??!Suggestions for photographing inside a warehouse...PLEASE!!

Skhigh

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Good Morning!

So I have been asked to take photos inside a warehouse-ish type bldg. I need to photograph the workers working, however the lighting sucks big time and I unfortunately do not have any special lighting equipment, just the built in flash ( sony a100..please dont tell me to get a new camera..working on it.). I have already taken some photos and a FEW of them came out pretty good, but most of them come out grainy because of the high ISO required. Also, the objects I photograph turn out fine, but if its a person and the move just a bit its blurry.

Im going back tomorrow with my tri-pod but using a tripod in this case has proven to waste time...by the time I get it set up for a great shot...the "shot" is long gone.

Any suggestions (besides getting a new camera/equipment) would be greatly appreciated!
 

Overread

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If its a shot of people working chances are the tripod won't make much difference. You'll still need a fast shutter speed to capture the motion of them working - and for most typical indoor situations that speed will be more than fast enough for handheld. It's good thinking and you can at least get some low ISO, long exposure building and machine shots - but moving subjects no.

As for the action - if its a working environment chances are if the action was there it will return to that spot again giving you another chance; the other option is to predict where the action will be and be there before it happens.



PS - if this is a paid gig have you considered adding an equipment rental price to your costs? Renting a higher end camera for the day and a wide aperture lens would at least give you more tools and scope to work with.
 
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Skhigh

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Thanks! It kind of is...my father-in-law "hired" me....so its not real serious...Im using this opportunity to practice really. I still want to deliver great photos thou.
 

ipschoser1

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Unfortunately, such conditions are almost impossible to work in without the right camera, lighting and glass. Sorry, those are just the facts.
 
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Skhigh

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I figured as much...just hoping there was a little trick out there that I didn't know about..lol
 

cgipson1

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A TRICK to get good shots in adverse conditions? Only if you are on good terms with the Photography Fairy! Maybe you can get some magic fairy dust that would help with the problem!!!

Other than that.. knowledge and the right equipment is the only thing that would help! There are NO TRICKS for something like this, unfortunately!
 

shmne

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You could always shoot a long exposure and intentionaly blur out the people. It depends on how artistic you are allowed to get, but with some creative freedom I promise you there are many ways to capture a nice image in this kind of atmosphere.

Start intentionally dragging your shutter for a longer period; just enough to drop your ISO and enough to blurr the person to the point where you can tell it is a person but just not who it is. This has been done very many times and looks very cool.

Also there is one more trick you can try, use your flash. It isn't the most amazing in the world, however it can work as a freezing fill depending on conditions. First expose the scene for your ambient light (this will blurr the people), then pop your flash and use it as fill. As long as the difference isn't too great you will be able to at least somewhat stop the people and not get much of the blur.

This will at least give you a shot :)
 

2WheelPhoto

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This was my 1st feeble attempt at event photography. Shot handheld in horrid dim available light from above. I was able to shoot 3200-4000 ISO and aperture F2.8. No noise reduction.

But wow it took some gear to do it.

475661_3252350102240_1071635590_2899104_343298562_o.jpg
 
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Skhigh

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One word- Jealous!

Eventually I will get some good equipment, right now its just not in the budget. I just recently decided to make photography more then just a fun hobby. Im only a couple months into school for photography and I want to gain more knowledge on these kinds of things before I go out and purchased them. As a hobby photographer, I just used the lighting that was available....but I am learning very quickly that I need more than that.
 

2WheelPhoto

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One word- Jealous!

Eventually I will get some good equipment, right now its just not in the budget. I just recently decided to make photography more then just a fun hobby. Im only a couple months into school for photography and I want to gain more knowledge on these kinds of things before I go out and purchased them. As a hobby photographer, I just used the lighting that was available....but I am learning very quickly that I need more than that.

Good luck - I'm a student too, been at it a year or so. Classes are huge fun. Studio Lighting and Advanced Studio lighting have been my favorites!
 

Designer

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You are going to need some lights. Perhaps your FIL can spring for renting some additional flash units. Forget the on-camera flash, and get some high-powered units triggered by a remote. Hide the actual units, and place them around the area in stragetic locations. Don't forget the depth of the room, get some lights far into the background. If you wish to highlight some people, position a light to illuminate them. It ought to be fun.
 

