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Learn how to optimize the Canon XSi/450D for a museum scene
Tags:Canon XSi/450D: Set for Museum Scene,canon xsi/450d,digital camera tutorial,how to use a digital camera,lb guides,photography lessons,set for museum scene
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The problem with Museum pictures is that you can’t use the flash. So you have to rely only on Ambient Light. In your Mode Dial, you have this No Flash Mode option which will turn the flash off, it won’t automatically pop the flash even if there’s very, very little light but everything is automated. So you can see my ISO is Automatic and my White Balance is Automatic and these are very, very important, especially the White Balance in a Museum setting because Museum is typically use tungsten lighting, your pictures will come out very, very yellowish if you stick to auto White Balance. So instead of using this Mode, what I prefer using is the Program Mode. The Program Mode will allow me to control my ISO and my White Balance while it sets the Shutter Speed and the Aperture for me.
However, and this is very important, I can still control the Shutter Speed and the Aperture by turning this Dial but the camera will maintain a well balanced exposure. So because we can’t use the flash, leave the flash down and it won’t automatically pop. The ISO, you’re going to have to increase the ISO to compensate for the lack of light. So press the ISO button; that’s right here by your index finger and go down to select 800. You may need to select 1600; this really depends on the amount of available light.
I’ll show you how to test whether you need 800 or 1600 or maybe sometimes you can even just use 400. The lower the ISO the better quality image you’ll get but the less sensitive the camera is to the available light which means if the camera is less sensitive to light, the Shutter Speed will be a lot longer which will prevent your from being able to hand hold the camera. We’re in a Museum so you probably won’t be able to use your tripod either. So we have our ISO set to 800.
Next is the White Balance; press WB and move this to tungsten. More than likely this is light source being used at the Museum. If not however, you can choose any of the other settings to optimize it for the color; go ahead and press sets. Now, you have tungsten Light setting; your ISO is set to 800. And let me go ahead and show you how to know whether 800 is what you want or not. Press your Shutter Button halfway and you’ll see the Shutter Speed and the Aperture displayed in the back. Right now, my Shutter Speed is at 1/250 of a second and that’s fine for me to hand hold. In your case, you’re going to have much, much less light than I have so the figure won’t be this high. But as long as it’s over 1/60 of a second, you should be able to hand hold the shot. If it’s below 1/60 of a second, you can do a couple of things. One, increase the ISO; press the ISO button, go down to 1600; press sets. Press the shutter Button again and you’ll see right now my Shutter Speed went up to1/400 of a second.
Now, the other thing you can do, sometimes the Aperture will be a smaller Aperture than what you need because I’m assuming we’re taking pictures of a flat piece of art. Then you don’t really care so much about your depth of field and that means you can use a very large Aperture to allow more light through. More light through allows for a faster Shutter Speed. How do you do that? Let’s go back to 800 ISO; I’ll press the Shutter Button halfway to bring up these figures again. After I released the button, it takes a few seconds for these figures to go away and before they go away I want to move my Dial to change these figures. So you can see now, I’ve change my Dial and I moved it to F3.5 which is very large Aperture. And that allowed the Shutter Speed to jump up to 1/2000.
Again, in your situation, you have much less light so you wont be at 1/200 but if this what allows you to maintain a fast Shutter Speed then go ahead and use a larger Aperture opening. Press the Shutter button, the figures went back to their defaults so I just need to reset that; go back to the Shutter Button before the figures disappear. So they don’t go back to default. And then press the Shutter Button, the rest of the way to take the picture.
Now, remember, you don’t need to use the screen in the back to see all of these especially not your Shutter Speed and Aperture. As you look through the View Finder, you’ll see these figures at the bottom in green and so you can just press the Shutter Button; see what it set to without removing your eye from the View Finder. Move the Dial and then go back to the Shutter button, again, with never having to move your eye away from the View Finder.
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