Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
12-11-2014, 11:12 AM   #46
Forum Member




Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 87
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by OrangeKx Quote
The past several months I've been shooting Program Mode and that's what I did in LV, day and night. There were a few exceptions where I used Aperture Priority, but most shots were "P" and I would move the numbers to fit the shot I wanted. It was a lot of "shot and move" with the crowds and trying to not make my wife wait for me all day long. Don't forget to call up some Exposure Compensation now and then with all the crazy lights going on in the background.

I really try not to use my 18-55 kit lens (like using primes) but lately it's been saving the day, and that was true in LV. It's the widest lens I have and I needed that on the Strip. It could be some of my style preferences and some of it was just shooting in tight quarters. I think you'll get good shots at night without doing anything out of the ordinary. Remember to take advantage of handrails, post, walls whatever to steady the camera. The only flash I used was the built-in flash, and it was used sparingly to fill in.

(Hint: if you happen to ride the bus that runs the strip - saves you lots of time and walking - try and get the upper deck front seats as they're great for getting some interesting pics. The best way to get the seat of choice on the bus is board it at either end where there are less people getting on, like just before NY/NY. The picture in my linked thread of the reflection in the building glass was taken through the bus window sitting on the "sidewalk side" of the bus.)

Here's the thread from my Vegas trip: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/14-general-talk/269144-first-trip-las-vegas.html

Maybe it's my "hobbyist" approach, but in some situations I just shoot a few extras to make sure camera shake is gone and do some different exposure settings of the same shot. You can sort it all out when you get back to the hotel/home. My approach in LV was just get the shots now because I won't have a 2nd chance any time soon. I have a friend who works in one of the casinos and he took us around and I got pics from vantage points that 99.9% of people will not get (have not posted those). That opportunity was unique and I did what I had to to get the shots quickly and confidently (they came out just fine)

I'm an early riser who's blessed with a wife that's very slow to get ready in the morning, so while she was going through her routine I would already be up and dressed to head out and shoot some artsy stuff (close to the hotel) where I could take my time. It was nice being alone with the camera in the morning light and very few people moving around. The attached picture is a sample from my early morning shoot. If you have a smart phone a sunrise/sunset app is very handy to know when to be out to catch the golden hour.

Every photo outing has some reject pictures so I trashed a lot of pics in the process, but I think I did pretty well in the end.
Sounds interesting and great photo at Mandalay!

Could someone please elaborate more n this? Like in this situation, you do X, that situation, do Y.

Thanks!

QuoteQuote:
Don't forget to call up some Exposure Compensation now and then with all the crazy lights going on in the background.


12-11-2014, 11:47 AM   #47
Pentaxian




Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Posts: 1,443
QuoteOriginally posted by Hexism Quote
Could someone please elaborate more n this? Like in this situation, you do X, that situation, do Y.
Thanks!
That's the problem. What I would do for situation X someone else based on their experience would do another thing. And what about sub-variations of X? There's so many subtleties that go into getting the right photo out of situation, and you aren't going to learn them all in two weeks, or even two years. I've been shooting semi-professionally for 8 years, and I am still acquiring new techniques and ideas and understanding.

That's why I keep preaching the concept of learn the fundamentals and understand the basics, and focus on these at first. You won't have all the answers for your trip and I guarantee you'll look back on your images 3 years from now and will sigh and decide to take the same trip AGAIN to get better pics. So although I was taken to task for suggesting a "right way" to photograph things, I still believe the "right way" is a method and practice that will yield consistently high quality results each and every time. Can you get away with handholding long exposure? Maybe, sometimes, but not often and not to a high degree of quality. So the "right way" to take night photos is with a tripod and remote release.

With that said, reduce the variables in your photographic equations for now. Shoot in Auto and focus on composition. Stick to daytime photography and let your skillset catch up to your expectations. You aren't to the point where you can worry about methodology and how to handle this circumstance or that.

