Yesterday’s blog was centered on ISO and of course the 800 pound Gorilla in the room focus. There is no real decision to be made on camera adjustments as they are dictated by the conditions. After editing the pictures I took yesterday (the second time through for me) and comparing the settings on the project which lasted for just over a week; I came upon a realization.
The image of the Red Wing Blackbird was taken from about 50 feet with my 400mm lens. ISO 200, shutter 1/500 with a f-6.3, it came out well I’m happy with it. However this image was one of about 50 I snapped. It was late afternoon 5:27pm to be exact, it was taken as the Sun was setting. When I turned to a shadier area to take a few of Doves on a branch equaling the same distance the image was not a keeper. The ISO was too low, in my opinion it should have been in the ISO 500+ range. that setting would have accepted much more light which in turn would have raised the shutter speed. It would have been fast enough to counter my shaking which caused the image to be grossly out of focus.
The image of the Pelicans taken the day prior had settings of ISO 320, f-6.3 and shutter speed of 1/1200, it is a proper setting for the 2:00pm intense Sun I was dealing with. That same setting would have worked wonderfully in the fading Sunlight of the next night. The ISO may have been a bit low, I should have opted ISO 500 with a shutter of 1/1000 to 1/1200 or higher for this Pelican shot.
The image above is the best shot I have ever made of my buddy the Seagull. ISO 200, shutter 1/1000 f-6.3; 8:30am full morning sun. At the time I shot the Redwing Blackbird the sun was setting, this camera was kept set from that until I took this one. When I took the pictures as the Sun was setting the shutter speed adjusted to 1/80 much too slow for my popping joints and creaky bones. Had the ISO been higher 500-800 the shutter would have been faster, most likely 1/400 + depending upon how much light the sensor needed at that ISO.
The Starlin was taken at ISO 400 f-6.3 and shutter speed 1/1600 at 4:00pm in full Sun. What does this mean? I am planning at dawn and dusk to set the ISO high 500-800, low f-stop, and the camera will set the shutter. As the light increases lower the ISO until at full Sun it ends up at either 300 or 400, the shutter will adjust most likely set at between 1/1000 and 1/2000 depending on the intensity of the Sun. That will work.
Jacques Lebec Flutter Shutter