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  1. #2266

    • Mickey's cousin, Sparky!
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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Mountain Sprite,

    You will find that the simple, basic tips that Hot Sauce has documented are pretty good. He, WDWFigment and several others have written a lot for we laymen. Their tips have done a lot for my photography skills. I used to use my P&S and just take pictures. Now after a lot of reading and using the knowledge my skills have grown exponentially. I have since ditched the P&S for a DSLR and would never have done so without the knowledge passed down from these tips that allowed me to do so without fear.

  2. #2267

    • I do believe in fairies!
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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    @Mpabis525 - Thanks for that input. What exactly is a DSLR? I've heard you guys all talk about it, but I haven't a clue of what kind of camera it is. Are they costly?
    "While there is very little grown-up in a child, there's still a lot of child in every grown up." ~ Walt Disney

  3. #2268

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Mountain Sprite

    DSLR is basically a digital version of a traditional camera. When you see someone walking around with a Canon Rebel or Nikon around their neck with an interchangeable lens, that is basically what it is.

    Is it costly? Heh, heh,heh....
    Well everything is relative but a basic camera with one lens runs about $500. That an get you shooting out of the box. However like any other hobby the good stuff can cost more. It all depends on how far you want to go with it. For me, I can only afford so much so I got my DSLR with a couple of lenses over a period of six months.

    Is it worth it? For me, yes. I can get pictures I never could get before because of what the camera can do.

    HOWEVER, use what you are confortable with. Use learn and enjoy your P&S. if eventually you want more from photography then start looking into the DSLR route.

    That is what I wound up doing. Once I got really comfortable with my P&S thanks to all the tips here, I made the leap because I wanted to do more.

    Remember a P&S and a DSLR both take pictures. It is what you want to do with it hat sets them apart. There are some pictures on here taken by guys and gals with P&S's that are better than anything I will EVER get with a DSLR. But as you can see with Hot Sauce's pics, what a DSLR can do is jaw dropping.

    Don't worry now what kind of camera you have. Use it and enjoy it for now. Learn and evolve and you should be happy with your results.

  4. #2269

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    The best camera is the one you have with you, and that's a big point in favor of the P&S - you can have it in your pocket and always with you when you see something great.
    I pledge allegiance to the Earth, one planet, many gods, and to the universe in which she spins.

  5. #2270

    • Mrs. J. Depp
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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Sprite View Post
    @Mpabis525 - Thanks for that input. What exactly is a DSLR? I've heard you guys all talk about it, but I haven't a clue of what kind of camera it is. Are they costly?
    DSLR stand for Digital Single Lens Reflex and is a digital version of SLR's from the past (aka film cameras). All those fancy Nikons and Canons you see strapped around people's necks are more than likely DSLR cameras.


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  6. #2271

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Size Matters…

    Today’s “Disneyland Photo Tip of the Day” is on Photographing night time parades. When I planned out this tutorial, there were several different techniques that I wanted to try out in a kind of competition with each other, which lead me to the distinct conclusion that Size Matters.

    When I say “Size Matters”, I don’t mean the size of the camera, the size of the lens or the size of the sensor (although a full frame sensor does help because it can handle a much higher ISO). What I’m referring to is the size of the Aperture. “Fast Glass” (a lens with a large aperture like F/1.4) is what mattered most, regardless of the camera or the person using it.

    To run my experiment I pitted the quality of the camera against the experience of the photographer and Fast lens on lower quality camera against slower lens on higher quality camera. I didn't use a camera with a full frame sensor for this test because it probably wouldn't apply to the 95% of the people reading this who have crop sensor cameras.

    So here’s how I ran the test.

    I had my wife Diane, who has very little experience with a DSLR using my old Canon T1i (an entry level DSLR) with a Canon 50mm F/1.4 lens attached.
    Aperture set at F/1.4 (as large as it could go)
    ISO 1600 This is about as high of a ISO as the T1i can handle and still produce clean useable images. Any higher and they are so noisy that you can’t use them.
    Spot Metering, White Balance on Auto, Exposure Compensation down 1/3rd stop, AI Focus, Continuous Shooting Mode and the Single Center Focus Point selected (because it is the most accurate and where the camera is metering the light)

    Against;

    Me using a Canon 7D with a Canon 55-250 F/4 –F/5.6 lens in my (not professional) but much more experienced hands.
    Aperture Set at F/4, adjusting to F/5.6 as I zoomed (this is 3-4 stops slower than the 50mm F/1.4)
    ISO 5000 This is at the very high end of what the 7D can handle and still produce moderately useable images but still only 2/12 stops higher than the ISO 1600 that was on the T1i.
    Spot Metering, Auto White Balance, Exposure Compensation Down -2/3rds (for faster shutter speed), AI Focus, Continuous Shooting Mode and Single Center Focus Point.

