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Thread: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

  1. #1
    Adrian's Avatar
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    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Ideal walk-around lens for FF? This is more observations than well thought out questions, but I would welcome any advice.

    Egged on by Colin I recently bought the Canon 16-35 f2.8 L and the 24-70 f2.8 L II. We have just got back from a trip to Rome where we took both of these lenses for use on the 5DIII (and we used a 40D body too). We figured that longer lenses were unlikely to be worth the weight penalty in this city.

    Both of these lenses are excellent. When I originally bought the 16-35 I somewhat naively thought it would be mainly a landscape lens. In fact it is amazingly useful for indoor shots as well as the typical tourist posing in front of some famous building or other! It does landscape too, but I am still getting the hang of how to use it effectively for that as shots can end up with significant foreground dominance.

    Of the two lenses, in crowded Rome, probably the 16-35 spent most time on the FF camera. We fired off around 1100 frames on this body, and quite a lot of these were candid people shots from café’s and other vantage points. Some were on the 24-70, which is quite an amazingly sharp zoom.

    Here comes the question. Very often with street photography (bear in mind I am very much an amateur) there is very little time to grab the optimum moment. I missed quite a few shots (meaning of my 1100 a lot were discarded) because I failed to get the desired sharpness. Neither of these lenses has image stabilization, so good hand held technique is necessary. Mine needs improving!

    In addition, I almost always want to control depth of field: often desiring shallow depth. In tricky lighting situations (harsh shadow to bright transitions) I am struggling with ISO and metering as well, as I try to get a fast enough shutter speed to run with the aperture I want, so that acceptable sharpness can be achieved. Auto ISO never quite seems to deliver what I want and for street shooting I can only control limited variables, especially if I am trying to toggle focus points.

    Any brilliant words of wisdom from you guys?

    I do have an IS lens available (24-105 f4 L) but I didn’t bring it with me since I knew I would be using the 2.8 end quite a bit for shallow DOF. Maybe that was a mistaken choice.

    I would like to post some shots up here once I have processed some of the raw files (and I have a couple of questions about that too!).

    Adrian

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    William W's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    Ideal walk-around lens for FF? This is more observations than well thought out questions, but I would welcome any advice.

    I think most of what can be achieved, is governed by one knowing the limits of the gear and also the capacities of the gear, at those limits.

    On a 5D Series Camera: my preferred “Street Lens” is the EF35 F/1.4L.
    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    #592881 JPEG.
    5D, 35F/1.4.
    F/2.2 @ 1/320s @ ISO3200; HH; Manual; AWB.

    For me, the 35/1.4 has the best of all aspects: very, very fast (aperture); very good wide open; excellent @ F/2; I understand, intimately, the FoV for the range of Shots; it is perfectly balanced and weighted for one handed shooting, either hand and also inverted; I know all the DoF/ Framings, backwards (35 was the staple Newspaperman's "doorstop" lens); it has an 'adequate' amount of distances marked on the lens's focus turret.

    However , I know the one 'limit', when using this lens, is: that it is NOT a Zoom Lens - so my brains is seeing and is aware "at 35", accordingly.

    *

    My next most used “Street Lens”, would be the EF24F/1.4L or the EF135/2, difficult to tell which I use more often – but the 35/1.4 wins the ‘most used street lens prize’, hands down.

    The 24 is excellent for Hip Shooting.

    ***

    The 24 to 105 is a very handy “all-in-one lens”: at the expense of it not having a very fast aperture.

    However, as one example of understanding the capacities, at the limits of the gear - with a bit of forethought and then practicing some specific techniques, one can learn to exploit the wider uses of Image Stabilization:

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    #593236 JPEG SOOC
    5D; 24~104F/4 IS @ 82mm.
    F/4 @ 1/5s @ ISO1250; IS ‘ON’; Manual; AWB

    WW
    Last edited by William W; 29th May 2013 at 04:05 AM. Reason: corrected grammar

  3. #3
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    My standard kit for traveling is two 7D cameras (I shot a two week trip to China with a 30D and a 40D) wearing 17-55mm f/2.8 and 70-200mm f/4L IS lenses. I will occasionally additionally pack a 12-24mm f/4L Tokina along with a 1.4x Canon TC.

    I personally would not be without a long zoom for travel but, my style of shooting might be different from other photographers. I care less about the "I was there" type of shot and I would not be happy if I only brought home shots of brick and mortar with few if any images of the people of the areas which I visit.

