Hello! Need a bit of help.

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Tommy gun, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. Tommy gun

    Tommy gun TPF Noob!

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    Hello everyone!

    I have a few questions and I appologize if I sound completely clueless because...well, I am!;)

    Photography is not a true hobby for me by any means, but it has started to play a role in my real passion, aquaria and fish keeping. I have been getting pretty involved with a forum, much like this one, on the subject of keeping both freshwater and sal****er fish tanks; of which I have both. As a sort of 'aid' for explaining what I want to get across to those who have some questions, and also to share pictures of my own tanks with others, I have been taking quite a few pictures of my tanks and equipment. However, the problem lies in that I cannot get my fish to sit very still for any amount of time and they do not comply easily when I ask them to "Say Cheese!" :p

    The camera I have is a digital camcorder that will take both videos and still pictures. Ironically, the video camera is not well adept at taking still photos of moving 'targets'. All of my pictures of fish come out very blurry since they are moving and I have researched extensively on the brand and exact camera options that I have with my model while trying to see if I can get some more clear pictures.

    So, today it occured to me that I can take very good and smooth videos, and I of course have the ability to pause the videos on my computer with great clarity of the spacific 'frame' that it stops on. So, I looked into some sort of method or software that would allow me to take still pictures right out of my videos, but cannot find anything really spacific on how to do this.

    So, I am wondering if any of you may know of a good way for me to accomplish my goals here or if you could so graciously point me at least in the right direction into finding out how to do this. I know that will today's technology, someone must have invented a way to do something along these lines since I often see pictures of fish who are known to be fast and elusive and they are always mighty clear.
     
  2. Puscas

    Puscas TPF Noob!

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    Hey Tommy,

    For taking pictures of fast moving fish, you'll need to have lots of light shining in the aquarium and then use a fast shutterspeed to 'freeze' the action. That would be the way to go with a photocamera, I guess.

    But if you've got them on video, why not use something like Windows Movie Maker, doesn't that allow you to make stills? And if everything else fails you can always play your movie on your pc, pause it at the right moment, and do a 'print screen'....


    good luck!



    pascal
     
  3. Tommy gun

    Tommy gun TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for the reply.

    I have heard of this Window Movie Maker but I do not think I have it on my computer so I take it that this is software that I would have to buy and put on my computer? I have a Window's everything else maker, but no movie maker.

    Can I do the print screen tip and just copy and paste to something else like MS Paint? I know it sounds silly, but I dont have the printer to be making copies of everything and I know I would lose a lot of clarity if I printed and then scanned it back to my computer. I want to use them online rather than to keep in a book or on a wall.

    Again, I appologize for asking such naiive questions. I am very new to all of this.

    If I wanted to get pictures of fish regularly, is there a better digital camera I could buy that would be good for this sort of thing? The camera I have right now does not seem to have an option for shutter speed. I have figured out the lighting pretty well and can take some great pictures of the tank from far away, but just not the fish close up since they always look like they are twitching right when I take the pic and come out fuzzy.
     
  4. Puscas

    Puscas TPF Noob!

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    Hi,

    Well, I've your using Windows XP, it should be in there (movie maker that is).
    I've used it a long time ago, so I'm not 100 % sure it has that 'still possibility'.

    But if you want to try the print screen: yes, you can print your screen, open Paint, and then use ctrl-V to see the screen-image. Than just cut out the picture. It's not really high-tec, but it works.


    And about the camera: I don't know how fast these fish move. My guess is pretty fast (especially when they get scared by someone trying to take their picture.. :)), so you're looking at some pretty fast shutterspeeds. I'm no camera expert, so I have no idea what kind of camera's are out there that have those speeds. Maybe someone else on this forum can help you there.
    But if it's not too much trouble, try the other options first, maybe it works out ok.


    pascal
     

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