1. dbay

    dbay

    Messages:
    62
    Name:
    David Bayley
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    I decided to have a little play with my dslr this evening. I'm a complete beginner using a proper camera so try not to be to harsh. After watching a few tutorials I was stupidly advised in to going straight in to manual mode. Some 9f the pictures were ok ish but could be a lot better. I switched to shutter priority this evening and I quite happy with the results so far.
    DSC_0214_1.JPG DSC_0209_1.JPG
     
    Francis Drake likes this.
  2. kendo1

    kendo1

    Messages:
    6,701
    Name:
    Ken
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    Manual has its uses, but to begin with, stick to aperture or shutter priority. It will make life a lot easier for you.
    You'll learn what happens when you adjust one of them and let the camera figure out the correct exposure.

    Not bad for first efforts :)
    Did you use a tripod? Camera shake at low shutter speeds is not a good thing!

    Figuring out the subject is a major hurdle for beginners. You also have to keep an eye on the background - in this case the sky which is a bit uninteresting, and the house in the second shot.
    A different viewpoint can hide the house.

    I'd suggest just going out and taking as many shots as you can - maybe 1 in a hundred! wiill be keepers :) (judging by my efforts)
     
    stu.h and dbay like this.
  3. dbay

    dbay

    Messages:
    62
    Name:
    David Bayley
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    They were taken without a tripod, I'm surprised they are clear without camera shake but I was concentrating more on the affect at the time.
    Yes, i only noticed the house after I had got home to view the photos, again concentrating to much on what's in the middle of the photo and not all the surroundings.
    Unfortunately the first photo has a empty beer can just in the top left of the frame but I didn't fancy scaling the water to remove it.
    I've also turned on the photo information in the bottom right of the photo, I'm not sure if this is a good or bad thing. My reasoning was to later help me learn on what I had been doing at the time. It is saved in raw+jpeg so I'm hoping it could be edited out if needed at a later date?
     
  4. Forkbeard

    Forkbeard

    Messages:
    412
    Name:
    Jim
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    You could probably (definitely) get away with a lot wider aperture/shallower depth of field than f22 and f25, which will increase your shutter speed giving sharper images (less motion blur and less diffraction). Give it a go at say f8 and see how you go. Then if you want to slow the water down, you'll probably need a tripod (or something as a rest) and an ND filter to get nice sharp image.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2018
    dbay likes this.
  5. dbay

    dbay

    Messages:
    62
    Name:
    David Bayley
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    DSC_0198.JPG sorry this was my second shot as opposed to 10th or so on for the above images. I was trying to slow the water down to give the silky effect. A tripod will be on my list in the near future. I did find it quite hard with the slower shutter speeds, also some better lenses will be on the cards in time.
     
    Francis Drake likes this.
  6. ancient_mariner

    ancient_mariner

    Messages:
    9,106
    Name:
    Toni
    Edit My Images:
    No
    I presume the long exposure time was to intentionally blur the water? *see you just posted while I was typing*

    A rule of thumb for hand-held exposures is 1/focal length = longest holdable exposure. i.e. 35mm lens = 1/30th, 200mm lens = 1/250th etc. VR can work miracles sometimes, but can't be relied on completely.
     
    dbay likes this.
  7. Forkbeard

    Forkbeard

    Messages:
    412
    Name:
    Jim
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    If you have the 18 55 VR kit lens I'd leave it til last thing to upgrade (maybe get a 55 200 to go with it?) - It's a decent bit of kit providing you've got a good copy. You may find in the future you'll want something else but it will probably be some reason other than image quality. I had one and came back to it after 'upgrading' to something I thought was better. They're light, sharp and cheap as chips to replace.

    A tripod and ND filter will get you the results you're after here and won't cost the earth.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2018
    dbay likes this.
  8. dbay

    dbay

    Messages:
    62
    Name:
    David Bayley
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    I have picked up a cheap sigma 70 300 but I haven't really found a use for it yet. The kit lense has given me the best results so far.

    So what would a ND filter do if you don't mind me asking?
     
