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Thread: Taking pictures in low light.

  1. #1
    Senior Member dorts's Avatar
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    Default Taking pictures in low light.

    Hello all,

    I am having difficulty taking pictures in low light. It was after the rain and the sky was overcast. Tried to take some pictures of raindrops on the leaf and it wasn't successful. I didn't want to use flash so I tried without. But it was quite dark and windy. So the shutter speed was slow. So when I snap (with tripod), it was blur, because the leaf was moving. I didn't want to increase the ISO too much as it will get noisy. I went to max ISO 400 and still couldn't get a decent shutter speed. The leaf will still be blur. Any ideas how would I go about snapping it?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Quote Originally Posted by dorts View Post
    Hello all,

    I am having difficulty taking pictures in low light. It was after the rain and the sky was overcast. Tried to take some pictures of raindrops on the leaf and it wasn't successful. I didn't want to use flash so I tried without. But it was quite dark and windy. So the shutter speed was slow. So when I snap (with tripod), it was blur, because the leaf was moving. I didn't want to increase the ISO too much as it will get noisy. I went to max ISO 400 and still couldn't get a decent shutter speed. The leaf will still be blur. Any ideas how would I go about snapping it?
    Either find some way to stop the leaf from swaying or use flash. Can't really think about any way else.

    BC

  3. #3
    Senior Member Galdor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Rain drop on a leaf? May need a Macro lens or a fast lens at least if you do not want to use flash.
    Minolta. Konica Minolta. Sony

  4. #4
    Senior Member dorts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Aww. Sad. I was using my 40-150mm to snap. Maybe I can ask the wind to stop blowing.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Hi there fellow Oly bro *waves*

    Increasing the ISO will only help so much and I agree with you on a max ISO of 400 cos of the noise issue.

    I think you're only left with a couple of choices if you don't want to use flash.

    1) Use the biggest aperature available (but you'll loose depth of field)

    2) Steady the leaf using some kind of holder that's gentle on the plant
    (check out this product called the "Plamp")

    3) Use something to block the wind (large piece of cardboard, jacket, a small elephant, etc...)
    Happiness is a state of mind.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Why you do not want to use the flash? Correct use of flash in macro photography produces very nice photos.

    BC

  7. #7
    Senior Member Galdor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Agree. Correct use of the flash in Macro can give very nice results.
    Minolta. Konica Minolta. Sony

  8. #8
    Senior Member dorts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Thank you everyone. Using an Elephant is sure a good way to block wind. Unless it farts. LOL.

    After taking a look at the pictures I took with flash(I did take some), it looks fine, do you feel the flash is too harsh? Take a look.


  9. #9
    Senior Member Galdor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Looks OK. Nice picture bro.
    Minolta. Konica Minolta. Sony

  10. #10

    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Looking at your perspective in that pic:

    1) Using the 40-150 was a good choice cos it gives you more distance to get the flash in there. Try to diffuse the flash by using a bounce card (white piece of paper) see how it goes...

    2) You can also try you other kit lens, the 14-45, it's slightly brighter than the 40-150 but not by much. Remember that with the 14-45 you'll be much closer and so your flash will be more "harsh" so to speak.

    If you have the FL-36 or the FL-50 you can try flipping down the wide-angle filter...

    Alternatively, you can train an elephant to hold a light for you!
    Happiness is a state of mind.

  11. #11
    Senior Member dorts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    1/2) LOL. I just realised that picture was using the 14-15mm lens. Hehe. And bounce card? Just any white piece of paper, do what? Haha.

    I don't have $$ to buy FL-36/50.

    About the elephant, I'll see if I can ask him to hold a light for me, without me being stepped on.

    I got a 40-150mm picture if you want.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    i think you should use your flash.. i just found out how helpful flash can be especially when there's low light. get a flash diffussor and you will find your flash much softer..

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Ya. Probably the diffuser can help soften the shadows too. Sorry just find that the shadow is rather unwanted.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Quote Originally Posted by dorts View Post
    Thank you everyone. Using an Elephant is sure a good way to block wind. Unless it farts. LOL.

    After taking a look at the pictures I took with flash(I did take some), it looks fine, do you feel the flash is too harsh? Take a look.

    This is a quite decent photo. You could have repositioned the leaf such that the branch is out of the background and, thus, you do not see the hard shadow cast. You can also use PS to remove it.

    If your system allow, try using remote flash. Using diffusor and bouncing can be good solutions to soften the lighting. Try playing with flash exposure compensation, to increase/reduce the flash exposure.

    You can also shoot in M exposure mode if the flash is TTL. Meter the ambient light in your camera, the TTL flash should adjust the strength by itself to expose the subject. By metering the ambient light, you can either increase or reduce the ambient light in relation to your subject according to your preference.

    BC
    Last edited by Scaglietti; 10th May 2007 at 10:18 AM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member xunjas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scaglietti View Post
    Why you do not want to use the flash? Correct use of flash in macro photography produces very nice photos.

    BC
    using macro flash helps in macro photography too..

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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Quote Originally Posted by dorts View Post
    Aww. Sad. I was using my 40-150mm to snap. Maybe I can ask the wind to stop blowing.
    Using a winberley plamp (not sure of the spelling) to hold the leaf will reduce the movement of the leaf. cost ard $70 bucks

  17. #17
    Senior Member xunjas's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Quote Originally Posted by DeSwitch View Post
    Using a winberley plamp (not sure of the spelling) to hold the leaf will reduce the movement of the leaf. cost ard $70 bucks
    it should be item, Wimberley Plamp - http://www.naturephotographers.net/gs/gswimplamp.html

  18. #18

    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Patience is the key to this issue. Shooting with flash takes away some natural coloration and shadows that you might want to present (and give you ugly shadows unless its diffused nicely). Either wait for the wind to stop blowing or block the wind.

    Otherwise, use a flash with diffuser or get a diffuser for your built-in flash. Think that might work in reducing harsh shadows. Think you can get those for 12 bucks from Perly or PQ23 in here. But I havent use it, my friend has and it seems to work.

    good luck. Good try on the flash part on ur picture!

  19. #19
    Senior Member dorts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    Thank you all for your great suggestions. I'll see what I can do.

  20. #20
    Member/Tangshooter
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    Default Re: Taking pictures in low light.

    I always carry some pegs ( used for hanging cloths ) around when shooting leaves. Use the pegs to secure the subject..to your tripot. Choose those bigger diameter ones.. not the wooden ones.

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