On3legs | Shepherding Lights
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Shepherding Lights

Understanding Exposure

I was asked recently to explain how to use manual mode on a DSLR by a friend of mine. I get this question a lot and is it any wonder… DSLR (Camera’s in general) have a lot of buttons and dials, and some of them can be downright confusing.

I shoot 95% of the time in Aperture Priority (AV on Canon), this is where I get to control the aperture on the camera and it will work out the rest using the metering mode. This works really well in most situations but there are times when shutter priority or full manual mode is needed.

You will need to understand the relationship between ISO, Shutter Speed and Aperture and how each mode works to get the most out of your camera. I call it the Bermuda Triangle of Photography because it is where everyone gets lost!

I have a page on my blog HERE that you can read if you’re keen on learning how to take creative control over your camera.

Today’s iCandy – Shepherding Light

On my short trip to the south island of New Zealand, right on the top of my must visit list was the Church of the Good Shepherd. It is located at Lake Tekapo and is one of the most photographed churches, if not the most photographed church in NZ. After dinner I wanted to head out to capture the church at night. Lake Tekapo is well known for being one of the best spots to see the stars at night. This particular night wasn’t the best due to a very full and bright moon, the plus side was that it lit up the side of the building nicely!

Whenever I photograph something that has been photographed a million and one times, I like to get a unique shot, My wife Nikki came up with a great idea and grabbed a torch and ran from window to window on the other side of the church as I took a 30 second exposure, this is how I achieved the light you see in the windows… Remember, to see The Technical Mumbo Jumbo it is below the photo.

The Church of the Good Shepherd

The Technical Mumbo Jumbo

[tabbed tabs=”Camera|Mode|ISO|Aperture|Shutter|Lens|Filter|Other info”] [tab] I used my trusty D800 for this one [/tab] [tab] Manual Mode was used giving me creative control [/tab] [tab] ISO500 – I always shoot as low as possible but in this case, cars kept coming up the road and their headlights were wrecking my shot, so I bumped it up to ISO500 for a quicker shot [/tab] [tab] f4 – Luckily this lens still has a great DOF wide open at f4 allowing me to take a quicker shot (see ISO tab for why) [/tab] [tab] 30 seconds, after this my camera has to be on bulb so this was the maximum I wanted to do[/tab] [tab] Nikon 14-24mm f2.8 – my favourite UWA lens [/tab] [tab] None used [/tab] [tab] I used my RRS TVC-33 Tripod and a remote release to avoid camera shake. Once home the shot was Post processed using Lightroom 4 (very little was needed) and I used Topaz Denoise to get rid of the little bit of noise from shooting at ISO500 – try Topaz for yourself by Clicking Here – save 15% with code ‘on3legs’  [/tab] [/tabbed]

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