005
    #5
  6. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Dirty Harry Guest

    "In any event, unless some one can give me a compelling reason why, I hadn't
    planned on taking my 18-55 or my cheap 75-100. Thoughts?"

    http://www.harryphotos.com/miketruckfinal.jpg

    shot at 18mm with the stock rebel lens(sky was added)...but you should be
    able to get in even closer and have everything sharp for a cool look...the
    28mm is 45mm in 35mm format (excuse my bad wording) so it's not very
    wide...
     
    Dirty Harry, Mar 17, 2005
    #6
  7. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Jim Townsend Guest

    Robert R Kircher, Jr. wrote:

    > Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted some
    > general advice on what I should bring.


    Good for you.. (I'll just be watching on TV :)

    > I hadn't planned on taking my 18-55 or my
    > cheap 75-100. Thoughts?


    I'd leave the 75-100 at home, but I'd take the 18-55.

    Atlanta is a big place.. You might want to capture the whole
    track from the stands.. Your 28-135 might not be wide enough
    at 28mm.. I'd want the 18mm to augment my shooting options.


    > 2) I have a Lowpro waist bag, similar to
    > http://www.lowepro.com/Products/Beltpacks/classic/Orion.aspx,. It holds
    > everything but the 100-400, however, I find it sort of bulky. I was
    > thinking of stopping by the local shop today and looking at a belt solution
    > with a lens case for the 100-400 and the 28-135, a top load case for the
    > camera, and an additional case for accessories and CF cards. I'm thinking
    > this will be easier to handle on the plane and at the track. Any thoughts
    > or suggestions?


    I've got a Lowepro OmniTraveller. I found this site that shows
    what it looks like:

    http://www.asvd07.dsl.pipex.com/nikond70/Lowepro_Omni_Traveller.htm

    It has padded adjustable partitions that attach with velcro so
    you can move them around and configure the bag to snugly carry a
    variety of lens shapes.

    I can squeeze in my EF 28-135, my EF 50mm f/1.8 and my EF 100-400
    along with the 10D, filters, cables, mem cards, lens cleaning stuff
    spare batteries and a 420EX flash :)
     
    Jim Townsend, Mar 17, 2005
    #7
  8. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Matt Ion Guest

    Robert R Kircher, Jr. wrote:

    > 3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


    One thing I found shooting CASCAR races a couple years ago, is to set
    your exposure manually. Meter it off the tarmac or start with Sunny 16
    and lock it in. Otherwise you get too many pictures of black/dark cars
    coming out grey with washed-out backgrounds, or white/light cars coming
    out grey with really dim backgrounds. Metering will vary as you go
    around the track as well, between front-, side- and back-lighting
    (especially if you're in the pits). My best results have come from
    setting the aperture wide open, then locking in the appropriate shutter
    speed, and just leaving it there.
     
    Matt Ion, Mar 17, 2005
    #8
  9. "Robert R Kircher, Jr." <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted
    > some general advice on what I should bring.
    >
    > 1) I'm planning on taking my 300D of course along with my 100-400 and my
    > 28-135. I'll be taking shots from the stands and pit road. I'm hoping to
    > get some good action shots; we'll see. In any event, unless some one can
    > give me a compelling reason why, I hadn't planned on taking my 18-55 or my
    > cheap 75-100. Thoughts?
    >
    > 2) I have a Lowpro waist bag, similar to
    > http://www.lowepro.com/Products/Beltpacks/classic/Orion.aspx,. It holds
    > everything but the 100-400, however, I find it sort of bulky. I was
    > thinking of stopping by the local shop today and looking at a belt
    > solution with a lens case for the 100-400 and the 28-135, a top load case
    > for the camera, and an additional case for accessories and CF cards. I'm
    > thinking this will be easier to handle on the plane and at the track. Any
    > thoughts or suggestions?
    >
    > 3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    >
    > TIA
    >



    Thanks everyone for you help. Unfortunately the local shop didn't have much
    to offer in belts so I'll be taking my current case.