    I had the ability to zoom in on the characters whereas Diane could only get a fixed scene and had to make sure her subject was in the center of the frame or they would be out of focus and not metered correctly. It was no big deal to crop her images to match what I was getting by zooming.

    When the floats or characters came by, we tried to shoot similar shots so we could compare them to determine who got better images.

    I’ll post them image to image, hers against mine along with the shutter speeds we both achieved. My images with the 7D have the Exif information on the top of the image. Diane's photos with the T1i have the Exif info on the bottom.

    All of these images, except for one which I will point out took considerable post processing work to brighten them up, correct the color temperature and noise reduction.

    To begin, we chose a location on Main St. USA, which is what I recommend because it has the most ambient light from the buildings and the spot lights are closer to the characters and floats than other locations along the parade route. We set up directly across from the Music Store because the angle we would be shooting the floats at put them in front of the Main St.Cinema which has a lot of lights and gave nice light and background atmosphere to the photos.


    Since Diane was using a fixed length lens at 50mm and had to make sure the subject was in the center of the frame to be in focus, I cropped some of her shots to give a more appealing composition. Here's an example of the original image of Goofy and after I cropped it.




    This one is to show you what happened when she didn't wait for the subject to be in the center of the frame. She had several like this but that's ok, she's learning.


    This shot of a dancer from the Little Mermaid portion shows that Diane and I both got the same shutter speed but hers is cleaner, brighter and took less post processing than mine did.




    Since I had the zoom lens, I could zoom in on Snow White but I paid the price for the aperture changing to F/5 with decreased Shutter Speed. I got lucky with this one at 1/100th but others were too slow and blurry.


    Diane got a much broader scene but had a nicer crisp image with a shutter speed of 1/500.


    I want to show you what one of the actual images looked like before any post processing so you get an idea of what the camera was truly recording.This photo is straight out of the camera with no post processing at all.


    Here it is after post processing and cropping.


    I had to time it right and shoot several shots of the Lion King float. I got lucky and had a nice clean one when he stopped moving his head. The shutter speed of 1/80th is a bit slow for a moving object.


    Once again Diane had a much larger overall scene but had a shutter speed of 1/320th and a crisp clean image.


    For Princess Tiana, my shot at 1/60th is still slightly blurry even though she posed for me.


    Diane had a speed of 1/640th, which is more than fast enough for a sharp image.


    The same thing happened with Captain Hook. Even though he posed for both of us, his hand is blurry in my shot but not in Diane's.




    After going through all the photos we took and deleting the bad ones and editing the good ones, it became very clear that Diane was the winner. Her photos were cleaner, sharper and more useable than mine.

    So in conclusion... Fast Glass and the size of your aperture is what matters most when photographing night time parades.

    I know that most people don't have the 50mm F/1.4 lens because it is 3-4 times the price of the "Nifty Fifty" 50mm F/1.8 lens. If you have the Nifty Fifty, that will work just fine. The difference in Shutter Speed will be negligible.
    Set your camera to Aperture Priority, Aperture at F/1.8, ISO to 1600, Auto White Balance, Spot Metering, Center Focus Point, Continuous Shooting and drop your Exposure Compensation down 1/3rd to -2/3rds and you will be just fine. You will have to brighten them up in post but you'll have the highest percentage of clean, sharp, useable images.

    Happy Snapping!

    Michael Greening 2013
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  7. #2272

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Interesting comparison. Thanks! I agree with you on the f/1.4 - it's a fabulous lens.
    I pledge allegiance to the Earth, one planet, many gods, and to the universe in which she spins.

