how to deal with situations dslr refuse to take a picture?


Jul 8, 2012
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N/A
#1
i missed a small group photo because of my noob skills.

was at a chalet, and taking pictures outside the chalet during the night (so it was low-light?) then wanted to take a group picture but my d3100 didn't want to focus, so i tried to get it in focus by moving the camera around, but it doesn't work.

and by that time some of the group people gave sneering remarks and the group was dismissed.

that's how i missed taking a group photo. should have turned it directly to auto mode and take the picture.
after that i was quite sad for a moment. :thumbsd: need to up my skills by a lot.
 

ThreeM

New Member
Feb 22, 2010
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#2
Is ur auto focus assist on?

Maybe try aiming a corner where u can focus better?


Turning on and off the focus and try again?
 

Oct 12, 2011
229
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Singapore
#3
I guess it was very dark that's why it was hard to autofocus. Try turning on the AF assist light if your camera has such a feature and use auto mode if you need to take a quick snapshot. If you have a torch you can turn it on and shine on your subject to help your camera focus, lock the focus then meter again for correct exposure but this method is quite slow.
 

rhino123

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 1, 2006
5,243
15
38
NA
#6
1) Use manual to focus
2) Use external flash (more than one if needed, and offshoe when needed)
3) Look for a more brightly lit location to shoot
4) Change your group of friends, they are not good friend. For someone to make sneering remarks and left when someone is trying their best to try to do something is nothing but jacka##.
 

Shizuma

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
2,557
25
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#7
you need manual focus.

neither fast lens nor high ISO can help, if the contrast or light is too low for camera to detect
 

Oct 1, 2011
1,799
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Planet Earth
#8
call the camera a nawty boy/girl and spank it.

jokes aside, yeah if the lens keeps hunting due to the lack of contract in the scene, switch to MF, jusdge with your eyes and shoot. better to have a slightly blurry picture (and perhaps save some face) then to have none at all.
 

Jul 8, 2012
15
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0
N/A
#9
thanks all for reply. next time (if there is) i'll turn on AF light assist and on manual focus.
 

Shizuma

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
2,557
25
0
#10
call the camera a nawty boy/girl and spank it.
As it is with all my misbehaving electronic equipment, I just place a flyer or advert from the media about a replacement model eg laptop not working? place flyer for laptop sale... very soon, Laptop working again. so strange, right?
 

shierwin

Senior Member
Dec 29, 2008
3,440
8
38
East Coast
#11
Try to conduct a practice shoot under similar light on your own with static objects (no sneer for the time taken)... with auto, build-in flash, manual etc. Then you'll learn to handle the cam better and know its limitations
 

tecnica

Senior Member
Dec 26, 2004
3,660
10
0
#12
i usually get somebody(usually the one standing in the middle) in the group to wake his/her phone from sleep mode and place it at chest level with phone screen facing camera.

phone, light from screen, contrast... voila, beep and focus~
 

blazin

New Member
Apr 2, 2012
41
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#14
3100 AF assist light is usefull for shooting dark places but it maybe irritating to the people you shooting at~
 

edutilos-

Senior Member
Dec 28, 2010
6,032
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The Universe
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#15
Should use manual focus, and do "focus bracketing" to make sure, i.e. take a series of photos shifting the focus just a little just to ensure that you have one in focus.
 

May 1, 2006
159
0
0
#17
i missed a small group photo because of my noob skills.

was at a chalet, and taking pictures outside the chalet during the night (so it was low-light?) then wanted to take a group picture but my d3100 didn't want to focus, so i tried to get it in focus by moving the camera around, but it doesn't work.

and by that time some of the group people gave sneering remarks and the group was dismissed.

that's how i missed taking a group photo. should have turned it directly to auto mode and take the picture.
after that i was quite sad for a moment. :thumbsd: need to up my skills by a lot.
I am using D3100 too, have been in the same shoe before. What I did to improve my skill is
1. Practice in similar lighting to have an idea on how to set the camera setting.
2. Before taking important photos, I often take test shots and adjust the setting till I am satisfied before gathering the group
3. If I can't get the setting right I will just use auto mode :p
4. Lastly I have up my lens to a fast prime.

3100 AF assist light is usefull for shooting dark places but it maybe irritating to the people you shooting at~
Yes, lots of the people complain about it, and I have turn it off. You can't take candid shots with this AF lights on.
 

thoongeng

Senior Member
Jan 26, 2010
1,247
15
38
#18
i usually get somebody(usually the one standing in the middle) in the group to wake his/her phone from sleep mode and place it at chest level with phone screen facing camera.

phone, light from screen, contrast... voila, beep and focus~
good idea!
was wondering if it will be better if the person on the left or right 1/3 of the group do that instead, so that it is easier to get everyone in focus? (because the distance of the middle person to the camera and the sidemost person to the camera distance may be quite far such that the sidemost person may not be in the focus plane?)
 

dennisc

Senior Member
Oct 24, 2002
2,026
2
38
Freezing Upp Thomson/Mandai!
#19
fast primes are good for shallow dof, not for group, also your settings may differ with the group's as it's a different location, etc. Hmm and etc
 

milez

New Member
Jun 16, 2012
437
0
0
Singapore
#20
In a group photo situation where your camera cant really focus, in order to get an insurance shot, adjust to small aperture eg.g f8 , so that you have wide depth of field, try to focus on the closest object to the group... If AF still hunts, switch to manual focus, and roughly focus with you eye. Once target is about clear snap it. Because if you wide depth of field, your subject is in thereabout focus range, your shot should be clear and in focus.

In low light situation, increase iso till your shutter speed is at least 1/60 so that there is no motion blur. If you have a flash (no matter how small) use it. ... With M mode and adjust f 5.6 or 8 with 1/60. iso 1600 or there about.
 

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