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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk 
Thread started 27 Sep 2012 (Thursday) 08:01
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Lens for Sweet 16 evening party

 
vsrsquare
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Sep 27, 2012 08:01 |  #1

I have been asked to photograph a Sweet 16 backyard party of about 100 people, at night. I recently bought the 5D Mark II, but only have the 50mm lens. Any advice on best lens to rent for candid shots at the party? Also, is the 430 EX flash strong enough, or do I need to step up?

I was thinking the 70-200 f2.8, but it is kind of pricey. Would the 70-200 f4 work? Or even something smaller? Any advice or tips about how to approach this would be great. I usually do outdoor family/child portraits in perfect lighting, so I'm a little nervous about the night time shots!

Thanks!




  
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rick_reno
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Sep 27, 2012 08:22 |  #2

play around with your 50mm and flash in your own yard, i think you'll find it should work.




  
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mmb
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Sep 28, 2012 09:53 |  #3

f/4 would be way too slow for night shots in a backyard.

How is the party going to be lit? In a tent or just outside?




  
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scorpio_e
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Sep 28, 2012 10:08 |  #4

I would rent the 24 1.4.The 430EX flash is fine. Get lots of batteries. I would not suggest getting the 70 to 200. You could also rent the 85 1.8 for some nice tight images.


www.steelcityphotograp​hy.com (external link)

  
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bigarchi
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Sep 28, 2012 10:32 |  #5

yeah, big difference if it is in a tent or if it is just "in the back yard".

if there's no tent I would want ocf even more, unless there is some good lighting going on that i've never seen in a backyard :)


~Mitch

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Christopher ­ Steven ­ b
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Sep 28, 2012 12:55 |  #6

Hm. My gut tells me that wider is better here. In this case I'd grab something as wide as 16/17mm or even the 24 as Ed suggests to complement the 50mm. I think wider is better because although a long lens will give you better and obviously closer portraits, I suspect there will be so much action that most of your shots should be including multiple people, showing dynamics between them etc.

Be careful not to play too passive and shoot from the outside too much if you are shooting wide to 50mm. Get in there !

Edit: in terms of lighting, a backyard shoot (assuming no e.g. tent ceiling) with just one flash is a challenge depending on how you look at it. If you're cool with subject in a coalmine shots that have flat lighting on the subject's face, well, that's easy: pop the flash on your camera. If you want nicer lighting, put it off-axis, but prepare for serious serious challenges in getting keepers for multiple reasons:
1) shadows created due to occlusion (remedy: put flash up high, walk to and shoot subjects you KNOW are getting the light on them.
2) variance in intensity of light falling on subjects (remedy: increasing distance of flash from subjects makes for more even light)
3) hard to grab focus in the dark (remedy: use a flash with flash assist on your camera, put wireless through output on side of camera (pc sync port ?)
4) light falling at bad angle aka, half-lit face (remedy: wait until subject turns to face best angle or look for subject already doing that. OR move flash)

The above 4 points should give you a sense of the difficulties of going wireless with a flash outside with no (ceiling) bounce sources. Should you take on the challenge, as always, set the ambient for the background, ie., you'll likely be at ISO 1600+.



christopher steven b. - Ottawa Wedding Photographer

www.christopherstevenb​.com (external link)| Blog (external link)

  
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vsrsquare
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Hatchling
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Sep 28, 2012 17:40 |  #7

Thank you everyone for the advice! Christopher, your tips on the flash are especially helpful. I'll only have one flash, so will to do what you have suggested. And I figured the ISO would be above 1600. I am going to practice tonight.

Weather calls for rain, so I am going to check to see if she plans to have a tent or move indoors. I may luck out there!




  
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scorpio_e
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Sep 28, 2012 18:16 |  #8

Assuming there is a DJ. Get the subject between you and the DJ. You might get some interesting backlighting.


www.steelcityphotograp​hy.com (external link)

  
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Lens for Sweet 16 evening party
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