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What is the best way to set the Aperture / lenght of exposure for night landscape shots. I have Minolta 600si with Manual/ Aperture/ Shutter priority mode.
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If the landscape is illuminated by street lights you can set to auto-exposure but open up one stop to prevent underexposure.
For nightscenes illuminated by the moon light the exposure will be long and because of reciprocity failure you need to compensate. Take a reading with the camera on auto - either priority mode or program - and if the reading is one second expose for four, if it's four seconds expose for 10 and if it's 10 seconds expose for 100. You will need to use the manual mode for this.
I can't offer any advice drawn from experience, as I'm just starting to experiment with all of this low-light stuff. However, a lot of my starting experiences will be influenced by a book I recently bought that I consider to be well worth the money: The Complete Guide to Night and Low-Light Photography by Lee Frost.
It covers many aspects of the subject at a sensible level, as well as a good selection of subject matter.
I have a problem trying to photograph foxes which regularly visit my garden at night. I can`t seem to eliminate green eye! Can anyone help? Also which aperture should I use?
I can get quite close to the foxes as I feed them every night, and they tolerate my presence at a respectable distance. They are beautiful creatures and I would love to take a decent photo of them.
Living in hope,
I assume, Janet, that you are using a flash for lighting and this is producing the green eye. (If I'm wrong, just ignore me
This sounds like a similar problem to "red-eye". Try setting the flash off the camera, maybe on a tripod or lighting stand. With an extension cable, you should get enough distance between the flash and the lens to remove the effect.
Thanks for the advice Michael56J
I will certainly give it a try.
Janet, Michael's right about the green eye being the same as red-eye. The only way to prevent this is to use flash off the camera (use a slave gun if the flash is built-in) or buy a bounce adaptor (assuming the flash is not built in). You can alter the photos after. One company makes a pet eye pen that is designed to remove the green on prints and digitally it can be done folloing the red eye removing technique that has been covered on ePHOTOzine.
Thanks for your advice GTLane. I will bear it in mind. Which aperture would you advice me to use please?
The aperture you use is largely going to be determined by the power of your flash and the sync speed of your camera's shutter. The advantage of using flash out doors is you don't get those annoying harsh shadows, because the light falls off very quickly. There is no surfaces for it to bounce off. What camera do you use?
Thanks for your advice.
I am using a Canon EOS5 camera at the moment.I have a flash which can be used "off" the camera and it goes off when the inbult flash goes off.
I have discovered that the peanuts placed for the fox to eat have encouraged a hedgehog to visit my garden.This has given me even more incentive to learn how to use flash at night!
Thanks again to everyone for their help.
Just a suggestion if you have not decided on a film for your night photography, try Fuji NPC 160 which has 4th layer technology and rerasonable low light characteristics upto 16 sec exposure time with just +1 stop correction or at 4 sec +1/2 stop or 1/4000 to 1 sec no stop correction required., basically no filters required. This film a have found produces good results under artificial light and when combined with daylight flash units. Or try Fuji RTP 64T type II, but will require you to flash sync at not less then 1/15 sec, this film has very good long exposure time of around 4 mins before compensating filters might be needed, however with wildlife, l guess 4 mins might be a touch to long, but useful for fireworks combined with multi exposures etc. Search for, 'night' under the techniques section at this site and read 'Into the night' it introduces some of the consideration of night photography.
Thanks for your advice.
You could try Fuji 1600HG, the grain isn't as bad as you may think. A chap I know did his BA finals with this, I saw the results they were great, he used it to photograph boxers with a little fill flash. he enlarge them to 10x8 with no real problem from 35mm
Your original question asked how to photo landsapes at night. For this you don't need flash, only patience.
Set your camera on a tripod ,fit a cable release, set to manual mode, also set lens to manual if its autofocus, set up your composition then fire the shutter set at F8 and start counting or look at your watch with a torch. First exposure anything over 30 secs. and thereafter lengthen the time to expose. Go for 2, 5 10 mins if you like. You can get great results!! Just experiment.
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