    I have no shots of myself in China and only a relatively few of my wife. Although, I did capture the "must shots" of the Great Wall and the "Forbidden City", etc., the images I like the best showed the Chinese people in their environments.

    Therefore, I don't have a strictly have a "Street Lens" but, rather a travel kit of two cameras and two lenses for all-around shooting...

    My kit provides a focal range of 17-200mm (I don't miss the 55-70mm gap) with IS in all focal lengths, great auto focus and image quality, along with a constant f/2.8 aperture in my mid-range zoom and a constant f/4 aperture in my longer zoom. I am quite happy with that combination...
    Last edited by rpcrowe; 28th May 2013 at 11:19 PM.

  4. #4
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Adrian – it sounds like you have learned a lot from your recent experience; albeit perhaps not as quickly as you would have liked to; based on the number of rejected images.

    First of all, I’m not surprised that neither of the lenses you were using were stabilized; one would not normally expect that, especially in pro glass that ranges from wide angle to a mid-range zoom. You should be able to hold them steadily enough without shake. If you are getting sharpness issues you are either shooting to slow a shutter speed or not focusing on the right thing; both of these need to be corrected through cleaning up your technical skills (i.e. slow down and shoot more carefully). I shoot an f/2.8 14-24mm and f/2.8 24-70mm, which in the Nikon range are going to give me somewhat the same shooting parameters as you have. I also often have a longer lens, like the 70-200mm or 80-400mm along.

    A lot of street photography is shooting people. Like any other type of photography, you need to practice to get these shots, and because you don’t know what your subject is going to do next, you have to be ready when the situation is right for the shot. Your camera has to be ready; proper ISO dialed in, proper aperture and shutter speed. Often you only get one or two shots before you lose the moment.

    For street photography, I find I shoot three different ways:

    1. Close up and personal with a fairly wide angle lens. The 24-70mm works well there. This allows me to step right up and in front of other people. It’s easiest to hit Cartier-Bresson’s “decisive moment” with this lens.

    2. Low key – usually with my D90 and the f/1.8 35mm lens so I look a bit more incognito; no long threatening lens in anyone’s face. I tend to use this when on crowded downtown streets; and

    3. Zoom from a long way away. This is probably the hardest way to shoot because you have to get a good long line of sight and not have someone step in front of you, and with a bit of luck, your subject won’t know you are taking their picture. I love the perspective, but it is not that easy to get a good shot.

    I’m not particularly a street photographer, but certainly will do shots of people and things while cruising the streets with my camera. That being said, I tend to shoot people only when they look interesting, are in interesting settings or are doing interesting things.

    Anyways, here are some examples I’ve taken:

    This is New York City’s St Patrick’s Day parade, just after the point where the parade has officially ended. The marchers are still together, but things are starting to break up at this point. The marchers are a lot looser and more interesting at this point. This is a long shot:

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses


    My second shot is a group of Caribinieri Police in front of a building in Venice. The black uniforms and the white buildings just worked really well. This is a wide angle shot:

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses


    This final shot is also a long shot and is a traditional Mennonite boy who is working with his relatives at a stand at the St Jacobs Market in Canada. These people tend to not want to have their picture taken and the market was very, very busy. The boy was tucked in behind a post and when he eventually ducked out for a moment I got this shot.

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses


    Anyway, like anything else in photography, you’ve got to get your technique down, have your camera ready and set up properly (I do a lot of test shots whenever the lighting changes) and just get the shot when the opportunity arises.

  5. #5
    GrahamS's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by William W View Post
    I think most of what can be achieved, is governed by one knowing the limits of the gear and also the capacities of the gear, at those limits.

    On a 5D Series Camera: my preferred “Street Lens” is the EF35 F/1.4L.
    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    #592881 JPEG.
    5D, 35F/1.4.
    F/2.2 @ 1/320s @ ISO3200; HH; Manual; AWB.

    For me, the 35/1.4 has the best of all aspects: very, very fast (aperture); very good wide open; excellent @ F/2; I understand, intimately, the FoV for the range of Shots; it is perfectly balanced and weighted for one handed shooting, either hand and also inverted; I know all the DoF/ Framings, backwards (35 was the staple Newspaperman's "doorstop" lens); it has an 'adequate' amount of distances marked on the lens's focus turret.

    However , I know the one 'limit', when using this lens, is: that it is NOT a Zoom Lens - so my brains is seeing and is aware "at 35", accordingly.

