Monday, July 25, 2011

Exercise 4.8 - Tungsten and Fluorescent light

This exercise consist of two parts:


Fort his part I had to take three pictures in a room lit by tungsten lamp with different white balances. The frame had to cover both indoors and outdoors objects.

18mm; f/11; 1/3 sec; ISO 400; white balance - Incandescent

18mm; f/11; 1/3 sec; ISO 400; white balance - Sunny

18mm; f/11; 1/3 sec; ISO 400; white balance - Auto

The Incandescent white balance works the best here. The lighting outside and inside look most natural and balanced. "Sunny" white balance adds too much of yellow colour and outside objects are not seen at all. "Auto" white balance makes indoors both indoors and outdoors parts of the picture a bit overexposed.


For this part I had to take images in rooms lit by fluorescent light, setting white balance to Auto and Fluorescent and identify the difference.  

18mm; f/10; 1/6 sec; white balance - Fluorescent 3 

18mm; f/10; 1/6 sec; white balance - Auto

In this case the difference can be only slightly seen. Fluorescent lamp is hanging on the ceiling and light is spread in the whole room. fluorescent white balance adds a bit of green colour to the picture. 

For the second pair of pictures I took small fluorescent lamp in the kitchen and experimented a bit wth different levels of fluorescent white balance. 

58mm; f/10; 1/3 sec; white balance - Fluorescent 3

58mm; f/10; 1/3 sec; white balance - Fluorescent 2

58mm; f/10; 1/3 sec; white balance - Fluorescent 1

58mm; f/10; 1/3 sec; white balance - Auto

As can be noticed here, the higher is the level of Fluorescent, the more green tone is added to the picture.  
The most natural is the one set to Fluorescent 2. Auto and Fluorescent 1 have too much of yellow, and they are actually quite similar to each other, while the fluorescent 3 makes picture too "green".

It may be concluded, that white balance set to Fluorescent is preferable with relevant lighting conditions. Though different levels of the balance should be taken into consideration when taking pictures with such lighting.   

Exercise 4.7 - Outdoors at night

The task was to take a couple of pictures outdoors at night.
I decided also to practice with different white balances there. I took 4 pictures - with white balances set to Auto, Fluorescent, Tungsten and Sunny. Then, I have chosen two out of them that looked the best. these were shots taken at white balance set to Auto and Sunny. Both Fluorescent and Tungsten gave too much of  blue colour.

70mm; f/16; 3 sec; white balance - Auto

70mm; f/16; 3 sec; white balance - Sunny

Out of these two pictures I like the one taken with "Sunny" white balance the most. It gives warmer colours and more natural tones.

120 mm; f/16; 3 sec; white balance - Auto

120 mm; f/16; 3 sec; white balance - Sunny

In this case both "Auto" and "Sunny" look fine, but Sunny gives more saturation to the light. The focus is not sharp enough on both pictures. It was quite windy and boats were slightly moving on the water, which became obvious with 3 seconds of shutter speed.

12mm; f/18; 6 sec; white balance - sunny; ISO 400

In this case it was not completely dark outside, but to take this picture I had to set ISO to 400 and shutter speed to 6 seconds. As there was no wind, the sharpness is also fine.

The first thing  learned from this exercise is that outdoors pictures look most natural and colours temperature is warmer with white balance set to Sunny. There are many different opportunities for outdoors photography at night - from city streets to harbors and single buildings with interesting lighting. I will definitely explore more of them in the future.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Exercise 4.6 - Cloudy weather and rain

The exercise consists of three parts, that covered three different types of weather - cloudy, overcast and rain:

1. Cloudy weather: in every pair one shot has been taken when the sun was covered by a cloud and another shot when sun was shining.

35mm; f/14; 1/80 sec

35mm; f/7.1; 1/80

The difference between two pictures in obvious: the one in the shadow is not that bright and the sky on the background is grey. For this pair of shots I had to adjust the aperture from 14 to 7, as the shutter speed was 1/80 and I would not be able to shoot from hands, if I switched to slower shutter speed.

38mm; f/8.0; 1/125 sec

35mm; f/8.0; 1/80 sec

In this pair of shots, again, there is no shadow on the grass and the green color of trees is different on these two pictures. In this case I managed to keep the aperture the same, and the shutter speed was 1/125 and 1/80.  

42mm; f/8.0; 1/60 sec

46mm; f/10; 1/250 sec

In the third case I adjusted both aperture and shutter speed. The color temperature and saturation is definitely different on these two shots. Also, the road is a bit overexposed on the first picture. 

The shadow influences the tone, temperature and colors saturation. The shutter speed increases about 1/3 when shooting in shadow. In all three cases, I definitely like the pictures taken on the sun. 

