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night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help
  
 
gschlact
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help



@Trucks
I think what Darryn is getting at is to use the hyperfocal distance with the short focal lengths. You can use the dof calculator. I think that is why you werent satisfied with the 50mm f1.4, probably not wrong focus per say, but the very thin dof.

Also, remember that if you are using flash as your primary light source, to avoid ghosting from ambient and meter at least two stops below ambient.
darryn patch wrote:
Id go with the same setup ppl use in a water housing to shoot surfers from the water

15mm fish eye
Chuck the lens into manual focus mode after presetting the focus at 1.5m
Dial in 1/500 or more of shutter speed at 2.8

easy peasy




Oct 16, 2017 at 02:53 AM
darryn patch
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


You'll be on a road to ruin if you dont understand how the camera auto focus and the flash system works


You need a fast shutter speed, you can't get a fast SS if you use flash as the sync speed is 1/250 (that means your shutter speed maxes out at 1/250 sec which means a subject travelling at 30km will move about 2-3cm during that 1/250 second exposure, at a close distance thats a massive amount of movement which is why your 2 pics are way out of focus

You need to use high speed flash sync

You wont get sharp photos using auto focus because your lens and camera aren't fast enough to shoot subjects moving at 30kmph 3 feet in front of you, thats why you need to preset your focus at 1.5m use a fisheye lens for close shots like what you have posted.


Have a read of this

http://www.exposureguide.com/high-speed-sync-flash.htm








Oct 16, 2017 at 03:41 AM
trucks
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


gschlact and Darryn, thanks for the comments. Thanks for the link Darryn; I do understand HSS, curtain sync, etc...

I had a profoto rep tell me that for action / fast recycle time not to use HSS. He described using a short flash time to freeze the action rather than the shutter was the preferred method (the ol' water drop shot is my experience with this, so it sounded viable to me). Thoughts?

The link Darryn provided explained HSS use for allowing a wider aperture and still maintaining desired exposure level, which of course makes sense.

Thanks for any continued assistance.






Oct 16, 2017 at 04:12 AM
pat.kane
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


I use both sync speed and HSS depending on what I'm trying to achieve. A couple of examples for me:

1) night football -- 1/800-sec on camera exposed for ambient light with HSS flash at ETTL at -1. This allows me to get light into the helmets and get better colors. The rest of the field is also properly exposed and contributes to the shot.

2) basketball -- 1/1700-sec from strobes with the camera at sync speed (1/250-sec for the ID X II) and exposed at least two stops below ambient as pointed out by gschlact. Since you've eliminated ambient from contributing to the exposure, the flash duration freezes the action. My PCB Einsteins t.1 flash duration is 1/1700-sec at half power (great!) and 1/540-sec at full power (ghosting will be experienced). I can usually stay at 1/2 power and can get 3- to 4-stops below ambient, which is where I prefer to be. In this case, the darker the gym, the better.



Oct 19, 2017 at 02:58 AM
trucks
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


Pat, Thanks for sharing your shooting scenarios. That makes perfect sense.

For scenario #2 (basketball at 1/250), are you able to TTL in that mode with your strobes, or is that manual all the way?



Oct 21, 2017 at 04:38 PM
gschlact
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help




trucks wrote:
Pat, Thanks for sharing your shooting scenarios. That makes perfect sense.

For scenario #2 (basketball at 1/250), are you able to TTL in that mode with your strobes, or is that manual all the way?


Theoretically you can still TTL as long as you are getting reliable auto exposure. Remember AE setting is different than Flash AE. For regular, You can use EC -2 and A semi auto mode or: auto ISO, auto flash , or Av (sub sync speed will still benefit from flash freeze of the action. HOWEVER, The bigger problem is Canon's piss poor auto ISO when flash is in use, and you will find that it pretty much throws iso to 400 and doesn't adjust it like non flash. So in practice, you'll need to figure out what ambient -2 is in terms of ss, av, and iso and fixed flash power. Then you can make adjustments and set parameters and float the ss or flash power. I hope this makes sense, but at lease one parameter needs to float so that different distance shots will be adjusted appropriately for the flashed primary light. Looking forward to seeing your results, even if not perfect the first time.



Oct 21, 2017 at 09:43 PM
trucks
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


gschlact, Thanks for the explanation. I was thinking I would shoot in M and lock everything down at -2; but it makes since to go Av mode at -2. We skate at night a lot, and depending if I'm shooting down into the bowl, up out of it, or across the top, the amount of night sky varies a lot, and is drastically different than the grey artificially lit cement of the skate-park bowl.

I missed my skate night last week, so hope to have more shots this coming week (at one session per week average, it will be a slow learning curve) . I appreciate your willingness to help out.



Oct 22, 2017 at 03:31 PM
 

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pat.kane
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


Since I can light one end of the basketball court pretty evenly, everything is set to manual. You probably don't have the same luxury at the skate park.


Oct 23, 2017 at 01:37 AM
trucks
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


I took some photos last night, disappointed. Initial set of camera: AV mode, F8, ISO3200, EV -2, later pushed to -3. was using partial metering mode, shutter bounced around a lot from 1/60 to 1/250. No HSS last night.

I had some operator problems with ST-E2, the 580EX that was topside was being swamped by the 420EX in the bowl. I ended up putting the 580EX on camera and using it to control the 420EX. I need to spend time with my gear on a non skate night.

On a positive note, I am more comfortable with manual focus, and single shot (vs machine gun and AI Servo). Exposure is still very primitive, but timing of shots had a better hit rate than I expected.

a bit bummed, this will take some work.

Thanks for any advice.






