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  #1  
Old 01-13-2005, 12:43 AM
santosh santosh is offline
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Default Help needed to take pictures in dark

I have a canon powershot G6 digital camera. I was visiting Orlando recently and wanted to take pictures of the disney parade in the night. I did not want to use the flash because I wanted the original colors of the parade lights. This was the problem I faced. I could not keep a longer shutter speed because the parade was moving and there would be motion effect in the lights. If I used a shorter shutter speed then the lights in the parade were not very bright and would result in a dark image. I also varied the aparture so as to allow more light (f 2.0) but still couldnt manage to get a decent picture of the parade. My question is what settings should I have used in this situation (dark surrounding, moving light parade, no flash). Any inputs? Thanks in advance.
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Old 01-13-2005, 03:43 AM
Ryan Ryan is offline
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Default Re: Help needed to take pictures in dark

If what I read is correct your camera has five ISO settings; Auto, 50, 100, 200 and 400. The higher the number, the more sensitive to light your camera is, so try setting your camera to ISO 400.

Keep in mind though that a lower ISO offers the best quality, so only set it higher when you must.

Hope this helps.
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Old 01-13-2005, 07:13 AM
thien thien is offline
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Default Re: Help needed to take pictures in dark

There are two settings that affects the speed on an exposure: ISO and aperture.

ISO: The higher the number the faster the speed and the more noise you will get.
Aperature: The larger the aperture (small F-number) the faster the speed and the shallower the depth of field.

For a moving parade, you would need at least the speed somewhere around 1/80s and faster to freeze the subjects. For a night parade, this would translate to a F2 at ISO 1600. If you have some more lights you may get away with ISO 400.
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Old 01-13-2005, 11:03 PM
santosh santosh is offline
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Default Re: Help needed to take pictures in dark

Thanks for your inputs.. I will remember to try a higher ISO next time.
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  #5  
Old 01-16-2005, 04:09 AM
philip_coggan philip_coggan is offline
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Default Re: Help needed to take pictures in dark

Just a tiny detail from what Thien said (and Thien is a guy I defer to in photogrpahy), but there aer 3 things that control exposue, not 2 - ISO (which is the sensitivity of the film or chip to light), aperture (how wide is the hole that's letting light through the lens into the camera), and shutter speed (how long the hole stays open).

If you need to take pictures in dark conditions, you can vary all 3 to let the maximum of light in - a high ISO, a wide aperture, a slow shutter speed.

If you want to minimise blur due to the movement of the subject, shutter speed is the one to watch - it has to be fast enough to freeze the movement of your subject - which means that you can then really only use ISO and apertuer to let enough light in.

And if it still doesn't work ... then it doesn't work :). (Some photos are untakeable, and we just have to live with it...or buy a moer expensive camera...or start using blur as a deliberate part of the photo).
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Old 01-17-2005, 01:52 AM
kikvel kikvel is offline
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Default what Philip mentioned is very important...

a clear picture, without any motion blur element is not necessarily the best picture, so please take a look at the pictures from National Geographic magazine, many of them have blur and are really obscured, I do not remember seeing a picture with flash there...

so do not worry, keep on practicing and taking the best from your camera, remember also, higher ISO settings mean more noise, and also bigger file sizes...and that means less shots per memory card...

K.
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Old 01-17-2005, 10:21 PM
santosh santosh is offline
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Default Re: what Philip mentioned is very important...

Thanks for the inputs. Here is a sample of what I captured at the parade. I used 0.6 shutter speed and f 2.0 . The ISO setting was set at auto.
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  #8  
Old 01-17-2005, 11:25 PM
philip_coggan philip_coggan is offline
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Default Re: what Philip mentioned is very important...

Hi Santosh.

I notice the background (some people watching the parade) is in comparatively clear focus - clearer than the fich, anyway. That means you can contrast the comparatively sharp spectators against the blurred fish, making the niteraction between spectators and fish (rather than the fish itself) the main psychological centre of your photo.

If your camera has a thing called second curtain flash, you can make those light trails from the fish work for you. 2nd curtain flash means that the flash goes off as the shutter curtain falls, rather than as it opens - this means that the light trails are captured for the period the shutter ermains open (half a second on this setting), and then the flash goes off and captures a sharp photo of the fish at the end of the light trails.
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  #9  
Old 01-18-2005, 02:44 AM
philip_coggan philip_coggan is offline
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Default Re: Help needed to take pictures in dark

As an example of using movement blur, have a look at http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/Africa/Mali/photo121145.htm
(this photographer, called nygus, is very talented!)
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  #10  
Old 01-18-2005, 04:31 PM
santosh santosh is offline
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Default Re: Help needed to take pictures in dark

Thanks for your inputs. I have to check if my camera allows me to change my flash settings. I also visited the link you had mentioned(nygus). He is indeed a talented photographer. I still haven't got the courage to take pictures of strangers like he has done. Hope to break the barrier soon.
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