  9. ancient_mariner

    ancient_mariner

    Messages:
    9,106
    Name:
    Toni
    Edit My Images:
    No
    Allow you to take long exposure photographs in daylight without having to stop down until the iris blades squeak, and still over-expose. ;)
     
    dbay and Forkbeard like this.
  10. Olivia Green

    Olivia Green

    Messages:
    40
    Name:
    Olivia
    Edit My Images:
    No
    A beginner myself but these images look beautiful. Did you just play with Shutter Speed or any thing else too?
     
    dbay likes this.
  11. dbay

    dbay

    Messages:
    62
    Name:
    David Bayley
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    Yes I slowed the shutter speed right down to get the silky effect. The shutter speed is on the bottom right of the photos if you wanted to try for your self, I put this setting on the camera to help me remember for future reference.
     
  12. Teflon-Mike

    Teflon-Mike

    Messages:
    972
    Name:
    Mike
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    "North-South-East-West - Check the Corner's, Then the rest" Remember, to LOOK, that';s what makes the photo, not faffing with lenses or settings. Everything in the view-finder will be in the photo, so take the time to look at it, and look at it ALL, "NSEW, Corners, Rest' that little bit of discipline to slow down, pay attension.. make ~SURE you have paied attension, is the first step to taking better photo's whatever camera you got.....

    Kit 18-55.. cracking bit of kit for the cash.... Mine came with the camera, that was cheaper as a kit with it, than as body-only without.... lenses dont get much cheaper than that! And, as its my most used lens on widgetal, and having splurged to afford lenses to cover the same range I had/wanted for my old film cameras, and got around five times the value of camera in lenses I DO NOT USE!!!!! in the camera bag.. rather embarrased by that 'give-away' 18-55... yet, I have spent three or four years deliberating on what I might actually buy to replace it, that might actually be much if any better.... I could spend a lot more money on alternative lenses that cover that 'range' of focal lengths; a lot that are like the super-zooms, going longer at the long end, but probably NOT actually all that much better optically than what I got... lens that is most likely is the Sigma 18-50.. actually a tad tighter at the long-end, but slightly faster f2.8 max aperture, it IS a much higher quality lens, both optically and mechanically... would I get much if any benefit from it, though? Certainly not as much for the money, given evcen that is as much as I spent on the camera body!!!! A-N-D I STILL have to look through the thing, and check, north-south-east-west, and not get folk in luminous hiking jackets or hv-is clad dogs etc in the frame!!!

    To-wit, you almost certainly wont do much if any better with another lens, and anything you do get, like the 70-300, will change the view-point, not necesserily the results.

    ND or Neutral-Density filters.... a-n-d milky waterfalls... err... yeah..... Idea of an ND is that is blocks light from getting in the lens, so if you are in good sun-light, and your camera is trying to set a fairly fast, shutter-speed as well as very tight aperture, and low ISO.... eff-sixteen-sunny... suggests that on a good bright sunny day (like wot we only get very briefly and rarely here in the UK!) the typical 'exposure' settings will be about 1/ISO setting at f16. So, if I were using the old manual Zenit, that don't have no meter, let alone one that tries to make settings for me... I would load it up with 100ASA film.... cos that's what I got in the fridge..... and looking out the window.. its flukily, especially for April, very sunny..... until sun-set at least! So, 100ASA or ISO film, so shutter-speed of 1/100th seconds on that dial..... and then f16 on the lens, and away I go.... no meter required! If I want to shoot at 1/250th cos subjects a bit quick, I need open up the aperture a stop, so f11, then... if I waqnt to slow the shutter to milk waterfalls... I'm in trouble!!! I have the ziess 50 in my hand, and it does go to f22.. so I could drop the shutter to 1/60th... but I cant remember if the Helios actually goes to f22! A-N-D I would be pretty stuffed trying to go any slower on the shutter, as I couldn't 'stop-down' any further...... THIS is where your ND filters come in.... blocking light getting through the lens, with a 3-stop ND, I could set a shutter three-stops slower and get the 'same' effective exposure, when I run out of f-stops.... so; back to the illustration. F16-Sunny day; suggests I set f16 on the lens, and then 1/100 on the shutter for ISO100 film..... now I can wack on the ND Filter, and drop the shutter one stop, to 1/60th.... (I dont have a 1/50th setting on the clock-work Zenit... 1/60 be close enough!)... two-stops would take me down to 1/30th on the shutter, and three-stops 1/15th... now whether theres a water-fall or not, its likely to get milky.... as above, old rule of thumb for hand holding, is to use a shutter faster than 1/focal length of lens..... Zenit is a 58mm focal length lens, so I am risking 'blurr' at anything beneath 1/60 or so.. And you need a tripod BEFORE you need an ND filter.....