Edited on Oct 30, 2017 at 03:00 PM · View previous versions



Oct 27, 2017 at 02:15 AM
gschlact
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


These are not bad. A little hot. Imam thinking that getting your topside flash mounted higher up will give it a bit better balance with the bottom light.a for NOx would be even better. Also, if the bottom one is further away, why isn't that one the 580 vs the 430?




Oct 29, 2017 at 03:30 AM
trucks
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p.2 #11 · p.2 #11 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


Thanks for the thoughts. I tried mounting both up top, but with only the plastic piece that came with the flash, I couldn't get them pointed into the bowl I was holding the 580EX on top (until I mounted it to camera in place of ST-E2).
At the deep end, we don't get "out of the pool", just up to the coping, so the flashes have to point into bowl.

Good idea about swapping flashes. I guess there is a higher risk of a board hitting the one in the bowl though. Setting it in the wet spot will protect it from a rider, but a stray board isn't that rare of an occurrence (i.e. we wreck a lot).

What about using tripods and mounting both flashes up top, but pointing into bowl? maybe put the flashes somewhere between 90 and 180 degrees apart??

flash exposure seemed hot all night. I can pull down in post. What about my camera exposure settings (Av, F8, ISO3200, partial metering)? any thoughts in that department?

Thanks so much for the help!



Oct 29, 2017 at 03:55 AM
gschlact
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p.2 #12 · p.2 #12 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


Regarding your settings.
Remember it is the flash providing the stop action, and the negative EC eliminating the ghosting, thus shutter speed isn't important. Regarding the iso, lowering it will depend on the current flash power used for these exposures. If you recallin one of my earlier posts, I mentioned locking flash in manual, along with ISO and Av. The resulting SS would let you know the exposure value and the ability to trade off flash power (battery life and recharge speed) and ISO. I don't believe the Exif will report the flash power used, so it needs to be observed manually.

Example of the math: set flashes to 1/4 power, iso 3200, Av = X ( I don't remember which lens you are using)
Let's say this results in SS 1/250. This tells you that you have 2-3 stops to take out of flash power or iso combined, and still net SS 1/30-1/60. The lower the flash power the shorter the stobe pulse and the more rapid recharge and even betterstop action, but even at full power (longest pulse) I believe pulse length is still at least 1/1600.

My point of the math is that ISO 3200 might actually be using 1/32 or 1/64 power and if so, you could lower your ISO a few stops. (I don't have enough experience with flash power data to know what your exif would typically use, please apsquare your results and maybe remind us of the lens FL and aperture.)

Regarding the large photos you posted or future ones, can you also include a 100% crop from the sharpest area in the image? At -3 EC I wouldn't expect ghosting so I would expect sharp results (lens dependent and technique dependent). In the last two ohotos you posted, imwoukdmhave expected sharper results. This means you might have either slightly missed with focus locked on coping behind rider, or might have to mfa due to back focus, or your panning might have been not 'matched to the rider causing motion blurr even during the stobe pulse, or you might need to tweak AI Servomsettings for better tracking, or might need better AF point option selection. (Whittling down this list will come with time and experience. Someone remember which camera either, but if you have case settings, set TS to -2 or -1, Acdel/Decel to +2, around AF point switching to +2. I suggest single point and not expanded but be certain to lock on rider an not be slopoyn hich could lead to lock on coping edge. If you have a 7d model, you can try small zone and track the rider as they approach , hopefully getting multiple at points on him. For me, I would start with single or spot point which can help with diagnostics but need to remember during interpretation about the -2 TS. Also verify 1st and 2nd image priority is set to focus .

Looking forward to next skate results.



Oct 29, 2017 at 02:07 PM
trucks
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p.2 #13 · p.2 #13 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


Thanks again for the wealth of info. I like the idea of locking flash to better understand what it is doing at given camera settings. Things are fast at the park, and I'm taking a break from skating, and I'm focused on timing the shot, so I really have not experimented with changing exposure during a given shoot. I'll need to I think.

I'm using a 8-15/4L lens, usually around 10mm (on 7d). I'm using manual focus, which is new to me. I agree, some shots look soft. A friend offered to take a few of me, and his were way soft. I'm thinking he may have had a lot of black sky in frame when the camera picked the shutter speed (just guessing).

As you know, I'm dusting off old gear (I'm happy to buy new gear, and am continually researching hardware, but until I start getting flash exposure down, it kinda seems silly to buy gear. I don't actually have any photo software. My old version of PS is on a computer in the attic, and I can't find disks. I was going to subscribe to PS, but I hate monthly fees, I guess I'll do that though, I've just been procrastinating.... I'm on an I5 surface, not even sure if it will run PS. Any suggestions?



Oct 29, 2017 at 05:01 PM
gschlact
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p.2 #14 · p.2 #14 · night time skateboarding... pool skating... gear help


Did you really mean you are Manual Focus? If so, use the DOF table and utilize hyperfocal distance. IE, pteropus of about 8 ft gets you 4ft-36ft in focus inside the dof for 15mm FL This will eliminate AF tracking accuracy and issues totally. http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html

Next, take a photo of a static subject st similar distances and demonstrated the sharpness that you are driving for with the action shots, this will establish 'baseline' for your lens. Also, if that lens has IS, turn it off. If you had it in mode 1 it would fully explain so,e of the softness.

No need to get new gear, what you have is fully capable in your situation, obviously with he learning curve you are climbing for improvement.

Regarding timing, try 7fps shoukd be quite good, you skaters are not moving all that fast, especially relative to a ball. But I do profess timing improvement with a single peak shot type approach requiring practice.

Regarding camera licking shutter speed, as long as you were -3 EC, the flash would have provided the stop action, he focus seems sorts, not ghosted.



Oct 29, 2017 at 06:15 PM
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