There's perhaps nothing more visually exhilarating than a well-made sequence photo. This is especially true with pictures of sporting events. Learn how to make your photos even more special by mastering the art of sequence photography.
Sequence photography can produce some pretty special photos. Here at Sport Photo Gallery we definitely consider ourselves pretty well versed in the art of making sport photos come alive, and in our opinion, there’s no better way to do this than by learning how to create, build, and execute the perfect sequence photo. Here’s how to do it.
What is a sequence photo?
A sequence photo is a photo that describes continuous motion in one photograph. It takes multiple dynamic images of your subject, and places them in sequence on top of a static background. Giving the impression of movement through the series of dynamic images, frozen in space. When executed properly, it is truly a visually stunning way to express movement and poise in a photo.
What equipment is needed?
You’ll need a solid tripod in order to stabilize your camera and prevent any movement in your background. Make sure that your tripod can be extended so that the camera is at the right height and angle to capture the full performance of your subject.
Camera with Burst Mode
There are many different types of cameras that offer burst mode. No one is technically better than the rest, as long as there is a burst mode you’re good. The image quality will rest largely on the shutter speed and pixel quality that your camera affords you. Most digital cameras, GoPros, and mobile phones offer a burst mode.
High-Capacity Memory Card
Often forgotten but super important, burst photo sets require a lot of memory space, so you’ll need a good memory card. Especially if you’re taking high quality images! Ensuring that there’s adequate space on your card or internal memory will make it possible for you to get the full shot of the movement. To get your camera to retain full speed and burst mode to last long enough to capture the full sequence, you may need to lower your image quality.
Almost all photo editing software will help your images go from good to great. Photoshop and Gimp are two really popular software programs for editing, but some really handy mobile apps like Snapseed, Action Shot, or MotionFixPro can also be used to fuse the images together. If that sounds too complicated, don’t panic – upload your image sequence in the Sport Photo Gallery MyCollage template and make a sequence there instead!
What Settings Do I Use?
Depending on your available memory, adjust your photo quality beforehand, as discussed above. Lower photo quality can help prolong the burst mode if you’re running low on space.
Depending on the story you’re trying to tell through the action of your photo, you’ll set the shutter speed accordingly. If you want to use the burst mode, you’ll probably need to use a very fast shutter speed. Play with both fast and slow shutter speeds if you can and decide which one best suits your subject and the final look you’re going for.
Favour the manual setting if you can to keep an even exposure of your subject across the full frame. If you’re shooting outdoors, you probably won’t need a high ISO number – on a sunny day at least!
Frame and Angle
Make sure that you use a wide enough frame that the entire action will be able to be captured. Profiles work best for sequence shots; this angle deconstructs the action at a more understandable view, so that your audience can get the full experience of every position your subject is in.
How Do I Edit It?
Whichever photo editing platform you’re most familiar with will probably be the best one to use in order to edit these special photos. Keeping your camera in manual mode and keeping the settings similar – if not exactly the same – will help you edit the images later and make them look part of a sequence. Put the images in chronological order and you’re all set! Consider uploading them in MyCollage and check out how they’ll look once framed. Irresistible, we’d bet!
If you’d like to learn more about what sort of action shots best represent your sport of choice, visit our sports images for inspiration on how to take your photos to the next level!