    Actually, the old zenith is as heavy as a small moon, it may be hand-held down to about 1/30th or 1/15th by some-one with steady hand and practice.... as long as the subject isn't too frisky.. this is the main thing about Image-Stabilization ion widgetal cameras; it doesn't ACTUALLY let you hand hold down to much if any lower shutter-speed... doing a shutter-speed limbo with my daughter to see how low we could go, seems we both have pretty steady hands, and could hand hold pretty reliably down to around 1/8th or so.... Other-Half on the other hand, struggled, even with IS 'on' to get unstreaky pictures, even as high as 1/60... and it was a bit hit and miss, even at 1/30th! IS on modern widgetals, is, IMO, a bit of a chocolate tea-pot.... if you could take a steady photo from good technique without it, you still will, and will probably do better than the IS... if not... you were starting from the back, and best IS will do is compensate a little... and mostly for the fact that the camera is almost NOT as heavy as a Zenit, and that much more prone to a little shake!

    You have been warned; IS is NOT a panacea cure-all, and it is not even vaguely 'essential', at best, its marginally useful, when choosing a lens. either way; learning good hand holding technique, which means turning off the ruddy back-screen and looking through the peep-hole; holding camera cradled under the lens with left hand, gripped loosely in right finger poised on shutter in right; elbows in to the sides to brace the support, and moderating your breathing, as you 'squeeze' not snatch shutter button, is, after making sure you are on firm ground and got a pretty steady 'stance' the key top success......

    Back to milking water-falls..... you will probably want a shutter-speed beneath 1/30th for most, if not slower. This does beg the tripod, before the ND filter. Waterfalls are usually in 'shade' so even on an f16-sunny day, you will usually have that bit less light to need block to start with, and may be able to use perhaps one or two stops less shutter-speed; but even so..... you are into the realms of shutter-speed where hand holding isn't particularly practical or viable, you WILL need a tripod.,

    Now, the over milked water-fall Is a cliche.... it is a traditional teaching exercise to show the effect of slow shutter-speeds on movement.... but there are thousands of examples out there..... and with the propensity of high density 'Big-Stoppa' ND filters, that with a 10-stop filter factor or more, can extend an f16-Sunny at 1/100th exposure to maybe 5 whole seconds..... you are into a world of cliche, and excess.... its very very easy to use an incredibly long shutter to turn a water-fall into a solid slap of white...... and plenty of examples of that much over-doing it out there.. so the trick IS actually to NOT over-do-it, and pick a shutter to get 'some' just enough milking, to show movement in the water, but no so much your whole waterfall milks out.. that's the next bit of the lesson, being discerning... and there are folks who spend an entire life time practicing this effect..... it is NOT easy, by a long stretch.

    Brings me to metering...... your camera has in-built metering; unlike the old clock-work Zenit, more that metering is 'coupled' to the shutter and aperture settings.. IE it meters the amount of light reflected off your subject, and picks the settings of aperture and shutter, and possibly ISO to suit..... B-U-T that meter is measuring the amount of light going through the lens in any 'instant'.. which as far as your camera goes, is something less than its fastest shutter period.. what 1/5000th of s second.... you are taking pictures of water falls... water is falling.. and takes a dang site longer than 1/5000th of a second to fall from top to bottom..... high-lights the bright spots reflected of a chunk of water at the top... will carry on reflecting a high-light as they travel down the frame...... your high-lights 'streak'... Longer your exposure, the more the high-lights will streak, or try and expose a larger portion of the frame... and the metering goes to pot..... if the meter bases its exposure assesement on the first very very short peiod of time.... it wont account for the high-lights moving and effectively multiplying in the frame; and it will select 'settings' for you that will tend to over-expose the whole picture; If the meter is a little more or less sophisticated, and tries to average the reading over a longer time... it can go either way, trying to over-expose the back-ground to account for the propensity of streaking high-lights, OR it can over-expose, as those high-lights chuck far more light at the sensor than the meter 'saw' in an instance.

