Christmas morning shots (advice please)

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Craig G, Dec 24, 2009.

  1. Craig G

    Craig G TPF Noob!

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    Please forgive me for looking for a last minute quick and easy answer, but I'm leaving the P&S cameras in the drawer again and will be using my D80, and I don't want to F up another Christmas with crappy pics. No time to delete, re adjust and shoot again.

    So, I pre-set up my camera on the tripod to take some pictures tomorrow morning. I'll be using my wireless remote so I can be in them as well. (1st time for that)
    I'm using my Sigma 18-200 3.5 lens.
    I'll set my ISO @ 400.
    Then my WB to auto.
    Aperture to 3.5 max for that lousy lense.
    Off camera flash (cheapo unit. On/off type).
    Shutter speed......I have no idea. ????? I want to pick up the lights on the tree but if I go too slow the kids moving around will blur the shots. Also, I will not have the greatest light due to the weather and only two lamps in the room.

    So.....kids running down the stairs, then kids taring up wrapping paper in low light. What should I do.

    PS* If I guessed correctly, there's a 24-70 2.8 under the tree for me.:D
    PSS* I also set up a video cam as a back up because three years in a row, I screw this up.:(
     
  2. HikinMike

    HikinMike No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If your already have a video camera running, then enjoy your kids. But that's just me.

    Merry Christmas!
     
  3. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    What do you mean, "lens set to f/3.5"? That does not compute for me: flash photos indoors at ISO 400 would be best be done with the shutter speed set to around 1/60- second, and the lens aperture set to around f/7.1 or thereabouts. I don't know what kind of off-camera flash you have or how it is triggered. If the flash has a bounce feature, I would set the flash so it bounces up off the ceiling and rains down on your kids opening their gifts.

    A camera set up on a tripod and triggered remotely....hmmm....could be a lot of focusing issues there unless you keep the focal lengths short, in the 18 to 35mm range, and keep the aperture small, like f/7.1 to f/9, and have most of the scene at one moderate distance from the camera.

    A flash unit can be a valuable asset, or a PITA--it depends on how well the flash integrates with the camera, and on your knowledge and skill with the flash. An "off-camera flash" might not do all that well if you do not have it set up correctly; you have until tomorrow to figure out how to get it set up right, and to make sure it has fresh,strong batteries. Might be a good idea to have the little lady shooting the P&S as well...

    Hope there is a 24-70 under the tree for you!
     
  4. Ron Evers

    Ron Evers Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    "Might be a good idea to have the little lady shooting the P&S as well..."

    You broke me up with that line Derrel. :lol:
     
  5. Craig G

    Craig G TPF Noob!

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    I said aperture set to 3.5, not lense. Your saying set it to 7 to 9. Will do. :thumbup:
    Will do.:thumbup:
    Yes it does, and that's how I would typically use it for this senerio .
    Your correct with focusing issues as I'm still getting used to the remote. Everyone will be within the same dof for the most part. I may have to loose the tripod and hand hold if it becomes an issue.

    This is something I am learning and need to pick a few brains about it

    Thanks for taking the time to help me out. I want to become better at this so I'll be sticking around for a bit.
     
  6. HikinMike

    HikinMike No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I would ditch the tripod. I can just see a lot of OOF shots if you use a tripod. Best to hand hold it and precisely focus the subject.

    Good luck and Merry Christmas!
     
  7. Craig G

    Craig G TPF Noob!

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    Your right. While I'm waiting for the little ones to fall asleep, I'm messing around with the remote, and I don't see that it's going to work with moving subjects. I'll try it for a few shots, then hand hold after that.
     
  8. PatrickHMS

    PatrickHMS TPF Noob!

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    Use daddy's old Kodak Photoflood light bar, set your WB, and shoot away...


    ...lol
     
  9. jjparson

    jjparson No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I went through this experience this morning. I echo the other advice given. I was shooting a D80 as well, iso 400 1/80 , F 7. For the most part the pictures turned out really well. The other option is to use P mode. When I am nervous about the results I will usually shoot in both just to make sure I am covered. This has seemed to work well for me. Good luck and don't take it so serious that you take the fun out of the morning ;).

    Merry Christmas
     

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