Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
02-19-2010, 04:16 PM   #1
New Member




Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 7
Very first day with DSLR - what am I doing wrong?

Hi all,

I just got my K-X a few days ago and I decided to go out to shoot some photos on my university's campus. I didn't spend long outside and I only stayed in one area due to the sun setting soon (pics were taken late afternoon).

Definitely not anyone's best work, so please go easy! These are taken with a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 from a friend:

Flickr: asdftt123's Photostream

I notice that a lot of my photos have very poor lighting. How can I better this? These were taken on aperture priority, where I played around with the aperture to get different depths and left the ISO alone (auto).

Any suggestions or criticisms would be welcome.

Thanks!

02-19-2010, 04:34 PM   #2
Pentaxian
LeDave's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Minneapolis - St. Paul
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,904
One thing you're doing wrong is your shooting at f/22 and yet the shutter speed is actually decent at 1/60s.. Unless you like the star effect from the sun, you could try using f/8 instead. If you're getting those dark shots, it might be because your camera is trying not to overexpose the skies, you could try using EV compensation at +0.7 to +1.0.
02-19-2010, 04:56 PM   #3
Veteran Member
PentaxPoke's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 1,411
QuoteOriginally posted by asdfTT123 Quote
Hi all,

I notice that a lot of my photos have very poor lighting.
The only way to fix poor lighting, is to get better lighting!

Actually, I don't think your exposures are bad. It looks like it was late evening. What I recommend is:

a) Shoot in "P" mode for a bit to see how the camera's exposure performs.
b) Learn about exposure. The relationship between shutter speed, aperture, and ISO. I have said many times that learning about exposure can do more to improve people's photography, than anything else they can do.
02-19-2010, 05:15 PM   #4
Senior Member
BethC's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Pennsylvannia
Photos: Albums
Posts: 289
A lot of times if I get the sky exposed properly, the rest of the picture seems underexposed. But you didn't blow the sky in any photos and actually the sky looks beautiful and I don't think your pictures look too underexposed, so I think you did a nice job.

I highly recommend the book Understanding Exposure. First book I read (after the camera manual) and it helps so much. I go back and read it again every so often.

Just keep shooting, keep practicing, keep messing with settings, keep practicing with dif. times of day, dif positions of the sun etc....

02-19-2010, 09:40 PM   #5
Pentaxian
Just1MoreDave's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Aurora, CO
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,864
QuoteOriginally posted by asdfTT123 Quote
...I notice that a lot of my photos have very poor lighting. How can I better this? These were taken on aperture priority, where I played around with the aperture to get different depths and left the ISO alone (auto).
You have to do a little analysis of what you're seeing in the viewfinder. Look at the important parts of the image and observe the lighting. Then look at the other parts and their lighting. Then make sure that the camera is set to capture the important parts correctly, without the other parts distracting from that in any way.

Photo IMGP0161 is one example. The tree is the intended subject, but it's not getting very much light. The tree behind it is getting sunlight and the sky is pretty bright. The camera's meter tried to make everything OK, but could not know that the first tree was your subject. I know my camera's meter loves the sky, and wants nothing more than to make beautiful exposures of sky. Any image that includes sky, if that's not my main subject, I start thinking about overriding the meter with positive exposure compensation. (You can accomplish the same goal in about a thousand other ways, but exposure compensation works well with aperture priority mode). Snow is another big-time meter fooling item similar to sky.

I would take a photo like this or others where the lighting is "poor" and use software that can simulate different exposures measured in stops. I know Adobe Camera RAW (part of Photoshop products) does this and that's what I use. You can make the whole thing one stop brighter and see the effect - possibly the sky would then be too pale. Get an idea of what exposure compensation might do in the real world, concentrating on what 1 stop or 2 stops or whatever looks like. (You don't need to actually bother to fix all the photos in software.) Then go out in similar conditions and try again. You can try bracketing, taking one photo at the meter's setting, then one below and above the meter's suggestion. The camera can do this automatically if you want.

There's more to learn of course, but some of it will happen by itself as you take more photos.
02-20-2010, 07:32 AM   #6
Senior Member




Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Baltimore, MD
Posts: 178
I second that the images overall are exposed properly, but maybe your subject is poorly lit or you didn't expose to your subject.

