After the enthousiasm last year of Fotki and other friends, I decided to share some of the photos and classes again this season. All input, remarks, additions, photos, whatever fits to this ... ALL comments are welcome ... It would be great if this could become a bit of a forum where we can all discuss these topics, ask questions, add comments and learn from each other !

albums: 5
albums: 6
albums: 7
exams digital photography classes 2
Jan 6, 2010
Album was created 7 years 8 months ago and modified 7 years 8 months ago
12th class
Dec 2, 2009
Album was created 7 years 8 months ago and modified 7 years 8 months ago
10th class
Nov 18, 2009

Studio assignments

Album was created 7 years 10 months ago and modified 7 years 10 months ago
7th class
Oct 21, 2009

theme motion

Album was created 7 years 11 months ago and modified 7 years 11 months ago
6st class
Oct 14, 2009
Album was created 7 years 11 months ago and modified 7 years 11 months ago
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Sep 30, 2009

some m&m's in the home made mini studio ... another cool test.

I know these are far from perfect still ... but it sure is a lot of fun testing.

Everyone has tried to eat my subject ... my kids, my husband and even my cat !!!

Album was created 8 years ago and modified 8 years ago
a soap story
Sep 28, 2009

testing a home made mini studio:

a white plastic box which provides a soft diffuse light, two constuction lamps, some white paper as backdrop and a few glasses as feet under the box ...

Not yet happy with the results but definitely a starting point for more experiments !


Album was created 8 years ago and modified 8 years ago
3rd class
Sep 23, 2009

We learned about setting up lights and a softbox, using a lightmeter, flash synch, ...

(more text will follow soon)


Album was created 8 years ago and modified 8 years ago
2nd class
Sep 16, 2009

Playtime is over !!!

First we rehearsed how to read a HISTOGRAM.

A histogram describes the tonal range of each photo.

The camera's processor locates each pixel on this horizontal scale according to its relative brightness from 0 (Black) to 255 (White). Pixels of equal brightness are stacked vertically one upon another to create lines of varying heights. The result is a graph of very fine vertical lines which can appear as a smooth curve, a series of jagged lines or a combination of both.

Have a look at this film where J-F O'Kane explaines what a histogram is and how you should read it:

Secondly we spoke about WHITE BALANCE. Setting the White Balance, by defining the color temparature of the light, will allow you to ensure that the photographed object will be captured with its real colors.

Different light sources will result in light of different temperature, indicated in degrees of Kelvin:
- daylight (full sun in the middle of the day): 5500K
- sunset (yellow-redish) 2500 K
- light bulb (Tungsten): 3200 K
- hallogene light: 3500 K
- sun behind the clouds (overcast): 6000 K
- shadowed light (which is very blue): 7000 K
- fluoresent light (which strictly taken doesn't have a spectrum) matches with 4000 K (TL-licht in het nederlands).
- flash light: about 6000 K (so close to overcast)

Setting your white balance manually can be very helpful. For instance setting your white balance on 6300 K when shooting in full sunlight will tell your camera to adjust the color temperature (as it will assume you are shooting in somewhat colder light), which will result in warmer photos.

How to set your white balance manually:
you can either use an expodisc ( put it in front of your lens, disable the autofocus and take a photo and then set this as reference. (Don't forget to enable the auto focus again).

Or you can do the same with a white sheet of paper, holding it in the light, photographing the white only and using this as a reference.

Then we spoke about the DYNAMIC RANGE of a photo.

The maximum dynamic range (or contrast between the brightest point and the darkest point) your digital camera can cope with, will be about 7 or 8 stops. In reality this dynamic range can be at least 10 stops (or more).

Imagine you take a photo of a pale bride in a white dress and a dark skinned groom in a black suit, in full sunlight ...

Your histogram would show two blocks only, one on the far left side for the groom and one on the far right side for the bride.

Ansel Adams has taught us the zone system, reducing everything into different levels of grey. He defined 9 zones of grey from 1 (black) to 9 (pure white) and rotating everything around zone V which is our ever returning middle grey (often called 18% grey as it reflects 18% of the light).

Rule number 1 to remember: our European caucasian skin is about 1 STOP LIGHTER than middle grey.

Most camera's will not be ale to go beyond zones VII or VIII ... the rest will be overexposed. So 3 stops lighter than middle grey will be overexposed. Same for zones I and II, 3 stops darker than middle grey will be under exposed.

Album was created 8 years ago and modified 8 years ago
1st class homework
Sep 11, 2009

Homework: shoot some photos on Leuven kermis, in Manual Mode, no flash, ISO 100 and try to make a sharp image.

Result: loads of images in the trashcan, a lot of swear words, and a real good time with my friends (especially afterwards in the pubs of Leuven) ...

Album was created 8 years ago and modified 8 years ago
1st class
Sep 9, 2009

First class started slowly, allowing us to get into the rythm of things again.
After introducing ourselves to our renewed class group, it was brushuptime:

Aperture (the larger the aperture opening, the LOWER the number):

1 - 1.4 - 2 - 2.8 - 4 - 5.6 - 8 - 11 - 16 - 22 - 32 - 45 - 64 - 90 - 128

Shutter Speed (faster to slower):
1/8000 - 1/1000 - 1/500 - 1/250 - 1/125 - 1/60 - 1/30 - 1/15 - 1/8 - 1/4 - 1/2

DON'T forget your camera only indicates the denominator ... so you will see 8000, 1000, 500, 250, 125, 60, 30, 15, 8, 4 and 2

continuing: 1 - 2 - 4 - 8 - 16 - 30 - bulb
seconds will be indicated with ".

All these numbers represent 1 STOP.
And 1 stop is a doubling or a halving of the amount of light which falls into your sensor.

So with the aperature and shutter speed you will control the exposure of your sensor !

The ISO sets the light sensitivity of your sensor (as with the analogue cameras you would buy different film). ISO also represent 1 STOP per jump:

25 - 50 - 100 - 200 - 400 - 800 - 1600 - 3200 - 6400 - 12800 (max for my EOS 50d) - 25600 (max for the EOS 5d mark II).

The higher the number, the more light sensitve the sensor will be (electronically that is, in reality the sensore remains the same). The higher the ISO, the higher the noise (see examples).

Changing the aperture will influence the DOF, the depth of field. The larger the aperture (smaller number), the shorter the DOF.
Changing the shutter speed will influence your photo in another way: short shutter speed will freeze your image, the longer the shutter speed, the more motion the photo will show. This can be a conscious choice OR result in blur pics.
NOT using a tripod, 1/50 or 1/30 (indicated 50 or 30) would be the longest shutter speed to use.

Album was created 8 years ago and modified 8 years ago