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Camera Settings in the Park

Discuss and share your wildlife photography, filming and equipment
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Peter Betts
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Unread post by Peter Betts » Wed Jan 30, 2008 10:10 pm

In nature Photography you have to react and all the pros use Aperture Priority or AV ...that way the camera works out the shutterspeed for the shade /bright scenes you may confront in a hurry wheras the manual setting you set just before in full sun may be okay but drive around the corner with a Caracal/leopard crossing the road in deep shade will be a disaster at those settings. Use Manual only for take your time landscape shots.

My Default settings are 200 ISO, Aperture Priority, Continious flat out firing mode, VR/IS on all the time, and -.3 to -.7 and lens set to an F stop fairly near wide open...then you will get 90% keepers and if you have time you can adjust to get even better shots ...But remember after the shots and Before you drive away reset your default settings..this really works for me and I dont have any throw away stuff apart from too many duplicates
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NightOwl
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Unread post by NightOwl » Thu Jan 31, 2008 3:53 pm

Peter: my problem is never the settings, but rather... by the time I get the car stopped , the animal is already on it's way and SO got the best pic and not me :cry:
Part of the problem of being the driver.

But on the other hand when it's an animal that does not run, I have preference of positioning the car to suit my shots :D

Shooting M is not that difficult if you do it from the start and get used to it. Like eveything else in life, you get better with practice. I set my settings for an average scene when I start. Then when I pick the cam up and in the move I roll the ss button to what I think I'll need extra or less, for shade or bright light. Gotten pretty damn good at evaluating the scene's light and adjusting equivalent clicks. When the Cam lands on the beanbag, all I have to do is FIRE, then fine adjustments after that. I also have very high keeper rate. And shooting in RAW gives me even the ability to recover the rest.

All depends on how quick you learn the habit and how much experience you have with it. My ISO usually varies between 100 and 200, but 400 when the sun is hiding behind dark clouds.

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delboysafa
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Unread post by delboysafa » Thu Jan 31, 2008 4:46 pm

I am similar to Peter's set up. Depending on time of day, I am between 100-400 ISO. I try not to go over that if I can avoid it.

It also depends on the focal length of the lens and support for your lens. I used to use M all the time, but after a session with a pro, I now shoot exclusively in AV and my keeper rate has nearly trebled. That is my personal preference. I also keep highlight alert on to show me the 'overexposed' areas in a shot, so I can make changes and shoot again.

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DuQues
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Unread post by DuQues » Thu Jan 31, 2008 4:58 pm

Hmmmz, I hear no one on having your cameras On-switch set to the second On, so that with the controlwheel you can under- or overexpose in steps of half or one third steps by just scrolling the controlwheel on the back of your camera.
(Talking Canon here, possibly the same on Nikon.)
This is what I often use when you have very dark or bright backgrounds.
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

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delboysafa
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Unread post by delboysafa » Thu Jan 31, 2008 5:34 pm

DQ, yes, I use it sometimes, when I am not sure, but generally not. Once again - personal preference

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richardharris
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Unread post by richardharris » Fri Feb 01, 2008 3:25 pm

Its personal choice, but I use Tv. I think speed of shutter is more important than depth of field - particularly for the 'grab shot' when there is no time to set things up.

I use the rear wheel to select focus points; exposure compensation is with a thumb press and top wheel. I forget to do this often enough! As I have discussed before, main problem is birds with white areas in bright sunshine. Frequently overexposed.

Richard

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bert
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Unread post by bert » Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:19 pm

NightOwl wrote:Peter: my problem is never the settings, but rather... by the time I get the car stopped , the animal is already on it's way and SO got the best pic and not me :cry:
Part of the problem of being the driver.


:lol: :lol: :lol:
And with the setup on my lap as well.

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Joubie
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CANON: PICTURE STYLE

Unread post by Joubie » Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:55 pm

Going to the KTP for 10 days next week and I do not want to shoot in RAW. Can someone please recommend the best picture style and settings I can use to get the best sharpness and contrast in my photos.

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DuQues
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Re: CANON: PICTURE STYLE

Unread post by DuQues » Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:01 pm

No RAW? :shock: Oh well....

Best settings depend on the situation of course. But rule of thumb is 100 ISO, 1/125 and f/16 for landscapes.
Shooting wildlife you should go to f/8, maybe f/5.6 depending on your lens. (Widest opening at full zoom plus one stop.)

With Lightroom you can edit jpeg files as well.
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c

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Joubie
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Location: Port Elizabeth, South Africa

Re: CANON: PICTURE STYLE

Unread post by Joubie » Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:21 pm

@Touareg. We are arriving in KTP on the 25/3.
Twee Riviern 25/3
Nossob 26,27,28,29
Mata Mata 30,31,1,2
I usually shoot in JPEG and RAW but my laptop with Photoshop on, the hard drive crashed and needs to be replaced.
I usually use standard picture style with the settings Sharpness 6, Contrast +3, Saturation +2, Colour tone 0. Just worried that it's a tad over and I can't fix afterwards.

@DuQues I usually use the setting you recommended.

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WarrenP
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Re: CANON: PICTURE STYLE

Unread post by WarrenP » Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:22 pm

I always shoot in RAW and large jpeg. That gives me the ability to use the large good quality jpgs for general quick viewing etc and I have the RAW files if I want to do recovery etc.

As for settings, as mentioned wildlife normally benefits from large apertures, so you can blur the background and get fast shutter speeds to limit shake. Set your ISO as low as possible but at a setting that will give you decent shutter speeds. Most modern camera deliver very good quality pics at the higher ISOs.

Some other advice is to play around with your camera so you know what it can and cant do, before you go so you don't get any nasty surprises.
Get a bean bag.

and most of all enjoy!!
Only when the last tree has died, the last river has been poisoned and the last fish has been caught, will we realize that we cannot eat money. -Cree Proverb

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DuQues
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Re: CANON: PICTURE STYLE

Unread post by DuQues » Thu Mar 15, 2012 7:49 pm

I possibly have a "more advanced" camera, but I always shoot RAW. And RAW only. I don see a need for jpeg, it only eats up space and I almost never use them.
For lets us call it "incidents" in the parks, where people go into the wrong, there is a very handy button on my camera, which forces it to take the next photo in RAW and jpeg. I have a USB card reader with me. Then the reception at the nearest camp can download the jpeg of the offender, and fine him. That is the only time I shoot jpeg.

But then again, I have one (or two) portable harddisks with me, like these: http://www.nextodi.com/product/eXtreme_en.html with 500 GB disks in them.
So if a photo takes up 30 MB or 5 MB doesn't really bother me. I just don't like the camera to make choices for me.

But again, space is an issue, when you get back and are confident you will be able to process all your photos in a month, grab Lightroom: http://www.adobe.com/go/EN_US_D_FP_11_T
You can download a 30-day trial, perfectly working, and it will adjust your jpeg photos too. Without altering the originals!
Not posting much here anymore, but the photo's you can follow here There is plenty there.

Feel free to use any of these additional letters to correct the spelling of words found in the above post: a-e-t-n-d-i-o-s-m-l-u-y-h-c


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