Tag Archives: lighting

Canon 600EX-RT with Canon 40D & Canon 5DMark2

Though Canon says you will need a camera body made in 2011 for High Shutter Speed Sync, my tests show older camera bodies will work in this mode.
Though Canon says you will need a camera body made in 2011 for High Shutter Speed Sync, my tests show older camera bodies will work in this mode. Above is the display of the ST-E3-RT that is attached to the hotshoe.  I set shutter speed to 1/8000 sec and shot off a frame. The resulting frame looked under exposed but was in sync meaning the entire frame was exposed. I suspect in that mode, I will have to go into my E-TTL setting and add more light selecting “+2” or even “+3” to compensate for the light loss or else switch to Manual mode and increase the power ratio.

High shutter speed sync is the mode that many photographers using Speedlites rave about but in practice its applications even with the latest greatest Canon bodies is limited.

It’s a very pricey feature because you have to buy the top-of-the-line Speedlite. Continue reading Canon 600EX-RT with Canon 40D & Canon 5DMark2

Photographing fire dancers in low light

This fire-eater was taken with my old 80-200 f2.8 zoom set at 145mm. Exposure was ISO 6400 f2.8 @1/1500sec to freeze the flames on the torch as well as on his tongue.
This fire-eater image was taken with my old 80-200 f2.8 zoom set at 145mm. Since it doesn’t have image stabilization, I had to make sure to hold the lens steady. Exposure was ISO 6400 f2.8 @1/1500sec to freeze the flames on the torch as well as on his tongue.
Also shot at ISO 6400, this very pretty Polynesian dancer was shot with 1/180 sec @f2.8 with my old style 80-200 zoom which has no image stabilization.
Also shot at ISO 6400, this very pretty Polynesian dancer was shot with 1/180 sec @f2.8 with my old style 80-200 zoom which has no image stabilization.

Advancements in digital photography used to be measured by the megapixels that its sensor can capture for each image.

Thank goodness that race has ended at least in the DSLR market.

Now, it’s about how good the image looks at high ISO.

It’s not that I have an aversion to digital noise in an image.

I lived with digital noise for years when I worked in news because there are lots of instances when flash photography is not allowed yet I had to had to produce an image to illustrate what took place.

Two such instances that come to mind is in the courtroom and some athletic events like badminton tournaments.

These days the ISO setting on my Canon 5DMarkII is never set higher than 400.

Even though I know the camera handles low light very well, I prefer to ‘light’ my subjects if it’s a portrait for better control.

I find if I’m doing a portrait, I want to be in control of the lighting anyway except in the case of this Saturday at the close of the 2013 Lunar Festival in Riverside.. Continue reading Photographing fire dancers in low light

Two light setup for self-portrait

Self Portrait Tips

_MG_6660
#1 A ‘hard light’ i.e. a Speedlite fitted with a grid spot was my main or key light on the right for this type of lighting commonly known as ‘short lighting’. There was another speedlite also fitted with a grid spot for a backlight. I used the grids because I didn’t want the light to spill all over. I was too lazy to remove the picture hanging on the wall behind me, so this was the simple solution. See other picture.

When my new Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite and its companion ST-E3-RT transmitter arrived, I couldn’t find locate a model.

I’m not so fond of self-portraits for obvious reasons. Continue reading Two light setup for self-portrait

A portrait for the holiday season

Hadia Bendelhoum, one of my students wanted a new FB profile picture while we were on our field trip to Shutterstories a photography studio in Riverside, so I dug out my 580EX Speedlite, a grid spot and cybersync radio slaves and I also used a big silvered reflector.

A portrait to match the holiday season is fairly easy  if you have a flash you can fire off-camera.

But you’ll need a lens that has a wide aperture.

That is often called a fast lens because the  wide opening or aperture allows you to shoot with a ‘fast’ shutter speed.

Then it’s a matter of finding a location where there are tiny twinkly lights like outdoors or even indoors next to a decorated Christmas tree.

The more colorful, the better.

Yes, you can shoot this with only available light too.

Just be warned you will most likely be shooting at high ISO using really long/low shutter speeds  and may have strange white balance issues. Continue reading A portrait for the holiday season