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02-17-2011, 11:31 AM   #1
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50mm lens?

I'm going out to the countryside next week as I want to try some slow shutter speeds on running water etc would my smc a 50mm lens be ok for this? Anyone have any tips for this kind of photography?

02-17-2011, 11:43 AM   #2
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Of course it is. Any lens can be used for that as shutter speed is controlled by the camera. Depending on the light you'll probably have to stop down a bit though. And you might need a tripod. Really the only reason you might use a different lens would be to get a different "look" of the scene. Just take whatever you think will help you achieve your vision in the most appropriate way.
02-17-2011, 12:07 PM - 1 Like   #3
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If a 50mm provides the field of view you need, yes it will work. To get the silky water look, you will need to use the lowest ISO you have and shut the lens down (f22 or so) to get the longest shutter speed as possible. This is why a tripod is necessary. However, you will not need the "fast" fifty for its fast quality (f1.4. f1.7), as this will let in more light and your shutter speed will become faster.

Exposure Time: 1.000 s, Aperture: f/11.0, ISO 400 (Why I didn't shoot ISO 200 I don't know), Linear Polarizer, Cloudy rainy day.


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02-17-2011, 01:04 PM   #4
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Tim, beautiful shot.

I haven't done shots like these in years, because we don't have waterfalls in flat South Florida, and putting bracketing aside, what do you meter for?

Something in the scene close to 18% grey and NOT the water???

02-17-2011, 01:50 PM   #5
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You might invest in a neutral density (ND) filter so you can use slower shutter speeds in brighter light.
02-17-2011, 02:03 PM   #6
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These aren't the best but you can "silky" water handheld thanks to SR.

Kit lens, no filter 0.3s ISO 100 f/13.




Kit lens, no filter 0.167s ISO 1600 f/18




Kit lens, no filter 0.5s ISO 100 f/25




A Neutral Density Filter and a tripod would really have helped with these. They were shot with my elbow resting on a rock.

Kit lens, no filter 0.5s ISO 100 f/22




Kit lens, no filter 0.5s ISO 100 f/22


02-17-2011, 03:16 PM   #7
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Great shots! Are they taken in Watkins Glen/Taughannock Falls?

I grew up in Liverpool and use to visit the area a lot. Here in FL we rarely see water falls, unless they are man made.

QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
These aren't the best but you can "silky" water handheld thanks to SR.
02-17-2011, 03:20 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kathiewe Quote
Great shots! Are they taken in Watkins Glen/Taughannock Falls?

I grew up in Liverpool and use to visit the area a lot. Here in FL we rarely see water falls, unless they are man made.
The first 3 are at Robert Treman State Park. The last 2 are Taughannock.

02-17-2011, 03:31 PM   #9
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You need a 4 or 6 stop ND filter and a tripod (it can even be a mini tripod or beanbag). Sorry but handheld is not going to give sharp results, not even close.

Last edited by twitch; 02-17-2011 at 03:49 PM.
02-17-2011, 05:52 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
Tim, beautiful shot.

I haven't done shots like these in years, because we don't have waterfalls in flat South Florida, and putting bracketing aside, what do you meter for?

Something in the scene close to 18% grey and NOT the water???
I think I metered off the big rock up front. I didn't mind the silky water being blown but I didn't want the rock to be blown. It really helped that it was overcast that day. I drove the 2 hrs for this shot because the weather would allow long exposures.

Tim
02-19-2011, 11:17 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
Tim, beautiful shot.

I haven't done shots like these in years, because we don't have waterfalls in flat South Florida, and putting bracketing aside, what do you meter for?

Something in the scene close to 18% grey and NOT the water???
How about some slow wave shots?
02-20-2011, 07:36 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
The first 3 are at Robert Treman State Park. The last 2 are Taughannock.
Nice handheld shots. I've now added these two locations to my summer weekend travels list.
02-20-2011, 10:21 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
I haven't done shots like these in years, because we don't have waterfalls in flat South Florida
How about broken fire hydrants spewing into the air? Or water parks? Hey, you should be able to do something with backyard sprinklers!

Here, the blizzard is taking a slight break, but melting porch snow and dripping icicles just don't have the OOMPH! of waterfalls. Maybe when the roads are cleared, I could go uphill and shoot snowmelt cascades, but I'd probably freeze during the exposure. And I'm reminded of the slogan of the capital of Canada's NorthWest Territories:
YELLOWKNIFE -- When the police yell FREEZE!, you do.
Oh well, waterfalls. Use a couple CPL's to give you a variable ND; meter off a gray card; avoid the splash and don't fall in; etc. Watch for mermaids.
02-20-2011, 11:48 AM   #14
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Generally, all you need is a slow shutter speed and a tripod. You might get a shot or 2 handheld but a tripod should really be used. If you don't have ND filters or a polorizer, wait until late in the day. Usually, an exposure of 1 sec will show some milky waterfalls. I use that as my starting point and make adjustments from there.
02-20-2011, 09:33 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
...Oh well, waterfalls. Use a couple CPL's to give you a variable ND; meter off a gray card; avoid the splash and don't fall in; etc. Watch for mermaids.
The first time I tried this, I did not know that you can go too far. I simply screwed two polarizers together, adjusted for maximum darkness and took some shots. The viewfinder was just about too dark to see through. The shots came up on the screen sort of a purple monochrome, which I assumed would be no trouble at all to fix in processing by changing white balance. Nope, still purple.

I assume the polarizers were cheap since I got them with various used lenses on eBay, and that has to be part of the problem. Later I found that the technique does work at less extreme settings. Someday I'll break down and buy real filters.
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