Auto Mode And Flash-Off Mode

Photography - 101 From Auto Modes To Manual
9 minutes
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We're going to jump in right from the top, we're going to start with automated modes or what we commonly refer to as green modes. Now automated modes, you're basically telling the camera that you want to handle every single thing, okay, from the exposure from the aperture, the artistic side, your ISO, everything is going to be handled by the camera, automated modes. Basically, they're great as learning tools when you first start out, but the thing is that while the cameras are smart and intelligent, they're not really intelligent enough, I'm going to show you exactly what I mean, because we have a fairly complex scene here. Now to help me out. We have our wonderful couple here. This is Keith and Christine.

They're going to help us out for all of these portraiture scenes. And we're going to start out basically by shooting a shot, well, just kind of the standard walk up shot. So why don't you guys come out into the sun. And again, this is the first thing I'm going to train you guys not to do is don't do the standard walk up shot where you basically don't think of anything around you from the lighting to the composition to the posing and everything. We have 50 millimeter cameras or 50 meter lenses on both of our cameras. What I'm gonna do is just go ahead and and shoot a shot right here.

Okay, now if you notice the flash popped up in the first shot, it looks like a fire in the second shot it didn't. The automated mode that we're using right now is the fully green mode that controls flash as well Generally, we also have a no flash automated mode to what is the flash trying to do in the scene? Well, basically the cameras seeing a scene that's very kind of off lit. Okay, we have this side light coming in from the sun. And what the cameras trying to do is use the flash on the camera as a fill light to fill in these hard shadows that we have on our couples face. Now what I'm going to tell you is that with the flash on modes, don't use it.

The reason why is that we typically want to use flash when we're getting into more advanced flash when we're using hotshoe flash we have control over the direction and really much more control over the type of flash that we're getting, that's when we want to use flash. These onboard flashes are never going to give you that great of a light so really you're better off sticking the camera in a non flash automated mode. And using the lighting tips we're going to be showing you to get the right shot rather than using onboard Flash onboard flash on these cameras is never really going to look awesome. Here's what I'm going to do is we have this we're shooting under this pier for several reasons. One, it's a great backdrop. And basically, we have kind of an unlimited amount of shade.

And we have very harsh sunlight right now it's approaching noon, we get really hard, direct light. And so this pier allows us to have that shade wherever we need it. But it also gives us a beautiful background. It's a background that basically repeats and it looks really nice and portraits because it has lines and it has all these things that we wanted a background on kind of simple, repeating backgrounds that can offer lines and so forth that really draw attention to our couple. What we need to do though, is place them in a position and get the right light on them. What we're gonna do is just use the natural shadow of these pillars.

So go ahead guys, go ahead and step back into that shade right there. That's perfect. And let's actually get you guys into a pose now. So why don't we do let's do like our standard v up first. Okay, so the Vf if you guys are interested in learning, posing techniques and all this kind of stuff. It's kind of beyond the scope of this DVD, but check out the natural light couples portrait session.

Vd that's basically all about lighting and posing couples. We also have posing guides available online as well. Let's go ahead and get into the app. And you guys, actually, it seems like you already know what that is so, so that's perfect. Keith, your hand goes around right on the waist, actually, let's leave your front hand in the pocket. There you go.

Perfect. And then I'm gonna have you guys scoot over to this side a little bit. So we kind of get you a little bit more under the side a little more right there. Perfect right there. And then basically, what we'll do is have you guys lean the heads into each other just a bit. Perfect.

And Olivia, why don't you grab the silver. And what we'll do with the silver is we're going to come on to this side, and I want you to reflect up into some light up into them. So let me go ahead and see where this light is going to be. So what we don't want to do, what we're trying to avoid here is we don't want to get direct sunlight on a silver, it's gonna look really powerful. And you can see that if I bring this up, guys, don't look at this, close your eyes for a second. It's gonna be really bright.

You can see how strong that is. If we want to go for that strong main life and that's fine, but what we're going for is a very soft lifestyle look. So instead what I want do is bring this right underneath and fill. Now see we're catching direct light. And so we get that up lit Look, this is where we need to either go from the side, or we need to use a white because a silver is gonna be too strong. So let's see if we can get a nice light.

