Last night, as I walked into the West Allis Central Fieldhouse for the Girls Indoor Track Conference Championships, I honestly wondered to myself, "When are they going to turn the lights on?"
Then, I realized ... there was no turning up the wattage on these bad boys.
I looked at my camera and said a little prayer.
Coming from Florida — where nearly every prep sport is played outdoors — indoor track sort of made me want to cry. I looked at the Nikon D3 of the photographer next to me. He sensed my pain and said, "Yeah, you can't shoot anything in here under ISO 5000." In full realization that my camera has no capability of shooting any higher than 1600, he walked away, kindly laughing.
For those who are unfamiliar, ISO is the
standard measurement of a camera's sensitivity to light. For film
cameras, the ISO is the film speed, which is based on the composition
of the film. Back in the film days, in order to change the ISO, the
photographer had to load a film with a different speed. With digital
cameras, ISO can be changed by selecting a speed from the ISO menu,
which reconfigures an electronic circuit that emulates film speed.
Sometimes, rooms are so dark that altering the camera's shutter speed
and aperture are simply not enough. The ISO is a third variable that can create a correct exposure.
I'm not proud of posting a photo taken at ISO 1600 (as I rarely ever shoot above 500), but I wanted to show you what it looks like. Grain, noise, and lots of it.
However, with the newest, top-of-the-line cameras these days, higher ISO's are able to be used with little to no noise.
The second photo posted below is simply an overall shot to give you a sense of last night's available light. I shot the first photo at ISO 1600, 1/160, f2.8 and the second photo at ISO 640, 1/125, f2.8.
Nikon D2H, 155 mm, 1600 ISO, f2.8, 1/160, Manual
Brookfield East's Morgan Mayer-Jochimsen competes in the pole vault Wednesday, April 2, 2008, during the Girls Indoor Track Conference Championships, held in the West Allis Central High School Fieldhouse, West Allis.