    *

    My next most used “Street Lens”, would be the EF24F/1.4L or the EF135/2, difficult to tell which I use more often – but the 35/1.4 wins the ‘most used street lens prize’, hands down.

    The 24 is excellent for Hip Shooting.

    ***

    The 24 to 105 is a very handy “all-in-one lens”: at the expense of it not having a very fast aperture.

    However, as one example of understanding the capacities, at the limits of the gear - with a bit of forethought and then practicing some specific techniques, one can learn to exploit the wider uses of Image Stabilization:

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    #593236 JPEG SOOC
    5D; 24~104F/4 IS @ 82mm.
    F/4 @ 1/5s @ ISO1250; IS ‘ON’; Manual; AWB

    WW
    Good advice is only good if taken. This is good advice. Take it.

  6. #6
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Well if I'm shooting on the street or on a walkabout I will normally have these settings ready to go:

    WB - Auto
    Matrix Metering
    EV at 0 (relying on my matrix metering here generally - I'll chimp and if necessary in consistent light dial in some -ive or +ive EV)
    Capturing in RAW (allowing me to pull back any blown highlights on individual shots if required, change WB if necessary, etc)
    Aperture Priority
    ND filter in the pocket if I'm in bright light and really want to shoot wide open
    Auto ISO - set with a max of 6400, and a minimum shutter speed of 1/50th (if I'm shooting environmental portraits with a still subject with 35mm or 50mm) to 1/100th (if I'm shooting candid scenes or using the 85mm)

    Then I'll be using one of the following lenses (35, 50, 85)

    I'll generally be shooting at f2-f8 but prefer to go more towards wide open or 1 stop down, so therefore focusing is a concern.

    Focus mode might have been a deciding factor on your hit rate in Rome as well. I tend to use single point, with the camera in Continual Focus, but with my focusing only being set with the AF-On button, rather than the shutter button half press.

    Getting the focus away from your shutter button can help no end. To start it will feel alien, but it can drastically improve your workflow and shooting speed in rapidly changing conditions and environments. You can (to name but a few):

    Pre focus, release the AF-On button and then just shoot when a subject is where you want them
    Focus, recompose, shoot
    Keep the AF-On button depressed and track subjects while shooting

    Or I use a manual focus 35mm - then it's never a hardware failure!

  7. #7
    Adrian's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Hmm. Stupid as it may seem, I have not so far used the AF button on the back as I was unsure of its purpose, so that is illuminating. I am still learning the camera. The focus modes are challenging as there are so many options and switching between them is not especially intuitive and I am not aware of a quick method of returning to a default setting.

    Some of my best pictures, and also some of my worst, were shooting people passing a pavement cafe where we had a good vantage point. There were some very interesting people, but fast composition was a necessity. Often people came around a corner, a shot was potentially on and then over within a second or two. I find this quite challenging.

    I have also struggled somewhat with focus when the subject is moving rapidly towards me. When I get home I will try to post an example.

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    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    I have also struggled somewhat with focus when the subject is moving rapidly towards me.
    That is what the continuous autotracking / servo focus mode (or whatever Canon calls it) is all about. It is not particularly useful for motion parallel to the sensor plane, but works fine for subjects moving towards or away from you, so long as you get a focus lock.

    The other technique that works well here too is zone focusing (nicely said, pre-focus with a sufficient DoF to capture the subject sharply). Here I will focus on an object approximately at the right distance away, turn off autofocus, set a decent f-stop (around f/11 for me) and shoot the subject enters the zone. In the cafe shooting scenario you are looking at, I'll pick a landmark, like a table or chair and use that to judge when to shoot when the subject gets to it. This landmark is often my focus point.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    I have not so far used the AF button on the back as I was unsure of its purpose, ..
    That's one you need to study the manual about, Adrian.

    I'm with Phil and exclusively use 'back-button' focusing (even for my slow and lazy landscape stuff ... when I don't manually focus). But you need to set up your camera (using the menus) to activate that button to do that job and to de-activate focusing on the half-press of the shutter. I don't think your camera will be defaulted to be working with back-button focusing.

    And answer to Manfred, the Canon equivalent mode is AI Servo. All my dog agility stuff, such as this, is done with my thumb locked onto the AF button on the back whilst in the AI Servo setting. So, I'm tracking the dog around the course and holding it in focus. That way you can keep firing off short high-speed bursts.

    The same principles would, I think, hold good for street work.

