Updated: Nov 1, 2021
This is one of my favorite things to photograph! However, capturing movement in photography can be a challenging task for a photographer. Movement can come in many different forms whether it's on purpose with a twirl or natural with the wind it can really help set the mood of your photo.
Because of the moving subject you will want a fast shutter speed, like real fast. As in above 1/1000 sec. fast, to assure your subject is more frozen and crisp aka sharp lol Of course, this also depends very much on how fast your subject is moving. You will need to spend time learning how different shutter speeds impact the quality of your images. I explain this a little further below.
Using the continuous feature on your camera, you can also capture a series of shots
And even join them together in PS creating a unique and creative image. (we will save that for another blog)
Two more things to consider with the shutter speed are the direction of the moving subject and how close you are to the action.
Direction: If your subject is moving toward you or away from you you can get away with a slower shutter speed. But if the subject is moving from left to right or in the other direction you need a faster shutter speed.
Proximity: If you’re close to the action whether it’s through a longer lens or because you’re in the middle of it you need to select a faster shutter speed than when you’re further away. The closer you are the more visible the action becomes.
Give your subject space! Making sure your subject has space (in the photo) to move in the direction they're going makes the final image more appealing to the eye. Using the "rule of thirds" is a great composition tool to achieve that.
Another way to capture movement that doesn't involve a human subject is using a very low shutter speed which is called long exposure. This method is best for night photography or wanting to capture movement with water or light. This will "blur" your focus ie water, clouds, light and have the background in focus. Now keep in mind whichever technique you are using you will also need to adjust your f-stop and iso settings.
Lowering my shutter gave me the chance to capture the movement in the water in kind of like a slow motion effect.
For this method I highly recommend using a tripod for best results.
Keep in mind if too much light enters it will result in over exposure especially during the day if you aren't using filters. Be sure to review your Aperture & ISO setting to see what you might need to adjust. Grab your camera and play around during the day and or night.
Capturing motion in your photography is part technique and part art. Luckily, with practice, you can master it!!!