2WheelPhoto

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You are going to need some lights. Perhaps your FIL can spring for renting some additional flash units. Forget the on-camera flash, and get some high-powered units triggered by a remote. Hide the actual units, and place them around the area in stragetic locations. Don't forget the depth of the room, get some lights far into the background. If you wish to highlight some people, position a light to illuminate them. It ought to be fun.

Great advice right there... FYI her 1st post said "Any suggestions (besides getting a new camera/equipment) would be greatly appreciated"which makes it difficult
 

Milhouse

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Try doing some B/W at high ISO. The extra grainy pics may look good.

Check if they have any shop lights that you can use. If they do use them to increase the light.
 

DiskoJoe

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I figured as much...just hoping there was a little trick out there that I didn't know about..lol

There is..........

Get dad to buy you the gear you need. You need a flash and a prime lens. I would recommend that you get a Minolta maxxum 50mm f1.7 for starters. Good lens and super cheap, less than $100. A flash would help too. I have a hvl42am. Its mid range and goes for about $200 used. Then you could bounce flash off stuff to get decent exposures. Start saving now!
 

TCampbell

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Lenses make a huge difference here. You've got to understand "stops".

You've got a Sony a100 -- no doubt with the kit lens which is an f/3.5-5.6 variable aperture zoom (18-70mm on a Sony I think).

At about 50mm this lens will probably have a max aperture of f/5.6. The ISO caps at 1600. Since the people are "working" in the warehouse, you need a reasonable fast shutter speed. You're not shoots sports so they're probably not moving too terribly fast, but it sure would be nice if you could get a shutter speed of 1/125th -- a 60th *might* be tolerable.

In the game of stops, your lens is your enemy. If you had a 50mm f/1.4 lens, that'd be a HUGE help. Think about this. You'd go from f/5.6 -> f/4 -> f/2.8 -> f/2 -> f/1.4. That's an improvement of FOUR FULL STOPS. Since each stop collects TWICE as much light as the previous stop, the lens is literally collecting SIXTEEN TIMES as much light. That's a HUGE difference.

That means that if the best your camera can do with the kit lens is take a shot at 1/8th of a second at ISO 1600, then at f/1.4 you could take the shot at 1/125th!

The problem with f/1.4 is that it'll have a very shallow depth-of-field, so not much will be in focus except your subject. For example, at 20' the depth of field is less than 3' thick. At f/2 you get a bit more - but only 4' and you lose a stop of light so it's only 8 times brighter than f/5.6 (because it's only 3 stops better.) Basically this means you can shoot subjects of specific people doing something... but not shots showing people working across the warehouse.

Wider angles give you more DoF -- they make a 24mm f/2 lens (it's one of the Zeiss lenses... which means it's not cheap.) With a 20' focused distance the DoF is 20' thick (14' - 34' is in focus.) The hyper-focal distance on that lens when shooting at f/2 (this is the focused distance which causes the maximum possible depth of field) is to focus it at 47'. At that focused distance everything from about 24' to infinity will be focused. You could use this if you needed to take a long shot over the whole warehouse.

But you'll need the right equipment... that's the "trick": having the gear and knowing how to use it.

You can rent the lens if you don't want to buy it (it's a $1400 lens... you probably want to "rent" this. A 4-day rental would cost about $50: LensRentals.com - Rent a Sony 24mm f/2 SSM ) I just linked LensRentals, but there's BorrowLenses, B&H Photo and Adorama all have rental departments... and I'm sure there are many more choices as well.

And just for fun...

web.jpg


This is taken with a 5D II at ISO 6400. This image was not de-noised (there is some noise in it, but you can't see it at this size. In full-size you can see the noise.) The image was shot using a 135mm f/2 lens (at f/2) and 1/60th (you can see the motion blur on his hand as his plays.) So here I am at ISO 6400 and f/2 and 1/60th is _still_ the best speed I can get in this particular lighting. There really is no substitute for having the right gear when the lighting is a problem.
 
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