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Old Jun 3, 2007, 11:56 AM   #1
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I am a volunteer for our local humane society in charge of taking pets for adoption photos and posting them on our website http://www.upaws.org.

I am currently using my Sony DSC-T9 digital camera for the photos. I love the shots outside but for the inside shots of the cats, the shots are very hard to get a real good shot where the cats eyes aren't glowing. I've put the camera's red-eye reduction on but with animals they see the extra flash and they are "gone"!

Do you think the Nikon D40 would be a good camera for this type of shooting? I'm thinking of upgrating.

I'd bascally keep it on Auto and be taking shots. I'm not a camera expert.

Thanks, just wanting to get the very best photos of these homeless pets. A good photo really helps get them adopted.


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Old Jun 3, 2007, 1:22 PM   #2
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whitetabby-

Using aNikon D-40 in automatic seems to be to be a bit of over kill. The photos on your website look quite good. Perhaps a Sony H-2 would be a better choice. The are selling for about $(US) 270.00 and have received excellent reviews.

Sarah
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Old Jun 4, 2007, 3:48 PM   #3
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I don't know what your shooting situation is like, but if you can simply improve the lighting so that you don't need to use a flash that would likely be a cheaper and more effective solution. You should be able to pull it off by just putting in some brighter bulbs in one area and maybe adding some additional light sources (try to use identical bulbs in all lights).

Or, you could get some studio lights which will definitely be bright enough, but those can get a bit pricey, inconvenient and maybe even a bit dangerous considering how hot they get.
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Old Jun 4, 2007, 5:59 PM   #4
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The solution to the problem of eyeshine may be as simple as distracting the animal so that it is not looking directly into the camera, and no light should reflect back. Your best protraits are of that sort as it is, so keep up the good work.
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Old Jun 4, 2007, 7:53 PM   #5
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The D40 will give you the same glowing eyes. You need to light the animals from a little to the side of the camera. You could do this with a slave flash.
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Old Jun 4, 2007, 10:15 PM   #6
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A camera's red-eye reduction mode won't really help with glowing animal eyes, cats in particular. Cat eyes reflect light differently than human eyes, so there's no point in using the red-eye reduction mode.

If you do get a Nikon D40, you can shoot without flash at a higher ISO, and thus not have to deal with glowing eyes. The same is also true of the Fuji F20/F30/S6500/S9100, although to a somewhat lesser extent.

As the very happy parent of 3 shelter cats, I know how difficult - and rewarding - it can be to get a really good photo. As Penolta has stated, if you can have a helper distract the pet during a shoot, your chances of success will increase dramatically.

You are doing a wonderful thing!


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Old Jun 4, 2007, 10:28 PM   #7
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Here is another thought. Use a bounce and reflected flash combined togetheras outlined at http://www.a betterbouncecard.com. Here is what a typical photo looks like. It might work for the pet photos as well. This photo was taken with a Canon XTi equipped with a Sigma 18-125mm lens and a Canon 420EX Flash Unit.

Sarah
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Old Jun 4, 2007, 10:31 PM   #8
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Here is what the actual set up looks like. It is a zero cost solution. It works the very same way that the Light Sphere II does, but by just using a sheet of recycled computer paper and a recycled rubber band.

Sarah
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