What am I doing wrong?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Southerngal, Oct 17, 2007.

  1. Southerngal

    Southerngal TPF Noob!

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    I love taking outdoor shots and Im usually very pleased w/them.....it's my indoor shots that stump me. I recently took some pics at my friends daughters bday.....no charge, she forgot her camera, so I was just snapping away as a favor to her. Several of the pics seem blurry to me.....here are a few examples........is it my speed, camera shake....dont know? The lighting was awful. It was a warehouse type building w/fluorescent lights.

    Settings: ss 1/30 F2.2 ISO 200 no flash...aperture mode
    [​IMG]

    Settings: ss 1/40 F2.8 ISO 200 no flash...aperture mode
    [​IMG]

    They always look sharper and brighter on my cameras LCD.....is this my computer? Im not a computer wiz and I dont think that our computer has ever been calibrated....how would I go about doing this? I realize these are probably questions that I should know the answer to...sorry:confused:
     
  2. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Things always look brighter on the LCD. And sharper too because I don't need to squint and zoom in to 100% to see problems on a computer.

    The shutter speed is too slow for the focal length. Both were shot with a 50mm. A rough guide as to an acceptable hand holding shutter speed is 1/actual focal length so in your case these should be 1/(50*1.5) or 1/75th. It may be worse or better it depends entirely on how well you hold your camera.

    Beyond that up the iso or open the aperture to get the exposure or use a flash.
     
  3. RyanLilly

    RyanLilly No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    1/30 is pretty slow, but I dont think that motion blur or camera shake is you only problem. The girl in you first picture look alright, but the cake is out of focus. The second shot just look out of focus, you don't have much DOF with such a wide aperture. You are probably in need of greater DOF for these shots, you probably need to stop down a bit to get a More depth of field for the first picture, but really you cannot use a slower shutter speed without getting blur. So you would either have to up the ISO, or use a flash. The second on I think is just out of focus.

    I think that your answer here is a Flash. It will let you stop down to get more DOF and you wont have the grain of a higher ISO, of course then you have the harsh lighting of a flash to deal with, but thats a different issue.
     
  4. castrol

    castrol TPF Noob!

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  5. Sideburns

    Sideburns TPF Noob!

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    defn need a faster shutter speed first of all...
    The rest you can work on later
     
  6. Big Mike

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

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    Definitely looks like your shutter speed is too slow.

    There are a few options to fight this. First, you can use a wider aperture (if your lens will allow), which will give you a faster shutter speed...but also give you a shallow DOF.

    The next thing you can do, is turn up the ISO. For every stop that you raise the ISO, the shutter speed will be twice as fast. So you could have used ISO 400 or 800 and you would have been OK here. Turning up the ISO will increase the noise, but noise is better than blur. Also, make sure to expose properly because that will minimize noise.

    Lastly, you can add light. It could be opening the curtains/drapes or turning on more lights...but the easiest might be to use flash. Now, using flash and making it look nice...is a whole new topic.
     
  7. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Just looking at the first picture:
    - It seems blurry, but I am willing to bet it is becuase you used a f/2.8 aperture and the focus was on something other than the eyes of your subject.

    - Also, at f/2.8 your depth of field was very shallow. If your goal was to have the cake and the little girl in focus, you would have needed an aperture of at least f/4 - f/8 (bokeh is nice, but not when its not the desired effect). That would have increased your shutter times, and suddenly a flash becomes almost mandatory.

    So if you do not want to use a flash, what can be done?

    - You could have somehow increased indoor lighting (turned on all the lights, opened the drapes, etc...)

    - Increasing ISO does brighten things up, but if raised too high, introduces noise on some cameras (the D200's are known to do this).

    In my case, I would have simply bounced the flash off the ceiling or wall to light the room the way I needed to get it.

    Composition is always a tightrope to walk. ISO, aperture and shutter speed are a constantly changing folrmula that get better only after a lot of practice. I'm certainly still learning and still need tons of practice myself.
     

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