Monday, April 27, 2009

Shooting on Manual and CONTEST #3

For those of you wondering how

This is what I do to get my Manual settings:

1. I think of what I want to accomplish with the picture I am trying to take.

  • If I am taking a portrait where I want to isolate my subject from the surroundings, I will pick a low F-stop (1.8 with my 50 mm or 2.8 with my 85mm) that will make my background blurry or out of focus.

  • If I am trying to capture a child running, I will choose a fast shutter speed of say 1/400 or 1/500.

  • So, first I pick the most important setting to me and build everything else around that. For a portrait I will choose and aperture (F-stop) of about f/2.5 or f/2.8 unless you have more than one subject, then you will go up from there.

2. After that, I will always start with an ISO of 100 because that will give me the greatest clarity and least amount of noise. I will only bump up my ISO if I *HAVE* to.

3. So all I am left with now is my shutter speed.

  • I know that with my 50mm lens I can go as low as about 1/125 with a squirming child, but with my 85mm I can't go lower than 1/250 because it is a heavy lens and I will most likely shake the camera. So with either of those lenses I will set my SS to as low as I know I can go.

4. The next step would be to take my meter reading and adjust my settings accordingly, however I am TERRIBLE about doing this. I RARELY take a meter reading....DO NOT THINK this is okay. I would be a much better photographer if I did this EVERY time.
  • You can set your camera set to partial metering and meter off a gray card or your subjects skin. Just fill the viewfinder with your subjects skin and you will usually have to overexpose by about a stop unless you are photographing a very dark skinned person. If my meter tells me I am underexposed, I will up my ISO to 200. I can't go lower on my shutter speed because I am already as low as I can go without getting camera shake. I also don't go lower than f/2.5 on my aperture because it takes allot of practice to get both eyes in focus at say f/1.8.

5. Take a test shot and check your histogram for blow outs. For a portrait I like my histogram hill to be far over the the right, but without blowing any highlights.

6. After all that, once I am satisfied with my exposure I will shoot away.

Another thing to remember is you don't have to re-meter for every picture. As long as your subject stays in the same light then ignore your meter jumping around and just snap away. If you move from a sunny area to a shady area or from outside to inside you will need to re-meter and reset your white balance too.

So now I want you to go out and PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE! It takes a lot of getting used to! There are so many things to think about! You don't have to have any specific lens for this contest. I want you to email me at your images.

I will give you until MAY 11, 2009

  • Tell me what you are trying to accomplish in your shot {your child running, hitting or catching while playing baseball, a portrait of your child, friend's child, niece or nephew}
  • What lens are you using
  • What ISO did you use
  • What you set your F-Stop {aperature} at
  • What you chose for your shutter speed
  • Did you meter?
  • Did you take a test shot? If so send me that image and what you did to improve your final shot before you took it
The WINNER of this contest will get a $50 gift card to Target

No comments:

Post a Comment

Portraits by Jenn's Fan Box

Portraits by Jenn on Facebook
blog design by the polka dot pig