Tecnhnical HELP big time...

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by julie32, Oct 19, 2008.

  1. julie32

    julie32 TPF Noob!

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    Happy Sunday---

    i need someone to please explain a few things to me. I shot an event last night. There were 7 rooms, all lighted differently. (lit?, what's the proper English there?). I had so much trouble. Shooting with a Canon 5D, 24-70mm 2.8 lens, 580EX flash.

    What I struggled with is the following: it was terribly dark in there, candle lit with some sconces lit on the wall. Not much overhead lighting AT ALL. I opened my lens as wide as possible (2.8), about a 500 ISO and about 1/40s. That wide, I was having trouble with DoF. If there was a a couple posing for a photo and the guy was even slightly in front of the woman, he was sharp as a tack and she couldn't have been more blurry. Such a slight depth difference...and i couldn't get it right. I played around with a ton of different settings. I did get some great shots, but it wasn't without tremendous efforrt and a lack of understand of what I needed to be at (setting wise).

    Can you offer up some advice? How do I have enough light without the graininess of a high ISO (I know with the 5D, I can go highER than other cameras, but still...)and without the DoF issues that I was experiencing. The 2.8 was blinking, which was indicating to me that I was doing something wrong....obviously. But I cannot hold the camera still at an 1/8 of a second!

    I know I asked a lot here, but try your best!

    Thanks a lot.
     
  2. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    That doesn't make any sense. If you had a 580ex you should have been able to shoot at something like f8 1/125 ISO 100 no problem.

    If you have to shoot w/o the flash your only alternative is very fast glass...like a 1.4 prime.
     
  3. julie32

    julie32 TPF Noob!

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    I'm an amateur photog, every day I'm learning. I guess since it was so dark in there I assumed I should be as wide as my lens would go at 2.8. But obviously that gave me DoF issues. Thanks for your help Alpha.
     
  4. Ls3D

    Ls3D TPF Noob!

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    I've been hauling that lens around on my 40D body and it is no picnic! Starting to consider a fast deploying monopod for busy shooting environments and longer exposures during spontaneous low light shooting.

    -Shea
     
  5. julie32

    julie32 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks Shea. My arm is killing me this morning with my stroboframe on there too!
     
  6. icassell

    icassell TPF Noob!

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    The problem was your f2.8. That wide open, you were nearly guaranteed to have DOF issues. Were you unable to use your flash?

    Ian
     
  7. julie32

    julie32 TPF Noob!

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    Hey Ian,
    I'd say, I don't know HOW to use my flash efficiently.... Gotta look for a website that I can learn all about it...
     
  8. Alpha

    Alpha Troll Extraordinaire

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    Try the camera or flash manual first. They're usually pretty easy to understand.
     
  9. mcnewby

    mcnewby TPF Noob!

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  10. julie32

    julie32 TPF Noob!

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    thanks mcnewby-- excellent site.
     
  11. RyanLilly

    RyanLilly No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I that situation, using your flash can allow you to to stop down so you don't run into DOF issues. Your shutter speed is mostly irrelevant to the exposure of your subject, because the flash is faster than your shutter. The shutter speed allows you to control how much of the ambient light is captured, so you can get a good balance between ambient light and flash.

    For example, using the setting that Alpha has suggested as a starting point, F/8 1/125th, with flash you will get a well exposed subject and a dim background, now leaving the aperture and flash settings the same, changing the shutter speed to 1/30, and the background and ambient light will be picked up much more, but the exposure of your subject by the flash will remain the same, raise the shutter speed shutter speed to 1/250, and the background will be even darker, but the subject will still remain the same.

    The method that I like is to use a long shutter speed to pick up a lot of the ambient light, than use a flash set to rear curtain(it fires at the end of the exposure) to light and freeze the motion of the subject. At slow shutter speeds though you may get motion blur in the background but your flash can still freeze the subject even at very slow speeds, this can be very desirable or very distracting, it really just depends on your needs or style.

    Try searching for "slow sync" "rear or second curtain" or "dragging the shutter" and you should find a lot more info and some example photos that will be much more helpful than my ramblings.

    Have fun.
     
  12. Tiberius47

    Tiberius47 TPF Noob!

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    The best resource on the technical issues of flash in the Canon EOS system can be found over at Photonotes. Have a read of their article HERE.
     

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