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How would you guys have taken this shot?
These pictures were taken with a FZ-8 P&S camera when I was in Beijing. This picture was taken in the evening and the result doesn't seem too acceptable to me. If you guys had the Canon XTI with 17-40mm L f/4 lens and 430 EX external flash or any other DSLR cameras, how would you have taken the pictures?.

Http://www.flickr.com/...wrencejunjielee/1475496447/in/set-72157602251204972/.

Http://www.flickr.com/...wrencejunjielee/1475488985/in/set-72157602251204972/.

Http://www.flickr.com/...wrencejunjielee/1475492815/in/set-72157602251204972/.

The reason why I ask this is because I intend to get a Canon setup base on those equipment. If I go back to Beijing next year, I want to retake those shots and hopefully it'll come out better. I want to learn from my mistakes...

Comments (9)

I think that the first shot came out surprisingly good for a P/S I'm guessing on AUTO mode. The other 2 I'm not really sure what you wre going for. I posted some information on another thread about shooting a portrait as sunset that would apply to the first image with a DSLR..

Http://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1002&message=25729354..

Comment #1

SMPhoto wrote:.

I think that the first shot came out surprisingly good for a P/S I'mguessing on AUTO mode. The other 2 I'm not really sure what you wregoing for. I posted some information on another thread about shootinga portrait as sunset that would apply to the first image with a DSLR..

Http://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1002&message=25729354.

I don't know if you associate "P Mode" with auto mode, but I guess they are similar..

I just wanted to take a regular snapshot. I wanted a more natural and sharper picture if that makes any sense to you...

Comment #2

The first one came out better than the other because the background is brighter. To achieve proper lighting in the other two, I'd either use flash in Slow sync mode, or wouldn't use flash at all and opt for a longer exposure. In the latter case, use a tripod (or a camera/lens with vibration resistance mechanism - Canon calls it "IS" I think).

Http://www.flickr.com/photos/96953368@N00/..

Comment #3

Yes "P" mode, pr Program is an AUTO exposure mode. If you shoot the DSLR the same way, then you will wind up with similar results. Maybe a little better image quality do to superior sensor, lens, etc. The best advice I could give is to take the camera off P when you get it and learn the basics of exposure. It's the beauty of digital...instant feedback and the higher ISO capabilities of the DSLR will help bring up the background exposure for what you are looking for, but you still need to understand exposure to use it. Get the SLR then read this.

Http://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1002&message=25144124..

Comment #4

I've never tried this myself, so I'm wondering if full manual is really necessary? So long as you were metering off the sky then locking the exposure, couldn't you use either aperture priority or program auto effectively?.

Not that I mind using M if it's needed, but I'd be back to one of the other modes for the rest of the shots I'd be making, and it'd be nice if there was an easy way to "persuade" the camera to behave without switching modes all the time..

Thanks for the advice though. I looked at the shot in the post you referenced and it's pretty awesome...

Comment #5

Thanks, actually I think I should have dropped the flash down about another 1/2 stop, but the S5 handled it well without blowing out whites. Any other DSLR would have. Hmmm...honestly I shoot on Manual 100% of the time when using the SB800, I just like it that way, so I didn't really think about AV. If you meter the sky and lock the exposure in, will the camera still meter the iTTL of the subject correctly on flash fire? Not sure but seems more complicated to me than just setting manual exposure for the background and letting the flash do it's thing...

Comment #6

Manual? Maybe, maybe not..

Circumstances chance, and there's many ways to set a camera..

BAK..

Comment #7

I would have, first of all, decided how serious I wanted to be about this..

Quick and dirty, set the camera to A for aperturer priority, and take a meter reading to see what shutter speed is abvvailable at an aperture I like..

Adjust ISO if that helps me get a handholdable shutter speed..

Set flash exposure compensation to minus one..

So now the camera is at, perhaps, 1/30 at f5.6, and the flash is set to produce enough light to underexposse the shot by one stop..

Click..

Picture now has properly exposed background, and friend is quite bright, one stop below perfect, but brght enough to look pretty good..

BEFORE YOU LEAVE.. if you think you'll be shooting outside at dusk a lot, or under overhangs so that you are in shadow, learn to use flash exposure compensation. The heardest thing to learn/decide is how brightyou want the flash in relation to the background. Some people like dark backgrounds and well exposed people. Others like the background right, and the people a ittle darker. Others like the people even more darker..

The experpiment is to repeat the same shot with minur two, minus one, plus one and plus two exposure compensation, with background exposure set at normal, and then repeat the experiment with the background set at mnus one exposure compensation ( not FLASH exposure comp, just camera exposure comp).

After a while, you'll learn what you like, and then automation will help you out..

BAK..

Comment #8

Sgt_Strider wrote:.

These pictures were taken with a FZ-8 P&S camera when I was inBeijing. This picture was taken in the evening and the result doesn'tseem too acceptable to me. If you guys had the Canon XTI with 17-40mmL f/4 lens and 430 EX external flash or any other DSLR cameras, howwould you have taken the pictures?.

With an f/4 lens you would have lost a stop over the f/2.8, but with any dSLR you could have shot at ISO 400  800 for a net gain of 1  2 stops (or twice or four times the shutter speed)..

For the second two shots:.

With the 400D/Xti or similar camera I would have shot in Av or M at a higher ISO and similar or slower shutter speed so that the background was better exposed, using the flash more for subject fill..

With any Canon camera Av works as a fill flash mode or a shutter dragging mode, it exposed for the background and uses the flash for fill. You can use exposure compensation to slightly under expose the background so that you don't totally lose the evening effect..

In M mode you can vary the ratio of flash to fill as much as you want, it is really THE flash mode on Canon dSLRs..

For the first shot it would be difficult to illuminate the foliage and avoid blowing the sky unless you had a few external lights. As SM almost said, this shot came out surprisingly well..

Brian A...

Comment #9

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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