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Crossfit Q&A

Lesson 16 from: Taking the Fear Out Of Low Light Photography

Jared Polin

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Lesson Info

16. Crossfit Q&A

Lesson Info

Crossfit Q&A

That was a fun photo shoot talk about a challenge in low light situations people run into this all the time and literally we took the fear out of it did I take the fear out of it for you guys and you guys at home do you feel more confident in what you saw there again showing you with a d thirty three hundred and kit lens and whatever we did if you could do it with that you can do with anything it comes down to the fundamentals should I you want me to start going over images now you want to take questions shooting more before we get into the ok because I definitely want to showcase that cause I know people want to see editing I will do my best to show them some of the editing that I do here but let's jump into those questions perfect first one from a lot of different people can you talk about your approach the white balance again? I know we talked a little bit about it yesterday, but can you give general strategies for white balance? You're in the situation? Yeah, we actually had that q...

uestion during the play back the question was what do you do with your white balance with my white balance in most situations I leave that in auto and I and I deal with it because I'm shooting wrong it's the raw file that is gives me the ability to play with the white balance. Now, if I was using a strobe where using flash, which in this course for the three days we're not doing anything with flash photography, it's all about wrangling the low light, but the white balance, I just tweak after the fact that's, not something that I really want to spend too much time with, because if the lighting the lighting is gonna be pretty, even it's going to the same thing, I could do a white balance test, I could take a white piece of paper, and it could get the shot or get that preset. I'm not taking the time to do it, as you see with how I edited my photos in the last segment, I don't like taking extra time to do a lot of different things. We like to just get in here and do it, and that's, something I will do in post, because white bounces really easy to tweak. Great one from diana are, how do you feel about distortion of people with white angle lenses that you're using it's, something to be careful with? Women distort terribly, and they also distort the truth often so it's, you know, it's something, you have to be careful with the fourteen to twenty four if you get people along the edges of it, even with some of the seventeen to fifty five you may see some boeing stuff happening if you put people all the way to the edge, it may not be the sharpest and you will see something elongation happening that may not be good in some of the images that we did hear, I liked making chris look larger, he already had big muscles and big traps and showing just getting close and filling the frame wide angle is a key on that tone if you're going to use fish islands is which I don't advocate very often, and we talked about that I talk about that I don't remember which shoot I talked about that in yet, but fish eyes were a very selective thing. You can use it from one to three shots during a day, but do not get stuck with a fish eye on your camera because everything is going to end up looking the same and be all distorted. Oh, I got something else. While you're doing that, you're looking for the next one it's on the same line of shooting wide angle, I'd like to say get his closest possible, fill the frame, get as much detail in there while still shooting wide just because you're shooting, why doesn't mean you need to shoot from a distance on? Have the subject be like a peanut size that's not what you want to do. You want to fill that frame as much as possible, but when you're shooting wider at fifteen or seventeen, because that or eighteen on a kit lends you just trying to show the scene and all of the details that make that scene so much better in a final image, one from dumb hook and housing and a couple other people. Hardest thing about little life photography eerie photography for me is auto focus focus hunting, missing focus? What kind you to make it work better? And then, pausing elaborates, would have loved some tips for manual focusing, especially in situations when we can't use the auto focus assist light at the out of focus just isn't cutting it well manual focus is a simple as it's either going to be in focus or it's, not that's manual I personally I didn't even put my glasses back on, so maybe I should do that. I don't shoot with glasses on as we noticed in there. When it comes to manual, I don't see very well when it comes to focusing wow, that made everything clear. Is that what glasses they're supposed to do? There is a dot inside of a lot of people's cameras that's, a focused dot that may help you if you're looking at that to see if your focus is right in manual. But if you're focusing in on the little dot on the viewfinder, you're not looking at your scene in your composition, you may not be doing a good job there, but in terms of low light, I know we're going to face this in the garage shoot where we had to figure out how to focus on the subject underneath the car underneath the hood. We're going to get to that, but I'll just answer it now anyway. Some ways you can do it, you can use the focus assist beam that could help you in low light situations. I personally turn that off, but that could help you. You can have a flashlight, you're gonna have a laser, one of the things that I like doing a laser and actually lazar, you can point at the person and focus on just don't point it at their eyes seriously don't point it in people's eyes, the lasers, but you could have somebody hold a cell phone up to get the focus that's bright, so if they hold it up near their eye and by their face. You've pre focused their lock in if they're not moving you then have the ability tio, get your focus in lower light it's not the easiest thing in the world, you kind of find a half, you kind of have to find that contrast to get that focus, right? I think we did good here, even with the d thirty three hundreds of the d thirty three hundred get it, and I think it worked out well. Does that answer that? Absolutely. Thank you. One from hala. Go nya on this something that I know we've talked about, but I just want you to reiterate it for them. Jared is focusing and re composing and also shooting a highest ranges. Do you worry? Or consider how sharp the image will be if zoomed in and blown up? I'ii how sharp to the eyes end up being if you look at the final image at one to one well, I mean one. The one is one of those things. Can we can we