Red Carpet Event Photography

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by photodeb, Dec 8, 2006.

  1. photodeb

    photodeb TPF Noob!

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    I need your advice if you are able. Tomorrow night I am about to shoot my first red carpet event. I have never done this before and all I own really is a Canon XTI, the lens it came with and an additional Canon EF 135 mm lens. Obviously I believe I may have some shopping to do before the event.
    what is the least I can get away with-equipment wise.. since money is tight and quite honestly since Ive never done this before Im quite nervous....

    The party planner emailed me to let me know what he wanted and mentioned if I could get a strobe so it looks more professional..this is for a company event where it is a red carpet theme. I've never used a strobe and quite frankly dont even know much about them.

    I've been shooting for only 3 months and my only focus has been portraits in natural light. Please help if you can- its tomorrow night...
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    If it's an night...you will need a strobe. I suggest the Canon 430EX. It's not particularly cheap...but it's a darn good flash. If you can find the older version, the 420EX...it might be cheaper.

    Don't get a Canon 'EZ' flash...they don't work well with new cameras like yours.

    The advantage of getting a Canon flash...is that it will work with the camera and use all the fancy technology. It should really help...if you don't know what you are doing.

    You really don't want to use the built-in flash. It's not very powerfull...and the chance of red eye is pretty high.
     
  3. photodeb

    photodeb TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the advice! I'm assuming the lens that came with the camera should be ok...?
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    It's certainly not the greatest lens, or even a pretty good one...but it's not terrible. (well the build quality is terrible...but the glass is OK).

    I have that lens...and to get the best quality out of it...I avoid shooing at it's widest (18mm)...and I avoid shooing with the aperture wide open (F3.5-F5.6)...I like to keep it at F8 if I can.

    If you want a great lens, at a great price...pick up a 50mm F1.8.

    If you have some money to spend on a lens...then I would consider a zoom with a maximum aperture of F2.8. The Canon ones are expensive...but Sigma & Tamron offer great F2.8 zoom lenses for much less.
     
  5. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    is the 135 a prime? if so, than that should work fine if you can get close enough .
     
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    135mm on an XTi...is quite the telephoto. They would have to be standing pretty far away to get more than a person's head in the shot.
     
  7. ladyphotog

    ladyphotog TPF Noob!

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    And if you use the 135 you will need more power from your flash so make sure you have one that will cover the distance. Light falls off over distance so practice with it if you can.
     
  8. photodeb

    photodeb TPF Noob!

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    yeah the 135 I think would have me having to stand too far away..hmmm..do if I invest in another lens, any other suggestions besides the one suggested...?

    BTW I decided I may have to rent everything..this is getting costly!
     
  9. DeepSpring

    DeepSpring TPF Noob!

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    Like Mike said the 50mm 1.8 is great and its under $100

    I did my schools homecoming dance with that which I imagine wouldnt be ALLLLL too different then a red carpet event in the lighting and distance.


    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...s&Q=&sku=350973&is=REG&addedTroughType=search
    There is an example of one of the sigmas he was talking about.

    this one is $100 less but B&H dosn't have it yet so I don't know if you could find it somewhere else
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...s&Q=&sku=352403&is=REG&addedTroughType=search
     
  10. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    All good and accurate pointers above...

    one thing to note... All EOS digital SLRs require E-TTL compatibility. There are a few aftermarket flashes that advertise EOS E-TTL compatibility but there have been many reports of major incompatibiities. Stick with the Canon "EX" line of flashes; 430EX (replaced the 420EX ) or 580EX (replaced the 550EX). The Canon EZ line is basically incompatible with your camera. Unfortunately, Canon's flashes are not cheap. I would recommend getting a slightly used 550EX over a brand new 430EX if you can find one. A bit more power.

    The 50mm f1.8 is probably the biggest bang for the buck lens in Canon's lineup.


    oh yeh..

    just make sure you practice with the new equipment a few times prior to the event. Nothing is more fustrating than learning the unfamiliar equipment on the fly. Also, don't forget to buy good quality batteries for your flash and carry extras...
     
  11. JIP

    JIP No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    One of the biggest problems you are going to find is speed of focusing. If you have the opportunity to rent things you should also consider a body that will focus fast enough so you do not have to keep people waiting while you focus.
     
  12. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    think 'diffuser'.

    Direct flash is often is much too contrasty.
    If the room has a standard height, white ceiling try shots with the flash bouncing off the ceiling.

    Practice in advance
    Practice in advance
    Practice in advance
    Practice in advance
     

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