TWiP Family 045: Panning Photos for Parents

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Today we have a guest host, my good friend, Zane Schwaiger. She wanted to learn how to take panning photos of her kids. She’s doing a daily photo project, a 365 Project, and attempted a panning photo but it wasn’t what she’d hoped.

What is a panning photo?

Panning photos show motion. The shutter speed is slow and the photographer moves her camera with the subject as they move. The background is blurred and the subject stays focused.

Something that is like panning can be created when you are moving with your subject and use a slow shutter speed. Zane and I talked about a photo by Simon Boyle, who is doing a 365 project with us, of his wife on a spinning ride. We also talked about doing a photo of a child spinning with your camera on a timer. I hadn’t tried it when we talked, but I tried it after. These example of photos that use the same motion blur that panning uses.

Here are three ways to capture the action on a spinning ride.

In our conversation, we talk about how to make a panning photo. First, chose a subject moving in a predictable path and speed. Use a high aperture and the highest shutter speed you can while still getting motion blur. I usually use 1/50 or 1/60. Expect a lot of bad photos and have fun.

After our conversation, Zane was inspired to try panning again. She said it took her about 100 photos to get the one that worked.

I love panning photos. I love how much energy they have and how I can embrace the motion of my children when taking a panning photo. I started making panning photos to capture the excitement of sled riding.

I hope this episode encourages you to try some panning photos. Share your panning photos in the comments, even if they didn’t work the way you’d hoped!

If you have a family photography question, a suggestion for a show topic or guest, or just want to say hello – email me – jenny@twip.pro

Zane and I talked about our 365 Projects. Today is a great day to start your project. We’re having a great time sharing our photos in the TWiP Family 365 2016 group on Flickr. Join us.

More about Zane: Website, Flickr, Instagram

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