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Images, Graphic Design, and Digital Photography Discussion of all things graphics.

help with my photography


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BCRose

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougStocks View Post
Very thorough discussion given by BCRose. However, I differ with him/her on one aspect. Shutter speed can matter when using flash simply because the duration of the flash is so short. At the 1/15 second duration mentioned or slower, then, depending upon the amount of ambient light, you can get noticeable ghosting (unless the subject is inanimate and the camera is on a tripod). A living subject will almost certainly move some as will a hand held camera. Also, as previously pointed out, a shutter speed in excess of the camera's sync speed might produce an unevenly illuminated frame.

As an interesting test of how stead you can hold a camera, take two laser pointers. Place one on a table shinning on a wall. While holding the second one, try to keep your dot on the one generated by the table's.
Like the original poster was asking about...Flash in a studio setting providing 100% of light.
The information regarding ambient light is not relevant here. There will not be ghosting with a stationary posed subject like this. You are talking about something completely different where you expose for the ambient light and freeze the subject with flash, for that you need at least 1/30 ss in my experience for good results.

In a studio situation like the original poster was asking about my information is totally relevant. I urge you to try it to see for yourself. Speculating on what might or should happen is not really helpful to the OP. This is a simple concept and all the misinformation given is only confusing what the OP asked.

Trust me on this...I am a retired school photographer and former studio owner and have shot hundreds of thousands of these types of headshots with great success. Like I mentioned above, doing this with a single speedlight is not easy but can be done with nice results.

Cheers,
BCRose
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BCRose

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RavingMac View Post
I do understand. Doug says it better, below, than I did.
In essence, what you are saying is correct only when flash provides the majority of light for the total exposure. When ambient light is significant, shutter speed matters.
Thank you for agreeing!

Cheers,
BCRose
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MattMac7

 
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Don't get too concerned with your background just yet, -use the black muslin until you & subject are comfortable and confident. Concentrate on your models position and expression relative to the camera. Change the positioning of your flash to show the models best features and pose her to flatter the body shape. Position of hands AND feet are also important. To be brief here, 'walk before you run' and think about lighting backgrounds much later down the path of experience.
Be comfortable yourself and ensure the model is too, otherwise it will show in your pictures. Good luck, and enjoy your photography! Google portraits in 'images' mode and study them!
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BCRose

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougStocks View Post
Very thorough discussion given by BCRose. However, I differ with him/her on one aspect. Shutter speed can matter when using flash simply because the duration of the flash is so short.
I just wanted to add that the shorter the flash duration the better for freezing subjects. Sports photographers strive for this. Shorter flash durations are more easily achieved at lower power settings.

If you understand the principle it makes total sense.

Paul C. Buff, Inc. - Flash Duration

Cheers,
BCRose
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Exodist

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by conamor View Post
Good day,

I am having trouble taking good pictures.
I have a nikon 3200, with a sb-200 flash, bought a 10x20 muslin white and black.

I am taking the pictures in the base with a suspended ceiling (white). Muslin is hanged on the wall.
Subject is on the muslin, I aim my flash to the ceiling and the picture is still grainy...
Their is not much light in the basement... Is that why?
Should I get lights?

Any reason why it is doing that?

Thanks!
First lets ask. Do you know anything about photography and how your camera works. Now dont take this the wrong way. I am honestly not trying to sound rude, but this will help us know your knowledge level to better help you.

I am going to assume the worse and try to work my way from here to help you.
Before I begin I would like to say the 3200 is more then enough of a camera for indoor/studio portraits. Don't let anyone tell you other wise.

First off the "grainy" look I am going to assume is from your camera using a High ISO to compensate for poor lighting.

But lets first start by explaining the exposer triangle. You have your lens Aperture on one corner, the ISO sensitivity on another and shutter speed on the last. If you adjust anyone of these, your exposure changes.

It is generally a good practice to keep your ISO low as possible. 100 being the normal low for most cameras will offer the least amount if any noise. This is even more important when shooting in lower light conditions.

Now your lens Aperture determines your over all depth of field. For outdoor portraits you generally want to get the largest aperture you can. f/1.8 is about standard and offers a nice blurred background behind your subject. However in studio photography, its generally a practice to have your lets from about f/5.6 to f.7.1. This is because the quality of your image can be better at those apertures in most lens and you want as much of the subject and the background in focus as much as possible.

