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Old Feb 18, 2006, 7:48 PM   #1
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I need to get more light for indoor photos. A friend just said to use table lamps. The only light we have now is lights on the ceiling fans. I figured for the price i would try buying a single light and umbrella. I have also thought about buying an external flash and just try bouncing it. But not sure if it will be enough to soften the light. Is there much differencebetween using a strobe/umbrella and bouncing an external flash off a sheet? I know that table lamps stay on where the strobes "flashes" I just want something easy and safe to use. I'm using a Minolta Dimage Z2, all the talk about sync cords etc sounds confusing and i don't want to ruin my camera doing it wrong. Plus trying to figure out the settings confuses me. LOL I want to do some portrait type photos with backdrop. Whats the easiest /cheapest lighting to use? I won't use halogen because of the kids. I found this on ebay but not sure how to go about firing it.



http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...%3AIT&rd=1
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Old Feb 18, 2006, 8:33 PM   #2
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Try looking at these links:

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...mp;forum_id=54

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...ting%26quot%3B
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Old Feb 18, 2006, 8:46 PM   #3
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Thanks, but none of that helped me. The 2nd one wasn't even talking about people photos. And was talking about halogen which i won't use. I guess i will chalk it up. There seem to be to many postions/settings to remember. (
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Old Feb 18, 2006, 10:38 PM   #4
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You can do what you want, but it isn't as hard (or easy) as it seems. The good thing about using halogen bulbs is you get to see the exact shot in your camera, before you take it. (I use halogen bulbs in some of my house lamps.....they get hotter than standard bulbs, but I don't have kids running around).

I often use a standard flash unit to light portraits......the further from the camera the better. I took this one with a Vivitar 285HV on a Minolta-to-standard flash connector & a Lumiquest pocket softbox.
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Old Feb 18, 2006, 10:42 PM   #5
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I shot this one using the exact same flash connected by a PC-synch cord while holding it out to my upper right with one hand (D7i camera was on a tripod). It's practice, not your equipment that makes the shots......
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Old Feb 18, 2006, 11:00 PM   #6
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Thanks, i just don't want to spend money on something i don't know how to use. I think i may just buy an external flash and play with that. I can always use that for distance shooting. I wish i had it when my dd was in dance. Where can i get a Vivitar for my camera? I've heard alot of people mention them.
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Old Feb 19, 2006, 11:49 PM   #7
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Vivitar is just a brand of flash (& I don't think they still make the 285HV). Sunpack, Metz & others make great units that will do the same thing....if you are willing to put the time in to learn them. If you aren't & want to give up cause it's too much info, you will just be shooting snapshots....I believe, it is easier than you think.
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Old Feb 19, 2006, 11:55 PM   #8
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Thanks, i have a condition that effects my thinking and its hard to remember and comprehend all the things needed to know. direction, wattage, types of lights. Then so many people have different views, don't know what or who to believe.
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Old Feb 20, 2006, 9:19 PM   #9
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momof3b (May I use your first name?), If you want to start taking more formal portraits with really simple equipment, try going out to Home Depot and getting three of those cheap, aluminum bowl reflectors with the clamp on the back. You can use whatever kind of bulbs suits your fancy. Just make the bulbs all of the same type type or you will have problems getting a good white balance in your pictures.

Do a Google on portrait lighting and you will find many articles with basic information. In fact, do the Google thing first. Then you will know better how many lights you want to use. If you want to play with the lighting techniques, you can use dolls, stuffed animals or other similar kids toys. The light placements will affect your human subjects in a similar fashion.

The good thing about using lights vs. flash is that you can see results before you take the picture. When you get good at light placement and want to branch out, then try out doing the same thing with flash equipment.

Try keeping a log of what kind of light placements and camera settings give you what results. Then you won't have to rely on a bunch of competing opinions -- you'll know what is working for you and what isn't.

You said that you don't want to spend money on something that you don't know how to use. Nobody knows how to do something until they start doing it. Check out some basic info' on portrait lighting and experiment with some cheap lights. The more you do, the more you will "get it".

Grant
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Old Feb 20, 2006, 9:27 PM   #10
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Thanks nobody mentioned the light "bowls" all they mentioned was halogens which get way to hot. I will try the lighting you suggested. My husband may even have some. I just didn't want to spend a bucnh of $ on boxes, lighets etc if they were the wrong kind and i wasn't going to be able to use or know how to use them. Thanks again!
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