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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 10 May 2011 (Tuesday) 12:34
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My 10 photography questions

 
Alarm
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May 10, 2011 12:34 |  #1

Hello.
I am pretty new to photography and i got really fascinated of this new hobby.
I do spend an hour a day reading articles, books etc. But still there are
some questions that i would like to ask. So let's start.

1) We talk about shutter. On a film camera i can understand how a shutter looks like.
What happens with a DSLR ? Is the shutter exactly the same or the shutter is just
electronic by turning the sensor on/off ? When i flip up the mirror (from my settings)
i do not see any shutter "blocking" the sensor.

2) How to prevent my camera from the sun when shooting against the sun? I read
or cases when the shutter was burned or the camera was damaged from the sun flaire.
Is there any trick with that or just a risk when i try to create black silhuettes on
a bright sun or even shooting sunsets?

3) Should i avoid using often the live view , especially during day time ? I came with this question as the sensor is always exposed.

4) Shutter speed vs EV . Is there any real difference? Suppose i shoot on shutter priority, or even manual mode. Would it make any difference stopping down the shutter speed or
reducing the exposure? Why can EV be helpful when we can do with shutter speed settings
the same things.

5) Metering mode vs Locking exposure. When shooting for example on a person with a bright
background, it would be preferable to use spot metering and focus on the person and
let the camera do the job for us. But what happens if i would lock the exposure on the bright area and then shoot while focusing on the person. Would i have the same results?
Is my second approach wrong ?


6) Hyperfocal distance. Well here... I did read several things but i am sort of confused. From what i understood, manual focusing is the way to go. So lets assume we have the following scenario.

IMAGE: http://img849.imageshack.us/img849/9969/20129797.png

We talk about landscape photography. Untill now, i was shooting focusing straight
on the mountain which could be miles away. Apparently this is wrong. So let
asume that i use a focal length 20mm, and an aperture f16. From the online
calculations :
a) i should focus on an object that is 4.38 feet away, like the rock shown on the image ?
b) i focus normaly on the mountain and set on my lens ring at 4 feet ?
c) After what distance should i consider using the hyper focal distance ? If we talk about objects that are 10 ? 20 ? 100 meters away ?
d) Also some times when shooting landscapes, there are not many things to close focus at with the center focus point. Should i use another focus point , lower, left,right focus
point in order to focus on an object that is on that 4.38 feet distance ?
I got a bit confused with this, if i should really focus on a closer object, or i should
just set my lens on the distance that is displayed on the ring.

7) When shooting raw, its better to over expose pictures and correct them with PP ?
Under exposre to get better contrast?

8) Comparing macro lens with zoom lens: Suppose i have a 300mm lens which can focus
from a 1 meter distance. Shooting with this lens will result to a bigger object printed
on my image compared to a 70mm that can focus from 20cm ? There is some confusion for me
when we talk about focal length that gets you closer to things through its strength,
and with the macro lenses that allow you to get really close.

9) Focusing. My lens ( Sigma 17-70) says that the minimum focus distance is 20cm. Is this focusing capability referred to the Auto Focus or generaly ? I was testing my lenses
macro capabilities and i could get really goog results when manual focusing from a 1.5-2cm distance.

10)
a) Shooting landscapes, most of the times my skies look pretty washed out instead of
blue. Lets not consider the use of a polarizer filter (which i own). Is it possible
to get a decent nice sky colour with any sort of settings? If i underexpose to get
a nice sky, i lose a lot of details of the rest of the image.
b) Similar to the above question, what do you suggest when the sky is totaly cloydy
(clouds without shape or depth) making the sky appear in the image as a big white thing.

Thank you in advance :)

:: Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes ::

  
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Stump
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May 10, 2011 15:21 |  #2

1) As far as I know, there's not an actual shutter blocking the sensor. The mirror pops up and the sensor is turned on. That's how I understand it.

2) I don't think the sun will harm your camera that easily. I have taken direct pictures of the sun and I've never had a problem. I wouldn't think shooting with the sun in front of you would make all that much of a difference.

3) There's no reason to avoid using live view other than it creates more noise in the image. The live view focus is too slow for me to use anyways, except maybe on a tripod sometimes. I don't think LV is going to harm your sensor if that's what you're asking.

4) EV and Shutter Speed are two totally different things. When in Manual mode, EV isn't going to do anything. EV is basically adjusting your cameras internal light meter. If you are using AV/TV then you can use EV to get your camera to automatically shoot the scene a little brighter than it normally would or vice versa. It's pretty handy, think shooting in the snow, white cars or black cars.

