Rebel Help - Please Save Me

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by rompworthy, Nov 25, 2006.

  1. rompworthy macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2006
    I have not been able to get into my creative settings much with 2 toddlers taking up most my time but I its family portrait time and Im in need of some help desperatly.

    I tried to research online with what little time Ive had and now have reached failure after trying what Ive read please tell me what I did wrong in my portraits so hopefully tomorrow I can get them done.

    I used the Av setting and Im getting blur/ghost/tracers whatever you want to call them. Minimal on tripod but my less still toddlers held on our outsides of center are blurring bad even then.

    Ive tried everything I can think of good light, tripod, Aperture dialed down (or up) to a lower number, ISO up even cranked both and still get tracers on test image with moving hands.

    Its so much better on Av for the warmth of the light and crispness of the picture (ignore my amateur words) so I really dont want our fair skin on auto so we can look washed out and stale. Please tell me what else I can do.

    Also since Im here what can I do off tripod too, for just my toddlers portrait w/o the tripod I can do anything on AV mode its just a mess.

    HELP please.

    If I need another creative mode please walk me trhough step by step I promise to learn up later but now Im on time constraint so please save my rookie noobe butt.

  2. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    What lens is on the camera?

    It sounds like you are trying to capture the existing light and don't want to use the flash. Right? If so there simply may not be enough light for your lens and camera. You may need to add more.

    How much light is there? Mearure it this way: Point your camera at a medium colored object in the same light as your subject then tell us the three components of an exposure ISO, f-stop and shutter speed. No one is going to be able to tell you much without knowing the light and what lens you have

    What is the effect you want? simply no motion blur? If so you will need to rig the conditions so that the shutter speed is faster than 1/60th to stop camera shake and much faster to freeze a running kid. In low light this is hard to do and very hard to do without a fast lens.

    One other solution is to get a strobe and use it in bounce mode. You turn it backwards to bounce off the back wall. This will raise the lighting level without the ugly effects of direct flash.

    Let us know about the light. Maybe you can look at one of those blurry pictures you took and tell us the numbers (ISO, f-stop, shutter)
  3. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    If I were you, I'd turn it to Shutter Priority (is that Tv in Canon speak?) and set it to something even higher than the 1/60 that ChrisA suggested. Or better yet, set your camera settings by yourself (say ISO 400, f/2.8 or f/3.5 or whatever the widest setting is on your camera, and maybe 1/80 seconds or so).

    Or like ChrisA said, maybe you just don't have enough light to shoot with. If you're indoors and desperate, just get more light somehow. Open the blinds, turn on some lights.....whatever. Just get light. Shoot in RAW mode and play with the white balance and such after you get a decent photo of your kids.

    I don't really understand your reason for wanting to use Av so badly, but don't worry about the skin tones for now.
  4. extraextra macrumors 68000


    Jun 29, 2006
    Use Manual. Hold down the AV +/- and dial the aperture number down. Don't (numerically) go lower than f/2.0 (if you have a fast lens) otherwise pictures won't be that sharp. However if you find that you later need to go down to f/1.4 or f/1.8 then you should. Look through the viewfinder and check to see where the exposure is at. If it's on the left side, blinking at -2, lower the shutter speed. If you get to a shutter speed of 1/40 and the exposure is still on the left side, lower than zero, raise the ISO. Preferably, you want the exposure to be on 0, if it's a LITTLE overexposed/underexposed it's ok. Too much overexposure and everything will be a mess, too much underexposure and you'll have a ton of noise when you try to brighten the picture.

    With this, you should be able to get a good shot. I'm assuming you're using a lens with a wider angle rather than a 200mm zoom, so the shutter speed of 1/40 (the minimum, I'd recommend 1/60 or 1/80) should be ok . Since you've got active kids, I wouldn't recommend going for a lower shutter speed even on a tripod.

    If you find that even with the lens wide open, the ISO cranked up, and the shutter speed at 1/40 or so you can't get a properly exposed picture, you need to look into getting an external flash. The on-board flash is decent.
  5. rompworthy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2006
    Thanks so much for the help I have it figured out now with the help I was given. Now that I get it it all makes so much more sense the last post particularly helped narrow it down even better. I cant wait to get another flash but in the mean time I think Ill be okay. I can only open to a 3.5 on my lens, but with my ISO cranked to 1600 and my shutter at 1/80 I seem to be doing pretty good. Im maybe a little over on exposure +1 but said that was okay to be a little over or under? I can chaneg the shutter a little lower and get 0 but it was recommended I dont go lower than 1/80 right? or is it worth it to go to 1/100 if it means 0 on exposure? Also I can lower my ISO to 800 but have to crank my shutter even lower I assume its better to raise ISO then lower shutter when possible based on all of this? Thanks so much for everything - I truly appreciate all the help.
  6. rompworthy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2006
  7. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    It's all a trade off. With a high ISO and you get more "noise", but with a slower shutter it blurs do to motion.

    With a digital camera if you have to error on the exposure it is best to under expose. You can brighten the darker parts of the image in post processing on the computer but it the highlights are "blown" pure white there is no way to recover. Does your camera have a histogram display? Look at it. You do not want spikes on either end of the display -- especially on the right end of the display. The histogram will very accurately tell you if the exposure is correct.

    Digital is like shooting slides, don't over expose. With negative film you can over expose a stop or two with little problem but not digital.

Share This Page