Last is your shutter speed. You always want your shutter speed faster then say your focal length. Since you D3200 using a 1.5 APS-C cropped sensor, we would need to know your lens focal length. But for example if you have a 50mm lens just say (50 x 1.5 = 75mm). Which means you want to keep your Shutter Speed at 1/75th of a sec or faster to prevent movement blur (your movement not the subject). Faster the better, and a tripod is recommend. If however your wanting to freeze say a sports car or a basketball player in actions 1/500th or faster may be required.

Now if you follow these rules and your exposure is still to dark, you need to increase lighting. Many professional soft boxes alone can put out over 1500watts of lighting and many times multiple ones may be required.

Hope this helps..

Joe


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BCRose

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exodist View Post
First lets ask. Do you know anything about photography and how your camera works. Now dont take this the wrong way. I am honestly not trying to sound rude, but this will help us know your knowledge level to better help you.

I am going to assume the worse and try to work my way from here to help you.
Before I begin I would like to say the 3200 is more then enough of a camera for indoor/studio portraits. Don't let anyone tell you other wise.

First off the "grainy" look I am going to assume is from your camera using a High ISO to compensate for poor lighting.

But lets first start by explaining the exposer triangle. You have your lens Aperture on one corner, the ISO sensitivity on another and shutter speed on the last. If you adjust anyone of these, your exposure changes.

It is generally a good practice to keep your ISO low as possible. 100 being the normal low for most cameras will offer the least amount if any noise. This is even more important when shooting in lower light conditions.

Now your lens Aperture determines your over all depth of field. For outdoor portraits you generally want to get the largest aperture you can. f/1.8 is about standard and offers a nice blurred background behind your subject. However in studio photography, its generally a practice to have your lets from about f/5.6 to f.7.1. This is because the quality of your image can be better at those apertures in most lens and you want as much of the subject and the background in focus as much as possible.

Last is your shutter speed. You always want your shutter speed faster then say your focal length. Since you D3200 using a 1.5 APS-C cropped sensor, we would need to know your lens focal length. But for example if you have a 50mm lens just say (50 x 1.5 = 75mm). Which means you want to keep your Shutter Speed at 1/75th of a sec or faster to prevent movement blur (your movement not the subject). Faster the better, and a tripod is recommend. If however your wanting to freeze say a sports car or a basketball player in actions 1/500th or faster may be required.

Now if you follow these rules and your exposure is still to dark, you need to increase lighting. Many professional soft boxes alone can put out over 1500watts of lighting and many times multiple ones may be required.

Hope this helps..

Joe
I give up....

Cheers,
BCRose
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Exodist

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCRose View Post
I give up....
Well the post was not intended for you. Regardless of if he is using a flash or not. These rules apply. He must first understand these rules, before he is going to be able to understand getting a proper exposer using flash photography. Once he understand these, I can then instruct him on how to get the results he is looking for from everything to getting a fully lit subject, to even making the background pitch black on a lit room to isolate the subject. But unless he fully understands basic exposer, introducing flash to the mix is just going to over complicate things.. Ya dig..


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Beejaw

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by conamor View Post
Hi,
my SB-200 is not wireless I think because there is no R in front of the 200.
Should I get myself another flash (wireless) so it can flash at my backdrop? I have tried to search on BestBuy for one but I can't seem to see if it is wireless or not and how it would work. I suppose I need a base on that flash so it communicates with the d3200.
Adding equipment may help but is not the answer to your problem. The muslin is grey because you are under exposing - relying on automatic features on the camera means that the exposure is 'averaged' and so you get the wrong exposure for this subject. If you increase the exposure by using the factors that usually accompany these automatic factors - usual 2x, 4x etc. then the result will be to give a brighter/whiter image.
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DougStocks

 
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If your SB 200 can not be triggered by your built in flash and if it (SB 200) has a pc input (small round hole or plug), then you can get a very inexpensive device that responds to any other flash to fire your SB 200. Here is one for $10:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...Unit_with.html
This one does not even need the pc connection, just attach as a hot shoe to your flash.

Last edited by DougStocks; 04-04-2014 at 08:52 AM.
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Exodist

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beejaw View Post
Adding equipment may help but is not the answer to your problem. ..........................
Quote:
Originally Posted by DougStocks View Post
If your SB 200 can not be triggered by your built in flash and if it (SB 200) has a pc input (small round hole or plug), t...............
Both very good post.