For example, when I was in Seattle, I dreamed of taking a night skyline photo with a ferry passing in front of the city. Well, I was taking exposures measured in minutes at small (f11ish) apertures (for star effects), low iso and 300mm focal length when the ferry showed up. I had about 2 minutes to find the right combo of aperture, iso and shutter speed (and change shooting modes from MUP to instant remote release) to get my ferry. Because of the angle the ferry was moving through the picture and my distance from the ferry, by changing my focal length! (and cropping in PP) I was able to get away with a much slower shutter speed than you might expect all in an effort to keep my iso down!. (field of view directly affects the perceived motion of an object in the frame, it's why long lenses need faster shutter speeds and star trails show up sooner on an image taken at 100mm compared to 15mm. I believe it's called "Circle of Confusion" - Confused yet?...lol. How would I know this? From lots of reading AND lots of practice and experience.) But on top of that, I took 12 pictures IN MANUAL in those two minutes. Each one was a different combination of shutter speed, aperture and iso in an effort to maximize ETTR concepts AND prioritize low iso/low noise PLUS the whole time I was incrementally moving my camera on the tripod to keep the ferry in line with my idea of scene composition and the city in the background. I managed to get one keeper out of that sequence, but I instinctively knew what I needed to do in what sequence in what would have been a difficult if not impossible scene for the camera to meter. there's also no way I could have (or would have) taken the picture handheld. That would have added in yet another variable (me) into a difficult shot. For reference, here's the photo Seattle Skyline With Ferry by Paul Riedinger - Seattle Skyline With Ferry Photograph - Seattle Skyline With Ferry Fine Art Prints and Posters for Sale

In another thread, you posted some night shots, and to be brutally honest, none of them would be useable even if they were taken in broad daylight. Add in high iso noise shot wide open with a kit lens and hand held, you were doomed to failure. So my point is, you have to first understand what makes a good image and how and why it's a good image before you can worry about taking on difficult lighting/exposure situations.

Last edited by nomadkng; 12-11-2014 at 12:18 PM.
12-11-2014, 11:50 AM   #48
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
wtlwdwgn's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Billings, MT
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 12,045
My only suggestion is to do Las Vegas last otherwise there won't be any $$ left for the rest of the trip!

For night shooting I would use the TAv mode and set the shutter speed to 1/60 (with SR on or on a tripod without SR) and the aperture to f/5.6 or 8. I'd set the Auto ISO so the highest ISO is in the auto range. Then keep an eye on the monitor and histogram to check the exposure. Some of the better night shots are done just after sunset but not yet totally dark. Just my $0.02.
12-11-2014, 05:44 PM   #49
Veteran Member
OrangeKx's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Vancouver, WA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 809
I was a bit like you before I went to LV in that I wanted to get all the right shots and do as good as I knew how and the reality was I had to start shooting there to figure out what worked. The combo of people, light, your energy level, time of day, all that you just end up figuring out in the moment. I would get better shots the next time, but like I said, I'm very happy with what I came home with. I spent time at lunch or in the hotel reviewing the pics and trashing the terrible stuff from the camera. When I got home I deleted more in LR4.

I think you'll do fine. Experiment while you're there and lean on the skills you know works for you now. When shooting the moving stuff like the fountains it's impossible to get the timing for every shot, so just frame up and let it fly with a rapid series of pics. I got 1-2 good fire/fountain pics that way but rendered a bunch of trash pics in the process. Don't forget luck. I took a pic from the top of the High Roller and didn't know it at the time, but I had the Belagio fountain in the pic and it was a nice touch. Just have fun, be loose and go with it. You'll come home and wish you could do that kind of shooting all the time because you really get into a groove with the camera and settings. You'll learn a bunch on the trip. If you review your daily pics you can make adjustments and speed up the learning process.

Most of all... have fun.

