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Bruce
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Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 3:35 pm

Not necessarily applying to aviation photography but photography in general. I know that f8 or right around there tends to get the best shots, but in low light conditions OR when shooting indoors & with flash, should I be raising the aperture more open - like f 4.5, f 5.6??? From what I know, shooting with the very high and very low apertures changes your depth of field and what is in focus. So when should you use f 5.6?

Sometimes I can get a better shutter speed if I raise the f-stop....but I still get blurry pictures. In one example today, I shot the same subject in both 1/30th second and f4.0 and then 1/8th second and f 7.1. Which picture do you think came out sharper? the f 7.1 did! Even though the shutter speed was slower than the 1/30th one. However the f 7.1 picture was a bit darker than the other one.

bruce
Bruce Leibowitz - Jackson, MS (KJAN) - Canon 50D/100-400L IS lens
 
dendrobatid
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 4:14 pm

Bruce,
Please don't get me wrong here, for I am trying not to be facetious, but what you are asking, books have been written about - the basics of photography.
I would suggest that you got one and read it.
However, someone on the forum the other day used the term ' a balancing act for aperture, shutter speed and film (camera) speed and I liked that term.
To put it simply....
Most lenses work best stopped down a couple of stops.
The more any lens is stopped down, the greater the depth of field. No matter how much a lens is stopped down there is only one point of perfect focus and depth of field gives an area of acceptable focus. Telephoto lenses have much shorter depth of field than wide angle.
Try not to use a shutter speed slower than the reciprocal of the apparent focal length of the lens ie at 60mm focal length, try to not go slower than 1/60th sec.
If you got away with an eigth of a second, you did just that, got away with it, unless......
You were using flash when the flash, perhaps 1/1000 of a sec or faster, made the exposure anyway and, again within reason, the camera shutter speed was irrelevant anyway.
The answer, use f5.6 if there isn't enough light to use f8 !
I wrote this message and then looked at your profile. You have some great photos on the database already and I find it hard to believe that someone who takes such good photos (and has great equipment) could not understand these basics.
If this was a flame, I've fallen for it, if not it is just indicative of how much easier things are today.
Mick Bajcar.....over forty years as a photographer and still learning to balance
 
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Bruce
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 4:56 pm

Well first off.... I do have some cool photos on here. But that's because the Screeners keep my bad ones from getting on  Nuts But seriously, airplane shots are outdoors and I hardly ever have to use a flash or worry about very low light. I do not have an image stabilizer so if the shutter speed is going to be too slow - time to pack up and go home because the photos will never turn out good. But indoor photography is different. My focal length would be 28mm or so and I can use flash. So are you saying in that case I should try and keep the shutter speed at least 1/4 second, right?

bruce
Bruce Leibowitz - Jackson, MS (KJAN) - Canon 50D/100-400L IS lens
 
dendrobatid
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 5:30 pm

Bruce
I was walking a tightrope when I wrote and I was doing my damndest to try to not upset you
When using flash, use the highest shutter speed the camera will let you - the flash synch speed which is usually 1/125 sec these days (older cameras usually 1/60).
At close distances the flash does the exposing and the ambient light becomes insignificant. The actual flash of light is faster than 1/1000 of a sec so you simply have to ensure that the shutter is completely open when that flash happens....that is the synch speed.
The reciprocal bit I was talking about is in normal light for a static subject. Try to use a shutter speed at least the reciprocal of the effective focal length of the lens. That is an old 'rule of thumb' which IS makes a nonsense of.
I cannot image a situation where I would use 1/4 sec unless I was either, desperate, trying for an effect or the camera was on a tripod.
Mick Bajcar
 
sulman
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 6:50 pm

I think alot of people here are in the same boat. A passion for aviation has driven them to become extremely proficient in this somewhat esoteric area of photography.

I knew how to use an SLR before I got into this side of the hobby, but I can safely say a.net taught me everything about post-processing, and how to 'read' an image.


James
It takes a big man to admit they are wrong, and I am not a big man.
 
dendrobatid
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 7:00 pm

James,
Very succinctly put !
I have seen and admired some of Bruces photos and wondered if his message was a wind-up.
It goes to show what our all singing, all dancing, auto everything cameras can do.
Bruce, please don't take offence, but pick up that book.
Taking photos like that now, goodness only knows what you will do armed with the knowledge to override the camera.
Big eight month digital expert me, has been helping another dinosaur with the digital side of things.
Take a look at the photos of Anthony Noble for the pics of a man who can use an old manual camera, and use it incredibly well.
Mick Bajcar
 
fergulmcc
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 8:26 pm

Dido Mick!!  Big thumbs up

I too have just noticed Anthony's work and these are great photos. I e-mailed him the other day asking if there was more to come and thankfully there is! Bruce have a look at this gentleman's work. Its great viewing, I too could learn a few tips from him.
But seriously Bruce, you have some great shots too. Get a book on photography, they all pretty much tell you the same but each one will give you that little extra thing you're looking for. I have about four books and they do help!

Take care and do look up Anthony's work

Fergul Big grin

PS Keep them comming Anthony,  Big thumbs up

Edit: spelling

[Edited 2005-02-11 12:59:36]
Zambian Airways, Where the Eagles fly free!!
 
dendrobatid
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 8:33 pm

Fergul
Ah, I'm not alone in noticing his work then.
He told me he has thousands to come yet.
What, you only have four photography books?
I have so many I haven't even finished colouring them all in yet (LOL)
I know all the techniques (and photography too) but putting them into practice takes a knack, the magical eyes and experience.
Mick Bajcar
 
Staffan
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RE: Aperture Question

Fri Feb 11, 2005 8:35 pm

It really depends on what result you want. If it's dark and you shoot portraits in program mode with a flash, you'll end up with sharp photos with hard cold light and a pitch black background. This is similar to what most automatic point & shoots will give you.

You'll get more interesting effects though, if you shoot in manual with a slightly longer shutterspeed, allowing the camera to capture more of the ambient light and the flash to expose the subject. This is called slow sync.

On a wide angle, trying something like 1/4 f/4 and ISO 100 can give pretty nice results. The long exposure to get the background and the flash to get the subject in the foreground. If the subject is moving you'll also get some nice motion blur.

One advice, shooting in mixed light like this RAW is preferred as your AWB has a few different temp. light sources to chose from.

Staffan
 
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Bruce
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RE: Aperture Question

Sat Feb 12, 2005 4:15 am

Well for now what I would like to do is photograph cars at an AutoShow. For anyone in the Chicago area, the big auto show is going on now thru Feb. 20.

I know I'll need not more than the 28mm lens, probably the 19-35....and I'm sure there will be ample light there. There will be cars, displays, maybe even a band or two performing. I can't go too slow on the shutter speed or else I'll get blur.

bruce
Bruce Leibowitz - Jackson, MS (KJAN) - Canon 50D/100-400L IS lens
 
dendrobatid
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RE: Aperture Question

Sat Feb 12, 2005 5:10 am

Bruce
The 19-35 should be good for 1/30 sec.
Set the ISO at at least 400 and shoot in RAW. That way you will be able to adjust the white balance later as there will no doubt be lots of different light qualities.
At least with digital there are no constraints on how many you take !
Mick Bajcar
 
Staffan
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RE: Aperture Question

Sat Feb 12, 2005 5:25 am

Why not bring a tripod? Go there early and hopefully you'll get some nice shots before it gets full of people.

Staffan

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