First organised photo event

Discussion in 'Photography Advice & Discussion' started by CallySleeperKid, 3 Aug 2014.

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  1. CallySleeperKid

    CallySleeperKid Established Member

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    Hi, although I have been a keen railway photographer for some time now, I am going to my first organised photo event this Friday (8th August) at Ecclesbourne Valley Railway 'Multiple Memories' event. http://www.e-v-r.com/multiplememories/

    The event consists of a full day at various photo locations along the line, including an evening shoot in the DMU depot, so for a first timer is there any advice you would offer......

    Cheers, CSK.
     
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  3. gazthomas

    gazthomas Established Member

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    For the day shoot, take a good pair of walking boots, ideally steel towed. I generally wear shorts if the weather is good, but this does mean you may get stung. Also take an orange (must be orange) hi-vis vest which is mandatory on every line when lineside. You will find a 2 or 3 step foldable step ladder useful, to get a little bit more height for photos. Also take food and plenty of water.

    Pay full attention to instructions given you and also stick with/near your group.

    I don't know what camera you have, but irrespective take plenty of memory cards, though these days I might not fill a 16GB one, even when taking lots of RAW+JPEG photos. Take a spare battery if you can, or if not your charger when back at a station between shots.

    For still shots during the day any camera should do. If the DMUs are moving you need a camera where you can change the shutter speed - a guide is divide the shutter speed by 10 to match to the speed, so 1/100 is 10mph, 1/400 is 40mph. Your camera should have a "S" or "shutter priority" option.

    Some people have taken to mounting their cameras on a decorators pole, using WiFi and a tablet to control the camera remotely and to view pictures. This creates great results with a different perspective!

    Night shoots are quite different. The EVR website doesn't say what time the event finishes, so I'm assuming after dark. In this case you'll need a good tripod as night shoots require shots to be still. You also need to set your shutter priority again - start with 1 second and experiment. I often take photos of 4 - 10 second exposure. At these exposures and with the tripod you should not need to change your ISO from 100 or 200, but again experiment. An early mistake I made was with my lens, which on my Canon has an image stabiliser. It is important to turn the stabiliser off for night shots as otherwise the camera will hunt and won't focus properly. I also use the camera's built in self-timer or a remote control shutter release to avoid shaking the camera when I press the shutter. The more experienced photographer goes fully manual, but I tend to be happy with my cameras autofocus and apperture settings.

    I hope this helps!

    I have some shots from day and night shots on my page on the Railway Herald site (see the link below) or take a look at Jason Cross' website www.15c.co.uk. He arranges photo charters and has taken so many excellent photos, most recently with the afformentioned decorators pole, for which he readily accepts all the flack given to him!

    Enjoy!

    Gary
     
    Last edited: 3 Aug 2014
  4. CallySleeperKid

    CallySleeperKid Established Member

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    Thanks Gary, some superb pointers there, I will be taking those on board and having a few practice shots before Friday's event.

    I am currently using a Sony a350.
     
  5. gazthomas

    gazthomas Established Member

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    You're very welcome. Just realised I wrote towed instead of toed. Doh!
     
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