    THIS was what actually made it such an academic exercise, to show just how fool-hardy in-camera-metering may be, and that to get what you hope for, when that ISN'T what you are actually looking at, you have to 'diddle-the-dials' and apply some compensation to get the exposure YOU actually prefer, that shows your subject to best effect and the effect you wish to display, and THAT is where it comes down to practice........ not gadgets... they no not what you preffer or what may work 'best'.. you have to apply judgement.... and probably a tripod. And this IS where using 'manual' mode, to by-pass the cameras meter coupling trying to set settings for you comes into play.

    Two essential types of meter reading; Through the Lens,m or TTL. This is what 99% of SLR's use. They measure the light reflected off the subject coming throuygh the lens. You have a black-cat-in-a-coal-hole, andTTL metering will try and suggest an exposure value, umpety times higher than if you have a white-rabbit-on-a-ski-slope.. or you get a very light washed out cat in the coal hole, or a very grey, murky rabbit on a ski-slope, as the meter doesn't think they are any different..... and tries to suggest an exposure to make both the same mid-grey, not what they actually are, black or white... Worse, if the cameras meter is coupled, the electrickery tries to force those settings on you whether you know better or not.

    Other kind of metering is Incident', or falling light meter reading. You care not how muck light is being reflected, just what is falling; now you meter with, usually a hand held meter, with an invercone over the sensor the light faling on the subject, not reflected off it. Now yourmeter reading for the black cat in a coal hole, will be that much lower than for the white rabbit on a ski slop.... and settings to get that exposure aught be that much closer to what you actually see..... so the black cat will be very dark, the white rabbit very light..... again, back to the accademics, metering for the whole scene, a single meter reading gives you a base to work from... you have to apply discrimination and experience to get what you actually want, and get the detail and contrast in the rabbit or cat... but that's another lesson...

    Water-falls are one of NOT trusting the meter,m and learning to apply a little craft to the deal...

    And unfortunately, heading down a road of taking lots and lots and lots of ever more disappointing photo's, and you DONT get what you hoped.... to add to the propensity of cliche's already abounding........

    Remember, purpose of a photo is to be looked at; if its not looked at, may as well have not been taken; so ~WHO, WHY, WHAT? Remember the 'audience'.. that may, if purely accademic interest be just you.... and briefly, but remember it has to be looked at to be worth taking, so who will look at it? Why will they look? Are they water-fall spotters? Do they have inane interest in waterfalls? Are they going to be interested, possibly in the ';effect' of milking one? So why will they look, and WHAT will actually be of interest to them? What will they 'take' from the photo, so what do you hope to give them?

    These are fundamental bigger issues, and the biggest begginer mistakes; NOT looking at the whole frame in the view-finder... North-South-East-West - Check the corners, then the rest, and including distracting clutter in the frame, or chopping off stuff that is actually interesting, but before that, taking photo's often for thier own sake, NOT with any real intent, or intended audience, and wondering why no-one really wants to look at them, or finds them all that wonderful....

    It all starts with the APPROACH, and asking these silly-questions, at the beginning, long, long before you go hunting for things to point the camera at, even longer before you need worry about apropriate 'settings', and even LESS what may or may not be the ideal camera or lens, let alone filter or other gadget..... Slow-=Down, back up, look at the bigger picture, don't fall into the trap of 'playing cameras' worse, Gadget-Acquestion-Syndrome, convincing yourself you really really need that toy in the toy-box and it WILL make 'such' a difference to your photo's....... you can spend a lot of money to STILL not have an audience to LOOK at those photo's!
     
    Plasticdogz, dbay and mossienet like this.
  13. AgentOrange76

    AgentOrange76

    Messages:
    146
    Name:
    James
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    mate thats a seriously long post with potentially a lot of useful information to a beginner but its really hard to read to the point where I just wont bother.
     
    dbay likes this.
  14. GTG

    GTG Suspended / Banned

    Messages:
    1,795
    Edit My Images:
    Yes
    Try a polarising filter when you get the dreaded white featureless sky like that. Sometime it brings out some features or color if there is any to be had. In the UK unfortunately we are not blessed with lovely skies often like some countries but filters and editing can help it out a little if your lucky
     
    dbay likes this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice