Ton's of lighting, but photo's still dark?

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by photographygirl, May 7, 2010.

  1. photographygirl

    photographygirl TPF Noob!

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    I made a cheap photo studio in my guest room, and Have a TON of lights. So bright almost hurts your eyes, and heats up the room VERY fast. Lots of white sheets also to reflect light more. However, when I take a photo with my digital Nikon D50 set on Auto, or Portrait setting, the photos turn out to dark. Looks as thought I have no lights or very little lighting.
    (I am not using my external flash) I don't know what to do, or what I'm doing wrong. I am not very good with the Manual setting so I don't know if that would help.
    I'm attaching a photo that I took of my set up. A few diffrent angles.
    I have 2 100 watt lights, and 2 Holegen lights. I have white silk in front of the holegen lights to diffuse them. No difference in photo if I remove the silk. If anyone could give me a few tips, that would be great! thanks. [​IMG]
     
  2. pbelarge

    pbelarge TPF Noob!

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    Your light meter in the camera is picking up all of this light, and then metering for it. It would be similar to if you were shooting towards the sun.
    Take your camera off of auto and use a manual setting. Depending on what you are shooting, try either AV or TV.


    P.S.
    Hello and welcome to the forum
     
  3. pbelarge

    pbelarge TPF Noob!

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  4. Goontz

    Goontz TPF Noob!

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    Yep, it's likely too bright for the camera while in auto mode. Thus, the camera is darkening it in an attempt not to blow highlights out (as a simple explanation). You'll need to get out of those auto-modes.
     
  5. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    If the images look too dark, you need to use the Exposure Compensation feature on your D50. Press the =/-button and hold it in, then dial in around +1.5 stops of exposure compensation...that should be a good start.

    Another option is to set the camera to M exposure mode, and set an f/stop value of around f/5.6, and a shutter speed of say 1/60 second at ISO 400, and start there, and see how the exposures look. At slower speeds like 1/60 second, you need to make sure the shutter release is pressed smoothly, and that the camera is steady. A tripod is helpful when shooting indoors using artificial lights of the type that you have set up.
     
  6. photographygirl

    photographygirl TPF Noob!

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    That was fast! I got so many reply's so fast. Thats funny that I have to much lighting. Its funny cause I actually thought I needed more, so that why I have so much. Funny how that works. But thanks guys for all the info. I will have to use my manual settings from now on.

    I love this forum!:hug::
     
  7. Big Mike

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

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    A camera doesn't quite see light like we do. It doesn't really need 'a lot' of light, as long as it can use a longer shutter speed. But if you are going to be shooting people, then you do have to maintain a somewhat fast shutter speed, in order to freeze any movement.

    So I'd suggest to you, turning off all but one of your lights, just to start anyway. You can adjust your exposure so that one light will be enough, so once you get a handle on that, concentrate on the direction and softness of the one light. See how it changes as you move the light around...and so on. After you get a good feel for that, then add another light.

    I'd ditch the halogen lights. They get way too hot and they probably won't be the same color as your other lights.
     
  8. Dominantly

    Dominantly TPF Noob!

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    Interesting.

    I wouldn't mind seeing an example of your dark photos.
     

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