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Old Apr 11, 2007, 2:43 AM   #11
PDL
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snostorm wrote:
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If you choose not to learn and use it, you're only limiting your ability to get the shot that you might really want in a given situation.

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Of course, YMMV, but this really is a subject with no "right" answer, and has been argued since the times of view cameras and flash powder.

Scott
I think I have been insulted - no not really - but none the less. I have extensive experience with flash - old school (flash bulbs - real ones not cubes) to being the first on the block with a strobe. 30+ years of using flash - I do know when to use it and how to use it - I just do not like it.

Using bounce flash to smooth out shadows is one way of using flash - and yes - I can usually tell if flash was used in a situation - bounced or not. White balance is an issue - but if you understand the power of gels taped over the flash head then color balance is not really an issue. PP does not do a great job of "fixing" flash given things like a mixture of florescent, mercury vapor, halogen, tungsten and daylight (better known as the cafeteria where I work) - you just go with the WB that does not make the people look like they are sick.

The main thing - other that the just plain rudeness of flash - that I do not care for (even bounced) is that it appears that the camera is the source of the light - dead give away. I am in the market for a off camera flash (it is necessary sometimes remember?) but it will not be attached to the hot shoe - there will be the appropriate adapters and a cable. Get the flash away from being axial to the lens. If I need more that one flash - I will dig out the old Goldstar and the light activated SCR (and the circuit my dad showed me) and build my own slave.

Look at flash images and you will see a preponderance of blown out whites - pasty white skin with blue veins and dark black backgrounds. Not a pretty picture - when in doubt use available light - or be a pain in the vertical smile and blast away.

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Old Apr 11, 2007, 2:51 AM   #12
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Well said and the just what I was getting at.... and I agree Flash is last resort or shutter speed of ultimate inportance. (even if just effectively so as flash duration)
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Old Apr 11, 2007, 3:00 AM   #13
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snostorm wrote:
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Flash needs pretty static conditions?

I guess that using flash for macros of moving critters or wind-blown flowers (or just to overcome my inability to handhold 1:1 at the shutter speeds required for any DOF @ f11 -16), or freezing the action in sports, or catching water drops (or even bullets) in mid air, or kids (or pets) running around indoors
Thank you for verifying my point.... with the possible exception of sports.... ALL your examples are yes relatively static, contained, controled situations.

And guessing by sports maybe even thinking basketball... again a contained situation.
And I bet all those players trying to keep their eye on the ball really appreciate that blinding flash too.

In fact a local tightrope walker at Mallory Square Sunset PROHIBITS FLASH .... but sure as shoot some AH does anyways.... just what one needs 15 ft above concrete often in wind balancing on a 1 inch cable, needing a constant horizon reference to do so.

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Old Apr 11, 2007, 11:54 AM   #14
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The plans for building your own slave flash would be of great interst here - if you care to share?


As to flash, I use it when I feel it is necessary. No hard or fast rules about it. It really comes into what I am trying to say on the shot. If flash will help the shot I use it, freeze action, add a catchlight etc. If it doesn't I leave it off.


Darren
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Old Apr 11, 2007, 2:41 PM   #15
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Hayward wrote:
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snostorm wrote:
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Flash needs pretty static conditions?

I guess that using flash for macros of moving critters or wind-blown flowers (or just to overcome my inability to handhold 1:1 at the shutter speeds required for any DOF @ f11 -16), or freezing the action in sports, or catching water drops (or even bullets) in mid air, or kids (or pets) running around indoors
Thank you for verifying my point.... with the possible exception of sports.... ALL your examples are yes relatively static, contained, controled situations.

Sorry. but we must be speaking different languages -- static is usually defined as non-moving, stable, not changing, which does not apply to any of my examples.

And guessing by sports maybe even thinking basketball... again a contained situation.

Contained only in the sense that it's played within boundaries. I doubt that you'd get too much support for your contention that it's a static sport -- especially from those who play the game seriously.

And I bet all those players trying to keep their eye on the ball really appreciate that blinding flash too.

That's irrelevant to the point -- but the fact is that big time sports shooters mount RF controlled strobes in the rafters of indoors sporting events to get those sharp as a tack shots of players in mid-air.

In fact a local tightrope walker at Mallory Square Sunset PROHIBITS FLASH .... but sure as shoot some AH does anyways.... just what one needs 15 ft above concrete often in wind balancing on a 1 inch cable, needing a constant horizon reference to do so.

Again, irrelevant to the subject, which I thought was "natural" looking flash shots.

You've obviously missed my point -- perhaps I can state it more clearly --

I shoot mostly in natural light, but when that's not reasonable, I, apparently unlike you, will without reservation use flash since I'm constantly running into situations where the available light is just not enough to get the shot that I want. If you've seen any of my pic posts, you'd probably note that I'm constanly stretching the 1/FL "rule", with sometimes surprisingly good results.

I'm in the process (which will probably be an ongoing one) of learning the best ways to make my use of flash as transparent as possible -- to get "natural" looking images. I feel that if the use of flash helps me get more acceptable exposures, then it's something that I need to learn. You apparently feel that this is a futile endeavor -- I don't, and feel that your view of using auxillary light sources is very limiting.

So be it -- different strokes and such. . .

Scott
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Old Apr 11, 2007, 4:25 PM   #16
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i'd like to see some of your available light shots hayward. i can't remember but about 3 or 4 shots that you have posted and i know at least 1 of those was with flash. i'm an available light guy from WAY back but when the flash is needed i use it. i do try to get it off camera tho.
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Old Apr 11, 2007, 5:00 PM   #17
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And because I'm a strict "available light"-guy (having the fastest lenses Pentaxever made, except the 50 mm 1.2) I recently bought a second flash unit, to be able to bounce in two directions at the same time. There is a learning experience involved, and believe me, learning new stuff can be fun!

Kjell
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Old Apr 11, 2007, 7:14 PM   #18
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kjell,
fast lenses?? have you got the 135mm f1.8.. if you do, i think i may have a younger sister that's still available!!!

roy
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Old Apr 12, 2007, 12:01 AM   #19
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With a fast lens - a reasonably high ISO (800 is about as high as I like to go - even though I one of my favorite shots was at 3200) and SR in the K10D - the use of flash is even lower on my list of things to fall back on. I do recognize the need - or desire - to use flash in certain situations. I just come from a visual background where shallow DOF and a little blur is not something to be frowned upon. I am looking to purchase a good off camera flash - the one I bought for my SF1 does not work with Pentax's digital cameras - too bad it is not too shabby but it sure does not work.

To repeat what Hayward said - there are places where flash is prohibited - so to get images you have to rely on what you have learned about exposure, leaning up against the wall-post-person-door jam or use a tripod. Not everything has to be frozen it time - pasty white highlights that look like the sun is above your right eye (or left) and pitch black backgrounds. Will I use flash in the future? yes - but it will not make me feel good - just like cropping - causes artistic pain.

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Old Apr 12, 2007, 12:35 AM   #20
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PDL wrote:
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there are places where flash is prohibited - so to get images you have to rely on what you have learned about exposure, leaning up against the wall-post-person-door jam or use a tripod. Not everything has to be frozen it time - pasty white highlights....
Now from tonight a prime example, flash even bounce (and it was a black ceiling) would totally distroy the stage colorations, tonality, texture and depth, and actually personally I think the blur of musicians actually playing works in favor as well.

PS I have some sharper shots from this, but just wanted one with playing motion for demonstrstion. Note the faces aren't out of focus just moving slightly (mike and other things are in focus)
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