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Christmas Lights in Town (4 images)
Posted By: vievetrick, 12-02-2007, 07:38 AM

If you followed my thread on Christmas light picture tips you will have seen a couple of these already. But I wanted to share a seperate thread to get feedback or just to share incase you did not delve into that thread. All taken on w cold windy evening. All shot with the K10 on a tripod with a remote F shutter realease and my cold, cold, fingers . In trying to use some tips from the Storbist found here Strobist: How to Photograph Christmas Lights I went out after sundown.

This one was on the corner of Cottage and Union Street with the K10 - 16-45, Raw and cropped to remove street and cloned out some power lines

Exposure Time 0.7 sec
F-Number F4
Exposure Program Aperture priority
ISO Speed Ratings 100
Metering Mode Center weighted average
Flash No flash fired, compulsory flash mode
Focal Length 16.0 mm

This is the fountain that is the spot light in the center of town at the rotary. Shot this with the 77 LTM litteraly guessing on exposure in Bulb after some trial and error.

Exposure Time 9.84 sec
F-Number F16
ISO Speed Ratings 100
Exposure Bias Value 0
Metering Mode Center weighted average
Flash No flash fired, compulsory flash mode
Focal Length 77.0 mm

This is the gazeebo located in the Rotary in the center of town. I can't wait to shoot it with snow. This was again the 16-45

Exposure Time 584/50 sec
F-Number F16
Exposure Program Manual control
ISO Speed Ratings 100
Exposure Bias Value 0
Metering Mode Center weighted average
Flash No flash fired, compulsory flash mode
Focal Length 34.0 mm
Exposure Mode Manual
White Balance Mode Auto

I really like this fountain so it got some attention. Again shot in bulb but I actually fired the built in flash at the begining (the bag with the Sigma was to far for my cold lazy but to walk and get). When I do it again I will bring the Sigma and fire from a differnt angle. I think the flash gives a purplish color to the bottom of the fountain but I wanted to brighten it up a litttle. Over all it worked for me.

Exposure Time 1281/100 sec
F-Number F16
Exposure Program Manual control
ISO Speed Ratings 100
Exposure Bias Value 0
Metering Mode Center weighted average
Flash Flash fired, compulsory flash mode
Focal Length 18.0 mm
Exposure Mode Manual
White Balance Mode Manual

I will bring a flash light next time as well. Focus is okay I think but could have been a little better. With the F stop set to 16 I had a lot of wiggle room. Comments welcomed.
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12-02-2007, 08:33 AM   #2
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As I said in the other thread as with mine and yours I wish there was a way to get them to a point of clarity Maybe it's me but every time I try, It seems the lights make a blur instead of a clear shot. I do like the shots Pat and you did a really nice job. And I think we should be praised for going out in these sub normal temps and trying our luck. I'm still walking funny.
12-02-2007, 10:15 AM   #3
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I really like the gazeebo image. The star effect of the lights works well in this image. Thanks for the link and the post, tis the season and I love doing night photography.
12-02-2007, 11:58 AM   #4
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Thanks guys. The wind and the long exposure I am sure leads to the shake. Thanks both for the kind words.

12-04-2007, 12:46 AM   #5
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The 2nd shot is my favorite. The composition and the dreamy effect works out well.
12-04-2007, 03:47 AM   #6
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I like them.
I really like the star effect of 16-45, better than that of 77, see no.2 and no.3.
12-04-2007, 06:36 AM   #7
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Thanks all. We got a dash of snow on the ground but still not enough to get out there and reshoot. I will though before this long winter is over. HMMM it technically is not winter yet.
12-04-2007, 06:48 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by vievetrick Quote
Thanks all. We got a dash of snow on the ground but still not enough to get out there and reshoot. I will though before this long winter is over. HMMM it technically is not winter yet.
Technically summer here already! Sweating constantly

12-04-2007, 06:59 AM   #9
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ahhh summer, that couple of weeks here in New England that we sweat and wish it was cold and then we have winter where we wish it was warmer. Your summer is way better then our You should start a thread to warm us up in the other hemisphere. Maybe some beach shots
12-04-2007, 07:40 AM   #10
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Cracking shots Pat Im going to try some tonight if i get a chance, our town cebtre is looking pretty cool at the moment.
12-04-2007, 02:34 PM   #11
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Well, they're lovely! Now that you did it, what's the secret?--I mean it's only fair you tell us the magical settings, how this photography differs from all other photography etc.
12-04-2007, 02:38 PM   #12
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I'm not sure you can resolve the lights. There is a huge brightness difference from dark to 'light'. About the only chance would be to reduce exposure, but then wouldn't it all suffer some significant loss of quality?

QuoteOriginally posted by Photo Tramp Quote
As I said in the other thread as with mine and yours I wish there was a way to get them to a point of clarity Maybe it's me but every time I try, It seems the lights make a blur instead of a clear shot. I do like the shots Pat and you did a really nice job. And I think we should be praised for going out in these sub normal temps and trying our luck. I'm still walking funny.
12-04-2007, 07:38 PM   #13
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John - No real magic bullet. I actually found auto WB worked pretty well. Only needed a slight tweak. A pair of gloves a hat and warm coat very handy. Should have brought a flash light. I think bulb and the remote are a must. I agree with the Storbist just after sunset really looks great. but that is a short time frame so be quick.
12-05-2007, 10:12 PM   #14
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Thanks, Pat. I want to try some of these kind of shots over the next few days. Fortunately, I'll not have to brave too much cold - we're supposed to hit near 80 this weekend; this evening we looked at Christmas lights with the top down on the roadster.

Saturday night will bring the annual Christmas boat parade, about 200 well-lit boats (and well-lit crews) that will cruise slowly ( 3 mph or so) down Kemah channel. I'd sure like to get some good shots of this event - any tips on what I might do with a (slowly) moving target?

Thanks much,

Jer
12-06-2007, 06:08 AM   #15
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Jer - 80 degrees - your killing me. We wont see that again until May or June. LOLOL sounds like a good time this parade. SLow moving targets will be tought but I guess bumping up the ISO and or useing a flash (however not really gooing to give good results) could work. Are you in the parade or on the street? If on the street a tripod and maybe find a spot where they stop for a few seconds. Or get some interesting light trail shots as they move. Experiment its digital
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