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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Donald
    I'm with Phil and exclusively use 'back-button' focusing (even for my slow and lazy landscape stuff ... when I don't manually focus). But you need to set up your camera (using the menus) to activate that button to do that job and to de-activate focusing on the half-press of the shutter. I don't think your camera will be defaulted to be working with back-button focusing.
    I need to give this a try. It'd be nice to leave the camera on servo autofocus at all times, and using separate digits for focus and metering/shutter would ease the pressure on my index finger from shooting ~1,200 shots in 4 hours.

    Quote Originally Posted by William W
    On a 5D Series Camera: my preferred “Street Lens” is the EF35 F/1.4L.
    Interesting. My favorite street lens is a Canon EF 20mm f2.8 USM (32mm on 1.6x crop). I thought that was odd, but it looks like I'm not the only one who uses primes for walkabouts. I usually have my 11-16mm f2.8, 20mm f2.8, 50mm f2.4, and 100mm f2 with me.

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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    OK, here is an example of a "miss" that could have been a really nice shot. I have not cropped or processed the raw image at all yet. It is inside the Vatican and rather dark. She is moving towards me quite rapidly - almost running. Shot was taken hand held but with my arms braced on a ledge (tripods not allowed, nor was flash).

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    I have not bothered to process it because clearly I missed the focus. Aperture was wide open at f2.8 and I was on AV. ISO was 2500. Camera selected shutter speed of 1/25. Too slow. But I had no time....

    What could I have done?

    Adrian

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    Adrian's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Here is another example. In this case it was taken from my cafe vantage point described above. Again, I have just uploaded a cropped Raw file, as I have had no time to work on the image. But this one has potential I feel once it has been adjusted and sharpened.

    In this case I had about a second to grab the shot. I took two and both were pretty much in focus. This one was at f4.6 (for some reason that now escapes me!), aperture priority, shutter 1/500 and clearly the light was good. ISO was at the minimum 100. I would have liked shallower DOF in hindsight.

    I was sat down at the cafe table, trying to look fairly inconspicuous. The street was very busy. I have no idea who this person is, I just liked the quirky look.

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Final example. Again unprocessed. This time with the wide angle 16-35 L mounted. It was starting to turn to dusk and this is on the Spanish steps. A candid shot of a couple. I was on ISO 400 because the light was going and it was shady too. Aperture was f4 but could have done with being f2.8. Shutter 1/320. Aperture priority as usual.

    Again, once I have had chance to do some work on it, this could be a nice shot. Once again, I had very little time to grab the shot and really I was set up expecting to shoot the skyline, which is why I had that lens on.

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    I have been looking at the image of the attractive young lady in your Vatican shot. IMO, the main culprit here is camera movement rather than not nailing the focus. Shooting at 1/25 second requires some excellent holding skills. I really like Image Stabilization even in a shorter lens. Is Image Stabilizaton required in a relatively short focal length lens - probably not but, it is nice to have.

    Both the silhouette of the guy and the shot of the couple near the Spanish Steps are sharp. I would venture to say that this is because your shutter speed was faster.

    The Spanish Steps shot might have been improved if you had avoided the couple that are directly over the guy's head. Opening up to f/2.8 would have helped get them even more OOF than they are now but, stepping of to one side or another to avoid placing the BG people directly atop his head might have also helped.

    BTW: I often take advantage of the snapshots that others are posing for in order to get some of my travel shots...

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    In the series of shots from which I picked the above illustration, I wanted to illustrate the gals in Shanghai wearing some snappy outfits. I wanted to contrast them with the drab Mao Suits but,apparently those ugly things have totally gone out of style and I couldn't find any. Good Riddance!

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    DDK's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    This final shot is also a long shot and is a traditional Mennonite boy who is working with his relatives at a stand at the St Jacobs Market in Canada. These people tend to not want to have their picture taken and the market was very, very busy. The boy was tucked in behind a post and when he eventually ducked out for a moment I got this shot.

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    I love this shot. I'm being totally unhelpful by pointing that out, but I felt it needed to be said

  16. #16
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    But I had no time.... What could I have done?
    Sample 01:

    Firstly, you were inside the Vatican: that was known and planned. The ambient light does not change that much whilst one is walking around, inside: yes, there are some darker places than others - but essentially you knew that you were dealing with fairly low light levels - when you entered the building.

    Secondly, you knew that you might be taking pictures of TWO types of Subjects - firstly the Things (which are static) and secondly the People (which are moving) - always moving, even if they are 'standing still'.