  8. #2273

    • I do believe in fairies!
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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Thanks for all the advice on cameras. My biggest problem with my P&S is that whenever there's an action shot it comes out blurry. I'm guessing because it can't keep up with the speed of motion in the shot. Anyway that's why I was asking about a better camera. Strangely enough, I can get better action shots with my old Samsung phone. It's so old it has the slide out keyboard for texting. Go figure. I can't figure out why my Nikon can't capture action shots. I've even tried the "sports" feature without good results. I guess I just have to keep playing with it.
    "While there is very little grown-up in a child, there's still a lot of child in every grown up." ~ Walt Disney

  9. #2274

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Bump up the ISO for action shots, see if that helps. Higher ISO will help keep the shutter speeds faster. Or try adding a flash if the subject is close enough, even or especially in the daytime.
    I pledge allegiance to the Earth, one planet, many gods, and to the universe in which she spins.

  10. #2275

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    I'll have to read up on that. My manual doesn't mention how to change it. It only tells me that "The ISO is displayed when the camera automatically increases sensitivity to minimize blur caused by slow shutter speed. Pictures taken when ISO is displayed maybe slightly mottled." Then it doesn't say anything more about it. At least not that I can find in the index of the manual. So I guess I will have to read it cover to cover and see if i can find any other references to it.

    Thanks for your suggestion.
    "While there is very little grown-up in a child, there's still a lot of child in every grown up." ~ Walt Disney

  11. #2276

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    A big thanks to Hot Sauce 1 for the above advice (post #2260) about using a P&S. I can't wait to get back to the parks to try it now. My last trip gave me some great photos with my new P&S, but I only used the automatic setting and was disappointed with what I got on dark rides in general. I went to a party on the 4th and took a lot of outdoor shots as it got dark, and this time I took Mike's advice: I lowered the exposure compensation and stopped using the flash as the sky darkened. I also manually adjusted the ISO (going as high as 1600 for some shots while keeping in mind the increased noise). BIG difference. I'm convinced I got a far greater number of usable shots than I would have if I'd used the automatic settings. Many came out a bit dark, but they mostly lightened up okay in software, and they should be a bit dark anyway since, well, it was dark. Can't wait to try this on a dark ride.

  12. #2277

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Blake View Post
    A big thanks to Hot Sauce 1 for the above advice (post #2260) about using a P&S. I can't wait to get back to the parks to try it now. My last trip gave me some great photos with my new P&S, but I only used the automatic setting and was disappointed with what I got on dark rides in general. I went to a party on the 4th and took a lot of outdoor shots as it got dark, and this time I took Mike's advice: I lowered the exposure compensation and stopped using the flash as the sky darkened. I also manually adjusted the ISO (going as high as 1600 for some shots while keeping in mind the increased noise). BIG difference. I'm convinced I got a far greater number of usable shots than I would have if I'd used the automatic settings. Many came out a bit dark, but they mostly lightened up okay in software, and they should be a bit dark anyway since, well, it was dark. Can't wait to try this on a dark ride.
    That's awesome! I'm glad it helped.
    Does your camera allow you to shoot in RAW?
    If so, that will also help you control the noise and brighten them up in post.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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  13. #2278

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Quote Originally Posted by Hot Sauce 1 View Post
    That's awesome! I'm glad it helped.
    Does your camera allow you to shoot in RAW?
    If so, that will also help you control the noise and brighten them up in post.
    No, but I'll keep that in mind for a future purchase. Baby steps. Mainly I just need to practice adjusting those settings and figuring out what gets the best results with what I have. I hope that by the time I return to the parks I'll have an easier time with dark ride shots. I'm really happy with the camera so far (I posted a thread with my pictures here), and now I should be able to accomplish even more with it.

  14. #2279

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    Great write up on photographing nighttime parades! Although the nifty fifty 1.8 is hands down a great deal for fast glass, when I was in the market for my 50mm prime I looked at it as a investment in good glass that I could use with my eventual upgrade in camera at some point. I looked around and found a good deal off craigslist for my 1.4. I love the lens and although I could have saved alittle by going with the 1.8 I figured I would invest a bit more on a slightly faster lens especially for shooting in dark rides at the park. Either way whether you go with the 1.8 or 1.4 you will definately love the capability of shooting in low light and have a better chance of having workable images.

  15. #2280

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    Re: The Disneyland Photo of the Day...

    So, so true and very good thinking.
    I (as usual) had to learn that the hard and expensive way.
    I bought the 50mm F/1.8 first and was really happy with it but wanted that little bit of extra speed and quality so I bought the F/1.4 a while later. I should have spent the money right the first time and saved the hundred bucks. Now the F/1.8 just acts as a paperweight, collecting dust.
    Life is far too short for bland food!


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