2. Overcast day:

46mm; f/14.0; 1/160 sec

On this picture the lack of shadow does not disturb the subject. The only thing that could have been improved is the sky saturation. Maybe, if the shot was taken at different time during the day not at 12.00, the sky would look a bit more saturated.

200mm; f/6.3; 1/500 sec

On this picture the shadow on the donkey is a bit distracting. I think it would be better in shade, because the eyes and other features would be seen better.

38mm; f/22.0; 1/60 sec

The roof probably looks a bit flat here, and also too much light on the background make the hills flat and the sky a too light. 

Shooting in overcast day is not the easiest task, as it may seem in the beginning. Many objects look too flat, and shadows may be disturbing, when you need to highlight some details. 

3. Rainy weather:

23mm; f/4.5; 1/1600 sec; ISO 800

250mm; f/6.3; 1/640 sec; ISO 800

The rain gives very interesting options for shooting. I wouldn't take a shot of the church on the first picture, if there was no reflection on the road and dark clouds behind the church. The same with the second shot. The cat together with glistering pavement it looks quite nice. Both shots were taken at higher ISO 800. I should have used ISO 400 for the church, but for the moving cat I definitely needed higher speed.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Exercise 4.5 - Light through the day

In this exercise I had to take several pictures of the same spot through the day. The aim was to see, how the lighting in sunny day changes through the whole day and how different the subject and the background looks at a given point in time.
All shots were taken at 42-46mm focal distance. I also tried to keep aperture at f/20, where possible. ISO was set at 200 for all pictures.
The pictures were taken on the eastern coast of Corfu island. As it was eastern coast, the number of shots in the morning is a bit more than in the evening.  

Time: 5.30 a.m

42mm; f/16; 3.0 sec 

The colors are bright in the dusk and the sky is showing clearly three colors changing one another - from orange to light blue. Only contour of the mountain is seen on this shot.

Time: 6.00 a.m

42mm; f/20; 1/15 sec

Compared to the previous shot, there was more light, and colors became less saturated. Also, the shutter speed is not that long. Within half an hour it has changed from 3 seconds to 1/15 sec. The contour of the mountain is now dark grey as opposed to black on the previous shot.  

Time: 6.30 a.m

78mm; f/20; 1/30 sec

Here I changed the angle of shooting a bit, though it was according to the exercise. But everything is possible for the sake of good shot. I have also use a gradual ND filter here P21. Otherwise, the sun would be extremely bright and would lit the whole picture. So, I am not quite sure if this shot can be counted as part of the exercise.

Time: 8.30 a.m:

46mm; f/20; 1/500 

As sun was high enough at this time of the day, the colors of the on the shot have changed dramatically and made everything light blue. Though, as it was not too high yet, the shadows and different contours of mountains are seen much clearer than on the previous pictures. The shutter speed was shorter than on all previous shots.

Time: 10.00 a.m:

46mm; f/20; 1/80

The colors look more saturated here, and more patterns of the mountains can be recognized on the shot. the shot has been take from the shadow. I think it has also influence the level of colors saturation.

Time: 12.00 a.m

46mm; f/20; 1/60 sec

This shot has been taken at midday, and with at this time I decided to use polarizing filter to diffuse some of the light, as there was more then enough sun. The colors of the sea have changed during the last couple of hours. And some clouds appeared on the sky. It can be seen how the color of the sea has changed from the light blue to different lines of blue color and a green tone appeared.

Time: 14.00 p.m

46mm; f/20; 1/40

The difference between 12.00 and 14.00 is not that obvious. Though, because the sun is a bit lower and there are more clouds on the sky, the mountains and the pattern of the trees is more obvious. This shot has also been taken with polarizing filter. 

Time: 16.00 p.m 

46mm; f/20; 1/125 sec 

This shot has been taken without polarizing filter, which allowed faster shutter speed. Though, the saturation of the colors is less. 

Time 18.00 p.m : 
42mm; f/11; 1/125

At 18.00 a.m the colors became more like in the morning, turning from saturated blue and green into the light blue. The mountain itself is now a bit in the mist. The color of clouds has also changed into light grey. To be able to shoot from hands I had to change the aperture to f/11.

Time: 20.30 p.m

46mm; f/20; 2,5 sec

The whole picture is completely blue here, very similar to the morning one taken at 08.30 a.m. what makes the difference is the shutter speed. In the morning it was 1/500 sec, and in the evening it is 2,5 sec. 
That's why the sea surface looks different on these two pictures. 

This shot was actually the last one that I managed to take that day. It was completely dark outside, when I came back one hour later. 

As these ten shots are showing, the amount of light and the time of the day when the pictures are taken is  one of the main factors influencing the picture. The number of colors, the colors saturation and the temperature are different at different points in time during the day.