Long Exposures???

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Alpha, Mar 20, 2005.

  1. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    I know that in the end this will come down to some particulars like available light and personal taste, but I wanted to try some longer exposures and don't really know where to start. To begin, can you only do long exposures at night when you won't overexpose? Could somebody please give some sort of guideline for exposure times at night. When my exposure meter simply reads "under" I don't know what to do, or rather, how long to do it for.
     
  2. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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  3. SLOShooter

    SLOShooter TPF Noob!

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    You can make long exposures during the day by using a ND filter. They basically just cut down the amount of light coming in through the lens letting you take a long exposure during the daytime.
     
  4. Dweller

    Dweller Inconspicuous Supporter

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    I had a similar question when I started taking night shots and was given some advice thatw orked well for me:

    Using ISO 100 Set your aperature to f/8 and expose for 10-30 seconds and work from there.

    I got some great shots of the cities skyline using this as a starting point.
     
  5. KizaHood

    KizaHood TPF Noob!

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    Practice!
    If it's too dark to meter, just pick few manual settings and see the results.

    Film speed is very important while shooting at night, because night shots develop much more grain compared to daylight shots. Don't go over ISO 100.

    Try closing the aperture as much as possible! Don't hesitate to use f22 while taking nightshots - you'll get some interesting results!

    Don't hesitate even with extremely long exposures - try 10 MINUTES exposure some time (of course, considering the light and f setting).

    If you want to take a shot of night landscape of a city, while standing on a top of some building, try the following:
    -Aperture: f16
    -100 speed film
    -Shutter speeds:
    * 30 secs
    * 2 minutes
    * 8 minutes
    ...and compare the results!

    DONT FORGET YOUR TRIPPOD!!!
     
  6. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I'm all for using slower films speeds for long exposures. Besides being less grainy, the ISO on the label pretty much goes out the window for exposures longer than 1 second, so actually some low speed films become faster than high speed films for long exposures. An example is Tmax films (BW); for long exposures Tmax 100 is actually more sensitve than Tmax 400. You can usually find more info about a particular film's response to long exposures at the manufacturer's website.

    But if you are focusing on something 40 feet/13 meters or farther away there is going to be little difference in your DOF at f/16 or f/4 because "infinity" will be within the DOF. So if your DOF is infinite, why not go with a wider aperture? At f/4 the exposure time may be in minutes, while in the same lighting at f/16 the exposure could go up to over an hour (maybe that's what you want?). You will notice that the manufacturer's recommendations will say to open the aperture, rather than increase the time, because with very long exposures reciprocity breaks down much faster on the time side of exposure than the aperture side of exposure.
     
  7. elrafo

    elrafo TPF Noob!

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    hi MaxBloom,

    I had very good results With B&W Ilford PanF, it was 50 Asa, I did a lot of shooting by night in industial areas and ruins,

    Indeed , the closed aperture and the sublte grain of Panf allowed me to do quite long exposure without being overexpoded and keep incredible gradiants of Greys, from black to white.

    you shold try it if this film is still available :)

    here are some examples:

    http://www.3dluvr.com/elrafo/Site-def/photos/decor-def/bassin2.jpg

    http://www.3dluvr.com/elrafo/Site-def/photos/decor-def/bassin1.jpg

    http://www.3dluvr.com/elrafo/
     
  8. KizaHood

    KizaHood TPF Noob!

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    Because of star-alike rays that would appear around every light source (best seen on far away street lamps)!

    When the aperture is closed, it forms a polygon. That polygon has different number of angles, depending on lens. Each angle will produce one ray going from the light source. The closer the aperture, the bigger the star around light sources!

    If the aperture is wide open, there will not be a polygon, but the circle, so no rays will be formed. In such case, street lights will seem blured and burned!

    Try it - it will be fun! Try taking nightshot at f2 (or whatever is your lens' max aperture) at f8 and at f22 (or f16 if you don't have f22) and compare the results.
     
  9. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    Ahhhhh, very good point! It hasn't happened with my night photography for a long time because I've been using medium and large format lenses, and they have many more blades in the aperture to form a much rounder hole, but I do remember polygon and star flare from when I was shooting 35mm gear at night, particularly when I was using zoom lenses.
     
  10. thebeginning

    thebeginning TPF Noob!

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    ditto. thats what i do.
     

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