Today we’re talking about lenses. I recently watched a Peter McKinnon YouTube video called “The Holy Trinity of lenses”. That inspired me to do a “Sports version” if you will of the same video.
When it comes to the lenses, there are 3 that I always bring with me every time I go out shooting sporting events. With the first lens, if I was made to bring only one lens only, no hesitation, this is the one.
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Canon EF-S 18-200mm IS
It’s my 18-200mm lens. Basically, this is what you want to have on your camera when you don’t know what’s coming. There’s great flexibility and range from 18mm to 200mm. Which means you can get some wide shots from up close and also zoom in at the other end of the ground or the pitch or the court if you need to. This lens will get you through anything.
I think this lens is so good and you should have it, especially if you are on a budget. Because this is not necessarily the most high-quality lens, but for what you get for your money, it’s definitely a zoom lens that you want to have in your bag when filming sports.
This is a workhorse. It’s the lens that gets me about 70% of my footage.
In comparison, the next two are more like specialists that I only need for very specific reasons.
Canon EF 75-300mm f4-5.6
This lens right here is a 75mm-300mm lens. This guy is basically a back-up to my 18mm-200mm. Because in a perfect world, I don’t need to use this guy at all. But I definitely want it in my bag just in case. Sometimes if you are going to a new venue or somewhere you have never been before. They might put the cameras far away or refuse to give you access to the ground and therefore you need that longer range and the 300mm zoom is going to give you obviously more than the 200mm. But the downside is that it starts at 75mm.
Not only is it good for long-range action, but it’s also very useful to film fans from a distance. Because when you’re filming crowd shots, you don’t really want a wide shot with empty seats all over. If you’ve got a full packed stadium, then go nuts. But if you don’t, you really want to zoom in, avoid the dead space and just get the emotion in the face. So, to have a lens that allows you to punch in on the other side of the court or the ground is really helpful. Because otherwise you’ll only be able to film people in your section and that might not be enough. Actually, the next lens is going to help you with that. But you want to be filming from the front, not from the back. That’s what I’m getting at. So if you want to be able to film all these other sections that you can’t reach physically, this lens is going to get you that shot.
But, let’s move on to the other lens because now that we’re talking crowd shots, this guy right here definitely is the highest quality lens among the three.
Sigma 20mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Lens
This is a 20mm lens, f/1.4 aperture. Unlike the previous two, this one is fixed. So it’s 20mm, you can’t zoom in or zoom out. But it’s a nice high-quality wide shot that allows you to go literally in people’s faces and get that clean emotion. The f/1.4 aperture lets a lot of light in and get you that blurry background. So, the subject gets all the viewers’ attention and you can really focus on their happiness, their celebration, their stress, their relief. You see all those emotions with that lens if you use it the right way.
By the way, if aperture is a word you’ve never heard before and you’re wondering what I’m talking about make sure you check out a previous video that I’ve made about this topic.
It’ll teach you how to understand how the camera works with the light and how to get these blurry backgrounds. So if you are shooting with a DSLR, you’ll want to check it out.
Quick tip before I go, every time the game is about to finish, there’s a few minutes left, I’ll make sure I’ve got this lens on the camera because as soon as the game is over, I’ll run up to the winning fans and film them celebrating and cheering and pointing at the camera, being happy and jumping in the air. Because I can use these shots all over my video. Not only at the end obviously when the team wins, but also throughout the game when there are goals and stuff. Especially if I didn’t have the opportunity to film crowd reactions then. A celebration at the end of the game can make up for a goal celebration. No one will see the difference. So, during that one minute that the crowd is celebrating the victory, make sure you get different people with that beautiful lens and you’ll thank me for it later, I guarantee.
So that’s it for me guys. That was quick and easy, hopefully you liked it and I’ll catch you in the next one. Peace!