If he is trying to use only one flash, I am going to point out he/she should be using it as their main light and placed about 45 degrees to the left(or right, depends on your right.. lol) of the subject and the cameras on board flash can be used as a fill light. But if the main flash isn't able to be used remotely, man that just causes head aches. But if they going for a Rembrandt style effect, then its no big deal. A soft box can really help take that harshness off the side though. Though back to the point about the muslin cloth being underexposed. Even a single flash should suffice in most cases, but a lot of things can come into play. If you assume the flash is set to max a lot of it can come down to two things, how close the flash is to the subject and the cameras shutter speed. I think I read in one of his post that the flash was pointed at the ceiling. Perhaps he is doing this to defract the lighting, however doing this will make the amount of light take longer before hitting the subject and a longer shutter speed is going to be required before all the light has hit the ceiling, hit the subject and then had time to return to the camera. Getting over to manual mode, failing in say f/4, iso 100 and starting with something like 1/25 second and shorting the shutter speed until the image is properly exposed is a good start. However like I mentioned before many photographers stick their lens on about f/6.3 or 7.1 aperture because this is normally their shaprest point and also gives a clear DoF on both the subject(s) and the background. If the OP does this, hell with a long enough shutter speed alone you can get a fully exposed image with no issue.

But ya know keep helping the OP and he hasn't responded in the past few days, so our attempts at helping may be wasted at this point..


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DougStocks

 
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Exodist states that you need a longer shutter speed to give light time to travel from flash to ceiling to subject and back to camera. I beg to differ. The speed of light is so great (requiring only 1 nano-second to travel one foot), any shutter speed is sufficient for this configuration. For reasons stated earlier in this thread, you should not let your shutter speed get faster than the camera's sync speed.
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Exodist

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougStocks View Post
Exodist states that you need a longer shutter speed to give light time to travel from flash to ceiling to subject and back to camera. I beg to differ. The speed of light is so great (requiring only 1 nano-second to travel one foot), any shutter speed is sufficient for this configuration. For reasons stated earlier in this thread, you should not let your shutter speed get faster than the camera's sync speed.
While I generally agree with you. Even in a heavy moderate lit room. I can still underexpose the camera settings by increasing the shutter speed, then introduce a flash to the subject. And then shoot the subject, (while making even a white wall behind the subject turn black) and get a pic of the subject before the flashes light has hit the wall. Helps to be about 9 to 10 feet though from the wall.. This was what I was getting at. But the OP does need to take your advice and have them synced. I get very artistic with my work, and was just trying to point out while even a poorly lit room one can still achieve proper exposure if they know how to operate their camera. Which I feel is what the OP is really having trouble at..


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Last edited by Exodist; 04-04-2014 at 10:29 AM.
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DougStocks

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exodist View Post
...shoot the subject, (while making even a white wall behind the subject turn black) and get a pic of the subject before the flashes light has hit the wall....
I think that you will find that "problem" is related to the manner in which your camera is syncing the flash rather than the speed of light. Perhaps you have your camera set to the so called "rear curtain" sync. In this case, as I understand it, the flash does not fire until the end of the shutter open period. This can certainly produce some very "artistic" effects. I refer you to:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flash_synchronization

Last edited by DougStocks; 04-04-2014 at 12:43 PM.
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Wow has this thread gotten way out of control.

The OP is using a kit lens and a very basic flash. There is no light lighting the white background and the flash is being directed at the ceiling. If the OP directs the flash at the subject then he'll get a harsh shadow on the background.

What I would do with this equipment is to take the picture as he's been doing. Then use Nikon Capture NX2 (Nikon's editing software) and use the Color Control Point tool. Put a spot on each corner and enlarge the circle so that it covers as much of the background as can fit without covering the subject. Then adjust the Brightness to its highest.

I have the same background, but I use a D600 with a SB-900 attached with a diffuser on as a Master flash and 2 SB-600's as slaves. One SB-600 on each side of the background with big white cards attached so that as much of the flash is directed on the background and they are set on full power. I also have a few extra 150 watt lights directed at the white background. For a lens I use the 24-70mm f/2.8. I have my aperture set at f/2.8. My shutter speed is usually pretty high.

Even with all that I have to brighten up the background in Capture NX2.

I believe the OP would like a final product to look like this:
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BTW... I do not like the Muslin white background. I'm going to be getting a 9'x20' White Vinyl Background instead. It takes way to much time to steam the muslin background smooth.
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