Tuesday, September 18, 2012

More on shooting slow shutter speed...


Here's a "sister" post to yesterdays slow shutter "happy accidents".

This is an image of a skateboarder from a couple nights ago, the intent was to shoot him "still" while we blurred the movement of another boarder and biker that would be in frame (click on the image to view larger).


The easiest way to accomplish this was to use the ambient city lights and shoot slow shutter.
Here are the particulars on the image:

Aperture: f/1.8 (this allows the camera to "drink in" more light and the shallow depth of field adds to the motion blur)
Shutter Speed: 1/60s
ISO: 2000

And here are the things I do (and you can to) to get the best possible image while "dragging the shutter":

* If you have a VR (Nikon - vibration reduction) or IS (Canon - image stabilization) lens, use it

* Set the camera to burst mode so it will grab 5-7 images with a single depression of the shutter button

* Focus on your subject and then "lock it" so you don't have to hold still even longer as auto focus tries to grab focus on your subject (or anything else in frame)

* Brace your elbows down at your side

* If there is a wall, doorway, or street sign available use it to lean against, it provide even better stabilization

* Take a slow deep breath, then exhale half way and hold

* As you hold your breath slowly depress your shutter button and capture a series of 5-8 images

I good rate is about 50% in focus, but dont' be surprised if it's much lower as you first start using this technique.

Give it a try, and we would love to see your results.