When shooting with focus mode set to AF-A, sometimes the camera does not maintain focus on a moving subject.
There are various methods for taking action shots of fast-moving subjects. These methods depend on the type of action you are shooting and your desired outcome of the picture. Practice and skill, as well as shooting techniques and camera settings, all play a part.
You can select Continuous Shooting from the Drive mode option of the camera or try using the Sports mode in the Scene Selection options.
Here are some additional recommendations if you want more manual control over the settings:
- If possible, use a fast lens - a lens that has a large aperture .
IMPORTANT: This is especially important if shooting from far away in low light. If there is not enough light it is more difficult to capture moving subjects. A larger aperture means it can collect light faster. Using a lens with an f-stop of 2.8 or better is recommended for far away, low light shooting.
- If you can get close enough to the subject, use a flash.
- Increase the ISO setting.
- Set the camera to the Shutter Speed Priority (S) mode.
- Adjust the shutter speed.
- To completely freeze motion, use a faster shutter speed (generally, over 1/250 second is recommended).
- To achieve a blurring effect to express movement, use a slower shutter speed (between 1/50 and 1/100 is the norm).
IMPORTANT: You may need to experiment with different shutter speeds to get the desired effect. Depending on how fast your subject is moving and how far away it is, you may need to adjust the shutter speed higher or lower.
- Depending on the motion of your subject, choose the appropriate focus setting below.
- If the moving subject maintains its relative position in the camera, use Automatic AF (AF-A).
- In AF-A mode, the camera automatically recognizes whether the subject is moving or not, and switches the AF mode between Single-shot AF (AF-S) and Continuous AF (AF-C) accordingly.
- When shooting fast-moving subjects with focus mode set to AF-A, sometimes the AF mode cannot switch fast enough and the camera may not continue to focus on the moving subject. In this case, using AF-C is recommended.
- If the subject is moving across the field of view in the camera, set the auto focus mode to Continuous AF (AF-C).
NOTE: When using AF-C the camera continues to focus while the shutter button is pressed and held halfway down. When you are ready to take the shot, press the shutter button all the way down.
- If the subject takes up only a very small part of the frame (approximately 15%) and is moving too fast for auto focus to lock, consider selecting Manual Focus (MF) so you can manually control the focus.
- If you are using a high-magnification lens, mount the camera on a tripod or monopod for stability if necessary.
If model-specific information is required to complete any of the steps above, refer to the operating instructions supplied with the product. Manuals are posted on your model support page.
Read the Capture the Motion in Photographs article for more tips and examples.