The camera of choice was a no-brainer. We used Nikon D4 cameras set to shoot at 9 frames per second, and coupled them with the long Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 and 80-400mm zooms. We had two camera angle set ups on every scene.
Having a fast moving subject coming directly towards the camera is the most difficult situation for a continuous focus camera and lens to follow. The first time I ever tried a photo sequence like the one above was still in the age of manual focus cameras and lenses. I was working with a film Nikon and 400mm fixed lens and would pre-focus the camera at a fixed spot hoping the swimmer would hit it with the right expression and attitude. Needless to say, the absence of digital review also made this a real hit-or-miss opportunity. We would repeat the scene over and over again just to be sure that we had at least one shot in focus.
With a digital D4 and any of the fine Nikon pro teles, this type of shot is now a piece of cake. Set the camera to continuous focus, place one of the focus points on the swimmers face and let the camera do the rest shooting continuously at 9 fps.
|At the same time Daniel was photographing the swimmer with the RX100 II from his position under water, I was taking this series above with the D4 and 80-400mm lens.|