NPeterman From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 140 posts, RR: 0 Posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 3212 times:
I am looking for some advice for a quickly approaching photographic opportunity. This Saturday I will be able to photograph a MiG-23 doing afterburner engine run-ups after dark, and was wondering if anyone has any tips or advice to give me with regards to settings and technique. In terms of Equipment, I will have use of the following:
Canon EOS 50D (this particular example has high ISO noise FAR exceeding the average copy of this body)
Canon Rebel XSI
Sigma 50mm f2.8
And-if recommended or truly necessary, a tripod can be procured.
At this point, my exact proximity to the aircraft is unknown. I'd assume it to be fairly close. As the jet will be stationary on the ground, motion blur should not become a huge concern. Sunset is to be about 8:38PM, Engine run-up at 9:00PM, so some residual light is possible.
moose135 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 2009 posts, RR: 12 Reply 1, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 3200 times:
If the aircraft will be on the ground, I would definitely use a tripod. Set up like any other night shot - lowest ISO you can, mid-range aperture (f/7.1 or f/8) and vary the shutter speed to get acceptable exposure. Lens choice will depend on how close you are to the aircraft.
airkas1 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2003, 3848 posts, RR: 57 Reply 2, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3129 times:
Quoting moose135 (Reply 1): If the aircraft will be on the ground, I would definitely use a tripod. Set up like any other night shot - lowest ISO you can, mid-range aperture (f/7.1 or f/8) and vary the shutter speed to get acceptable exposure. Lens choice will depend on how close you are to the aircraft.
Moose basically said everything I would advise aswell.
Since you should be close to the aircraft, I'd take the 18-55mm and/or 50mm in combination with the 55-250. I really doubt you will be that far away that 250mm will not be sufficient. If you can fit all lenses in your bag, just bring all. It can't do much harm can it? Good luck and I look forward to seeing some of the photos!
NPeterman From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 140 posts, RR: 0 Reply 4, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 3081 times:
Thank you all for the input. tripod ordered-should get here tomorrow. And just found out that they moved the time up 30 mins, to just after sunset (literally one minute after) so that should help in the lighting department. Distance looks like it will be enought to require the 100-400, as the 25- anywhere past about 180 is too soft to cut it (no pun intended). Would love anyone else's thoughts of ideas, and I'll be sure to post what (if anything) I get from this first foray into night photography.
walter2222 From Belgium, joined Sep 2005, 1272 posts, RR: 31 Reply 5, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 3074 times:
If you still have time before the actual shoot, and when the tripod has arrived, you can practise before you do the actual shoot (use a car with headlights on, in a dark area, and shoot with different settings and see which settings give you the best result).
PS: Don't forget extra memory cards and spare batteries.
There is currently a very nice example on the front page:
sovietjet From Bulgaria, joined Mar 2003, 2339 posts, RR: 14 Reply 6, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 3066 times:
Nick, I will be there this Saturday for the run as well. I will be bringing my 5D Mark II and 100-400. However I also have a 40D with me, if you wish to use it. I think it makes less noise than a 50D at the higher ISO. My second lens will be the stock 28-135 in case I'm closer. And the aircraft will be doing a run down the runway, so it will be moving. My suggestion to you is to use the 40D/50D with the 100-400 at f/6.3 and ISO400 or above and hope for the best. And practice some panning these next couple of days . The rest we will figure out on the field.
unattendedbag From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 2240 posts, RR: 1 Reply 7, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 3026 times:
Quoting moose135 (Reply 1): If the aircraft will be on the ground, I would definitely use a tripod.
I agree! I would even think of packing the tripod before packing the camera.
Do you have a remote shutter release?? If not, try and get one. If possible (it will take quite a few shutter clicks), get .5 second of afterburner followed by 2 seconds of ambient light on the aircraft (without the afterburner). The afterburner is going to blow the photo out so you want to catch as little as possible and then keep the shutter open to capture the aircraft in the dark conditions.
I just read your reply (number 4) about the shoot being at sundown. I changed my shutter speed calculations based on that. It will take some practice to get it right.
photopilot From Cuba, joined Jul 2002, 2439 posts, RR: 20 Reply 8, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 2980 times:
Ear plugs or Acoustic headphones to block the sound. It's far easier to concentrate and shoot when you're not being blasted by raw noise.
Having worked airside a lot, a good pair of Peltor headphones is wonderful and I wouldn't consider an up-close shoot without them.
NPeterman From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 140 posts, RR: 0 Reply 9, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 2909 times:
I thank you all for your insightful and detailed responses. The tripod is arriving today, so hopefully I can get out there and get some practice in with it, and just some more panning in general. A lot of people who I have been talking with seem to differ on whether I should be shooting tripod or hand held, so I may have to make the call in the moment.