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Heritage Farmstead Museum Event Photography Notes

From: Guy H.
Sent on: Friday, April 18, 2014 5:27 PM

We completed the After Dark event!  We learned a couple things:

1.  A Flash is always required for event photography whether day or night.
2.  When taking pictures of people running around at night collecting eggs, an F /[masked]mm lens is not the best choice.

1. One of our members is a big practioner of "available light" photography as am I.  But there are limitations.  Night and late evening photography is one obvious limitation.  Daylight photography is not an obvious limitation.

The challenge with daylight photography is how to deal with the harsh shadows as your subject is wondering about.  This is a particular issue if they are wearing baseball hats.  The picture of the subject goes from nicely exposed in the sun to almost black in the shade.  The eyes in the shadow can look ghastly!

The answer is "fill flash".  The flash is generally set from -2/3 EV to -1 2/3 EV depending on the relationship of the sun to the subject.  The objective is to soften the shadows so the picture appears "natural" without looking over flashed.  The background should remain properly exposed.


2. The after dark event was unique.  The objective was to get pictures of people running around collecting eggs.  The problem is our camera uses the maximum light that passes through the lens to detect the focus.  The lens only "stops down" to take the picture.  The rest of the time it is wide open.  An F / 2.8 lens collects four times as much light for auto focus as a F / 5.6 lens.  I should have brougt the F /[masked] - 200 mm lens.  A lower ISO could have been used, the lens would focus faster, and the extra reach out to 200 mm  would have been helpful.

To soon old - too late smart   : (

Tomorrow we will have a daylight event.  To those who have RSVPed, the museum is looking for all kinds of pictures including artifacts on the property and in the rooms, the rooms in the house, as well as the visitors.  At the gate tell the receptionists that you are with photography club taking pictures for the Heritage Farmstead Museum.   That will get free admission.

Thanks . . . Guy

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