5) I'm not sure what your question is. Exposure and Focus are two separate things, but it seems like you're confusing them. I may not be understanding you correctly though. If you lock exposure on the bright background and focus on the person, the person will be in focus but underexposed. Your answer to #5 is no, you wouldn't get the same results.

6) When I'm shooting a landscape, I usually focus at something far away in the scene. I always use auto focus unless its too dark, then I manual focus. I'll let someone else answer all your other questions here.

7) I think its best to expose it correctly or as close as you can. I'd rather have something just a little overexposed rather than underexposed though. Underexposed images will have more noise, especially if you try to raise exposure.


You'd get a lot more responses if you'd ask one question per thread. I think I need a nap from reading all this and trying to figure it out. ;)


6D - 50 1.8 - 50 1.4 - 70-200F4L

  
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Alarm
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May 10, 2011 15:41 |  #3

Thank you for the reply.

Well i did not want to open 10 threads :)


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ckramos
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May 10, 2011 15:55 |  #4

1) Dont know
2) Beats me
3) get a LCD viewfinder
4) --
5) I use the two opposing half circles metering for back lit, and it work every time.
6)a) yes 4.38 feet away
b) if you doing that you're wasting so-so distance in front of the hyper focal distance. According to my calculator. @f16 everying 2ft in front and infinity behind will be in focus @4ft.
c) I use to carry this paper circle calculator thing that did all kinds photography calculations; get that or get a depth of field app for your smart phone.
d) there should be hash marks on your lens. set one end on the infinity symbol and you're good to go.
7) check your histogram.
8) not qualified
9) physical capabilities
10) a) only works if there's patch of blue sky
b) adjust the highlight and shadow adjustment


5d2 | 580ex ii | 35-70mm f3.5-4.5 | 50mm f1.4 | 17-40mm f4

  
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Snydremark
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May 10, 2011 16:33 |  #5

1. It depends. On (most) point and shoots, it's electronic; but on SLRs it is a real, physical shutter.

2. Just don't shoot DIRECTLY into the sun; and try to keep long exposures with the sun directly in the frame to a minimum.

3. Depends on what type of shooting you're doing. If you're working off of a tripod, go ahead and use it. If you are shooting hand-held, I'd avoid it. It's near impossible to have a good stance/grip on the camera when holding it so you can see the LCD.

4. Go read Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson...EV and shutter speed are not equivalent things. EV is simply shorthand for exposure value, which is a reference number to explain the amount of difference in an exposure. Shutter speed, aperture and ISO are the things that you use to DETERMINE your exposure value.

5. Metering is the act of measuring the light reflecting in your frame to determine the correct exposure settings. (assuming you are using the in-camera metering system) This can get long and involved, but the quick and dirty answer is that your examples are going to result in an underexposed photo due to using something bright and highly reflective to meter off of. Again, reading a book like Understanding Exposure will help you get the basics; then people here, with more talent at explanation that I can help you further.

6. http://www.dofmaster.c​om/dofjs.html (external link) Better than I could explain here

7. Various opinions on this one. I would experiment and find what works best for you; I'm a fan of getting it as close to right, out of the gate, as possible. Also, keep in mind that when people talk about over/underexposing for those purposes, they don't mean a lot in either direction (+/- 1/3EV or so)

8. It's the magnification power of the lens. A true Macro lens reproduces the image at a 1:1 scale on the sensor whereas other lenses only reproduce a scaled image (1:3, 1:5, etc).

9. Generally speaking, it's the minimum distance at which the lens can achieve focus. Your results sound suspicious to me.

10. Sure, you can expose for the sky and get good color; but as you've already noted, you get a much darker overall image by doing so. Some people bracket their shots (same scene at different exposures, say one for sky and one for ground) and then merge them later on to show the entire range of light. I'm a little lost on what you're asking in part B.


- Eric S.: My Birds/Wildlife (external link) (7D MkII/5D IV, Canon 10-22 f/3.5-4.5, Canon 24-105L f/4 IS, Canon 70-200L f/2.8 IS MkII, Canon 100-400L f/4.5-5.6 IS I/II)
"The easiest way to improve your photos is to adjust the loose nut between the shutter release and the ground."

  
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Alarm
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May 11, 2011 01:24 |  #6

4) EV and Shutter Speed are two totally different things. When in Manual mode, EV isn't going to do anything. EV is basically adjusting your cameras internal light meter. If you are using AV/TV then you can use EV to get your camera to automatically shoot the scene a little brighter than it normally would or vice versa. It's pretty handy, think shooting in the snow, white cars or black cars.

