In my last post (On the Island – Week 4), I mentioned one of my greatest challenges in being a photographer: balancing playing Ultimate with playing with my camera. I’m happy to report that this week I have succeeded as evident by the much larger number of photographs in the gallery below. But don’t look, yet! I have more to say. We had a decent number of subs for both games, which meant that I could apply my “when subbing for two points, shoot one and cheer/prepare the next”. Our team is trying a different subbing method, where one person is in charge of telling people when to come on and off the field. That individual for us is HighReleaseHandler who was more than happy to help me in my quest to capture moments in the game while playing, especially since he uses them on his blog.
Another reason I have more photos this week is because the League starts at noon, but ends in the late afternoon. Over that span of time, each team only has two games. After we played our two games, I stuck around for another hour to photograph two other games. That meant photographing four other teams, and since these pictures are eventually going up on the UltiNY website, that means more faces 🙂 I plan on doing that every week from now until the end. That will ensure that other teams get more “face time”. Not that my team isn’t the most photogenic team in the league (because we are), I just really shouldn’t play favorites.
My biggest issue this weekend wasn’t the lighting, it wasn’t the weather, and it wasn’t the play time. It was my Sigma f/2.8 70-200mm lens. I need to look into this more, but it’s been having issues with autofocus. You’ll have to imagine it with me, but you press the shutter button down halfway and it will focus back and forth, back and forth, never finding the point you want it to go to, not on a moving object or a stationary one, not on something close or far. I don’t know if it’s at a particular distance that’s the issue, if the lens itself is dirty on the outside or inside or what. It’s not the camera body, because my other lenses don’t experience this unusual fluctuation in focusing. I cleaned the lens as best I could, but it continues to pester me. If anyone has any information, it would be really, really helpful! I’m probably going to contact Sigma within the next week to see what they can do.
My challenge for next week: taking pictures from the end zone. It should be interesting, or dangerous, or both. I feel like I get a lot of pictures of the handlers and the back or sides of the people catching the disc for the actual score. We’ll see how I do! And I’ll get back to you on my lens issue…