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*Advice Please*

By DarkAngel

I've been trying to take some photos of my rats but none of them are turning out, they're all blurred or dotty (like this one).

I've got a Canon EOS Rebel, a 28-80 lens (the only one I've got at the moment), iso is 400, I also used a tripod.

I tried using the flash but it came out too light, without... too dark. This photo is the room light with a daylight blub in.

What am I doing wrong?

Tags: Rat Pet Pets and captive animals

Voters: gmontambault, The_Collector, User_Removed and 10 more

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The_Collector 16 4 1 United Kingdom
19 Feb 2007 3:14PM
I think your going to struggle a bit because just like kid's Rat's never keep still!

Maybe try increasing your shutter speed and using a larger aperture 5.6 or 6.3 etc, more chance of the Rat being in focus.(in this pic the wood is but the Rat isn't)

Also if your struggling for light maybe try some gentle lighting effects and also shot in RAW as this gives you much more control when processing the shot.

BlueRoom 16 73 20 United Kingdom
19 Feb 2007 4:46PM
This is a charming shot even if it is a little soft. I amsure natural light is best for this sort of thing but ther is just so little of it around at this time of year.

bmh1 16 572 1 United Kingdom
19 Feb 2007 5:47PM
It's still a nice picture as it stands, but for small objects close to the camera the flash could be a little bright, but the exposure time can be a too long without.

I would suggest starting with:
Putting the camera on Manual (M)
Setting the speed to 1/100 sec (using the wheel but the shutter release)
Setting the ISO to 100
Having the aperture as wide open as possible (hold the Av +/- button while using the wheel by the shutter release).
(I would also try using the RAW format).

If this is too bright - by checking the histogram (it probably will be) (I think the display will also flash the areas which are over-exposed on the image) then decrease the aperture until it is OK.

EDIT: You can also decrease the effective brightness of the flash by moving the camera further away and using the longer end of the zoom ...

User_Removed 15 16 England
19 Feb 2007 6:15PM
First of all this is a wonderfully appealing shot, and it makes a super composition. Just keep working on it!
Try using the lens at 80mm. Secure a white single thickness of tissue or tracing paper over the flash head. You can afford to stop down to f8, with the plain background you are using. Set white balance to auto (easy to adjust later anyway). Use shutter speed to suit your flash, which should freeze movement unless Ratty is really hyper.
Try the other suggestions as well, you'll learn lots! My approach is pretty simple to do, then move on to more advanced techniques.
Expecting to see great rat pics, but you'll have a job to better the pose and composition of this one.
Let me know how it goes!
DarkAngel 15 6 United Kingdom
19 Feb 2007 6:51PM
Thank you all so much for your help, I've printed them out so I can have a go at playing with all of them tomorrow. Thank you again.

User_Removed 18 16 1 United Kingdom
19 Feb 2007 7:10PM
Hello. love.

pet rats! intersting. So when can I come & photgraph them?
You have some great advise there. Love to play & learn.

RockArea 15 18 3 United Kingdom
19 Feb 2007 9:21PM
Oh no! I hate rats and now Dianne's going to be featuring them too!
Actually he's quite cute and his horrid tail's not in shot so it's well worth a click!

rachepix 14 1 United Kingdom
6 Jan 2008 2:26AM
this may have slight blur but its a lovely pic, he is georgous, it shows off his character

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