    --

    Rob
     
    Robert R Kircher, Jr., Mar 17, 2005
    #9
  10. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    John Francis Guest

    In article <QBk_d.708337$Xk.572242@pd7tw3no>,
    Matt Ion <> wrote:
    >Robert R Kircher, Jr. wrote:
    >
    >> 3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    >
    >One thing I found shooting CASCAR races a couple years ago, is to set
    >your exposure manually. Meter it off the tarmac or start with Sunny 16
    >and lock it in. Otherwise you get too many pictures of black/dark cars
    >coming out grey with washed-out backgrounds, or white/light cars coming
    >out grey with really dim backgrounds.


    Excellent advice. Just be careful if there's a situation where the
    cars are moving into (or out of) shadows, and meter on the right part.


    > My best results have come from setting the aperture wide open, then
    > locking in the appropriate shutter speed, and just leaving it there.


    That's appropriate when the cars are coming towards you. For a side
    shot too high a shutter speed results in it looking as though the cars
    are parked on the track. You want a little blur on the wheels, if
    you can manage it. Here's an example taken at 1/200 of a second:

    <http://panix.com/~johnf/temp/LSQualifying.jpg>

    (You need to pan during the exposure to blur the wheels, not the car)
    That car is probably travelling at the same sort of speeds you'll see
    at Atlanta. I wouldn't recommend starting at 1/200 if you've never
    tried panning to keep the car fixed in the frame during exposure;
    it's a learned skill. But you should definitely try several shots
    with a shutter speed around 1/400 of a second; that's a lot easier.


    Of course, depending on the light, 1/400 might very well be the
    shutter speed you get with the lens wide open; it depends on the
    ISO setting you've chosen. In that case I'd suggest leaving it
    set that way for side shots, but selecting a higher ISO value
    for any head-on shots; I like a shutter speed of 1/750 or faster
    in those situations.
     
    John Francis, Mar 17, 2005
    #10
  11. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Matt Ion Guest

    John Francis wrote:

    > In article <QBk_d.708337$Xk.572242@pd7tw3no>,
    > Matt Ion <> wrote:
    >
    >>Robert R Kircher, Jr. wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>>3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    >>
    >>One thing I found shooting CASCAR races a couple years ago, is to set
    >>your exposure manually. Meter it off the tarmac or start with Sunny 16
    >>and lock it in. Otherwise you get too many pictures of black/dark cars
    >>coming out grey with washed-out backgrounds, or white/light cars coming
    >>out grey with really dim backgrounds.

    >
    >
    > Excellent advice. Just be careful if there's a situation where the
    > cars are moving into (or out of) shadows, and meter on the right part.
    >
    >
    >
    >> My best results have come from setting the aperture wide open, then
    >>locking in the appropriate shutter speed, and just leaving it there.

    >
    >
    > That's appropriate when the cars are coming towards you. For a side
    > shot too high a shutter speed results in it looking as though the cars
    > are parked on the track. You want a little blur on the wheels, if
    > you can manage it. Here's an example taken at 1/200 of a second:
    >
    > <http://panix.com/~johnf/temp/LSQualifying.jpg>
    >
    > (You need to pan during the exposure to blur the wheels, not the car)
    > That car is probably travelling at the same sort of speeds you'll see
    > at Atlanta. I wouldn't recommend starting at 1/200 if you've never
    > tried panning to keep the car fixed in the frame during exposure;
    > it's a learned skill. But you should definitely try several shots
    > with a shutter speed around 1/400 of a second; that's a lot easier.


    There is that. Another option is to find a decent shutter speed for
    the effect you want to achieve (1/200 if you're comfortable with
    panning) and then locking the appropriate aperture - if you have good
    sunlight, shooting at ISO 100 should allow you to use f/8, which should
    allow you both to get a little blur on the side shots, and provide a
    little extra DOF for the straight-on shots (not that my Rebel's AI focus
    has ever had much trouble tracking the cars :)

    BTW, on the topic of lens cases/bags, I found a nice little case
    (probably a Lowepro) designed for a pocket digital camera that has a
    velcro loop on the back to allow you to slip it over any regular belt, a
    zip top that opens partway down the front for easy access, a few small
    compartments to hold things like my spare batteries, and just enough
    room to nicely fit my Canon EF 75-300 zoom. Works great for
    quick-changing between two lenses (such as the EF 28-90 on my old
    RebelG, and the EF-S 18-55 on the DRebel).