I thought that the EV just reduces the shutter speed. Was i wrong ?

6. http://www.dofmaster.c​om/dofjs.html (external link) Better than I could explain here

Thats where i got my information from. But still i am sort of confused how i should do it? Just auto focus on an object at 4 feet about and put my lens ring to infinity ? Focus on manual with my lens and set the ring on 4 feet distance ?

9. Generally speaking, it's the minimum distance at which the lens can achieve focus. Your results sound suspicious to me.

Well here are my results.

100% Crop from 20cm focusing

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: NOT FOUND | MIME changed to 'image/png'


100% Crop from 1-5cm focusing
IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: NOT FOUND | MIME changed to 'image/png'


If my lens says that my minimum could focus from minimum 20cm distance. Then how could i do this ? Thats why i asked if those 20cm refer to the AF capabilities only.


As for my 5th question about shooting an object with a bright background , how would you do such a shooting ? Exposure and metering mode ? Let us exclude flash light as the object is more than 5 meters away.

:: Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes ::

  
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sbattey
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May 11, 2011 02:02 |  #7
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Minimum focus distance is from the sensor, not the end of the lens. The end of your lens was 2cm away, but the distance from the sensor to the end of the lens has to be added in.


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Snydremark
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May 11, 2011 02:28 |  #8

Alarm wrote in post #12387705 (external link)
I thought that the EV just reduces the shutter speed. Was i wrong ?

EV doesn't adjust anything. It is adjusted BY your settings; adjusting your shutter speed or aperture or ISO will change the EV of the shot. Not the other way around. This is why I recommend reading a book about exposure and learning what it really is.

Alarm wrote in post #12387705 (external link)
Thats where i got my information from. But still i am sort of confused how i should do it? ... Focus on manual with my lens and set the ring on 4 feet distance ?

Yes. Or AF on some object that is that distance away, then turn off AF (switch on your lens).

Alarm wrote in post #12387705 (external link)
Well here are my results.

100% Crop from 20cm focusing


100% Crop from 1-5cm focusing


If my lens says that my minimum could focus from minimum 20cm distance. Then how could i do this ? Thats why i asked if those 20cm refer to the AF capabilities only.

I suppose it could be different with that particular lens; I've never used it before. On my lenses, though, it's the minimum distance at which focus can be achieved, manually or via AF.

Alarm wrote in post #12387705 (external link)
As for my 5th question about shooting an object with a bright background , how would you do such a shooting ? Exposure and metering mode ? Let us exclude flash light as the object is more than 5 meters away.

I would Spot meter on the subject and then override the camera's determination by between +1/3 to +1 1/3 EV because I know that the camera will be fooled by the bright background and attempt to underexpose my subject in order to correctly expose the background. EDIT: I should also mention that doing this would require using exposure lock if shooting in an auto/semi-auto mode (P, Av, Tv); using M you would just adjust either your aperture, shutter or ISO to reach a meter reading that indicates that exposure. Your title for that section isn't quite right, either. Metering mode and exposure lock are not a VS thing; they are used in conjunction to help you take control of your images when the camera isn't doing what you need.


- Eric S.: My Birds/Wildlife (external link) (7D MkII/5D IV, Canon 10-22 f/3.5-4.5, Canon 24-105L f/4 IS, Canon 70-200L f/2.8 IS MkII, Canon 100-400L f/4.5-5.6 IS I/II)
"The easiest way to improve your photos is to adjust the loose nut between the shutter release and the ground."

  
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Sirrith
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May 11, 2011 05:10 |  #9

Alarm wrote in post #12387705 (external link)
If my lens says that my minimum could focus from minimum 20cm distance. Then how could i do this ? Thats why i asked if those 20cm refer to the AF capabilities only.


As for my 5th question about shooting an object with a bright background , how would you do such a shooting ? Exposure and metering mode ? Let us exclude flash light as the object is more than 5 meters away.

The 17-70's MFD is 20cm from the sensor, not from the front of the lens. All manufacturer stated MFDs are measured from the sensor. The 17-70 does AF VERY close, its one of the great things about this lens.

If you don't have flash, then you'll either have to blow the background, or underexpose the subject. If you want to meter for the background, then you position your centre AF point on the subject, use spot metering, and fire away. If you want to expose the background, then you can do the same, but meter for the background, then lock your exposure, and recompose.
If you want both to be exposed correctly, then you'll have to meter for the background, and use fill flash on the subject.


