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Old Nov 10, 2008, 1:15 PM   #1
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Here's the equipment I own:

Canon EOS Digital Rebel Xti

18 - 55 EFS Canon IS lens 3.5 - 5.6

55-250 EFS Canon IS lens 4.30 - 5.6

28 - 135 EF Canon 3.5 - 5.6

50 mm EF 1.8

430 EX Flash & Gary Fong's LightSphere II & Generic Tripod

Using what I have to do:

A: Indoor Portrait work, what combination of equipment AV / iso settings would you suggest I start with?

B: Outdoor Portrait work, what combination of equipment, AV / iso settings would you suggest I start with?

I'm new at this and I'm getting closer to good stuff, but right now I am not happy at all with the quality of work I'm doing. Maybe hearing from you guys a better place to start, will help me progress more quickly.

It's not my intention to turn pro. But I am tired of shooting bad shots.

I'm sure I need to upgrade equipment to get a lower f.stop, like the 2.5 range. That's not in the budget right now.

Thanks a bunch!

FP








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Old Nov 10, 2008, 2:28 PM   #2
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Hi,
Don't think in terms of equiptment, think in what a story you want to tell.
Often the best work is done in natural light with whatever you have available.

If you want to use flash two are often very nice to have, or at least one with an off camera cord to use it on an angle.

Hope this helps.

Greetings,
Frank
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Old Nov 10, 2008, 2:59 PM   #3
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Dear Frank,

Thanks for your faith in me, but I'd really like to hear your thoughts when you start a indoor or outdoor portrait shoot. I'm guessing you start somewhere then make adjustments after you've seen your a few examples of your product.

So if you had my bag, which lens would you grab and where would you start with settings?

Thanks for your help. I appreciate the idea of telling the story.... but right now, I got no photos living "happily ever after!"

Michael




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Old Nov 10, 2008, 6:13 PM   #4
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Hi Michael,

You could use any of the lenses that you have to get some good results, they will be different, have a different feel, but they can still be good. The settings I use will give one type of result and then the settings used by Frank will give another...... also, if Frank and I used exactly the same kit and the same settings, I know which would turn out best, and it wouldn't be mine!!

For indoors if you want to go creative then go for the 50mm f1.8 but it might not be wide enough depending on space if you want full length.

As for outdoor you can get away with a longer lens so the 55-250 might give some nice results.

As for the settings that will depend on light, the depth of field you want etc etc so play around and see what differences you get.

One thing you might find helpful is to look through some of the portrait shots here and find ones you like and ask people how they got them.

If you have some shots you've taken that you are not happy with then post them and ask for advice how to improve. Yes, settings are a factor, but composition, pose and lighting are key.

Mark
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Old Nov 10, 2008, 6:23 PM   #5
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FaithfulPastor wrote:
Quote:
I'm sure I need to upgrade equipment to get a lower f.stop, like the 2.5 range. That's not in the budget right now.
I just realised I didn't answer this point but would say no, you don't need to be in that range for portraits, yes it can be used, but in the right place.

If you take a look at the thread "a quick write up and shots " by Frank the aperture that he uses for the shots are as follows.

F7.1

F14

F2.8

F10

F7.1

F23

Also using a couple of shots of my own lower quality work I've not pushed the extremes in the thread "This weekends wedding 18th Oct 2008" the aperture values used are:

F8

F8

F4

F3.2 (purely for light not for artistic effect)
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Old Nov 10, 2008, 7:19 PM   #6
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Thanks for the information, and for the inspiration Mark 16:16
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Old Nov 10, 2008, 7:22 PM   #7
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You're welcome and well spotted
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Old Nov 12, 2008, 5:47 PM   #8
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Don't know much about Canon equipment-I'm a Pentax guy. This was taken outside in full shade (I hate the sun) Pentax DS using a 50-200 zoom. On board flash used to trigger a Pentax AF 500-FTZ flash @ 1/16 power with a Stofen flash diffuser. Flash was about 10-0 to my right. Complexion cleaned up in Photoshop Elements 2.0
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Old Nov 12, 2008, 6:47 PM   #9
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DMJJR wrote:
Quote:
Don't know much about Canon equipment-I'm a Pentax guy.* This was taken outside in full shade (I hate the sun)* Pentax DS using a 50-200 zoom.* On board flash used to trigger a Pentax AF 500-FTZ flash @ 1/16 power with a Stofen flash diffuser.* Flash was about 10-0 to my right.* Complexion cleaned up in Photoshop Elements 2.0
Great shot. Given her age I doubt if any full-blown blemish removal is needed. The complexion is more ps like than I would prefer. The killer feature is of course with the eyes though

Daniel
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Old Nov 13, 2008, 9:13 AM   #10
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If you have a moment, please take a look at Halloween Magic (4 photos posted in the "People" forum)

I used a different setup for these 4 photos. Not sure if you think this is an improvement or not.

Thanks for your comments.

FP




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