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      11-30-2008, 03:23 AM   #1
SimonB
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OT: My best lightning shots...

Hi guys,

Sorry, but I have to show these off somewhere other than my usual photo haunts. I took these on Wednesday night, from a minesite 200km southwest of Kununurra.







Unfortunately, the best ones from earlier in the night were all out of focus , more practise required! There'll be plenty of opportunities for that...

More here, via a slideshow, including some non-lightning shots: http://SimonB.zenfolio.com/p151715027/slideshow

Thanks for letting me indulge,

Simon....
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      11-30-2008, 04:41 AM   #2
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very nice Simon.. an off topic post every now and again is welcomed!
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      11-30-2008, 05:04 AM   #3
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way cool.... always happy to see interesting pics even if off topic
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      11-30-2008, 05:08 AM   #4
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Thanks guys. I picked up a new Canon 40D yesterday to replace my stolen old 20D and am sitting here battling the liveview settings... That said, it's going to be interesting to see which camera, the 5D or the 40D becomes my 'day to day' camera.
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      11-30-2008, 02:12 PM   #5
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Very cool pics!!!!!
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      11-30-2008, 03:05 PM   #6
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simon- what are you shooting with?
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      11-30-2008, 04:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N54tt View Post
simon- what are you shooting with?
N54tt, these shots were with a Canon 5D and a 24-105. Not the best combination for the circumstances, but all I had with me.
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      11-30-2008, 06:07 PM   #8
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I think I can see the BMW mother ship hovering under the lighting strike in the third pix..:iono:
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      12-01-2008, 01:44 AM   #9
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Nice pics mate
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      12-01-2008, 01:52 AM   #10
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Fantastic shots. How do you manage to trip the shutter at the right time? Multiple shots I suppose (I think I just answered my own question).
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      12-01-2008, 02:10 AM   #11
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Nice :w00t:


Would have been spectacular with a 1 in the foreground!
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      12-01-2008, 02:16 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Would have been spectacular with a 1 in the foreground!
Haha, yes, it would have! A shame it's a bit too far....
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      12-01-2008, 02:20 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d3syd View Post
Fantastic shots. How do you manage to trip the shutter at the right time? Multiple shots I suppose (I think I just answered my own question).
d3syd, thanks, here's a reply I did on another forum to a similar question:

... I'm sure the film guys will have a different story, but for me it's usually one of two methods:

1) Use the Bulb setting on the camera, this usually holds the shutter open while you hold the shutter button down. When you get a flash of lightning, you release the shutter. The problem with this method is that if you don't have a shutter release cable (which I do, but didn't take with me), you'll get movement of the camera.

2) Set the camera to Tv mode, this lets you set the number of seconds or fraction of seconds to hold the shutter open when you press the shutter release, it'll close automatically after x secs.

#2 is the method I used, the first few were set with 30s, the last few with 2s. It depends on the amount of available light and the ISO setting (the sensor sensitivity to light) you've selected. I either had the camera sitting on the ground or on another object (pump station cabinet, coffee table cable drum for example) and used a rolled up pillow case under the lens to support it. Not glamorous, but it worked.

Practise, practise, practise and, above all, luck that the lens is open when 'the one' occurs. You delete a lot of dark frames and stuff up a lot, but that's the advantage of digital.

Hope that helps. Oh, the above assumes a reasonably sophisticated Digital SLR (DSLR).
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      12-01-2008, 02:49 AM   #14
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Thanks SimonB. Would you close up the aperature so that you don't overexpose your shots by having the shutter open for so long?
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      12-01-2008, 03:13 AM   #15
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d3syd, you've got me. I know enough to be dangerous, but just set it to Tv mode, dial in a guess at time for the shutter to stay open and see what the result is (as I understand it, in this mode the camera meters the scene based on ambient light and adjust aperture accordingly).

Undoubtably, that'll make the experts laugh, but it seems to work for me <shrug>.
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      12-01-2008, 03:15 AM   #16
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I think you know a lot more than me. I gave up SLR photography a long time ago. I now have a compact Panasonic camera and just point and shoot. LOL.
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      12-01-2008, 09:21 PM   #17
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Nice photos mate.

I was at lunch last Friday at Wolloomoolloo bay (by the water for those not from Syndey). A stormm came through and out of nowhere a lightning bolt struck a mast of a yacht no more then 50 metres from us. Scared the absoloute crap out of us! Sparks flew from the mast after it was hit. Amzing sight.
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      12-01-2008, 09:54 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d3syd View Post
Thanks SimonB. Would you close up the aperature so that you don't overexpose your shots by having the shutter open for so long?
On a Canon, Tv and Av are sudo-manual modes.

In Tv, you are choosing a shutter-priority mode (you select the length, and the camera auto-adjusts the aperture as necessary).

In Av, it's the opposite. You choose the aperture you want, and the camera does its best to choose the appropriate shutter speed.

I personally have become enamored with Av mode and the nifty-fifty Canon f/1.8 50mm fixed-focus lens. If the weather would ever get nice for a day here in Ohio, I'd take some nice new shots of the 1.

For the record, in the fully manual mode, you can of course adjust both aperture and shutter speed for ultimate control, but this definitely takes a bit more effort if you're not familiar with balancing the two.
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      12-02-2008, 03:45 AM   #19
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Quote:
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For the record, in the fully manual mode, you can of course adjust both aperture and shutter speed for ultimate control, but this definitely takes a bit more effort if you're not familiar with balancing the two.
Use a light meter. Manual mode is only really useful when shooting in the studio under controlled lighting conditions.
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      12-05-2008, 06:19 PM   #20
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Great shots Ssimon... We dont get enough lightning around here for me to try... I dont know if I would go as far as 200Km SW of Kununurra to get some though !!
Manual mode is for all conditions, you just have to be very familiar with it.
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