ARRGHHH.. I thought I had it..

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by stsinner, Dec 21, 2008.

  1. stsinner

    stsinner TPF Noob!

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    I was trying to take more holiday pics of the kids after playing with settings for hours.. I set the camera on Aperture Priority mode, used the SB600 in TTL mode and dialed the EV down to -2.0 and ISO 800 for a faster shutter speed in an attempt to not blur movement.. It's hard to get the kids to sit still long enough for low-light shots.. I didn't want to use the flash straight on in AUTO because it totally washes out the lights on the tree. I shot it in RAW, so I can adjust the exposure if it's horrible, but I like the picture other than the blurry kids... Is it something simple that I'm overlooking? I know the shutter speed has to be 1/125 or faster to freeze motion, but that doesn't work in this setting to get the desired effect.. I need a crisper picture, so is shutter speed my only option in this case? I can go to ISO 1600, but I'm trying to keep from getting too noisy.. I was already at 800. Aperture was at 5.6, which is the limit of this lens..

    Any advice? I've learned a lot since my last attempt, but 1/6 sec shutter speed is still too slow to get a good pic of the kids...

    Thanks for the help.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Eldrich

    Eldrich TPF Noob!

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    Are you using a tripod? or setting the camera on a table or is it in your hand?

    the fireplace looks like a different color temperature than the rest of the photo to me.
     
  3. stsinner

    stsinner TPF Noob!

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    It's on a tripod, but I was pressing the shutter by hand. I have a remote, but I wanted to fire off multiple shots because it's so hard to get a good one..

    Unfortunately, I don't know anything about color temperature yet.. I haven't touched this picture since it came out of the camera, so it's not had any PP.
     
  4. Early

    Early TPF Noob!

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    That would be a real winner if the kids were looking at the camera and they were sharper. I like the color as is, but you gotta get some reshoots.

    You say you used a tripod and 1/6 sec. Try pressing down on the camera with your free hand to make it more stable.
     
  5. stsinner

    stsinner TPF Noob!

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    Well, I think I'm right at the limit with that lens.. I played around with my 50, and it's much better at allowing a faster shutter speed at lower f-stop to get semi-good light and stop movement. I just don't seem to be able to achieve the warm look I'm after.. I chased this thing for a few days a month or so ago and wound up chasing my tail.. The is the first time I've played with EV settings and slow flash sync. The problem with the 50 is that I have to sacrifice a lot of the shot and get just the kids with the tree behind them. Oh well..
     
  6. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Sounds like you need a fast wide angle lens.

    ie 14mm or 17mm f/2.8
     
  7. Chewbecca

    Chewbecca TPF Noob!

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    you need a wider, faster lens.
    You have a D50, I don't know if the SB600 can be shot off camera with a D50 or not.
    If it can, you need to get it off of the camera, and shoot it THROUGH an umbrella.
    A faster lens will allow you to open your aperture more, and lower your ISO.
    I don't get why you have to be on such a high ISO with your shutter speed so slow. So, I'm thinking it's because you need a lens that will allow for a wider aperture.

    I can get decent lighting with my SB600 shot through an umbrella, ISO 200, 1/250, f2.8
    Oh, and up your exposure at least to 0/6. Why do you have that on -2?
     
  8. samleo

    samleo TPF Noob!

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    I was under the impression that shutter speed is irrelevant when using flash;the shot being taken in the fration of a second that the flash fires irrespective of the shutter speed selected. Have you tried going on manual flash control and selecting the aperture according to the GN of the flash? Works great for me!
     
  9. Chewbecca

    Chewbecca TPF Noob!

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    This is what I have heard as well. But, I KNOW it makes a difference on mine.
    At least when I use the flash off the camera. There's a HUGE difference in 1/250-1/320. It's like night and day.
     
  10. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    No. That shot was taken at 1/6 of a second. Check your EXIF data. If you have an SB600, indoors, and the ceilings are church ceilings, a shutter speed of 1/60 bounced off the ceiling (or whatever you have) is MORE than enough for a simple XMAS shot like this. At 1/6 speed, youre going ot be hit or miss if the kids are squirming, and if you wanted to get multiple shots, realize that the SB600 may NOT recycle fast enough for you to take another shot. Also, ISO800, indoors WITH an SB600 is overkill and not needed. ISO200 is fine in this situation.

    Right now I think there is just some confusion about what you are trying to do.

    This shot of a friends cat was taken with a single SB600 (mounted on the camera no less), under apartment lights. F 2.8 and 1/60 shutter speed.

    [​IMG]

    Here is my suggestions:

    Get if off AP Priority. If you want real control and real results start shotting this stuff in MANUAL mode. F/5.6 with a SS of 1/60 with SB-600 should be adequate. If you want, you can even meter for the fireplace, or the lights on the tree, and have a more "intimate" atmosphere around the kids.

    Don't shoot the kids first. Get everything set up FIRST, take a few practice shots to see if your lighting is fine.

    And again - get off AP mode. I think that is killing you dude, because nowhere in the OP did you mention a Shutter Speed of 1/6th of a second.

    And finally, lets work on the composition. This looks like a perfect "snapshot" pose. You most have a zoom lens, so work on getting in close, or moving the kids away from the tree (while keeping it in the background) so the tree makes a perfect out of focus backdrop for their darling lil faces. Or sit them in front of the fireplace and do the same thing. They dont HAVE to be looking at the camera. They can be playing with each other, showing off toys, etc - but having a scene that POPS is also important to making this photograph.
     
  11. stsinner

    stsinner TPF Noob!

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    Unfortunately, it's not possible to do off-camera flash with the D50..

    The reason I have the ISO so high is so that the shutter is faster-the same with the EV being on -2. I discovered that the lower I set it, the faster the shutter, and I'm trying to freeze the kids in place. I was just adjusting settings in Aperture Priority mode with the flash in slow sync in order to take in as much of the ambient light as possible in order to get the Christmas tree lights..

    I think I will shop for a wider angle fast lens.. Any recommendations for a lens that is useful in a bunch of situations, but doesn't cost a fortune? Of course a fortune is relative to each situation, so for me, I think $150 is about what I can do.. I'm going to go search right now.
     
  12. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Absolutely not. In fact its even more important as you are now introducing MORE light into the scene. Too slow, or too fast and the camera wastes or takes in to much of that added light.

    What people might mean is that with a DEDICATED FLASH, your flexibility in using FAST shutter speeds in low light situations improves, which it certainly does! But you still have to be mindful of it, as the OP was shooting at 1/6th Shutter Speed, whether he knew it or not.

    This isn't a lens issue.

    A SLOW shutter speed does not freeze action. And you're not trying to freeze action here, just be faster than the slight movements of the kids. Just put your camera in Manual Mode, dial it BACK down to ISO200, shoot at a minimum shutter speed of 1/60 (no slower), and choose your aperture based on that. With the D50, you can't go off camera (sadly), but at 1/60 you can easily hand hold that, and bounce the light off the ceiling.
     

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