12-11-2014, 07:06 PM   #50
Forum Member




Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 87
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by OrangeKx Quote
I was a bit like you before I went to LV in that I wanted to get all the right shots and do as good as I knew how and the reality was I had to start shooting there to figure out what worked. The combo of people, light, your energy level, time of day, all that you just end up figuring out in the moment. I would get better shots the next time, but like I said, I'm very happy with what I came home with. I spent time at lunch or in the hotel reviewing the pics and trashing the terrible stuff from the camera. When I got home I deleted more in LR4.

I think you'll do fine. Experiment while you're there and lean on the skills you know works for you now. When shooting the moving stuff like the fountains it's impossible to get the timing for every shot, so just frame up and let it fly with a rapid series of pics. I got 1-2 good fire/fountain pics that way but rendered a bunch of trash pics in the process. Don't forget luck. I took a pic from the top of the High Roller and didn't know it at the time, but I had the Belagio fountain in the pic and it was a nice touch. Just have fun, be loose and go with it. You'll come home and wish you could do that kind of shooting all the time because you really get into a groove with the camera and settings. You'll learn a bunch on the trip. If you review your daily pics you can make adjustments and speed up the learning process.

Most of all... have fun.
Just out of curiosity, can you please elaborate more what you meant by:

1. "Figuring out in the moment"
2. "Experiment while you're there"

Did you mean try different combination of ISO/Shutter Speed/Aperture?

Also, what kind of mode did you shoot in Vegas? Please share some settings or approach that you used the most.

---------- Post added 12-11-14 at 09:07 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by wtlwdwgn Quote
My only suggestion is to do Las Vegas last otherwise there won't be any $$ left for the rest of the trip!

For night shooting I would use the TAv mode and set the shutter speed to 1/60 (with SR on or on a tripod without SR) and the aperture to f/5.6 or 8. I'd set the Auto ISO so the highest ISO is in the auto range. Then keep an eye on the monitor and histogram to check the exposure. Some of the better night shots are done just after sunset but not yet totally dark. Just my $0.02.
I dont think high ISO will work.

The auto ISO will always choose the highest setting from my last couple shootings.

---------- Post added 12-11-14 at 09:10 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by nomadkng Quote
That's the problem. What I would do for situation X someone else based on their experience would do another thing. And what about sub-variations of X? There's so many subtleties that go into getting the right photo out of situation, and you aren't going to learn them all in two weeks, or even two years. I've been shooting semi-professionally for 8 years, and I am still acquiring new techniques and ideas and understanding.

That's why I keep preaching the concept of learn the fundamentals and understand the basics, and focus on these at first. You won't have all the answers for your trip and I guarantee you'll look back on your images 3 years from now and will sigh and decide to take the same trip AGAIN to get better pics. So although I was taken to task for suggesting a "right way" to photograph things, I still believe the "right way" is a method and practice that will yield consistently high quality results each and every time. Can you get away with handholding long exposure? Maybe, sometimes, but not often and not to a high degree of quality. So the "right way" to take night photos is with a tripod and remote release.

With that said, reduce the variables in your photographic equations for now. Shoot in Auto and focus on composition. Stick to daytime photography and let your skillset catch up to your expectations. You aren't to the point where you can worry about methodology and how to handle this circumstance or that.

