Historic747
Topic Author
Posts: 191
Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:55 am

Taking Photos Mid Air

Mon Aug 21, 2006 8:56 am

Hi, I have a Canon S3 that ofcourse is nothing compared to DSLRs and the great lenses out there. However I am trying to venture into aircraft photography. I travel a lot and I like taking pictures mid air. I have seen some amazing pictures here A.net taken of the surroundings (like snow clad mountains). Everytime I have tried taking these photos with a camera that has no (Av and Tv controls) I have ended up with overexposed photos that lack sharpness too. With the S3 do you think it is possible to take better pictures by say altering the Av (max is 8.0 on S3 - smallest lens opening) and having a fast shutter speed? Are there any other parameters like AWB and AEB that I can play around with? Also I wonder why my pictures are not that sharp? Is it becuase of focusing issues? Any help will be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.
 
ac888yow
Posts: 394
Joined: Thu Jan 20, 2005 12:29 pm

RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

Tue Aug 22, 2006 2:53 am

The S3 should be more than capable of nice inflight pictures. I used to use a G5 and had no problem taking inflight, or any other types of pictures.

I don't know how experienced you are in photography, but if you aren't already I suggest you get comfortable using your camera's histogram function. Take a test picture, examine the histogram, and adjust your camera settings as necessary.

For example, an over-exposed image would have a histogram that is biased to the right. Try using a faster shutter speed, or adjusting your exposure compensation to help correct this.
 
Kukkudrill
Posts: 1039
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2004 10:11 pm

RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

Tue Aug 22, 2006 9:49 pm

Most point-and-shoot cameras have a limited dynamic range compared to DSLRs, which means they are prone to overexposing the highlights. The solution is to set the exposure compensation to underexpose: normally two thirds of a stop should be enough.

As for focussing it's hard to say for sure unless you post examples of photos you've taken. Two possibilities:

  • I assume you do not edit your photos on PC: if they are in focus but not as sharp as the ones on a.net, this could well be the reason.


  • If you are trying to take photos of cloud formations etc and your camera is not focussing properly, it could be that the scenery is simply not giving your camera enough contrast for it to lock focus accurately (I have experienced this problem with point-and-shoots).


  • Charles
    Make the most of the available light ... a lesson of photography that applies to life
     
    Historic747
    Topic Author
    Posts: 191
    Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:55 am

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 1:10 am

    kindly take a look at these pictures

     
    Lanas
    Posts: 945
    Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2006 7:27 am

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 2:16 am

    Hey I can´t see the pics! Must be some problem with the link, or is it just me?
    "Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens." J.R.R. Tolkien
     
    MYT332
    Posts: 7283
    Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2003 7:31 pm

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 2:21 am

    Quoting Lanas (Reply 4):
    Must be some problem with the link, or is it just me?

    I can't see it either but if you go to the link directly, it works.

    http://www.airliners.net/uf/view.fil...6718&filename=1155961043xzhd17.jpg
    One Life, Live it.
     
    Historic747
    Topic Author
    Posts: 191
    Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:55 am

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 2:26 am

    Guys

    I am so sorry. I am having a tough time trying to upload some pictures I took in the air. I have been forced to start a new thread as a result but still not successful at uploading the pictures. I wanted to upload sample pictures taken from the air (though the one currenly linked is not). My problem is that these pictures turn out to be 'too blue', 'too hazy' and 'lack contrast'. I use a point and shoot. The histogram is banded narrowly at the centre. Is this got to do with the dynamic range? If so is the dynamic range of the scene less than the dynamic range of the camera? Is the blue effect becasue of UV radiation / aircraft window? How do I overcome this problem? Are DSLRs any better. How come pictures here on A.net taken from the air so sharp without the blue effect? Any help. And thanks for the responses so far.

    regards
     
    Lanas
    Posts: 945
    Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2006 7:27 am

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 2:34 am

    Try uploading to imageshack. Maybe it´s easier. I´ve never tried uploading personal photos here.

    http://www.imageshack.us

    Cheers!
    Lanas.-
    "Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens." J.R.R. Tolkien
     
    Historic747
    Topic Author
    Posts: 191
    Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:55 am

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 3:30 am

    Thanks for helping...Do you see it now. This one if of las vegas..second over siberia and third over Bangkok







    Thanks a ton!!
     
    Lanas
    Posts: 945
    Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2006 7:27 am

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 5:42 am

    Hi

    Glad you could upload your pics successfully. They lack contrast for sure. The pictures also have quality issues because the subjects you´re trying to shoot are too far away, so their shapes and definition lose quality. Try to shoot wing views with some lanscape below, that´s what I do. I have also taken pictures with P&Ss in flight in the past, and it´s not so simple, the lighting conditions have to be pretty good if you don´t want to lose quality.
    I´ll look for some of my window view pics so as to share them. Unfortunately most are for my personal collection.

    Cheers!
    Lanas.-
    "Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens." J.R.R. Tolkien
     
    Kukkudrill
    Posts: 1039
    Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2004 10:11 pm

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 9:48 pm

    1 and 3 look like they have been defeated by the haze (and possibly sunlight on windows). No. 2, though, is as good as you can normally expect for an unedited photo from high altitude. Historic747 I don't think you realise yet just how important editing is in arriving at the final product as seen on a.net. So here's a quick demonstration:



    All I did was ramp up the contrast, adjust brightness and colours, and sharpen. It's nowhere near perfect, but you can see the difference.

    Charles
    Make the most of the available light ... a lesson of photography that applies to life
     
    Historic747
    Topic Author
    Posts: 191
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    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Fri Aug 25, 2006 10:51 pm

    Charles

    That was awesome. You just changed the whole feel of it. Yes, it is true I do not edit my pictures. I have been a casual shooter but I would now like to improve upon my skills. People here have stressed the importance of editing but I think most people here use Adobe Photoshop which is a few hundred bucks. Are there any softwares on the inexpensive side?. Thanks much for proving the importance of editing.

    Regards
     
    Kukkudrill
    Posts: 1039
    Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2004 10:11 pm

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Sat Aug 26, 2006 1:11 am

    Quoting Historic747 (Reply 11):
    Are there any softwares on the inexpensive side?

    In a previous thread I believe someone said you can get Photoshop Elements for a hundred dollars. Possibly you might be able to find an old version for even cheaper (I use Elements 2.0 which came bundled with my computer and which mostly meets my needs). Several people use Paintshop Pro, but I have no idea how much it costs or whether it is as good as Photoshop. Perhaps others can advise.

    Be careful, though, because while there are lots of image editing programs on the market most of them are way too crude with processes such as sharpening and do not offer the level of control that you will need.

    Charles
    Make the most of the available light ... a lesson of photography that applies to life
     
    Historic747
    Topic Author
    Posts: 191
    Joined: Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:55 am

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Sat Aug 26, 2006 1:40 am

    Thanks once again. So does Photoshop Elements 2.0 offer the feature to give the extra sharpness desired? I think I should get a hold of it then.
     
    Kukkudrill
    Posts: 1039
    Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2004 10:11 pm

    RE: Taking Photos Mid Air

    Sat Aug 26, 2006 2:15 am

    Quoting Historic747 (Reply 13):
    So does Photoshop Elements 2.0 offer the feature to give the extra sharpness desired?

    Yes it does - it's called unsharp mask (USM). It will seem complicated at first, but it is well worth mastering. There's a steep learning curve involved in the editing of digital photos, but it will open out a whole new dimension to your photography.
    Make the most of the available light ... a lesson of photography that applies to life

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