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Old Feb 22, 2008, 2:10 PM   #1
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i am always trying to learn and get better so i wanted to ask what camera settings does everybody use to get great group shots indoors.
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Old Feb 23, 2008, 9:45 PM   #2
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What settings you use depends a lot on your camera. In general, you need a wide angle lens, and very good lighting. Many indoor shots do not turn out well due to insufficient light requiring long shutter openings, which leads to motion blur both on the part of the photographer and subjects. Image stabilization helps with the former, but not the latter. If you are unable to set up lighting beforehand, and have to rely on what is available, it is often better to use a flash. I find that in most cases, bounce flash is preferable to direct flash.

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Old Feb 24, 2008, 9:33 AM   #3
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i guess i didn't ask it right .i read a book by scott kelby who said to use f11 to get everybody in focus when shooting groups 3 or 4 deep. i wondered if anybody had any different thoughts or suggestions.
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Old Feb 24, 2008, 2:01 PM   #4
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Again, it depends on the camera you are using. A small sensor point and shoot camera has inherently greater depth of field than a 35mm film or full frame digital. His advice is geared more to the 35mm user with (I'm guessing) a normal FOV lens. A wider angle lens on the same camera would not need to be stopped down quite as much, and a small sensor digital could get away with even less.

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Old Feb 24, 2008, 6:31 PM   #5
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rebel xti with a 17-55 2.8 lens
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Old Feb 26, 2008, 8:44 PM   #6
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With the smaller sensor you will be looking at approx f8 to be 'safe' in most cases. However this will change a lot from the wide to long end as already stated. So at 17mm you can probably get away with f5.6 with no problems.
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Old Feb 27, 2008, 7:58 AM   #7
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Another setting that can be usefull is burst. Having several shots very close together will allow cloning closed eyes in some of the shots with the open eyes. That assumes you are not shooting with flash - flash does not recover fast enough to use the burst setting.
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Old Feb 27, 2008, 11:09 PM   #8
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Bill,

I lost the link, or it changed, but MS has (or had) a program called Group Shot which was made just for this. One can take several shots of a group, and then mark which sections to keep or get rid of, and combine them into one.

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Old Feb 28, 2008, 9:35 AM   #9
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I don't do much group shooting, but do use burst or at least take several shots very quickly. Cloning is the easiest to describe, but using layers and layer masking is the technique I prefer. Often find it easier to replace the whole head instead of just the eyes since closed eyes tend to go with a bit of a frown.

Much the same technique as manual fine tuning of panorama stitching.
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Old Feb 28, 2008, 10:30 AM   #10
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BillDrew wrote:
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Another setting that can be usefull is burst. Having several shots very close together will allow cloning closed eyes in some of the shots with the open eyes. That assumes you are not shooting with flash - flash does not recover fast enough to use the burst setting.
I do this even with flash, as long as you are using an external unit with quite a bit of power and if you are trying to use ambient light (as you generally should) to balance the exposure rather than relying fully on flash, then you should get off 2-5 shots. Even on my 1D mkIII with only the EX430 flash on at a recent wedding I was messing around (as I like to do) and could pop off3-4 shots in about half a second still with flash.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"But usually I find 2 is enough as people generally don't blink on both and also if you are taking 3+ of every pose then you will have a load of editing to do and wear out your kit faster.
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