Monday, 24 January 2011

Exercise 4 - Shutter speeds

For this exercise we were required to take a series of images of a subject moving across the frame to gauge the effect of shutter speeds. As with the previous exercise, I found it difficult to think of an original scenario so I decided to use the resources I had close to hand. 


On a rather dreary day with pretty poor light, I took a series of images of my photographer's assistant (AKA Mrs O) walking in our back garden. Not terribly original or artistic but I got the effects required. The main issue was the dull light which meant the images became blurred rather quickly and shutter speeds were limited. I shot all the images in Shutter priority, raw format at 34mm and ISO 400 which I felt was a decent compromise between clarity and noise. I then applied some levels adjustments and a small amount of sharpening when processing the images and converting to jpeg.


1/800  f/2.8

1/500  f/2.8

1/320  f/2.8

1/250  f/3.2

1/200 f/4

1/125  f/4.5

1/80  f/5.6

1/50  f/7.1

1/20  f11

1/30  f/14

1/8  f/18

1/6  f/20

1/4  f/22
Learning outcomes
Because of the low light, the images lose sharpness very quickly after 1/800 shutter speed. Even at 1/500 there is a definite loss of sharpness which makes the images look amateurish. At around 1/80, the images stop looking just out of focus and a more pleasing sense of movement becomes apparent. At and after 1/4 shutter speed, the images look ghostlike and become too indistinct to be of interest.


I normally use Aperture Priority mode as I find this suits my needs, but I enjoyed the use of Shutter priority and will use it more in the future.


I really like the later ghostly images. They not only give a sense of movement but add a surreal effect to a rather average scene.

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