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Thread: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

  1. #1
    Senior Member velasco's Avatar
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    Arrow How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    i have posted a thread on this few months back, but i cannot revive it so here goes before i totally forgot about this again hehe.

    whats the technique use when you wanna take a picture of people infront of a background and you want both to be seen clearly? I'm using a canon powershot S5 IS, is it possible?

    I've tried firing the flash but then the background would be pitch black or lose out most of the detail with my subject having bright faces. Is there a technique involved here?

    If so, would someone point to me a tutorial or site or guidance to achieve this effect?

    thank you

  2. #2

    Default Re: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    is there a slow flash function on the S5? You can use that instead of the normal flash. Sometimes center weighted metering can also work. If not i will use photoshop to pp till i get the amount of exposure i want.
    Last edited by rotisiao; 30th June 2008 at 08:28 PM.

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    Default Re: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    Quote Originally Posted by velasco View Post
    i have posted a thread on this few months back, but i cannot revive it so here goes before i totally forgot about this again hehe.

    whats the technique use when you wanna take a picture of people infront of a background and you want both to be seen clearly? I'm using a canon powershot S5 IS, is it possible?

    I've tried firing the flash but then the background would be pitch black or lose out most of the detail with my subject having bright faces. Is there a technique involved here?

    If so, would someone point to me a tutorial or site or guidance to achieve this effect?

    thank you
    I believe you are refering to HDR???

    Quote Originally Posted by rotisiao View Post
    is there a slow flash function on the S5? You can use that instead of the normal flash. Sometimes center weighted metering can also work. If not i will use photoshop to pp till i get the amount of exposure i want.
    There is the slow flash or synchro flash or sth liddat you may want to try it out :P it should work... but i still think that you are talking about HDR. Google: HDR on photoshop or something, it should give you a rough idea, but if i am not wrong, HDRs usually don't have people in them :P and just on the flash

  4. #4

    Default Re: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    It is easier that you visit the Gallery, pick some sample and link it here, instead of guessing what is it you want to ask.

  5. #5
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    Low powered flash on subject and a slow shutter speed to capture the BG.
    Michael Lim
    My Flickr Site

  6. #6

    Default Re: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    Quote Originally Posted by velasco View Post
    whats the technique use when you wanna take a picture of people infront of a background and you want both to be seen clearly? I'm using a canon powershot S5 IS, is it possible?

    I've tried firing the flash but then the background would be pitch black or lose out most of the detail with my subject having bright faces. Is there a technique involved here?

    If so, would someone point to me a tutorial or site or guidance to achieve this effect?

    thank you
    it is called "fill flash".

    with your onboard flash, if your background is not bright enough to be captured for correct exposure for your flashed face, then it will be black. there is limited dynamic range for any medium be it digital or film.

    so - what sort of background are you talking about? even if you use the highest end camera, and the background is macritchie reservoir at night where there are no lights at all, you are just going to get people with a dark background unless you have many spotlights at your disposal..

    understanding exposure will go a long way in helping you understand this problem here.
    Last edited by night86mare; 1st July 2008 at 01:26 AM.

  7. #7

    Default Re: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    Hi most compact and bridge cameras allow for the flash to be permenatly on - force flash. If you can't slow sync then set the camera to force flash, meter and expose for the background and you should get what you're looking for. If the subject is too brightly lit then cover the flash with some tissue (also acts as a good diffuser to soften the light, especially if the forground subject is a person). Hope this helps.
    In every photograph there are at least two people, the viewer and the photographer. (Ansel Adams)

  8. #8
    Senior Member velasco's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to ensure that both background and subject have adequate light at night?

    thanks for the input guys.

    i'll read up your replies with great insight and will update here once i come across another enquiry

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