pop up my screen yet so I can I can find something here. Ahh, because look, wonder one isn't the key all the time. Like I said before, I'm gonna pop this image up it's up there yet one one hundredth of a second, it f three to why so sixteen hundred weren't even that high, but this is this is one the one well, when it loads loading, loading and I mean that that's a sharp is you're going to get me look that zoomed in one to one and yes, there's noise and yes, there's grain. But I love this shot. What was part of that question? Do I worry about high? I s o n the noise you know I took the fear out of it. No, I don't fear it at all. I embrace it. Is there anything wrong with this image? Look, if if we fill the frame with just her head for a shot if you wanted to crop the crap out of this, then you're going to start bringing out that noise and grain. And then I'm going to fear the noise and grain when it comes to the cropping. But this is the composition that we went with and to zoom in one to one to see it. Yes, this is still sharp one to one really sharp one the one and yes there's some noise and grain but we're zoomed. This is what's the d six ten, twenty four megapixel camera also so that's a lot of mega pixels to zoom in on that's what you're seeing here, it's not to me an exact representation of a final print the final print, if you resumed in one the one you're going to standing this close to a thirty by forty or a twenty four by thirty six to see the noise right there. So I like this shot and that that hopefully answer that questions do it? Do we have any questions in here at all? I was just packed full of that much information that we didn't even need to do it. All right, well, that's a good thing, russ, and maybe just a clarification for texas. Do you use the auto focus? Assist beam or do you turn it off? Everything in texas is generally bigger, strewn on the auto focus assist me so in my deforest I don't have an auto focus is this beam? So when I'm shooting with that camera, I don't I don't have one with the d six ten I turn it off, I personally turn it off because I think it's a distraction to the subject, I think it gets in the way like it's not going toe help focus at an extreme distance. If you're in a really low light situation and you're doing the portrait, you're not really gonna be distracting them, and they know you need to get the focus and turn that focus assist team on, but I find that it's more distracting than not that's why I pursue we heard it off. All right. One. Mohr maybe. Here from saving pilot ryan. Saving pilot ryan. Pilot ryan. Not private. Right? What reason do you have to not shoot auto focus mode? Why do you only choose one or the other? Continuous or spot continues air selective, continuous or single? Yeah, well, what there's? No other modes other than auto. So the question is, why do you not shoot auto? Why do I not shoot auto? Because, well, I am an auto focus. Let's, let's get that I am an auto focus. I'm not in manual. If you were to shoot in the auto a mode that a lot of the night cons have that's going to tell that the camera's going to select the focusing point. So, for instance, maria's on the screen. No, let's, just pull up one of these shots. Let's, pull up this shot because it's cool. For instance, if I wasn't to be an a f auto, it may focus it's going to focus on the closest thing to the camera, so that could be right here, and it may focus in on the bottom of what he called it a jack cameron, no sledgehammer, sledgehammer sledgehammer you don't have to pay for the rights only used two seconds, but that is something that it may focus on if you could if you do the a f auto stuff the camera's going to select where it wants to focus if I'm trying to focus in on the eye and it tells me that the nose is in focus and a photo then the photo sucks it's gone so that's why I want to select the focusing point that's why I shoot in the a f continuous if it's action and I move the focus point around or if it's an f single I'm going to go ahead select where I want to focus because I want to I want to tell the camera where it should focus not have the camera tell me where it thinks the focus should be which generally could be wrong yes, all of that and then one more question for sam age when you are focusing on these, your half pressed focus is on the eyes right always on the eyes well, in most cases yes when I'm doing a portrait for example what's up on the screen now I'm focused on his eyes usually it's the the closest I to me that's what I'm looking for but when it comes to some of the wider shots generally speaking it's in the face area you know not so much here or here but right here does anybody get my reference tommy boy thank you somebody uh I even took myself out of what the question was yeah so I tried to generally get the eye and focus that's what I'm looking for I'm moving the focus points around I don't rely on the three d tracking I don't rely on letting the camera picket where it should be a kn literally moving the up up, down, down left right left right be a be a select start dial to tell me where that my button should be I want to go through and critique my own images I want to do that maybe we'll try and edit some of these as we saw earlier editing on the fly may not be the best thing to do does anybody have any questions or concerns about anything that they saw when they were watching it any certain images that popped out? We're just going through this awesome get this and you saw what happened there right? What was I saying? I was like I wanted to do a wide angle of her flipping and then I was like holy crap and I looked at the picture and I said look what's happening in the background look at the color and usually I thought would be black and white but the way that the color pop between the skin tones in between the pinks on then the background it's almost like there's a light back here creating that separation in the background and when you see something like that, you just have to go for it and that's exactly what I did here. I dropped the idea that I had to begin with because it's one of those happy little accidents like a happy tree that bob ross would have and you just find it oh, which one do we like though out of the three we've got more serious, chin is down, we've got more happy sort of lifting, not as intense, and then we got a little bit more intense in the black and white I know which one I like the first one, the first one just feels better, the black and white seems to lose it. It just doesn't seem to work as well, but this look and the way that this is, it works pretty well for me. I love how the backgrounds blown out. We're at three point two, sixteen hundred s, so one one hundredth of a second any cameras capable of doing that and we're only at seventy millimeters on