Inagural Newb Thread (Shutter Q inside)

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Annamas, Jul 26, 2009.

  1. Annamas

    Annamas TPF Noob!

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    This is my first asking for help thread on these forums, though I severly expect it will far be from my last. A little about me. I'm 25 and have been in love with the idea of photography since I picked up my first National Geographic. I love photo journalism, candid portraiture / street photos, landscape and nature. I've only recently started to think about getting serious with photography, so i've become a sponge.

    I have a Canon EOS 30D. Currently I have the stock lens (28-55mm f/3.5) and a (L series 70-200mm f/4). Looking on expanding by at least one lens in the near future, probably a 50mm f/1.4. As well as looking at picking up a flash of some sort.

    Today's question pertains to Shutterspeed. I've seen some amazing night time storm and landscape photo's, and I'm wondering how to go about replicating the technique. For the most part the idea is a low light area, tripod and a long shutter speed (i've seen up to 5 minutes mentioned on the forums). The max my camera will let me slide up to is 30 seconds, then it indicates "bulb". How does one get the camera to keep the shutter open for longer than 30 seconds?

    While I'm on a topic, can anyone recommend some good reading (book or internet) about light. I'm having the damndist time understanding lighting in relation to portraiture. (I've already purchased Understanding Exposure, but the section on light was rather weak).
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2009
  2. shmne

    shmne No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Well you see bulb is Canon's way of saying however long you feel like keeping it open. You just hold down the shutter release until you are happy with the length.

    There is a remote shutter release for I think 30 bucks that allows you to lock the shutter down without holding it down (plus it takes the release off camera so now you gain sharpness due to less touching of the camera!)

    Zack Arias - Atlanta based editorial music photographer ยป White Seamless Tutorial :: Part 1 :: Gear & Space

    ^- In general this guy writes excellent guides on setting up lights, ever since I stumbled on him I've loved his work

    *Edit-
    I just realized what you are asking, so let me add this real fast! What you are referring to is called a long exposure. It simply allows the sensor or film to collect light for a duration set by you. I slightly answered you by talking about what the bulb option was, but then failed to mention what this type of shot was called xD
     
  3. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    Knowing how to calculate stops (really easy if you keep it to one-stop increments; just * 2) will help when exploring bulb. It'll save frustration, and let you use the light meter effectively. (For example: say the meter tells you that you can get a proper exposure at ISO 1600, f/5, 4". If you're doing a landscape, you might want to stop down to say, f/14, which is a three stop difference. Take 4" and multiply by two three times, and you get about 30". Then lower the ISO to 100 to get the cleanest image, which is a difference of 4 stops. Multiply 30" by 2 four times to get 480", or approximately 8 minutes. And then shoot faster than that because the light meter overestimates because it tries to average everything to 18% grey...and it usually sucks in such low light anyway.)
     

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