They method I like to use is the "green button" or auto-exposure lock. Read up on it in you manual. I use it to spot meter on the subject I want, to make sure I get what I want exposed properly.

Now, if you have snow or a lot of sky and a backlit subject, these things are going to be blown out. This is because of the limited range you can get out of your sensor/film/whatever.

Hope that helps!
-southy
02-20-2010, 11:09 AM   #7
New Member




Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 7
Original Poster
Thanks, everyone! I still don't think my pictures are coming out quite like they should (maybe it's the subject or the lighting??) but I'll look into EV compensation and go to my local Barnes and Noble to pick up the book.

The pictures were taken during the late afternoon (around 5:00pm ish), 45 minutes before sunset. I wish I could ask more specific questions regarding these photos but I pretty much don't even know what to say. :P
02-20-2010, 11:36 AM   #8
Veteran Member
Jewelltrail's Avatar

Join Date: May 2008
Location: Rhode Island
Photos: Albums
Posts: 4,180
QuoteQuote:
Pentax Poke: b) Learn about exposure. The relationship between shutter speed, aperture, and ISO. I have said many times that learning about exposure can do more to improve people's photography, than anything else they can do.
YES! There is a great, free resource here:

Ultimate Exposure Computer

02-20-2010, 12:12 PM   #9
Senior Member
BethC's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Pennsylvannia
Photos: Albums
Posts: 289
QuoteQuote:
They method I like to use is the "green button" or auto-exposure lock. Read up on it in you manual. I use it to spot meter on the subject I want, to make sure I get what I want exposed properly.
I just started using that within the last couple weeks and really like the results. I was taking pictures of my kids in the snow (We have SO much snow) and was totally blowing the sky or blowing the snow. Have had good results with using the auto exposure lock button.

The Magic Lantern guides are awesome for going into a little more depth about what all the camera can do. So if they have one for your camera, I'd suggest it also. (I'm gonna go look on amazon right now)
02-20-2010, 12:15 PM   #10
Senior Member
BethC's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Pennsylvannia
Photos: Albums
Posts: 289
hmm, doesn't look like they have one for the K-X, but I wonder if they will at some point. Here is the link to the other Pentax ones on amazon so you know what I am talking about. Amazon.com: magic guide pentax: Books
02-20-2010, 05:38 PM   #11
Pentaxian
Marc Sabatella's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Denver, CO
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 10,686
QuoteOriginally posted by asdfTT123 Quote
The pictures were taken during the late afternoon (around 5:00pm ish), 45 minutes before sunset. I wish I could ask more specific questions regarding these photos but I pretty much don't even know what to say. :P
Pick one specific photo and find one specific complaint - that would help. as it is, I think to most of us they look pretty much exactly how we'd expect them to look for pictures taken in early evening. Maybe your monitor is set too dim or something?
02-21-2010, 09:04 AM   #12
Veteran Member
tokyoso's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Tokyo
Photos: Albums
Posts: 723
QuoteOriginally posted by asdfTT123 Quote
Hi all,

I just got my K-X a few days ago and I decided to go out to shoot some photos on my university's campus. I didn't spend long outside and I only stayed in one area due to the sun setting soon (pics were taken late afternoon).

Definitely not anyone's best work, so please go easy! These are taken with a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 from a friend:

Flickr: asdftt123's Photostream

I notice that a lot of my photos have very poor lighting. How can I better this? These were taken on aperture priority, where I played around with the aperture to get different depths and left the ISO alone (auto).

Any suggestions or criticisms would be welcome.

Thanks!
Maybe someone suggested this already.. try shooting in Program Mode and see if you like it better.
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!
aperture, camera, pentax help, photography, photos
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Happy Canada Day and Independence Day Leaf Fan General Talk 5 07-01-2010 01:30 PM
Big Day Tomorrow! Squirrel Day! Rupert General Talk 61 03-12-2010 04:55 PM
K100ds: best DSLR ever, or greatest DSLR ever? Steve Beswick Pentax DSLR Discussion 71 01-19-2010 02:47 AM
Help! Something is wrong with DSLR Seafood Pentax DSLR Discussion 18 05-22-2008 07:45 PM
1 day from PMA, still no new Pentax DSLR? RiceHigh Pentax DSLR Discussion 59 04-02-2007 02:52 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:19 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