URGENT HELP - What Lens and Flash are used in these photos?

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by tooomahs, Jul 29, 2009.

  1. tooomahs

    tooomahs TPF Noob!

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    Hello everyone.

    I was wondering if anyone could give me an approximate guess of what lens and what type of flash were used in the photos on this website: LUXY - Contemporary Nightlife Complex - Photo Page

    I wanted to take similar pictures and assuming it's a Canon camera and is not zoomed in, I was thinking of a Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM and a Canon Speedlite 430 EX II.

    Does anyone know? It would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! :lmao:
     
  2. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    It's a camera lens and a camera flash. There is no way of telling what lens or what flash was used. They style and look of the photos in question come from the abilities of the photographer. :D
     
  3. Big Mike

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

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    You are going about this the wrong way. It doesn't matter what camera/lens/flash were used. You should be asking what the photographer did or used (in general) to get these results.

    An important point is that the light looks to be somewhat off-camera. It looks to be above and to the left of the camera....maybe they are holding a flash in their hand or maybe it's up on a bracket or something. Also, there is a balance between their main light and the surrounding ambient light, which is a result of careful exposure control.
     
  4. tooomahs

    tooomahs TPF Noob!

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    I use the camera's built-in flash but the flash seems too "focused".

    I know what you mean, big mike, but sometimes gear does help. Technically, I can produce well-lit results with the camera's built in flash and aperture mode, but i have to hold my hand really still for about 2-3 seconds or the subject has to stand still.

    I don't have a stand-alone flash and was wondering if buying a Canon Speedlite 430 EX II would help with the lighting issue and make the pictures look more natural like in the pics of that website.
     
  5. rufus5150

    rufus5150 TPF Noob!

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    A flash on top of the camera aimed directly at the subject will all pretty much do the same thing -- wash out and give the harsh flash look. If you drop a 430exII on it, you'll just have faster recycling and/or more powerful flash.

    Judging by the position of the catchlights (when they're there, they're on the center of the eyes, mostly) and their size (tiny), it's a small light source and it's proximity is close to the camera. This makes sense because they're event photos and you really can't carry around a big ol' softbox off camera. Some appear to have the flash bounced off of this or that directionally.

    If you follow the shadows, there's some tell-tale harshness to them but not as much as you'd have with a direct flash. Most of the shadows are under the things that cause the shadows -- the light is above. Either He's hand holding the flash up high or has a bracket. It's broad enough that some form of diffuser is likely being used to spread the light around a bit (the shadows aren't uniformly rigid but exhibit some level of softness... this is a tell tale sign that the light source is being enlarged a bit).

    As to what equipment, who knows? The exif data has been stripped. Could be anything, but likely an SLR of some form or other. The photographer is probably using a lens with a pretty wide aperture because clubs and the ilk are notoriously poorly lit and the more open the lens is, the better it focuses in lower light.

    Like others have said, it's the technique. Good explosure is about the lighting, and what they use isn't nearly as important as how they used it. Funny thing about light, though, it travels in straight lines thus making it (relatively) easy to reverse-engineer at least the ballpark technique that was used in a shot.
     
  6. Big Mike

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

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    Do yourself a favor and tape that flash down...the less you use it, the better.

    The problem is that (besides being small and under powered) it's too close to the lens. Thus the light that you get is straight to the subject and straight back...making for very flat, boring light.

    The photos you linked to are slightly better, because the light/flash is a little farther away from the lens...but for the most part, the farther you go, the better and more dramatic your lighting becomes.
     
  7. blash

    blash TPF Noob!

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    My Nikon D3 did it, as did my Canon 5DMkII, as did my Sony Alpha 900, as did my Minolta XG-M.

    To create the lighting effect, my SB-800, SB-900, SB-600, SB-400, Vivitar flashes, Canon EX flashes, and an ordinary lamp all contributed to the effect.

    I just don't remember exactly WHICH camera and WHICH flash I used at this specific time.... because they're all so interchangeable! :mrgreen:
     
  8. tooomahs

    tooomahs TPF Noob!

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    So you're saying that if I had a Canon Speedlite EX II (either 430 or 530) equipped and had a 0.5 second exposure with aperture mode (to get a more natural background lighting), I can replicate shots like that?

    and I would also prefer a low f stop (bigger aperture) because it seems like the subjects are in great focus while the background is blurred. and fast shots are needed since clubs are poorly light.

    correct me if i am wrong.
     
  9. Big Mike

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

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    Yes. But remember that it looks like those photos have the flash higher up than just on top of the camera, so you would need a cord and maybe a bracket.
    Also, you probably wouldn't need a 0.5 (1/2) second exposure. Depending on several other factors, 1/30 or 1/15 might do it.
     
  10. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    With flash, your shutter speed controls the exposure of the background. As shutter speed gets shorter the background gets darker.

    With flash, your aperture controls the exposure of the foreground, which is usually where your subject is.
     
  11. Alleh Lindquist

    Alleh Lindquist TPF Noob!

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    Slower shutter with flash on bracket. Wider angle lens. You will need to be shooting manual.
     

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