There we go. So we're just going to add this nice little fill light right there. We're covering shade only. So see this isn't picking up any direct light. Okay, so let's go ahead and bring that in. Get a beautiful little fill there.

And what we're going to do is, let's see, Christine, why don't you lean the head on a Keith a little bit there you go and kind of bring the face forward a tiny bit. He then wants you to kind of look down towards her. There you go right there. Okay, so let me show you what we have here. Now for composition wise. Well, what I want to do is basically use this background kind of as a leading line that comes up into them, and then we're going to shoot with them on the right third of the frame.

I'm going to crop off kind of the top of Keith's head and it'll look totally fine in the image, where it's kind of more about her in this shot. But here's the thing I'm already noticing that I don't really like about this automated mode is that I don't have any control of my focus and I can see the focus Is landing right on Keith instead of basically over Christine. So I can see that in the shot Also, we're getting the flash up mode. So let's go ahead and turn off we're going to go into flash off automated mode. But you can look at this we're getting a much, much better shot already. Okay.

Okay, so that's kind of one of the limitations as far as the automated modes goes in this but we can see still, that we're getting a much better photograph than when we started out. Okay, wait, wait, wait, wait, take a look at the difference here. This is really crazy. No keep in mind we're still shooting and completely automated modes. And the only thing that pie has done is set up the couple in a better position for lighting. He added his own fill light and then post the couple and crafted his composition.

Now immediately the shot is so much better than that terrible walk up shot right at the beginning. So remember, you can get fantastic results from your camera without even touching the Camera Settings, all you really need to do is set up your scene. Now with an icon again, the great thing is that I do have a little bit control, I'm going to go with flash off mode again in this, and I do have a little control over my AF area. Okay, so I'm just going to go ahead and bring that up. And in focus mode, I have it on auto, but I'm going to choose a single point AF. And that way I can still focus where she is.

But yet, if I take this shot, we're gonna end up with a much, much better and sharper image. Let's take a look at the settings though because that's where really these cameras are both going with very safe options. And this is the problem is that when you go with automated modes, the cameras are intelligent, yes, but they are going to always err on the safe side we're in auto mode, we'd be better off shooting in portrait mode, but even in portrait mode, we still wouldn't get the kind of shots that we want. So both cameras did an okay job with it. But the thing is that I want artistic control. So this is where I'm going to flip into manual and we're going to go ahead and dial in our settings based on what I am envisioning for the scene.

Now what I want here is I want the background to fall off into a nice quickly because it's a relatively busy background, if we're not blurring it out, it's a great pattern background. But if we keep it all in focus, well, there's too much there. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to go ahead and adjust first my aperture to let's go about, you can go to F two f 2.8. So I'm going to go ahead and leave it on f2. And then let's just go ahead and bring up live view so we can get a focus or sorry, a exposure. So right now, let's go ahead and leave it bright.

I'm going to bring up the histogram too. So we can see this live view histogram. And I'm at one 640, if I went up to 1000, and we're still blowing out quite a bit of our highlights, so I need to bring it up to about one 2,000th of a second. Right here, the shadows are pushed against the left edge, we've retained our highlights, and this is about right, this is where we want to be. We're going to leave it at ISO 100 as well. So we're at F 212 thousandth of a second ISO 100.

I'm going to turn off my live view now. And then we're going to go for our final shot and now that I can actually move my AF point I'm going to move it right over Christine. There we go. Okay, so in comparing these two shots, I have to say both of them are actually really great photos. So once again, the selection and aperture between these two shots, it really comes down to your own creative vision. Now in the shot where the aperture is higher, we have a little more depth of field, right.

So for this particular photo, I kind of really do favor PI's decision in opening up the aperture. The reason is that the pillars in the background will they're just a little strong as a compositional element. And I feel like they detract a bit from the couple when they're more in focus. Now, when they're a bit more out of focus, I mean, you can still tell what the background is, but it doesn't necessarily compete with our subject nearly as much anymore. But you know what, it's a subjective decision, and it's one that you're gonna have to decide on your own. And at least when you're shooting in manual, you certainly can make those decisions all on your own.

Alright, so with the same settings, I'm going to go ahead and shoot a couple other shots. I want to get some different poses some variation, might have them leaning up against these poles, but we're gonna do the same thing, the same techniques, so you guys can stick around and Watch it as we go.

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