I finally took the plunge this week and upgraded my camera equipment.  The 5+ year old Canon S2 IS point and shoot was just not getting it down for volleyball.  So after the 2-day tournament in Louisville I started researching Digital SLRs and shooting sports.  In my research I learned that I was in for “an investment” and that of all sports photography, volleyball is some of the hardest to shoot – it’s dimly lit, the action can happen almost anywhere unpredictably (it helps that I know the sport AND know the team) and you are usually right on top of the court.
Undeterred I read all of the reviews and decided on a Canon T2i (I was really only looking for the body, but ended up buying one with the cheapo 18-55mm lens kit).  I know the T3i just came out but I didn’t see paying an extra $100 for the ability to flip out the LCD screen or trigger remote flashes.  Honestly that was a pretty easy decision – I already had a Canon point and shoot and was very happy with it for its limitations.  The hard decision was the lens.  After pouring over info in various forums, asking a few friends far more knowledgeable than me and reading a few pro sports photographers blogs, I settled on an 85mm f 1.8 Canon.  Yes, a prime lens that most people consider a ‘portrait lens’.  The main consideration was the speed – it was the cheapest / fastest lens I could get and that of course lets me open things up and let the limited light available in.
Since the pictures speak a thousand words, I’ll let them finish this post.  But I do need to say that I think these turned out awfully good for a first time out.  I shot all of them in Manual mode, ISO 1600, f 2, and 1/640 shutter speed.  Any recommendations to make them better next time are appreciated.  We’ve got another tournament in a month so I’ll have that much more time to tweak my technique.  Consider me very happy with the Canon T2i and 85mm lens – if I can make pictures this good with it, then it really can make a pro out of anyone.






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *