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Old Dec 5, 2010, 6:08 PM   #1
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Default a little fz38 guidance if you please.

hello my name is tom and i am new to this forum and new to the art of advanced photography for that matter. i am used to using a standard p+s camera and that suited my needs up until the arrival of my beatiful baby girl lyla-mae 7 months ago! i have always been a point and shoot type of photographer and preferred to have lots of sub-standard photos from events and never really worried about IQ etc.that has all come to a sudden change now lylas around and i began searching for a way to preserve her childhood in perfect detail! i looked at dslrs and hd camcorders but wanted the two to be combined in one package without having all the extra weight to carry as lyla has enough luggage for us to cart around already. i came to the conclusion that i had been beaten and there was nothing i could find or do. however by chance i stumbled upon a web page talking about a breed of camera i had never heard of a "bridge" camera! after reading hundreds and hundreds of web pages and reviews i decided the fz38 was the one for me. and i still stand by this despite have a few niggling things i hope you more experienced photographers can iron out for me. my main gripe is the inconsistency in my shots. i have taken some 400 photos since receiving this camera last wednesday and only around 20-30 have turned out how i would like them to and in fact i have even shot some that made me go wow! but on the other hand the ones that are bad are really bad, but i cant fathom out why and its driving me insane! take this one for instance, why all the furry edges around lyla? is that a focusing issue? is taht what you refer to as noise? i really have been tying loads of tips from this site but cant get anywhere near the shots i have seen flying around the forum! loads of my pics have ended up like this and i hope its not a fault with my camera. although i put it down to user error more than likely!
http://picasaweb.google.com/10289136...20373699851730


next issue i have is that pictures come out either under or over exposed like this
http://lh5.ggpht.com/_dSd41qBxfTA/TP...0101205_64.JPG

sorry im using links however i cannot figure out how to get my picasa photos on here and have tried loads of times bt it just keep deleting all my text. any help or info regarding taking better indoor baby photos would be very much appreciated. regards tom.
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Old Dec 5, 2010, 7:18 PM   #2
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[QUOTE=skowi;1174900]take this one for instance, why all the furry edges around lyla? is that a focusing issue? is taht what you refer to as noise? i really have been tying loads of tips from this site but cant get anywhere near the shots i have seen flying around the forum! loads of my pics have ended up like this and i hope its not a fault with my camera. although i put it down to user error more than likely!
http://picasaweb.google.com/10289136...20373699851730

The "furry" edges are caused by movement by either the camera or the subject. Since other things in the shot are also fuzzy, I assume you weren't holding the camera steady. Also, according to the image information, your shutter speed was 1/8, which is extremely slow and near impossible to hold the camera steady. If you want to shoot indoors without flash, you need a tripod.

I'll let somebody else comment on the flash over-exposure issue. I don't do enough indoor flash photography to offer any help.....
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 12:25 AM   #3
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Hi tom, I'm completely new to photography, and have noticed this problem a little, and I am going to try to explain to you how I've done my shots I suggest trying out manual to understand aperture and shutter speed better, then use either aperture priority or shutter priority, depending on your needs

EDIT: while writing this, you better look at this to understand aperture and shutter speed better: http://www.photonhead.com/beginners/...ndaperture.php

1st issue, the "noise" or grainy look --> your iso is WAYYY to high. the is is the sensitivity to light, lower ISOs have better color accuracy, less of a grainy look, but they are way darker. With a flash, ISO 100 is perfect. without, ISO 100 should still do the job, try to keep you ISO at 100 (apparently ISO 100 is best for this camera, though illogical that 80 isn't, this is just how it is). You can change the ISO in the menu I believe

2nd issue is the blur --> your shutter speed is too slow. Shutter speed is basically how long the thing opens to absorb the light, the fastest shutter speeds (1/1600 1/1000 etc) will capture the moment great, without blur (ie: you could be shaking like a 120yr old grandpa and the picture will be perfectly still without motion blur) BUT not much light will come in (not much of a problem for close-range flash indoor pictures). Preferably set this at 1/30 or faster, maybe 1/60, depending on your subjects movement and your hand's steadyness and your need for light.

3rd problem, overexposure --> The automatic of the camera doesn't factor in the flash enough when in close range, and too much in the long range. Therefore, you have to set your settings yourself. Read my edit to understand aperture and shutter speed. The FZ35/38's best aperture (best Image quality) is between f4 and f5.6, if you can, stay around there. Also understand the field of depth and the blurred backgrounds and stuff. Without a flash, F2.8 or the lowest you can get would be the best, and a slow shutter speed like 1/30~1/15 willl be good, depending on your initial lighting. With flash, F5~5.6 and shutters of 1/60 minimum, but probably 1/250 work best for me, remember to keep at ISO 100



Try whatever I posted, and experiment yourself, this is just the fruit of my experimentation hopefully I can provide examples with my pictures once I upload them

Hopefully what I said is at least semi-truthful lo

If you want, PM me with your MSN or AIM thing, we could chat a share ideas, and I can easily give you pointers and answer your questions with the small experience that I have

Last edited by n-ster; Dec 6, 2010 at 12:29 AM.
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 2:49 PM   #4
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thanks for the replies guys i appreciate you sharing your wisdom! saly i have seen many of your images and i can only dream of shots like yours! i have read lots of articles on shutter speed,iso and aperture but couldnt quite grasp the concepts! After i wrote this post last night i decided to give youtube a chance as i feel i learn more from watching how things are done rather than pages upon pages of text. i found this video really helpful and made it all crystal clear. i dont know if what this guy is saying is correct and would like someone to verify that so i know im on the right track! here is the link and hope it can be of some use to others.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nk78nH3d8hU

n-ster i dont really tend to use any instant messagers as i simply dont have the time due to working long hours and the baby keeping me busy although any help you can give me in a different way will be greatly appreciated!
i think that now i understand the concept of photography i will do a million times better than before and have promptly reset my camera back to factory settings as i didnt have a clue what i was altering lol. thanks again guys
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 3:05 PM   #5
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test out what you have learned and report back perhaps even show us some new pictures of that cute little girl of yours? :P
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 3:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skowi View Post
thanks for the replies guys i appreciate you sharing your wisdom! saly i have seen many of your images and i can only dream of shots like yours! i have read lots of articles on shutter speed,iso and aperture but couldnt quite grasp the concepts! After i wrote this post last night i decided to give youtube a chance as i feel i learn more from watching how things are done rather than pages upon pages of text. i found this video really helpful and made it all crystal clear. i dont know if what this guy is saying is correct and would like someone to verify that so i know im on the right track! here is the link and hope it can be of some use to others.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nk78nH3d8hU

n-ster i dont really tend to use any instant messagers as i simply dont have the time due to working long hours and the baby keeping me busy although any help you can give me in a different way will be greatly appreciated!
i think that now i understand the concept of photography i will do a million times better than before and have promptly reset my camera back to factory settings as i didnt have a clue what i was altering lol. thanks again guys
skowi - thank you for your compliment, but honestly I only post my good shots. I have a SD card full of bad shots I don't show anyone...
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 3:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saly View Post
skowi - thank you for your compliment, but honestly I only post my good shots. I have a SD card full of bad shots I don't show anyone...
Isn't that true for most great photographers? xD I need a few shots for an acceptable shot, and like 10 for a good shot (at least in full manual) In auto or aperture/shutter priority only need 3~6 shots for a good shot

Last edited by n-ster; Dec 6, 2010 at 3:23 PM.
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 3:27 PM   #8
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A few things to try-
There is a 'baby' option under the SCN setting that you might want to try
Use the flash even when you don't have to but set it to a lower intensity (press the +/- button three times to change the flash intensity. First is the ev, second is the auto-bracketing and third is the flash intensity)
Set the flash to sync 2nd which I think balances out the light instead of it all being on the foreground subject
Stand further back and use the zoom so the flash is less intense
Manually reduce the exposure by 1/3 as I find the FZ38 tends to overexpose a bit anyway
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 4:27 PM   #9
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skowi-

The youtube tutorial is basically correct and factual, though it has a lot of generalizations. Your Picasa photos shows that your FZ-38 is functioning properly, but you are not using all of its features. Several of the flash photos are over exposed (too bright in their appearance and showing some loss of image detail), which could be overcome nicely with the FZ-38's Flash Compensation feature.

The blur that you have in several photos is caused by the FZ-38 using a very slow shutter speed (as Salay pointed out, rather nicely). You can overcome the blurring by numerically increasing the ISO speed on your camera.

You will notice that your photos have different color tones to them. That is because you are not changing the WB or white balance when shooting indoors without flash.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Dec 6, 2010, 5:00 PM   #10
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thanks martin and great job with the auto hdr software it works wonders for photos! unfortunately lyla is in bed now so cant get any more pics using my new techniques lol. i did however manage to find find a rare, wild, rubber duck wandering through my living room so took some 250 pictures of it while altering settings and seeing what happened to the exposure and image quality. you may laugh but it worked wonders for helping me understand. it was a good subject because i used the eye on it as my focal point and it helped me to practice keeping the camera still. i had some great results from shooting this duck and nearly all the pictures turned out 100 times better than the ones i took of lyla the other day apart from the ones where i went into the extremes of really low isos/f stops and fastest shutter speeds. (although this could be due to the fact it stayed perfectly still throughout its shoot!)
however i took took 2 shots of mr.duck from the same position with exactly the same settings/light etc and they turned out massively different? ill show the links below
http://lh5.ggpht.com/_dSd41qBxfTA/TP...0101206_73.JPG
http://lh4.ggpht.com/_dSd41qBxfTA/TP...0101206_72.JPG
is this all part of the photography fun? i mean i now know the effects shutter speed apperture and iso have on an shots so after a bit more playing around with these is the next step knowing how light will fall on the subject at various angles?
@saly yes i know that experts like yourself often take many photos of the same subject before they get the result they want however i cant help but feel that your "bad" shots would still be 100 times better than my best ones. but practice makes perfect!

@n-ster hope you noticed i have dropped the shutter speed which in turn has removed the furryness! cheers.

@martin i will try those settings when i get in from work tomorrow and catch lyla up to the usual mischief. i also find that i dont like the results this or many other cameras choose for certain situations that was why i began looking at learning to create my own images.

regards, tom
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