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07-17-2017, 11:17 AM   #31

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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Brooke Meyer Quote
No, not if you're in shade. But you can buy a good quality, 3 filter Tiffen ND kit for about 50 bucks at B&H. I've only needed and used the 3 stop. BTW, I am a pro and I do get paid.
ok, one more question - have you ever experienced af issues with ND filters? I'm asking because I definitely noticed that all my af lenses perform miles and beyond better in daytime, and ND would cut quite a bit of light for af system to work with (as I understand it). The ND+cheap triggers route is tempting.

07-17-2017, 04:58 PM   #32

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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Brooke Meyer Quote
To keep it brief I'll use a list:

  • Both my K3II bodies and K5IIs bodies are spec'ed to AF down to EV 3 at ISO 100. That's two stops better than my old K5 bodies and I've proved it to myself in dark theaters.
  • A bright sunny day ( Sunny 16) is EV 15 at ISO 100, so -3 EV is 18 stops less light or cutting the light in half, eighteen times over.
  • Even a little haze and Sunny Days are usually somewhere between EV 15 and EV 14. Adding a 3 stop ND filter gets you to f5.6 - f4ish. Shutter at 1/180 is nearly another stop and gets you to f4 - 2.8ish.
  • You are now focusing around EV 10, well above -3 EV. EV 10 is typically deep shades to just at sunset. You still have a lot of runway for AF spec.
  • I don't sweat 1/3 or 1/2 stop as I'm shooting DNGs. I use the histogram to keep me in the ballpark.
When I make portraits, I use Single, Center Point AF with SR on (except when I can shoot on tripod in studio). If I'm wide open at 2.8 with a full sun background and a 3 stop ND filter on, I typically focus on the dominant eye and recompose. Especially handheld, I'll make a number of frames. Even without the ND filter, there's not a lot of wiggle room with DoF. Its a couple of inches at 2.8 & 135 mm at 10 feet.

The biggest issue is guessing the flash power for fill as I'm using the sun for rim/hairlight. I guess-timate and adjust with the review and histogram. I can do it with a flash meter but its pretty quick the other way. I use this ND Filter Kit and have had no issues

This was done with a bare YN-560 flash atop my tripod mast. Don't know why I remember but it was something like 1/128 power
Thanks for the break down, very informative! Do you use coloring gels to warm up portraits? Or balancing WB in post afterwards?
07-17-2017, 09:42 PM   #33

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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Brooke Meyer Quote
In studio yes, but not outdoors. Never saw the need by that'll probably change next time. I always adjust WB in Camera Raw. Even if I made a custom DNG profile with an X_Rite passport.
Ok. I tried just on camera flash, and it was just fine in the shade to fill the face, but at sunset it looked terrible, and it kind of cooled the temp so the subject and sunset didn't mix well. A lot to learn for sure
07-17-2017, 11:58 PM - 1 Like   #34
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I mostly use a 1/4 CTO gel on my flash outdoors. This allows me to keep the Daylight WB setting for good blues and greens in behind, but retain a warmth for the skin tones lit by the flash.


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