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Thread: Flash/Camera setting for evening dinner functions, with LightDome

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Flash/Camera setting for evening dinner functions, with LightDome

    Correct me if I am wrong, Catchlights. According to what I understand from film users, the type of aperture used will affect the coverage of the flash. Therefore at F2.8, the coverage of the flash using E-TTL will be minimal and hence there will be slight vignette at the wide end which may not be noticeable on 4R but obvious to photographer's eye at 8R. This observation is applicable to big group shot.

    I personally also adhere to the rule of minimal F5.6 with understanding. And I as a paid photographer will also never shoot at 17mm for group shots. Shooting at 17 mm will cause the faces of the pp at the side to be warped. If forced to shoot at 17mm, must ensure that i am at the correct elevation.

    Adding to this fact,I will have to zoom in a bit to prevent distortion of faces at the side and this means that F2.8 becomes pretty unusable for group shots. It will be pretty obvious on 8R and above.

  2. #22
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    Default Re: Flash/Camera setting for evening dinner functions, with LightDome

    Quote Originally Posted by fabianaino View Post
    ..
    well, do suggest to him. I suggested mine. =)
    Do suggest some thing which allows him to have more keepers instead of something theotically sound. =)
    We already did, but you are counter-suggesting something which is totally out of the rule-book of many paid photographers here.

    I don't see how shooting at 1/20s and f/2.8 for a group shot will allow him to have more keepers. If your definition of keepers means a photograph with a high chance of subject blur and shallow DOF beyond the first row of people in a group shot, I am dumbfounded.

    Quote Originally Posted by CreaXion View Post
    Correct me if I am wrong, Catchlights. According to what I understand from film users, the type of aperture used will affect the coverage of the flash. Therefore at F2.8, the coverage of the flash using E-TTL will be minimal and hence there will be slight vignette at the wide end which may not be noticeable on 4R but obvious to photographer's eye at 8R. This observation is applicable to big group shot.

    I personally also adhere to the rule of minimal F5.6 with understanding. And I as a paid photographer will also never shoot at 17mm for group shots. Shooting at 17 mm will cause the faces of the pp at the side to be warped. If forced to shoot at 17mm, must ensure that i am at the correct elevation.

    Adding to this fact,I will have to zoom in a bit to prevent distortion of faces at the side and this means that F2.8 becomes pretty unusable for group shots. It will be pretty obvious on 8R and above.
    If I'm not mistaken, what you are talking about for coverage is more related to the zoom head of the flash (assuming you are firing direct flash). If firing with a bounce, this is no longer applicable. As a general rule of thumb in flash photography, aperture affects how hard the flash works (in terms of output power), while shutter speed determines how much ambient light you are letting in.

    The term "dragging the shutter" means to shoot at a slightly slower (but not too slow) shutter speed to allow more ambient light into your image to balance with the flash's light. However, consider this: if you use a f/5.6 lens, and the flash has to work so hard to come up with enough light, your images generally will look a little less natural than with a f/2.8 lens, at the same shutter speed. I think this is what fabiano is trying to drive at. However, we are not talking so much about general flash photography, but shooting in group, where you are right about both points:

    f/5.6 - it is set as such to give sufficient DOF to the whole group. Some photographers will even play it safe and go for f/8 if they can.
    17mm - depending on which lens you use, distortion will vary. However, on most that I've used thus far, I have not seen one where there is hardly any perspective distortion (the stretch at the edges) at 17mm. You are right in saying that you should zoom in slightly to avoid perspective distortion, and failing that, ensure that you are more or less level with your subjects. If you are too low or too high, the perspective distortion is made more obvious.
    Last edited by calebk; 6th September 2008 at 10:37 AM.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Flash/Camera setting for evening dinner functions, with LightDome

    Quote Originally Posted by calebk View Post
    If I'm not mistaken, what you are talking about for coverage is more related to the zoom head of the flash (assuming you are firing direct flash). If firing with a bounce, this is no longer applicable.
    Tx for the clarification.

  4. #24
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    Default Re: Flash/Camera setting for evening dinner functions, with LightDome

    the aperture you use has nothing to do with the flash coverage, however, there are a few things you have to consider why we don't use wide open aperture to shoot group photos...

    most lenses have a sweet spot of two f stops down from the wide open, so a f2.8 lens perform best at f5.6 (in the entire range of aperture setting)

    most lenses are a little soft at the edge, this can be very oblivious when shooting at wide open.

    if shooting at f2.8, even you able to have enough DOF to cover first and second row, but does not mean you also have enough DOF for the people are around the edge of the photo. so it will be something like center people sharp in focus, corner people all out of focus, unless you carefully arrange all the people lining up at a same distance from the lens.

    we also don't use the wider angle lens setting for group photos, the reason are follow...

    most zoom lens perform best from not so wide to the longest focal lenght.

    wide angle tend to have distortion at edge of photos,

    thou the flash able to provide enough coverage, but since is using a wide angle, the center part of the people will still receive more light then the corner people, let say flash to center people is 10', flash to corner people are at 13', so either center people overexposed or corner people underexposed.

    even you are shooting with a bounce light, it will still have the same issue, just do a quick mental calculation will all the lights reach the people in a equal distance after bouncing off the ceiling or any device?

    I would suggest that if any people want to do some experiments, don't do it at other people expenses, if the event is too important to you, play safe, less things will go wrong.
    Last edited by catchlights; 6th September 2008 at 02:42 PM.
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