Preparation for Landscape Class – August 2011
I want YOU to work hard by using your cameras so that you will know how to handle them when we do the landscape workshop.
Here’s the good news, the workshop will be at the time of day when we have the best light – you know by now that is morning or evening twilight. So that means being able to control your cameras in the dark! As this is the time when the simple brain in the camera gets totally confused, I am going to show you how to use your own, much more powerful brains, to get the darn thing to work the way you want to. The problem is, during twilight the camera has difficulty focussing automatically or choosing the correct exposure, YOU have to go “beyond point and shoot” and make these decisions for the camera.
PRACTICE BEFORE THE CLASS SESSION:
What I need you to practice before the Landscape Session on 25th August, and definitely before the workshop on the weekend of 27-28 August is the following:
1. Make sure you have “film” (memory card) and a charged battery, leave your flash at home.
2. Set up your camera and tripod. If you don’t have a tripod I have three spare and I will ask our helpers to bring theirs.
3. Compose the scene by using lens zoom and/or positioning yourself (with a fixed lens you use your feet to zoom in or out).
4. Manually set the Aperture.
5. Manually focus on a subject and/or set the focus ring manually for depth of field.
6. Stop down the lens and check the focus and depth of field.
7. All of the above should preferably be done by looking through the viewfinder. Using Live View at night will affect your night vision.
8. Choose a shutter speed according to the subject that you are photographing
9. Manually set the ISO speed. During twilight we will probably be working in the range 800 to 1600 or more.
10. Expose the “film” and enjoy the digital advantage of checking your histogram for good exposure.
11. Bracket your exposure by +/-1 and also by +/-2 stops => by varying shutter speed not aperture or ISO.
During the class session I will explain the procedure carefully and give you examples of scenes, reasons the specific settings were chosen, and show you histograms – and the images resulting from my efforts.
WORKSHOP TIME AND LOCATION:
Boathouse Drive, south bank of the Yarra, see attached map and also the
views, Sun 28th August. Fallback date is Sunday 4th September. Be there before sunset (5:55pm) to set up
and take photos during civil twilight which ends 6:20pm or stay on for nautical
twilight which ends 6:50pm. During this time the sky turns a beautiful dark
blue shade then black and the city lights look like diamonds. I will be there
from 17:30 onwards. Take note of my mobile number and e-mail me your mobile.
Bring an umbrella, there is chance of slight rain in which case we may move under cover.
Bring a small torch, you need to adjust your camera in the dark.
Be there before sunset (5:55pm) to set up and take photos during civil twilight which ends 6:20pm or stay on for nautical twilight which ends 6:50pm. During this time the sky turns a beautiful dark blue shade then black and the city lights look like diamonds. You can see two of my twilight images here:
See Yarra Footbridge Night and Planet Oz. Never mind the weird projection!
We can hire a helicopter and take pictures with fisheye lenses on another day.
Camera with wide angle or zoom lens. I would use a 17-40mm
Tripod (borrow one, I can bring a few along)
Shutter release (not essential)