Shooting in low light - fast shutter

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Daf, Aug 10, 2009.

  1. Daf

    Daf TPF Noob!

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    Hi all!

    New to both this forum and photography!

    I have been going out to the local motocross tracks and snapping some photos with my new D40. It's a great camera and is making me look like I know what I'm doing! :lol:

    So ... I'm good to go if it's sunny/clear, and if I stay out of the trees (low light issue) - I'm posting a link to 2 different photos I need help with.

    1- One of them is from a race on a very overcast day - as you can see the sky could not be more gray - and the shots suffer because of it. Is there something that can be done on days like these - or is it a wash?

    2- Nice sunny day but the section of the track I'm shooting is under a canopy of trees - as you can see the light is not that great - and ... the foliage seems to be competing with the subjects for attention in the shot. Is there something that can be done for the [lack of] light? Should shots like this be avoided because of the background?

    Thanks so much for the time - I hope to learn enough to both take great photos and to help others that come here to learn.

    Daf

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. iflynething

    iflynething TPF Noob!

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    What are you shooting with, body and lens?

    ~Michael~
     
  3. thenikonguy

    thenikonguy TPF Noob!

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    fill flash would help.. (on both shots)
     
  4. Daf

    Daf TPF Noob!

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    Doh! Sorry about that ...

    Nikon D40 - and one of 2 lenses -
    18-55mm f3.5-5.6G ED II AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor lens
    55-200mm f/4-5.6G ED IF AF-S DX VR Zoom Nikkor lens

    I have it on shutter priority at 1600 (?)

    During the low light shots I can clearly see that it says "Lo" so it's not like I'm not properly warned. ;)
     
  5. Daf

    Daf TPF Noob!

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    Thanks - the problem there is that I'm literally taking half dozen shots in a second or 2 - that is the best way for me to capture the action. I'm using shutter priority mode.

    Thanks a million for the reply! :)
     
  6. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Checkout the camera handeling technique called 'panning'. You follow the rider with the camera and use a lower shutter speed. That lets the background and the spokes in the wheels blur, adding to the sense of speed and making the riders pop much more. It takes a little practice but isn't very hard.

    Your #2 shot would need flash. Not the pop-up one on your camera but off camera over on the right, out of the frame up on a light stand about 10 feet.

    The only other thing you could do is meter the shadows and let the bright parts of the background blowout.
     
  7. Daf

    Daf TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for the reply!

    I will research the "panning" method you mention - thanks!

    Sounds like, except for the shadow metering (which I will also do some research on), I just need to avoid shots like the 2nd one as they are not good photo enviroments without additional light.

    Thanks again!
    Daf
     
  8. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Pretty much yes. By the way your pictures are way over-saturated.
     
  9. Daf

    Daf TPF Noob!

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    Really??? All of them? :confused:

    Not even sure where to start correcting that as I thought most of the well lit shots were pretty good? What qualifies as over saturated - is there something I'm doing wrong?

    Thanks
    Daf
     
  10. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'm assuming you are shooting in JPG?

    If you are not doing any post processing, check to see if you can set the amount of saturation your camera adds to the image. I know in my XSI, I can set the sharpness, contrast and saturation in camera. Not sure about your camera.

    Or shoot in RAW and apply what you need after the fact
     
  11. Daf

    Daf TPF Noob!

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    Hi Bigtwinky

    I am shooting in jpg mode - I will switch to raw - thanks for that tip!

    I am applying some "levels" and "curve" adjustments ... you think I'm over doing it?

    Thanks
    Daf
     
  12. AgentDrex

    AgentDrex No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I guess I'm going to throw in my two-cents...a lot of people don't like the "over-saturation"...but I think you did a great job with it...
     

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