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Discussion in 'Photography Advice & Discussion' started by martyn29, 4 Jul 2007.
Whats the best lens, setting to use, obviously I know you cant use the flash.
Depends how dark it is.
Even if you could use flash, it is usually poor for night photography unless used cleverly.
The best time for night shots is when there is still a bit of daylight to avoid inky-black skies. However, your digital camera will manage a better job of this than film so you will get away with it.
You could set the ASA to 16000 but I don't recommend it unless absolutely neccessary, so try 800asa. 'Auto white' should take care of the white baance but there are a number of artificial light settings you can try for varying results. If you aren't happy with the grain/noise from 800 asa then lower it to 400. However, the higher asa settings will help you gain a fast enough shutter speed to stop movement. You will require a longer exposure. I often took night exposures of 30-32 seconds with 100 asa film and got very acceptable results.
If you can't get a fast shutter speed then use a tripod.
Here is an example of a 30-32 second exposure with a film camera (on a tripod). I also used an 80B 'blue' filter to convert the daylight film for artificial light use.
The interesting thing with the picture above was how steady the driver stayed throughout the exposure. Likewise, the telling of whether your exposure is quite accuarate for the lighting conditions, is in how much detail you see inside the loco cab (this could be a shop window etc). Too much exposure and the detail would be washed out and, too little it would look too dark.
And here is a couple of handheld shots with my Canon 350D SLR. At 16000 asa.... White light balance was on 'auto'.
Trust that this helps.
That's a very nice example of using a lower asa such as 100 and using a tripod. You really notice the high resolution and there is a sense of motion with the exhauste.
I had never been to Weymouth before a couple of Saturday's ago and was pleased to be able to recognise the station.
He didn't use a tripod IIRC!
Blummin' steady hands, then!
Even more 'well done'. However, I am forgetting many on here are quite young people and of course, have better breath control than when you are a lot older!!! Here is a B&W picture that I took at a 15th of a second, with 400 asa film and a Russian 'Zenith' SLR, waaaaaaaaaaaay back in 1975. Proof that I could do that quite easily back then, but I certainly wouldn't expect to get away with it today. Enjoy the ability while you can, dear friends!
The photo is of Saddle Tank No. 1 'Bonnie Prince Charlie', snapped in the gloom of Didcot Steam Depot, in the early years of the Great Western Society, at Didcot. They were at Taplow prior to this.
Oh, dear, makes me feel old.
Night photography with the Canon EOS 400D:
1, Turn the mode dial to M
2, Make sure the self-timer is activated (to prevent shaking when the shutter is released)
3, Focus on the subject you want to photograph by pressing the shutter to half way as you would normally, however use your middle finger to do it.
4, Use your index finger to move the dial next to the shutter button to the left or right, while looking through the viewfinder, until the arrow under the exposure metre icon in the lower part shows this:
2 - - 1 - - 0 - - 1 - - 2
This means that the exposure is at the right setting for the shot. If the Arrow is to the right, it is over exposed, if the arrow is to the left, it is underexposed.
Hope this helps
2 - - 1 - - 0 - - 1 - - 2
If you're using a tripod turn on mirror lockup in custom functions and use the timer. This will move the mirror up a few seconds before actually taking the photo to reduce any vibrations from the mirror moving.
ISO100, 20 seconds, F11
ISO100, 2.5 seconds, F8
ISO160, 5 seconds, F11
thanks guys! cant wait to try it out!!
What does the "F" mean? I'm guessing it is something to do with aperture? I heard it is best to make that be as small as possible?
And Jamie, thanks for those tips, will certainly be useful in Carlisle, even though my camera is slightly different, it still has all those settings on
The F number is the aperture (how much light is allowed through the lens). A low aperture allows lots of light through allowing a slower shutter speed. But the downside is it reduces the depth of field of the photo (how much is in focus). Somewhere around F8-F11 allows a decent depth of field. Something lower is good if you want to blur the background to make something stand out.
These two photos were taken at F1.8, you can see the effect that focusing at different distances has.
Wikipedia explains it properly:
Ok, so at night, it is best to have a higher aperture then right? Thanks for the link.
Depends what you are doing , F1.8 means you can use a faster shutter speed but still have a bright image and less blur where as F18 would need a slower shutter speed and more likely to have blur. But you can use it to manipulate images such as or craig's examples.
Ahh right ok thanks. So for stationary trains at night, what would I use? I guess both would probably work.
If the train isn't moving and you're using a tripod you want to use something around F8 with a slower shutter speed to keep most of the train nicely in focus.
All right, cheers Craig!
I know it isnt about the EOS400d but everyones talking about taking pics at dusk/evening , anyone got any tips on what I should do with my camera because Im doing abit of spotting tonight and I would like to try a picture and not a video for once
Tripod, long exposure assuming you're taking pictures of trains with no movement, if not then a high aperture...
You dont need too long exposure for dusk as its july so fairly light until late.