some advice - night shots

Discussion in 'General Gallery' started by valvecovergasket, Dec 13, 2006.

  1. valvecovergasket

    valvecovergasket TPF Noob!

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    wish this one was taken at more of a direct angle to the wall...bothers me the more i stare at it...
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    not sure how to manipulate the focus on this one to blur the background, and focus on the car more...and i wish the front wasnt as washed out...but faster shutter speeds made the rest of the picture too dark
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    your input is appreciated :D
     
  2. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    The larger the f stop (towards smaller numbers like 1.4) the shallower the depth of field.

    There is just too much difference between the lightest and darkest area (dyamic range) to get good detail in both. The front of the car in this image has no detail at all so this image can't be made acceptable using the shadow/highlights tool.

    There are several techniques to make an better image in this environment but the simplest to understand is to use a tripod and take two successive exposures (with the same aperture, changing only the shutter speed so as not to affect the depth of field) and combine them in PS. (Do a search on HDR - high dynamic range)

    The first three images suffer from white balance problems due to fluorescent and iodine lights.

    Hope this is what you were looking for by way of an answer.
     
  3. valvecovergasket

    valvecovergasket TPF Noob!

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    regarding f-stop, is there any rule of thumb regarding those numbers. i understand the idea of the larger numbers being a more distant focus, but i dont know how to apply that to situations...ie standing 20ft away from that car, and wanting to focus only on it, but not the background.


    so for the picture of the miata, it sounds like theres no non-PS way to acheive a good balance in that picture given the dynamic range? i have some other shots of that car with varying shutter speeds in that exact position so ill see if i can pull anything out of those.

    what would you suggest for white balance fixes for the other two for next time? i agree that they dont look "right" but im not sure what direction to go in....i have another more blue-ish shot of the porsche, but i didnt think that one felt all that natural either

    thanks for the help!
     
  4. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    Here is the link to a DOF calculator so you can get some idea of how deep the focus will be for any distance, f stop and focal length. http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html

    About the Miata, I think you're right.

    With regards to the top two pictures. I made a quick try at correcting the WB on the jpgs but wasn't successful. My guess these lights are so far from balanced that even a shot in Raw would be hard to correct.

    I had a little more success with the red Porsche in color-correcting the background and lens blurring it to make the car stand out. If you like this change, I can tell you the steps to get from your picture to this one below.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. valvecovergasket

    valvecovergasket TPF Noob!

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    i like the colors in your edited porsche picture. i will try to crop up and post my other version of that shot later tonight if i get a chance, see if that doesnt strike you as more natural.

    interesting DOF site, i will have to check that out some more after work.


    general photography question....
    next time im shooting in weird lighting such as that hallyway, the parking garage, and the vw dealership, should i strive to change the white balance to make colors i know are white...become white. or is it more acceptable to adjust the white balance to match what im seeing in front of me. with regards to the hallway and the parking garage, i changed the white balance to reflect almost exactly what i was actually seeing (in other words it really is that orange/redish in person). just curious what the common practice is...
     
  6. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    Without telling you what to do, I try to make the picture look the best it can look. If the off-balance color is pleasing/dramatic/sexy/whatever that's what I'll do.

    Glad you liked Porsche
     
  7. valvecovergasket

    valvecovergasket TPF Noob!

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    here is a different version of the miata, and the hallway

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