1. James Sparham

    James Sparham

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    Name:
    James
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    Yes
    Hi all

    I've been asked to take photographs at two birthday parties. As this kind of thing is isn't usually my forte I'd be grateful for any tips on equipment and technique (literally anything you can throw at me). They will more than likely be low light.

    One is at a hall, so indoor. The other is at a house in summer, so much of it will be outside.

    Some will be candid. One of the families is also setting up a kind of 'booth' so they can pose with silly props and the like.

    Cheers,

    James
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2018
    davholla likes this.
  2. sep9001

    sep9001

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    Kev
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    Hi

    Using a flash on camera and bouncing off ceiling or wall, just make sure they are white would be a good starting point.

    If you post what equipment you have you will get better replies.

    Thank you
     
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  3. James Sparham

    James Sparham

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    James
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    Brill, thank you

    When you say 'make sure they are white' are you referring to white balance?
     
  4. sep9001

    sep9001

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    Kev
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    No, when bouncing the flash, if you bounce of a red wall you will get a red colour cast in the picture.
     
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  5. Phil V

    Phil V

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    Phil
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    Frankly I never worry too much about the colour of a bounce surface, as at a party you’ll have multi coloured light sources and you need to capture the atmosphere rather than be technically ‘correct’ and WB can always be tweaked in post.

    I think the key is to remember you’re balancing 2 separate exposures. The ambient and the flash.
    This means ... shoot manual*, get a feel for the ambient and choose your exposure level for that (usually a stop under, but it’s to your taste) then use ttl for the flash (remember you can tweak the flash exposure with FEC)

    Other more creative decisions...
    I tend to have quite a narrow zoom on the flash, to avoid it being a floodlight for the background.
    My regular bounce position is to aim the flash head into the join between the wall and ceiling behind me, but more often nowadays I use a radio trigger and hold the flash in my left hand to light directly.

    *by shooting manual and using ETTL you are still allowing the camera to help with the flash exposure, but you’re not trying to 2nd guess the shutter speed and or aperture the camera will choose. So you can pick something fool proof like 1/60 and 5.6 andthe ISO will be high enough so your flash isn’t working too hard.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2018
    Graham W, sep9001 and davholla like this.
  6. Gogster

    Gogster

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    Name:
    Darryl
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    No
    IMHO this is absolutely not what you should do, unless it's portrait style you're looking for, if you are going to use flash, dial it right back and use it as fill, otherwise you will lose the light (and atmosphere) of the party. I would go as high ISO as you manage without too much grain, your fastest lens - you can pick up the 50mm f/1.8 very cheaply, and shoot using the disco light colours to add effect. Play around with the shutter speed to freeze the action or allow a bit of movement to give a nice effect.

    On a final note, it's all very well me saying this, the people you should be asking are the people who are asking you to take pictures, what are they looking for?
     

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