    Check any consumer-electronics store that has a good selection of
    pocketable digital cameras, and they should have a good selection of
    those little camera cases too.
     
    Matt Ion, Mar 19, 2005
    #11
  12. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    John Francis Guest

    In article <3q%_d.727414$6l.313540@pd7tw2no>,
    Matt Ion <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >There is that. Another option is to find a decent shutter speed for
    >the effect you want to achieve (1/200 if you're comfortable with
    >panning) and then locking the appropriate aperture - if you have good
    >sunlight, shooting at ISO 100 should allow you to use f/8, which should
    >allow you both to get a little blur on the side shots, and provide a
    >little extra DOF for the straight-on shots (not that my Rebel's AI focus
    >has ever had much trouble tracking the cars :)


    The trouble with 1/200 for a straight-on shot is that you can't pan
    to track the cars, so you're going to end up with some blurring; at
    the sort of speeds typical for NASCAR/CASCAR a car will move anything
    up to 18" (50cm) during a 1/200 second exposure. While most of that
    is towards you, and thus has only a minor effect on the image, it's
    still enough to show up on sharp edges (such as the sponsor decals).

    I prefer 1/750 to 1/2000 for head-on or front three-quarter shots.
    Of course that means you have very little depth of field (especially
    if you are using a long focal length), so you can't just rely on
    the af system unaided - you're a lot better of selecting a single
    af point (otherwise you'll end up with the wrong part of the car
    in focus; you want the driver, if you can see him, or the nose).
     
    John Francis, Mar 19, 2005
    #12
  13. Robert R Kircher, Jr.

    Matt Ion Guest

    John Francis wrote:

    > In article <3q%_d.727414$6l.313540@pd7tw2no>,
    > Matt Ion <> wrote:
    >
    >>
    >>There is that. Another option is to find a decent shutter speed for
    >>the effect you want to achieve (1/200 if you're comfortable with
    >>panning) and then locking the appropriate aperture - if you have good
    >>sunlight, shooting at ISO 100 should allow you to use f/8, which should
    >>allow you both to get a little blur on the side shots, and provide a
    >>little extra DOF for the straight-on shots (not that my Rebel's AI focus
    >>has ever had much trouble tracking the cars :)

    >
    >
    > The trouble with 1/200 for a straight-on shot is that you can't pan
    > to track the cars, so you're going to end up with some blurring; at
    > the sort of speeds typical for NASCAR/CASCAR a car will move anything
    > up to 18" (50cm) during a 1/200 second exposure. While most of that
    > is towards you, and thus has only a minor effect on the image, it's
    > still enough to show up on sharp edges (such as the sponsor decals).


    True too. Unfortuantely I don't remember entirely what settings I used
    at the time... most of it was in good sunlight, which helped... probably
    ISO400 film... 1/1000 at f/8 would be likely.

    As my audio engineering instructor always told us, "There are no rules,
    only guidelines." :)
     
    Matt Ion, Mar 20, 2005
    #13
  14. "Robert R Kircher, Jr." <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Going down to Atlanta tomorrow to catch the NASCAR events and I wanted
    > some general advice on what I should bring.
    >
    > 1) I'm planning on taking my 300D of course along with my 100-400 and my
    > 28-135. I'll be taking shots from the stands and pit road. I'm hoping to
    > get some good action shots; we'll see. In any event, unless some one can
    > give me a compelling reason why, I hadn't planned on taking my 18-55 or my
    > cheap 75-100. Thoughts?
    >
    > 2) I have a Lowpro waist bag, similar to
    > http://www.lowepro.com/Products/Beltpacks/classic/Orion.aspx,. It holds
    > everything but the 100-400, however, I find it sort of bulky. I was
    > thinking of stopping by the local shop today and looking at a belt
    > solution with a lens case for the 100-400 and the 28-135, a top load case
    > for the camera, and an additional case for accessories and CF cards. I'm
    > thinking this will be easier to handle on the plane and at the track. Any
    > thoughts or suggestions?
    >
    > 3) Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    >
    > TIA
    >



    Thanks again for everyone's help, I had a great weekend and managed to get
    what I think are some pretty good shots using much of the advice given.
    I'll posting links to the shots later today.

    --

    Rob
     
    Robert R Kircher, Jr., Mar 23, 2005
    #14
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