Tips for photos of Christmas lights?

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Posted 11/23/2012 by kjapeach in General Photography
 

kjapeach
PeaAddict

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Posted: 11/23/2012 11:39:50 PM
We're going on a harbour cruise this weekend and I'd love to get a great Christmas card photo. I've taken a class recently (5 hours in a lecture room with no hands-on) and I didn't learn much. This is my first time on this board, so maybe I'll try the beginners lessons here. I have tried the night mode on my Canon Rebel T3i and know I need to use a tripod. What other tips do you have?
Kimberly


~Kimberly
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Nicki

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Posted: 11/24/2012 5:49:01 AM
Have you ever used any other setting on your camera, other than the auto or pre-sets? Generally speaking - if you use any other mode other than Auto - set your ISO to a minimum of 800 (I usually go higher). If using Aperture (AP) mode, set the number larger if you want a lot in focus and lower (2.8/3.5/4) if you want less. (watch out for certain modes that allow the built in flash to pop up - you don't want that.) If you are in Manual - set your ISO, then your aperture to how much you want in focus, and then shutter speed (since you are using a tripod, you can go low on your shutter speed - but don't under estimate the amount of shake just clicking the camera can make - so I wouldn't go lower than 30/40). Experiment - if your settings are too dark, lower your aperture, or increase your ISO, or a little of both. Photography is not always (rarely) an exact science. Often it takes a bit of trial and error to get the right settings in any given location. The beauty of digital is that you can play around with it and delete what you don't like.

Good luck and have fun!


Nicki

Nikon stuff!

The more I know, the more I realize how much I don't know!

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coolbeans
PeaFixture

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Posted: 11/24/2012 7:33:55 AM

going on a harbour cruise


Depending on what type of boat/ship you are going on it may not be helpful to use a tripod. Perhaps if the ship stops at some of the sites you may be able to. It sounds like you are giving yourself a pretty tricky shooting condition. You want the fastest shutter speed you can get to stop any motion blur, created by the ship moving. I think you will want to keep a good depth of field to capture your sites instead of shooting wide open. Upping your ISO will allow you to increase your shutter speed but it may not be fast enough depending on how fast the boat is moving. It sounds like a wonderful time. If your not familiar with shooting off of the auto modes I don't think I would venture off that until you can practice on an event that may not be as special. Or you could try shooting some in an auto mode and some in a more manual setting. Covering your bases.


Canon 7D and XTi
Jackie S.

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Nicki

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Posted: 11/24/2012 12:02:00 PM
nice catch Jackie - yea, being on a moving platform will make shutter speed a critical element.


Nicki

Nikon stuff!

The more I know, the more I realize how much I don't know!

Blogging at ---> bended road photos





kjapeach
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Posted: 12/29/2012 4:56:25 PM
Thank u for your replies! I did end up using auto but I do want to experiment with your ideas. The boat was a Duffy and moved very slowly .


~Kimberly
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