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low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 03:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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This is making me crazy. I'm using a canon 20d, one Alien bees strobe turned all the way down with a med. soft box and no other light and black seamless paper, is that concidered "low light photography", even though I'm using an AB 800? I want my model lying down an a sheet of black plexi to get a nice reflection but I'm getting alot of noise no matter what ISO I use. I set my camera for flash and have been using the TV mode. Any suggestions or advice as to the correct settings.Thanks.
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Re: low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 04:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Well sounds to me..like your camera is trying to guess what your doing..and its not going to happen.... First off set your camera to Manual "M" mode.
you'll need to have a meter, to meter the flash from your strobe....so you'll know what F stop to set you camera....hince the light at the model is f8..set your camera to 1/125th and F8 as an example at ISO 200 if your camera will shoot at ISO 100....you need to meter at the proper ISO..the lower your ISO the less chance of getting NOISE in your Images..if you dont have a meter set your AB 800 to about 1/3 power and set your camera to 1/125 and F8...Im guessing thats going to be pretty close..you can chimp the shot and see if it looks over or under exposed..if so just adjust the Fstop a step up or down until you get the right exposure.
hope this helps some
Don.

This shot was taken at 1/125th F11...ISO 200 at 28mm

 
 
Re: low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 04:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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PS...dont worry about setting your lights to the lowest settings...your going to want some bright light..to create the dark shadows....so I think what your trying to do is more about placement of your light..than power...this shot was taken with Two AB 400s metered at f8.
send me an email or pm me...and I'll help you out the best I know how!
Don.

 
 
Re: low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 04:48 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks Don.
I have a model coming over in about two hours, I'll experiment and let you know. Bill
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Lowlight photography doesn\'t involve flash
Old 07-09-2005, 04:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I think you're trying for "low key" photography. Low light photography involves a tripod and long shutter speeds with available light. Low key photogrpahy involves exposing for the highlights and letting the mids go darker than in a "correctly" exposed image. Put your camera on M, iso100, 1/200sec, f8, flash WB. Take the picture and see what it looks like. Too dark? open up the F stop (f number goes lower). Too bright? Set the f stop higher. Rinse, repeat. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
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How Sin City!
Old 07-09-2005, 05:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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There I was, feeling like a rat bastard lowerin' Hell on a stormy Saturday afternoon. The smell of trouble was on the air like a cheap air freshener in a Yugo with no AC....... Sorry. Got lost in the moment. Has anyone else noticed the demand for info on high contrast low light glam sets has gone way up since Sin City hit the silver screen? I noticed cuz I been lookin for the same info myself. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]
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Re: low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 05:23 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I assume you mean low key photos. Here is an example:



In general lowkey simply means that the majority of the tonal values are below the half way point on the histogram. That's a fancy way of saying that there are more dark tones than light tones. My example is such a case.

Naturally, you won't have any success shooting in the TV mode since the camera will then choose whatever shutter speed it wants to take the shot using the ambient light. So, needless to say, you'll get odd results.

As already suggest, put the camera in M, with shutter speed at 1/125 and the fstop at f8. Shoot a full frame shot of a gray card and look at the histogram. You should see one spike. If its in the middle, then the exposure is correct. If not change the fstop up or down and shoot the gray card again and keep repeating till the spike is in the center. You now have the optimal fstop. Now you may want to adjust it from there to get the exact lighting effect you want.

Don't make the mistake of thinking lowkey means so dark you can just barely see anything. You want something where there is good detail, but just a lot of tones that are darker than mid and high tones.

You can also use a flash meter, if you have one, to get the fstop.

Cheers,
rfs
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Re: low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 05:56 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Your image is beautiful. That is almost exactly what i am looking for except she will be lying down. I'll experiment this afternoon. Your explanition using the histogram was very helpful. I do have a meter and will use it this afternoon also. Thank you.
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Re: low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 06:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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One more question. What ISO would you suggest?
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Re: low light ISO
Old 07-09-2005, 06:16 PM   #10 (permalink)
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You should always use the lowest ISO setting for your camera. In the case of the 20D, use 100 ISO. Also if you shoot in RAW format, you'll have more control after the fact to get the tonal values you want.

Cheers,
rfs
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