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Finally getting the indoor photo thing figured out....


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I bought a new camera late last year but really didn't put much effort into figuring things out until recently.  If you've seen my previous work you know that I normally photograph outdoors in a vignette setting.  Took a little time playing with my settings manually and was pretty pleased  with the outcome, much better results than I've been able to achieve previously.  Here are some shots, any critiques from photo experts and/or neophytes appreciated.  The kits are the 1/32 Eduard Bf 109E-7/Trop and the 1/32 Trumpeter Bf 109G-6.

 

Bf%20109G5_1.JPG

 

Bf%20109G5_2.JPG

 

Bf%20109G5_3.JPG

 

Bf%20109E7%20Trop_1.JPG

 

Bf%20109E7%20Trop_2.JPG

 

Bf%20109E7%20Trop_3.JPG

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Looking very good! The only thing that could be improved upon is the aperture. I don't know what aperture you chose but with a Digital SLR with an APS-C or DX-sized sensor I would use f/22 to get both ends in focus. A smaller sensor automatically gives you a bigger Depth Of Field so can have a bigger aperture / smaller f/stop number setting. You nailed the lighting, colours looking very good!

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Looking very good! The only thing that could be improved upon is the aperture. I don't know what aperture you chose but with a Digital SLR with an APS-C or DX-sized sensor I would use f/22 to get both ends in focus. A smaller sensor automatically gives you a bigger Depth Of Field so can have a bigger aperture / smaller f/stop number setting. You nailed the lighting, colours looking very good!

 

Erik, truthfully I don't what my aperture setting was.  I was playing around with the ISO settings manually, other than that I'm pretty much clueless on this stuff.  I'll play around with that next time though! Thanks for the input.

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Great pics Mike.

 

Hey, that's not the Eduard 109 is it? I heard it was unbuildable ;)

 

Yes, did you notice that huge bump on the fuselage spine just aft of the cockpit?  It just kind of jumps right out and smacks you in the face, right? :lol:

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Great photos with your new camera and fantastic finish on the 109's. I really like the desert chamofluge version!

I have several nice digital cameras but take all my pictures with my I-Phone.

 

Ralph.

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Mike,

 

ISO is only one part of the holy trinity of exposure. The other 2 pieces are shutter speed and aperture. You can arrive at the same exposure by varying the combinations

of the individual elements. Which element you vary depends on what effect you're looking for and the light conditions that are thrown at you.

 

ISO - you've already found cranking it higher allows you to use a faster shutter speed when there is less light

Shutter Speed - If you're not using a tripod you want to shoot at 1/60th second or faster (faster if say your subject is moving)

Aperture - Along with its role in controlling exposure controls 'depth-of-field'; the amount of the subject area that is in focus. Larger apertures (lower f-stops

like f1.8) blur parts of the foreground and background. Smaller apertures (higher f-stops like f16, f22) keep the entire range in focus.

 

So really you can change any or all three and get the same _exposure_ but higher ISO's translate to noise on the sensor and end up producing grainier

images especially when scaled up to larger size or cropped tightly in a photo editor.

 

For modeling purposes we have the following constraints:

 

- Our subjects aren't moving so shutter speed only matters if you're trying to hold the camera by hand

- We want to see crisp focus so we want smaller aperture values (higher f-stop numbers like f16, f22)

- We want to be able to crop closely to see detail so lower ISO values are needed (I like to use 200)

 

Now if you don't have a tripod and you set ISO 200, f22 and 1/60 shutter speed you will probably find you

have a very dark photo. Such is the beast. In order to get a proper exposure you either need to add more

light or change one of the variables.

 

If you can't add more light we want to keep f22 and ISO 200 so the only piece left to us is the shutter speed.

 

You need to find the shutter speed that will render a properly exposed image given the available light, ISO200

and f22. If you have a hand-held light meter it will tell you. Most people don't have a light meter :) but all DSLR's

come with one when you're in manual mode. When you look thru the viewfinder you will see a scale on the

bottom of the screen like the following

 

 

+ - - - - 0 - - - - _

 

When you half-press the shutter button in manual mode the camera will read the available light and tell you

whether you're going to over-expose (bars on the plus side of zero) or under-expose (bars on the negative side)

 

Now all you need to do is change the shutter speed until all the bars are gone and the meter is right on Zero.

 

When you do this you're going to find the shutter speed the camera wants to use is something like 3 or 4 seconds. There's

no way you can hold the camera for that long and not make small movements that end up causing your photo to

blur. This is why a tripod is pretty much mandatory. The other trick once the camera is on the tripod is to

use the timer function on the camera. This will get rid of the small movement you create when you press the

shutter

 

Hopefully you have a DSLR and all of the above might be of some use to you. If you just have a point and shoot

then you will find all of the above still applies but not all point and shoots have a built-in light meter that

can help you arrive at the proper shutter speed.

 

 

 

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Jeff,

 

Thanks for the tutorial!  My camera is a Sony NEX-F3, I believe I have the capability to manually adjust all the settings that you mentioned.  I do have a tripod as well, I'm going to do a little experimentation this weekend to see if I can improve on what I've done.

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Just looked that Sony up on dpreview. It indeed has an APS-C format sensor, so it pays to set the aperture to f./22. You can try the same shot with f./16 to look of the front and rear are still sharp. The lowest ISO-setting on your camera is 200, use that. As already written above, it gives you the least noise-induced artifacts.

 

Use a STURDY tripod, not the cheapest you can find. Using the timer function is indeed a great tip, or the remote control if your cam has that. Shooting in RAW is very good because it gives you control of the final photo. Normally RAW is just that; the raw data off the sensor. However, Sony is known to use some form of (lossy) compression on their RAW files. RAW files always need to be sharpened as part of the digital workflow in programs such as Camera RAW or Lightroom. Although JPEG's have less "bandwith" to play with the white balance and exposure in such programs; if you are happy with the results straight from the camera, there is no reason not to use JPEG's from the camera.

 

If you decide to tweak your photos in RAW before converting them to JPEG; don't forget to calibrate the screen of your computer! Standard TFT-screens are always way too blue!

 

http://spyder.datacolor.com/display-calibration/ 

 

http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/sony-nex-f3/sony-nex-f3A.HTM

 

http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials.htm 

 

http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tutorials/macro-lenses.htm

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OK, I'm still having depth of field issues.  The following were taken on a tripod and using the timer, ISO 200, and truthfully I'm not sure about my other settings "1/20 and F11", can't find any thing with the lower case "f."  When I set the upper case "F" to 22 the picture becomes almost black so obviously doing something wrong.

 

EDIT: Using a shutter speed of 1/3 seems to help depth of field focus but washes out the photos a little.  Is this just a matter of playing with my settings until I find something that works with my particular lighting setup?
 
bf109g6_black4_9.JPG

bf109g6_black4_10.JPG

 

bf109g6_black4_11.JPG

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Can't speak for your camera. Try playing around with your shutter speed.  Flash on, flash off. Try 100ISO at 2 seconds and so on. Have your camera hooked up to your computer while your taking pictures so you can immediately see your results.

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