Blur and Motion Shots

Blurry shots are usually discards when I’m going through my pictures.  On occasion, though, I intentionally blur pictures to enhance an effect.  Usually, I’m trying to add a sense of motion to a picture.  It’s not hard to do, and it’s a great shot to have in your arsenal.

Essentially, you have to keep a moving subject in the same part of the frame throughout a long exposure.  The better you follow with your camera, the clearer the subject will be.  To start, set your camera to a slower shutter speed.  Get off Auto, you addicts!  Try 1/30 or 1/15th of a second to start. On a bright day, 1/125th may be a long shutter speed.

In the two pictures above, the motion is from right to left.  I’m facing a little to the left of frame, twisting to take the picture.  That way, as I take the picture, my body straightens out in time with the movement of the car or horse.

The hardest part of taking these pictures is precisely following while the mirror blocks your viewfinder and you can’t see.   What I do is put one of my focus points on a small part of the subject and follow it for a little bit before I take the picture.  That way, I have the tracking speed before I push the shutter release.  In the Citroen picture, I focused on the racing number.   The longer your shutter speed is, the more drift you’ll wind up with.  That adds blur to your subject. which you don’t want.

Good Shooting

EDIT 10-18-11: I also have blur and motion shots from the Rochester Twilight Criterium, a terrific, urban bicycle race that’s on hiatus due to the economy.  I hope they bring it back soon, it was some of the most exciting photography I’ve ever done.

4 Responses to “Blur and Motion Shots”

  1. Manuel Says:

    I have to learn how to mess with my shutter speed…

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  3. Rochester Twilight Criterium « Night Panther Says:

    […] posted a while back about creating blur/motion shots.  A cycling race is the perfect environment to take motion pictures.   The action was fast and […]

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