the twenty four to seventy I like using the seventy two, two hundred to do most of the telephoto stuff, but we're right there with that twenty four to seventy and have the tire she centered she's in a good position let's see where it started in terms of editing, look on, develop, watch it crash no crash and that's where it started it wasn't the best exposure in the world but it was very dark in there and then with that raw file on the d six ten we crushed it we brought it right back not bad whom all right back to the beginning were there any other images that popped out at you? No okay critiquing wise let's look at it does that rope up top distract you a little but it could be part of the scene like it's not a big I'm going I don't have a laser pointer so I think that I don't mind the rope so much it would be cool if the rope was on the other side and yes if you wanted to take that out and use the content aware filling all that stuff you could but that's not something I even want to bother with it doesn't bother me that it's there because it's part of the scene it was something that didn't belong there like a something that didn't belong there whatever that would be I don't think I would like it it's a cool shot it's not the greatest in the world but is part of a photo story I think it works pretty well don't thank you yes oh when we were looking at this you're talking about symmetry yes with this where she is a woman and she knows she's pimping the painting looks awesome are we going to be more concerned with the symmetry or the fact that she square to the camera and it might not be the most flattering shot to get her good question in this case she's a fitness person who works the hell it works out and she has the body for this because she's jacked I don't think it's a problem because I'm not going for a beauty shot here she's fitness she's she's picking she's, picking shit up and putting it down if somebody wins a free guide but that's really what I'm seeing in that so but good question yeah, I always had one today see, this is what I'm talking about with ultra wide shots when it comes to showing the details of the scene this is an environmental portrait that shows everything that I want to see everything in this shot belongs there because we've got the tire he's about to hit the tire you have the weights over there you have the racks, the ropes and his head's not having a rope come out of it at this point it's actually between the ropes I didn't do that on purpose that's just what happened not that good well maybe but still it didn't work I love this rope right here that works well which should I be showing this with the mouse? Would that help for people at home showing the rope yeah, I like the rope here I like where he's situated all of the details she's in the background jumping rope this is cool everything about this image I love and I love it in black and white let's see where it went from the color block it's pretty block. All right, we processed it it looks good. I'm sure you want to see me go through and try to process it while we do it on the fly so let's do that I will hit reset don't even think it had to go too far up with my exposure just a little bit. Which it seems that for me I seem to always do this I seem to always pump it up just a little bit exposure rise I bring it up and then I come back and I crush my my contrast just a little bit or usually a lot depending on what we're going for. But I probably should go to black and white first because that's what I want this picture to be let's see, we got this boom that may even be too much for something like this, but we'll see what happens if we bring it back get my clarity going a little bits on popping up on the clarity not too far because look what you do when you do this it looks just way too much this also introduces more noise and grain with the clarity s so that is why you would end up fearing the low light because you get those types of results so we got that pumping up bringing though these whites up a little bit more contrast it is pretty bhumi right there little bit with the highlights and I don't care that up here's a little blown out I don't care about that stuff I look at the subject that's just my nature of doing this that's just a quick at it it's not much further off than than what I did yesterday I actually like this one a little bit more it fills in more of the light down here by the tire brings out some of that detail but but we're good any any questions about this shot you like this one I like that was that good russ they like seeing the edits got it moving up then we have hitting the tire as part of a photo store and look where she's at in the background jumping she's in mid jump I didn't plan that one that is another thing that happened but what I liked about the shot is that you got him hitting the tire it's compressed right there that is a good part of the action one five hundredth of a second is going to freeze well throws her in the air it froze the hammer being hit two point eight sixty four hundred s o again most cameras can do that and for the people that talk about zooming in one to one it's yes that's called noise it's called grain but this is a this is a gritty thing and to me this is still a winning shot no matter which way you slice it noise or grain you're not going to see it unless you zoom in like this with your face right next to it that's what that's just that's the misconception that's out there these people have the fear of the low light because they do look one toe want in on the computer and go oh my god, that looks terrible but how many people have printed something out the size of this desk and sat there and gone and analyzed it like this when it's on the wall you're five feet away going yeah, that full frame there were that shot looks amazing. So as part of a photo story I'm really happy with this. We've got this from the front my lines looked to be off slightly for once it looks like they're not perfectly straight but I'm sticking with it s o another cool shot I love the ropes up there and then we got to take a shirt off and this just happened well, this is symmetry I love the fact that he's right here. Split boom! Split the rack over there. The muscles popping. I love this shot here. Somebody get that away from me, so I don't do that anymore, but no, I like I like this shot. This to me works is a great environmental portrait photo. So what? What I'm thinking about when I'm shooting it, going to situations like this? Not only do I want to get the wide angle action shots where they're not looking at me, I want environmental portrait's that air wide angle as well, where they may be looking at me, but show the entire scene. I want those tighter head shots, which we have coming up in a second and I don't want these medium