Question for photojounalists


macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 8, 2006
I can understand why someone shooting scenic shots of landscapes or macro shots of flowers would want to shoot in manual mode, but I'm curious as to what people who shoot action or event shots use? For work, I've had to cover parties and events, and I just haven't been able to get great shots shooting only in manual. If i had time, I could adjust the settings to come out great, but I'm afraid of missing out on some memorable shots. So, for people whose jobs is it to catch some action, do you shoot in full manual, or one of the other modes?


macrumors member
May 10, 2006
The majority of the time that I shoot fast-moving, high action events (which isn't often... anyone looking for a photographer in the Tampa Bay area???), I use P-mode on my Canon. This allows me the flexibility of all my settings but with the camera doing some automatic metering. The camera sets the aperture and shutter speed but you can over or under expose the shot, change ISO, WB, and pretty much every other setting. It isn't quite as cheap as Auto as it allows more flexibility and creative control.

Kamera RAWr

macrumors 65816
May 15, 2007
Sitting on a rig somewhere
I would think people photographing high action events would use Shutter priority, if there is good lighting. Faster shutter speeds for freezing the action and slightly slower shutter speeds to perhaps convey motion.


macrumors 68000
Nov 18, 2006
Melbourne, Australia
For those situations when you need to be ready for anything, you're better off keeping your camera in Av or Tv. That way you can still have the ability to manually control your camera, but don't have to waste time setting up the settings for every single shot.


macrumors 68000
Dec 1, 2005
choose either aperture or shutter priority. never full auto. it's never correct, and you won't get what you want.


macrumors 68020
Nov 14, 2003
Washington, DC
Also, if you're getting better or more consistent results with the auto modes, look up in the manual what settings that auto mode uses. You can use a lot of the same settings in one of the manual modes, such as Av or Tv. For example, the sports mode would include continuous auto focus and continuous drive. You can use the same metering mode as the auto mode you'd use and same auto white balance, etc. Basically, copy what makes sense to you and don't worry about those settings, and concentrate on the settings you think you'll need for the job.


macrumors 6502a
Jul 21, 2003
I am a photojournalist who shoots manual and only manual for the control it affords me. I still do this even with the newest gear from Canon I just bought. I lean toward more shutter speed less aperture. This all comes from shooting b/w film for years with using a Nikon F2 with no meter so I could learn how things work. I don't do much sports anymore at my day job but that was a mainstay for my newspaper work so more shutter less aperture is where that comes from. Plus wanting clean backgrounds with no clutter.