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Photography buffs.. help!

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Tsal, Feb 27, 2003.


  1. Tsal

    Tsal

    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    Alright, attached you'll find a (de-sized) image I took this night at my friends gig - it came out pretty good subjectwise but quality is pretty poor, the whole pic is grainy. What did I do wrong?

    It was my first attempt in photographing a live band with all the smoke and lights going on. I have owned digital camera (2Mpix Canon, one of the small "design" ones) for few weeks now so I'm not very experienced. I had the ISO setting on 400(the 'auto' function came out with motion blur), too large perhaps? I don't think this thing has shutter speed settings..

    Another thing creeps into my mind: perhaps I should get some more expensive model with more user controls and better image quality? If this is the case, what would you recommend? My IXUS, as it's called in Europe, does pretty well with normal life pics though.

    Also, if someone could suggest a good site with beginner tips, I'd appriciate it.
     
  2. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    thats not a bad shot.

    I'm a photographer hobbiest. I do black and white photography mostly, I use a fully manual 35 mm camera, and I do all my own developing and post processing in the lab.

    I'm not very experienced with digital cameras, but as long as you have a passion and interest, gear doesn't matter that much. ;)
     
  3. Tsal

    Tsal

    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    Not bad, you say? I took around 50 or so, so one or two of these are bound to look ok :p

    Then again, perhaps my expectations are bit high as I'm comparing these to their previous gig pics taken with 35mm SLRs..

    Have another!
     
  4. Tsal

    Tsal

    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    Third. I think this is one of the best of what I took. Umm.. is it possible to get GAS for camera equipment? :eek:
     
  5. Hey that's a good photo. I like it...the grainy look looks good for that photo. it adds to the atmosphere..most digital cameras under 1500.US arn't good for action shots..If you want to go with a professional digital camera your looking to spend way over 2000.00 just to get something ok....Kodak makes a nice one..DCS Pro 14n or the Hasselblad H1 both of those should do the job, try this for beginner digital photo information..
    http://groups.msn.com/DigitalFineArtPhotography

    Fetch!
     
  6. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    I'm a photo buff in training (1st year photo major) so I don't know too much. One problem is the lighting... it's... cheesy. The colors... I don't like them. I know that's not your fault. In my limited experience with digital cameras, I haven't enjoyed them that much. But they could probably be fixed up a bit in Photoshop or something similar.
     
  7. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    Or you could just do a half assed job and just add a solarized effect...

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Concert photos are very difficult to take. First, your camera probably does not have a good lens - not knocking your camera but good lenses (without body) can cost several hundred dollars or more. A fast lense would be F1.7. My Toshiba digital is F2.9 at 35mm. Zooming in significantly reduces the speed of the lens.

    Second, the ISO setting is still pretty slow. In a dark setting, you would probably be better off with an ISO 800 or ISO 1600 setting which is extremely rare (non-existant?) for an affordable digital camera. With a digital camera, higher ISO settings always give bad photos. It's not so bad with film as film technology has been greatly improved over the years.

    Third, you will probably want to set the camera so it is "spot-metering". Most cameras will set the shutter speed based on the amount of light in the ENTIRE frame. If you are a singer in a spotlight surrounded by darkness, the camera will think that the average brightness is really low (cause of the extra darkness) and SLOW down the shutter speed. If you use spot metering, the camera will only consider the amount of light in the center of the camera (5% of the entire frame)...in other words, the camera will correctly set the shutter speed for the subject (the singer) and everything else around will be underexposed.

    Unless you were REALLY close to the subject and used flash, you will need to upgrade your camera. Either way, you're going to need to spend a lot of bling on a good lens.

    Photo.net - Concert Photography

    Actually, most of the stuff I said was at the link above. A great site. For more information on photography in general, try PhotographyTips.com.
     
  9. Brooks

    Brooks

    Apr 4, 2000
    Middle East
    What rabid_granny said. Also, image CCDs used in digital cameras, especially the cheaper ones really need a lot of light to make a good photo. The only way around it is to go to a better camera and a faster lens.

    Another thing is to try and avoid any lights that shine directly at you. Also, get a good flash unit and set it to half or quarter power to act as a 'fill-in'. It should not overpower the stage lights, but still provide additional illumination.

    When I used to do pro stage photography, I was shooting with an F1.2 lens and a nice Sunpak flash unit that was manually adjustable to anything you need. That, plus film at ISO 800 used to give me great results.
     
  10. DanGouge

    DanGouge

    May 25, 2000
    Canada!
    I know a couple photographers and let me say that the answer is yes, very much so...
     
