I really need some help! [lots of photos, all horrible]

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by TheTyro, Mar 17, 2009.

  1. TheTyro

    TheTyro TPF Noob!

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    I decided to conduct a little experiment of sorts with the camera, as im still getting these really underexposed and washed out looking photos. I dont know if it's my fault for not setting it up properly, or if my light meter is not set properly, or a bunch of those factors mixed together.

    This little photo setup is ugly but I did it quickly so I could take photos in a controlled environment and see how it'd look with different settings. So if anyone with experience could tell me what is going on I would really appreciate it. I have a 6 month warranty for my camera so if its that I could just send it back to have it re...fixed. Haha.

    Camera is a Canon AT-1, 50mm lens, has a Duracell 6v Lithium Battery that I just bought and used for three other rolls of film. This camera was just repaired about 2 weeks ago. These photos were developed at my local CVS.

    Alright, for the experiment. I'm using Kodak 200 film. I was sure to put my light meter needle in the middle of the little circle needle thingy whenever it told me to adjust it based on the light coming in.

    The ASA was set at 100 and the exposure ( I still dont really know the actual name for it) is at 60.
    [​IMG]
    ASA is 100, exposure thing is at 30.
    [​IMG]
    ASA is 100, exposure is at 15.
    [​IMG]

    Then I shot it with the ASA set on 200, and took three more photos at 60, 30 and 15.
    Here, it is set on 60.
    [​IMG]
    Set on 30
    [​IMG]
    Set on 15
    [​IMG]

    Then just because I was curious, I set the ASA on 100, and set the exposure for 125.
    [​IMG]
    Here I set the ASA on 200 and took the photo at 125 again.
    [​IMG]

    Some more examples of why I am confused ( Heck, I'm a noob at this, I realize i'm probably doing a lot wrong.)

    I went to Friendly's with my boyfriend, the place was extremely bright so I was sure I was going to get at least 1 good photo. The ASA was at 200 and I believe the majority of the photos I shot there were exposed at 125 or 250. But they came out crazy dark. Do I have everything backwards? haha. It's the only explination I can think of besides a weird light meter.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Please help me. :confused:
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2009
  2. Mgw189

    Mgw189 TPF Noob!

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    ASA is your film speed. Set that to the 200 film you were using. The exposure you are talking about is shutter speed. The lower the number the more light that should be let in. You didnt mention aperture or f stop. Aperture is controlled by a series of blades that open and close depending on where you set it. The lower the aperture number the more light that is let in. Also with a lower aperture you will get a shallow depth of field or a blurred look in the fore and back grounds.
     
  3. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I am also assuming you are adjusting the Shutter Speed Dial that is on the top of the camera under the winding arm.

    Take a look at the negatives ... I say this because the place where you had the prints done could have balanced the prints to look the same ... the first three images shoot appear increasingly darker/denser on the negative.

    If they are not, and appear exactly the same density ... then I suspect that your shutter is not changing speed (stuck at one speed).

    I am assuming that the exposure meter needle moves up/down as you change the shutter speed ?

    Have you tried just adjusting the aperture value on the lens (ie. 1.8 to 2.8 to 5.6) ?
     
  4. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

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  5. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Ah, I forgot to add ...

    all the images you have shown are very under exposed.

    If you had shot all these images with the Needle in the middle of the Circle ... then they should be properly exposed.

    Continuing on with my first comments ... here is a test of your camera ...
    With no film in the camera:

    open the film back
    remove the lens
    set the Shutter Speed to 60
    look through the shutter curtain while you take a picture (trip the shutter)
    set the Shutter Speed to 15
    trip the shutter
    You should notice the shutter opening for a longer time
    set the Shutter Speed to 2
    You really should notice the shutter opening longer
     
  6. TheTyro

    TheTyro TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, it was the shutter speed dial with the green ASA that I was messing with from 100 to 200. For my first roll of film, it was set at 100. (I had no idea I could change that until later) Since the film is 200, we thought it'd make sense to set it at 200 too. But this seemed to make the photos even worse in terms of the darkness. Thats where this little experiment popped up. The photos turned out better with the shutter speed set at 100 instead of 200 (brighter anyways)

    Yep, the exposure meter moved up (I believe every time I went to a higher number for the shutter speed, so I would try to match the meter (stick with a ball thing)

    I am still trying to learn all the terms (I'm reading about them now, like the aperture f-stop thing. I kind of assumed if the meter said enough light was coming in, and if things looked in focus I could take the picture. Maybe thats where I am screwing things up? I'll pay more attention to that. I was aware of the blades opening and closing for that purpose but...I'll see...if that helps. Haha.

    What aperture setting do you think would help? I think I had it at like 1.8 or around there for my experimental photos.
     
  7. Mgw189

    Mgw189 TPF Noob!

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    If you had them at 1.8 and 1/15th of a second you have big time issues somewhere. That kind of exposure would have been bright as bright can be.
     
  8. TheTyro

    TheTyro TPF Noob!

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    I'll do that tonight. I just developed some other pictures from today that were taken in bright sunlight at a variety of different settings and all of them were still washy and dark. Hopefully something will click in me and I'll get this solved. I really really appreciate all your comments guys, I have no doubt it will help me very much!
     
  9. TheTyro

    TheTyro TPF Noob!

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    Thats the main thing, I'm pretty stumped. Heres some photos I took out today in some very bright sunlight ( the porch was hot to walk on sort of bright)

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Based on what my little light meter was telling me and what the AT-1 guide was telling me ( on a bright sunny day, set it around 250) the needle was high so I set the thing to intersect it. I figure if i'm adjusting them both appropriately they shouldn't come out so strange.

    Just letting you guys know, I have read through the guide (quickly, but the jist of things made sense and my boyfriend read it too, we talked about the stuff together to make sense of it. Def need to read it again but still...we are pretty confused.)

    I may have to illustrate what I see when it comes to my meter and take more info about the aperture and what not when I take a photo so you guys can have more references. I was thinking about doing that anyways.
     
  10. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Ah, I just suddenly remembered something ...

    on the lens there is a dial (closest to the camera) that has numbers printed on it and an A.
    Is the lens set on the A ?
     
  11. AlexColeman

    AlexColeman TPF Noob!

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    Or get a D40, and 18-55 will give you the best time of your life....sorry, but I am no help with film.
     
  12. TheTyro

    TheTyro TPF Noob!

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    I just looked, it wasn't set on the A, seems when I turn it there it snaps into place. Would I want it there?
     

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