shots. I go through everything I worked through the fourteen to twenty four, twenty four to seventy, seventy two, two hundred, and if all you have is a kit lens or seventeen fifty five, you still can do this stuff. You just have to work a little harder sometimes and use the gear that you have in the bag. That's just the nature of it. But this is one of my favorite shots from the shoot. Then we switched over to the vertical seventy two, two hundred I love the fact that the tire is still in the frame, why is the tire still in the frame because he's about to hit it with the sledgehammer that's part of the workout so having that there is also creating dimension in the image makes sense wow, this is just me changing my angle going from this to this I only have one of the squad racks in the back and then this one I have both in there both work I think both work and then that that's cool didn't cut his fingers off didn't cut him off below the knees in a bad awkward position I think the head room is just about right that to me is a pretty pretty good shot I like that shot a lot and then you have the tighter head shots which are which you find they help tell a story and he's got the sledgehammer if he didn't have the sledgehammer is just the same shot that you could do anywhere but maybe for one shot to throw in there this could work as well different angles just working with the light that we have these are these are some of my favorite shots when you could sit them down or whatever they're doing get close like this this has that distort actually the distortion isn't terrible on this if I threw him off to the right hand side even mohr there could be more distortion but this held up very well right where he's at also if he was too far off to the side I don't think the composition would feel right a lot of it is based off of field what is the right feeling that you get doesn't make you want to throw up when you see a dutch angle then yes don't do the dutch angle so this doesn't make me want to throw up, which means I like it questions russ, we have one from nick a he says when your lines aren't straight, will you not straighten them with just a little bit of cropping? No, I personally know a lot of people do or I may find a frame that has the lines that are straight my goal again and it's my it's, my personal thing and it's it's a challenge to myself tio to stick to these moral beliefs of that is that I want to get my lines and levels of straight as possible also keep in mind with a fourteen to twenty four at certain points the subject and the and and some horizon and there may be actually straight but it's some other things maybe off just because of the way the lenses just the way the lens works so it's just finding what works for you that one was a little further off than I normally would like to be no excuses I failed, so now I just just one of those things but these shots I absolutely love these these just happened it's just you run through these scenarios when you get out there and shoot this is probably one of my favorite ones of the entire thing it's rugged it's grady it works very well I love this one we'll just keep walking through vertical actually you know what I like what what does anybody see anything in this that they like the light I like the front lip of the tire out of focus and the back lip is in focus and she's in maybe too much headroom it is but I also had the horizontal so then I threw in there a vertical because I'm giving myself a choice you don't want to sit there and try to crop this vertical because you want to talk about introducing noise and grain that's what's going to happen if you try to crop art have I've run into people that I don't shoot vertical at all I just cross my heart is articles and I make them look like verticals that is the worst thing you could ever do or one of the worst things you could ever do other than shooting j peg does the head room kill kill kill the shot or is it okay because maybe she's lifting I'm not trying to justify too much headroom because it may be too much but yeah, just calling it out flipping the tire wasn't easy especially we talked about motion this is one fiftieth of a second well that's right we were going for the motion that was the question how do we get some motion in this? Well, we made the tire have motion ideally I wouldn't want the film crew in the background but we're working with that for this but the hands air moving she looks to be pretty sharp where she's at but you have the movement in the tire to know that she just pushed it over that's where motion in the image works out very well I know that I've got a couple of d thirty three hundred shots from in there we talked about the leg movement right? Because that was at one tenth of a second then we were able to freeze it and one twentieth mostly same thing I said wait for the peak action and there we ended up and got it right there some other killer shots this is something that people don't think that you can do with the kit lends right? What did we do here? She's out of focus oh my god but it's a kid lens and it's at five point six I thought I could only do that with a two point eight we'll know it it's it's not totally true there's ways of doing it tio work on getting your background out of focus with the lens like that the closer you get to the subject, the more you're zoomed out, the better off you're going to be for for separating the subject from the background. In this case, I got as close as I could to focus on her foot at five point six, but I filled the frame as much as possible and she ended up being out of focus because that's, just the nature of how these lenses work. So that's, what the kit lens and this is a great part of the photo story that is like what? Who shot the you shot that qatar, the bass player, right tight, so showing the detail shots is it is all part of it. We've got the head shots, you've got, the action shots, the wide shots, the tight shots, the detail shots tell that photo story and you're good to go twenty nine millimeters on the kit lends it works no, the kit lends isn't the greatest thing in the world, but if if you're out there shooting and you get good results, that's, all that matters there, so that's good, we talked about the unicorn head didn't work because we saw that the rope was coming out on top of his head, so how do we get around that we move? We can move, we could make that work that happens and I think these these air pretty good for that. For that lens, even this eighteen millimeters it's wide, and it shows the scene. We're getting nice contrast out of it, and this is with the deed thirty, three hundred as well, with the kid land. So really, I I'm very happy with the results that I got out of the basic year with that. And as and as well as out of the d six. Ten.