For example, when I was in Seattle, I dreamed of taking a night skyline photo with a ferry passing in front of the city. Well, I was taking exposures measured in minutes at small (f11ish) apertures (for star effects), low iso and 300mm focal length when the ferry showed up. I had about 2 minutes to find the right combo of aperture, iso and shutter speed (and change shooting modes from MUP to instant remote release) to get my ferry. Because of the angle the ferry was moving through the picture and my distance from the ferry, by changing my focal length! (and cropping in PP) I was able to get away with a much slower shutter speed than you might expect all in an effort to keep my iso down!. (field of view directly affects the perceived motion of an object in the frame, it's why long lenses need faster shutter speeds and star trails show up sooner on an image taken at 100mm compared to 15mm. I believe it's called "Circle of Confusion" - Confused yet?...lol. How would I know this? From lots of reading AND lots of practice and experience.) But on top of that, I took 12 pictures IN MANUAL in those two minutes. Each one was a different combination of shutter speed, aperture and iso in an effort to maximize ETTR concepts AND prioritize low iso/low noise PLUS the whole time I was incrementally moving my camera on the tripod to keep the ferry in line with my idea of scene composition and the city in the background. I managed to get one keeper out of that sequence, but I instinctively knew what I needed to do in what sequence in what would have been a difficult if not impossible scene for the camera to meter. there's also no way I could have (or would have) taken the picture handheld. That would have added in yet another variable (me) into a difficult shot. For reference, here's the photo Seattle Skyline With Ferry by Paul Riedinger - Seattle Skyline With Ferry Photograph - Seattle Skyline With Ferry Fine Art Prints and Posters for Sale

In another thread, you posted some night shots, and to be brutally honest, none of them would be useable even if they were taken in broad daylight. Add in high iso noise shot wide open with a kit lens and hand held, you were doomed to failure. So my point is, you have to first understand what makes a good image and how and why it's a good image before you can worry about taking on difficult lighting/exposure situations.
Thanks a lot for the detailed and helpful feedback.

So, you stressed a lot on learning the right way.

Please forgive me that if this is a stupid question or it had already been answered before and I missed it.

What is the right way? Like how do you understand what makes a good photo?

I tried googling but it seems to be a rabbit hole. More and more click bait links and I ended up with a lot of tabs and not productive.

I am planning to read Bryan Peterson's book after I finish my exams.
12-11-2014, 07:34 PM   #51
Pentaxian
SpecialK's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: So California
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 15,686
QuoteOriginally posted by Hexism Quote

What is the right way?
There is no right way. Only various ways. Some people shoot in M, others in P mode. 90% is composition :-)
12-11-2014, 09:06 PM   #52
Veteran Member
abmj's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Central California
Posts: 600
QuoteOriginally posted by Hexism Quote
... I am planning to read Bryan Peterson's book after I finish my exams.
That is one way. Come back afterwards if you have questions. He answers most and will definitely help you to understand what makes a good photo.
12-11-2014, 09:07 PM   #53
Veteran Member
OrangeKx's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Vancouver, WA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 809
QuoteOriginally posted by Hexism Quote
Just out of curiosity, can you please elaborate more what you meant by:

1. "Figuring out in the moment"
2. "Experiment while you're there"

Did you mean try different combination of ISO/Shutter Speed/Aperture?


Also, what kind of mode did you shoot in Vegas? Please share some settings or approach that you used the most.

Yes, try different combos. I don't change ISO much but play around for what works for you.
May want to re-read my earlier post I mentioned that I shot mostly in Program Mode.

One more thing to consider is if you still have doubts run around your fair city and practice shooting stuff at home before you go on vacation. At the end of the day, taking pictures is taking pictures. Doesn't matter where you are.

Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
california, camera, car, cards, chains, drive, exposure, half, k-30, k-50, lake, lake tahoe, loop, mode, modes, mountains, park, pentax k30, pentax k50, photo, photography, service, tahoe, valley, vegas, vegas canyons yosemite, visit, weeks, yosemite
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How to get the most out of my DA* zooms? lithedreamer Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 4 09-27-2014 07:41 PM
How can I make the person pop in the picture? lulie553 Photographic Technique 9 02-14-2014 05:34 PM
Tips to Make the most of your Shake Reduction system Adam Pentax DSLR Discussion 3 05-14-2013 01:26 PM
How to get the most out of my kit lens Metalwizards Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 21 01-20-2011 05:44 AM
How do I get the most out of my 1.7x teleconverter? SouthShoreRob Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 14 01-10-2008 08:14 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:25 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top