  11. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    Digital cameras are cool, but the CCD imaging sensors have a lot of self-noise in low light. CCDs used for astronomy and high-quality low light imaging use noise reduction techniques like noise averaging to get clearer images, but that requires longer "exposure" times and some processing.
     
  12. Tsal

    Tsal

    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    Alright, I seem to be a lot wiser in this subject.

    Granny and Brooks, yeah, I looked into digicams to find a more suitable one, Sony Cybershot 717 seems to have best balance in that it is 5Mpix, can use ISO 800 setting and has F2.0 lense. It sells around $1000 I think, so I think I stick with my present cam for now. Also Nikon has one cam with f1,8 or f1,7 lense but it's maximum ISO is 400, and those couple other cams that have ISO 800 possibility seem to be around f2,5 or something like that. Real digi-SLRs go into $2000-2500, so that doesen't help much either.

    I could get me a 35mm SLR with decent lense as they are seriously cheaper than the digital ones, but then again I'd pay for film, developing and would need to buy a good scanner.

    BTW StupidMatt.. I hate that effect sooo much :p
     
  13. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    The pics you posted aren't bad at all. They lack some contrast, but good for the moment.

    I love the digital camera. It does have limitations, but is also great in alot of applications.

    In dark areas, I have taken photos without flash, and they look better than the "flash" blasted shots.

    If I am going to post or E-Mail pictures, digital rules. The resolution is very good. Most scanners tend to just xerox a photo (transparencies may be excepted). Which is the case of alot of photos (being processed from 24 hour photo stores) are poor resolution anyway.

    But...the subject has to stand perfectly still or they blur. The flash shots are mediocre.

    Film cameras seem to embrace a moment, even in motion. Probably because, once the light hits that film it's frozen (literally at light speed). Film cameras may be better for indoor motion shots like concerts/clubs. Digital cameras are always readjusting the focal point as you (or the subject) move(s) thus, the moment is caught at the speed of electricity.

    The shot below is a quick snapshot of my bass for a quick post here some months ago. Total time from shoot to post: about 6 minutes. But the subject is very still too.
     
  14. cb56

    cb56

    Jul 2, 2000
    Central Illinois
    What don't you like about those pix? Boost the contrast a little is about all i would do. Our digital camera gets fooled by smoke and under exposes the pix some but that's easily fixed.
     
  15. Tsal

    Tsal

    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    There's a bit of noise in the pics, I think, which I don't like. You are right about contrast.. Need to fix that.

    I did try stuff out with the (Arcsoft) image software that came with my camera and was able to remove some of the noise by adding bit contrast, slightly toying with color and saturation settings and by adding a tiny bit of blur effect.

    Why digicams are good for us total beginners is that you are able to shoot much without extra cost or having to change the film - just delete the bad pics and shoot some more. Only perhaps third of the pics I shot that night came off decent but it's no worries as it doesn't cost extra or anything.

    Then come home, plug into your PC and put the pics in internet for everyone to comment, just in couple of minutes. Lovely.
     
  16. It's unfortunate but if you are shooting at anything higher than ISO 100 on a consumer digital camera, you're going to get noticeable noise. :mad:
     
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    The smoke is refracting the ambient light and taking away some sharpness. That, combined with a low-light situation, makes it dificult to get a nice sharp, contrasty picture. On the other hand, I like the overall effect of the softness and the coloration from the stage lights. It really evokes a mood, which is a very desireable but elusive trait. I'd say go with 'em.
     
  18. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Photography is an art. Each photo you take is alot like writing a song. You do some good ones, and some bad ones. Not all turn out the way you want them to. That goes for digital as well. The shots you posted are cool and moody.
     
  19. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    I'm knocking the thread off topic, but I just have a quick photo question... sorta. I was developing a couple of rolls the other day. They came out completely black. Does this mean I had it in the developer too long. I didn't take a tempature reading because I forgot my thermometer, so I estimated a time. So I'm assuming I had it in developer too long... right?
     
  20. rwagne2

    rwagne2

    Aug 2, 2001
    Hi Matt,

    is the entire roll black (around the sprocket holes,etc) or just the individual frames? if the whole roll is black, then you somehow exposed the whole thing to light. if only the pictures are black, then it could be overdevelopment, but much more likely overexposure. Overdevelopment will increase the contrast of the negative - causing a zone shift. the thin parts of the negative will still be relatively thin, but the denser parts will block out to Dmax. btw, what film/developer are you using?