Amateur seeks advice...

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by klunsford11, Oct 27, 2005.

  1. klunsford11

    klunsford11 TPF Noob!

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    I own a Minolta Maxxum which I've started to use more often to take pictures of my son. However, I've notice that when I turn the camera sideways to take a photo I end up with a shadow down one side of the picture. What would cause that?

    http://members.aol.com:/klunsford11/pic3

    Also, I've been trying to take pictures of him up against a backdrop, and what happens is that the foreground is lit up but the background looks almost black. (It's actually a marbled blue color.)

    http://members.aol.com:/klunsford11/pic2

    Do I need an additional flash to light up the whole area? My camera has a thing on top to put a bigger flash I think.

    (Hey, I said right up front I was an amateur.)

    :D Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Kimberly
     
  2. JonMikal

    JonMikal TPF Noob!

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    first off welcome to TPF

    in the first shot, do all vertical shots have the same intrusive shadow when using the flash? this looks like something partially blocking the light.
     
  3. Marctwo

    Marctwo TPF Noob!

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    On the first one it looks like your thumb or finger is getting in front of the flash and causing the shadow.

    On the second a slower shutter speed will help but it may not be practicable with your camera... or it may.
     
  4. klunsford11

    klunsford11 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the warm welcome and the advice.

    The pictures I take outside don't have the vertical dark streak, just the indoor pics. I hadn't thought about my finger getting in the way of the flash. I'll have to do some testing on that theory.

    I wouldn't know what a shutter speed was if it bit me on the butt. I'm just using the point and shoot method, though my camera is capable of being manual versus automatic. I really need to find a good photography class somewhere. Any suggestions for good books or a course online?

    Thanks,

    Kimberly
     
  5. Cdeep04

    Cdeep04 TPF Noob!

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    A good book I have found is called Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson there is an older version and one that was updated in 2004. I like the newer one.

    One good thing to do is just go to the book store and looks at books and find one that you like and fits your needs.
     
  6. Marctwo

    Marctwo TPF Noob!

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    Sorry, I was a bit rushed in my first reply.

    In the first case: If you're holding the lens with your left hand then turning the camera on it's side may be positioning the flash behind your fingers on the lens. There are many things that you can screw onto the end of lenses that will also have the same effect.

    In the second case: Take your time in reading the manual - it really is worth it. Your camera may have a special scene mode for this type of thing called something like 'slow sync' or 'night portrait'.

    Keep playing and reading and it'll soon start sinking in. ;)
     
  7. David A

    David A TPF Noob!

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    Hmm...the links aren't working for me. :confused:
     
  8. klunsford11

    klunsford11 TPF Noob!

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    Cdeep - Thanks for the reccomendation. I'll check into that book.

    Marctwo - I never even thought about reading the manual. Duh! First thing I read was that the lens could interfere with the flash sometimes when the camera was turned sideways. It figures! Thanks for the idea.

    Kimberly
     
  9. steve817

    steve817 TPF Noob!

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    That's where a hotshoe flash would come in really handy, and yes that's what that thing on top is for.
     

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