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Alarm
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May 11, 2011 14:11 |  #10

That was something i did not know, that the focus distance was calculated from the sensor. well .


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Alarm
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May 11, 2011 14:13 |  #11

Here is something that i noticed. When on shutter mode, the EV changes the Aperture, while when on Aperture priority it changes the shutter speed.

So if i got it correct, the EV actually changes the aperture or shutter speed. This can be fully be adjusted by manual mode where EV is disabled.


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Snydremark
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May 11, 2011 15:00 |  #12

You have the situation correct; but you are misinterpreting what is happening.

What you are doing in those modes is changing EC (Exposure Compensation) which tells the camera to override its own exposure. The WAY that exposure is adjusted is by changing one of aperture/shutter speed/ISO.

Av mode tells the camera "use the aperture that I specified, and change the shutter shutter speed to maintain a correct exposure" (if auto ISO is set, the camera may choose to change ISO, also)

Tv mode says "Use the shutter speed I set, and adjust aperture to maintain a proper exposure"; same note on auto ISO.

So, EV is the value of exposure calculated BY the exposure settings, including any EC that you have specified. It might seem a small thing, but it's an important distinction to make in order to move forward.


- Eric S.: My Birds/Wildlife (external link) (7D MkII/5D IV, Canon 10-22 f/3.5-4.5, Canon 24-105L f/4 IS, Canon 70-200L f/2.8 IS MkII, Canon 100-400L f/4.5-5.6 IS I/II)
"The easiest way to improve your photos is to adjust the loose nut between the shutter release and the ground."

  
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banpreso
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May 11, 2011 15:21 |  #13

alarm, have you tried to use google and wikipedia for some of your questions?

1. DSLR has a focal plane shutter. If you turn your camera off, take your lens off, flip the mirror up with your finger, you can see the shutter. If you are on liveview or sensor cleaning mode, the shutter is open so you can see the sensor.

2. The sun will not damage the camera's liveview. Lasers have been known to damage the sensor during liveview, so becareful shooting concerts and dance clubs that use laser.

3. There's no reason to avoid using liveview. It does not damage the camera, except from lasers as noted above

4. Shutter speed is to determine your exposure time for the desired effects. Sports = fast shutter, long exposure water shots = slow shutter. Using exposure compensation the camera will adjust shutter speed or aperture based on your desired compensation and shooting mode, so you have no direct control. In manual mode, you obviously have full control over everything.

5. Depends on the situation, different metering modes or exposure lock would work better. if you have a small subject, that's dark, and a large background, which is bringht, to expose correctly you need to choose spot metering, and lock exposure on your subject for your subject to be exposed correctly.

6. Hyperfocal distance, the basics of it is, if you use a small aperture (like f8) and a wide angle lens, and prefoucs your lens per the depth of field scale indicated, everything from xxft to infinity will be in focus, so there's no need to focus for each seperate shot.

7. shooting with DSLR, it's better to UNDERexpose, because DSLR is more likely to blow out hilight than film. In RAW you can recover a lot of detail in the shadows, but not as much in the hilights.

8. 1:1 macro is common, but so are other set ups. if you have a macro lens that's less than 1:1, using extension tubes in combination could get you to 1:1 or even greater. It all depends on your need and budget. Greater than 1:1 lenses are also available. Buy what you need with the budget you've got. Don't get too caught up on 1:1.

9. MFD applies to both auto and manual focus. It's the physics of lens design. It's possible the actual MFD is less than 20cm, but rounded off to 20cm for the sepc sheet

10. what you need is a graduated neutral density filter
http://en.wikipedia.or​g …ed_neutral_dens​ity_filter (external link)


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mrbubbles
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May 11, 2011 15:35 |  #14

I am surprised that some DSLR users actually never knew there was a physical shutter on a DSLR.

http://www.youtube.com​/watch?v=Xnn5nzPvoIM (external link)
This is an awesome series of videos on youtube. The first episode talks about shutter speeds and how the shutter works.


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Alarm
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May 12, 2011 01:58 |  #15

mrbubbles wrote in post #12391156 (external link)
I am surprised that some DSLR users actually never knew there was a physical shutter on a DSLR.

http://www.youtube.com​/watch?v=Xnn5nzPvoIM (external link)
This is an awesome series of videos on youtube. The first episode talks about shutter speeds and how the shutter works.

I've never seen it with my eyes. Just read "shutter", "shutter", "shutter" but cant see it. So how can i know if its there ? :P Thank you for the video ! :)


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