Ratings and Reviews

Rusty Shinault

I'm a huge fan of Jared Polin; love his humorous and relaxed style of teaching. I love that he's passionate about photography, and that he is willing to share his experiences, opinions, and knowledge. I really enjoy Creative Live classes, and really enjoyed watching Jared teach in front of a live class. Hope to see more of Jared teaching on your platform.

user cf5d2d

Jared did not disappoint! He shared his knowledge of composition, exposure, and capturing the moment - all while engaging his audience and keeping things light and fun. I absolutely LOVE when how he sets up his equipment so that we can see each snapshot he takes, and then tells us why it's a good shot or why it's not a keeper. It's so easy to learn that way. I'm a second grade teacher (a.k.a. an educator) who, thanks to Jared can call myself a photographer. Jared is a photographer who is also a great educator!

a Creativelive Student

I've seen a few CreativeLive sessions and this was one of the best. It was very unique and engaging I liked the onsite shooting and review and critique. I have done teaching and I know how hard it is to teach WHILE you are doing and I think Jared did a great job of balancing that. I'm quite familiar with his FroKnowsPhoto podcast and website so I knew what to expect and both HE and CreativeLive EXCEEDED my expectations. Thanks much also for letting him use use studio for Raw Talk on the Road (my suggested name for it), I could see a real opportunity for CL to provide access to their facilities for others wanting to record training, etc.

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