I am very guilty of always saying yes to assignments. It is beaten into me from when I started this career and learned quickly that saying no often meant not getting the next call. Following my injury this summer I have been saying yes to anything. So when I was called to photograph a sport I’ve never even watched before, I immediately said yes.
Lacrosse is a fast paced sport I learned quickly with a certain amount of danger as the heavy lacrosse ball flies off the field with little notice. Of course there is danger in covering any sport, but rarely does that danger significantly limit the angles or positions you can shoot from. Because of this I was very grateful to have the new Canon 600mm F4 IS III. This allowed me to pick aggressive angles without being in the line of fire of shots that go wide. It also allowed me to make frames from up in the stands that were still tight enough to have exciting action.
This lens is incredible. It is so light at just under 7 pounds and allows me to hand hold it for two days straight of game action. It is incredibly fast to focus and just ridiculously sharp. No matter what I’ve tried to shoot with it I’m just blown away and even elevates my 1DX Mark II bodies to be more impressive than I already find them to be. During pregame I use a 2x teleconverter and take advantage of the combined 1200mm focal length. The image quality still holds up as very impressive to my critical eye.
I also used my Canon 300 2.8 IS II and I think that was a great combination for the sport. I was happy to make the frames I did with so little experience in Lacrosse. It helps so much to understand the sport you are photographing as the nature of sports photography is predictive not reactive.