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Thread: Advice please

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    Member Wranga93's Avatar
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    Advice please

    Hey guys my name is Ryan and new to this site, I particulary like photography and would like to possibly take it as a hobby. Anyways down to the point at the moment outside has alot of rain and great thunder through out the sky im asking if anyone would have some settings i could use. I have a Cannon PowerShot SX120 IS, its a P&S but really good has all the manual settings i can adjust, like DoF, Shutter speed, ISO and has its own DoF and Shutter Speed modes to. Im just asking if anyone has any advice i could use to take shots of lightning with theese modes please.

    Thanks guys
    Ryan

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    OK

    Firstly you need something very stable, do you have a tripod? You need to make sure the camera cannot move (at all) during the exposures.

    Now set your camera to ISO 100, and shutter speed mode. Often called S or Tv mode. Dial your camera up to say 10 seconds, and take a shot. This gives you the basic idea. You need no movement in the camera for the entire 10 seconds of the exposure, otherwise the result will be blurry.

    Now to try and get some lightning. Aim your stable camera at the most active part of the storm. Try taking photos between about 5 seconds and 30 seconds exposure. Without a 'lightning trigger' you will be just working on luck here. So just keep taking photos as the storm progresses and hopefully you will get some good results.
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    Mate, you'll need a sturdy tripod and bulb setting if possible. Patience is also a good feature to have. Have a look under "new to photography" and also the "Night - Astro" section, if you find some shots in the night - astro forum, most, not all, should have EXIF data, and or you can post a question to the person whom posted the pic. Every camera is different, and every scene calls for something different, daytime - night time, low light and so on. EXIF will help you narrow down these settings to your situation, but use as a quide only, you'll need to find what works for your situation, Normally bulb setting infinite focus and play with ISO. Start around 200 ISO depending on available light.

    Persistance is the key.
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    Thank you guys for your help, i could'nt take any shots last night due to power loss and couldnt read the thread but ill give it a try today. Thank you

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    Also helped me a little bit too although have already tried and taken a few half descent low light shots... thank you

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    firstly, tripod, lens depends on your closeness, but 17-50 is a start.
    I find iso 400, lens around 4 or 5.6.
    Focus can be very difficult if it is very dark. If the spot you want to shoot from is near, go in the day time and focus on the nearby hills or where storms pass. Get a shot of the focus distance on your iphone to return to later. Very vague and innaccurate i know you could just focus on infinity, but that isnt always right.
    Take a raincoat, a head torch, lots of cards, and a coles bag to cover the camera with.
    Check the lens for rain spits occaisonally.
    Watch the storm and try and get an idea of how it is moving. Inevitably the best lightning will be out of frame, but stick to your guns and shoot every card full.
    If it comes over you, move.
    good luck!
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