Shooting at night with 35mm

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by poplarparkfilms, Apr 26, 2008.

  1. poplarparkfilms

    poplarparkfilms TPF Noob!

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    Ok so I have a canon EOS Rebel k2 (film camera) with a standard 28-80mm lens. I am just going beyond into manual mode and was wondering If I was to shoot say a city skyline at night what should I set my F stops/ shutter speeds at to get a sucessful result?

    I mean I know keep the F stop open probley around like 4, and have your shutter at like 2 or what? I know the key is to have it so there is minimal movement or else the lights will blur. Can anyone give me some tips on shooting night photography on film?
     
  2. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Set your shutter to something at F/8 or numerically HIGHER. Use a tripod and use the camera's meter to tell you what shutter speed to use, thats what it is there for. ;) If it cannot give you an accurate reading, its likely possible that exposure times above 30 seconds are needed. Tripod is an absolute must for night shooting. The rest... is experiment and learn what works for you.

    There is no one setting that works for all conditions and it is impossible for us to know what the lighting conditions will be wherever you are.
     
  3. poplarparkfilms

    poplarparkfilms TPF Noob!

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    ha yeah those meters ha, well thanks I'm gonna go out and shoot some later tonight. I'll post here the results.
     
  4. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Bear in mind if your shutter speed goes beyond 1 or 2 seconds something called reciprocity failure will cause the film to underexpose by 1/2 or 1 stop so give it a bit of a boost in that regard.
     
  5. Mav

    Mav TPF Noob!

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    If you're going to be close enough to actually see some traffic or other movement, you'd probably want to set a specific shutter speed so that you get a nice streaking effect from the light. Could be a rotating signal light on a tower, or traffic, or pretty much anything.

    This was a 4 second exposure at f/4.5

    [​IMG]

    I was trying to time the exposure so that I'd get a nice sweeping effect from the light on top of the Eiffel Tower. Any longer exposure and you'd capture a wider arc, but it'd lack the punch and intensity. A shorter exposure would give a more intense beam, but over a smaller arc and you'd lose some of the action effect.

    This one was at 10s and f/7.6. The arc of the beam is now so wide that you can barely see it.
    [​IMG]


    And then this one was at 2 seconds at f/4.5. Auto ISO on my D80 cranked itself up to 250 from the base of 100 for the faster exposure since my 18-55 kit lens was already wide open at that point.
    [​IMG]


    If you're shooting slow speed film, a fast prime like the EF 50mm f/1.8 for $100 or the EF 35mm f/2 for $200 might come in handy. That'll give you maximum flexibility in shutter speed to get the effect that you're looking for. On digital you just use whatever lens you've got and crank up the ISO as needed.
     
  6. poplarparkfilms

    poplarparkfilms TPF Noob!

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    Hey man thanks so much that's great help. I can't wait to develope this new roll i got in here some beauts for sure. I'm gonna get some night shots tongiht going to be sick
     

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