    Thirdly you knew that the fastest aperture you had was F/2.8.

    These three facts define “the limits” - which is what I mentioned in post #2.

    Knowing these limits, you could have (should have) tested the ambient light on entering the Vatican Buildings to establish the ISO required for a safe motion stopping shutter speed when using an F/2.8 Lens - that estimate should have been made at a darker region of the room.

    In simple terms you had no business being at ISO2500 on a 5DMkIII, a camera quite capable of much higher ISO. You should have been at about ISO6400, to begin to be considered as “prepared for street work” shooting inside the Vatican Buildings, when using an F/2.8 lens.

    Think of it this way – if we two were to walk into the Vatican to pull some documentary shots of the Visitors there, would we have loaded our Leica with FP4 (nominal ISO125) or would load Delta 3200 Pro (nominal ISO3200) an ALSO plan to push the film one or even two stops, to ISO6400 or ISO12800? Obviously, we would choose to load the camera with the faster film – even before we arrived at the Vatican.

    ***

    Sample 02:

    Sitting down is not usually a good vantage point if you want to nail Street Subjects which are standing up – and close to you: “up the nose shots” don’t usually work that well.

    Consider this: The need to be ‘inconspicuous’ is often more about the Photographer not being comfortable with the camera than the potential Subject being disturbed or inconvenienced.

    OK - so you should have been prepared and reset to at F/2.8 – but F/4.5 isn’t that bad, really – the DoF is quite OK. Don't beat yourself up over the aperture you had set.

    However, consider the possibility that there is a passion for you using the 24 to 70 “AT 70mm” as your default response if you see someone interesting and you want to get close to it. (With a zoom lens especially), shooting a bit wider is often a better option as doing so allows the more critical framing to be done later, in Post Production.

    For example if Sample Two were shot at 50mm (and not 70mm), then it could have been cropped as an Half Shot and the Subject would have had plenty of space into which he could gaze, with that “quirky look” you liked.

    *

    About shooting a bit wide:

    My interest was piqued by the camera rig this "Tourist" was toting.

    I didn't have much time to pull the shot; I was above him and constricted by a railing to get closer; I was walking up and he was walking down, away from me and the shot wasn't important enough for me to chase after him.

    This is the JPEG SOOC: notice how wide (and sloppy) I framed it:
    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses


    This is what I made of it: later -
    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    "Canon 'Tourist' "

    ***

    Sample 3:

    I see this image as the indication of the shot which was missed being seen.

    I think the shot to have been taken was: be at about 16mm; get quickly to camera left and make the vantage point behind and to the side of the Photographer who was taking the Couple’s picture; include a wider array of People and The Steps and making a street candid (environmental) shot with the Coupe as the central feature.

    What could you have done about that – it’s just requires practicing looking at lots of different elements – there will always be the ones which get away, just work on that number being fewer.

    Consider looking wider to see if there is any element of the environment which adds to The Story of the MAIN Subjects, in your Street Portraiture:

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    "Stand over THERE!"

    WW

    Footnote concerning Sample 1:

    Whilst there might be Camera Movement in Sample One.

    There is DEFINITELY Subject Movement.

    This is evidenced by the differential of the AMOUNT of blur at the strap’s metal toggle at her hand compared to the blur of the strap where it touches her right shoulder: the trailing edge blur of that toggle (compared to other blurs captured in the shot) indicates that her hand is moving from camera right to camera left.

    Similar results will conclude that her head is also moving. (Though a bit more difficult to see) one can compare her head (specifically the sunglasses’ frames) to her shoulders and the camera straps on the shoulders to indicate head movement.

    Subject Movement can only be addressed (arrested) by using an appropriate Shutter Speed – or Flash.

    WW
    Last edited by William W; 30th May 2013 at 12:32 AM. Reason: Added Footnote

  17. #17
    Adrian's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Excellent advice William. I agree. The Vatican shot failure was caused by bad planning. My head tells me ISO 2500 is very high. Reality is for that camera ISO 6400 is fine. I didn't even consider doing test shots, but I will in future! As I mentioned, she is moving: she is almost running towards me. It was therefor obvious I needed a higher shutter speed, and on reflection I had ample time to get this organised in advance. I was mainly photographing statuary and a cupola, so I was set up for that (they don't move!) and simply didn't think more.

    I agree too that the cafe vantage point (sitting down) was not ideal. This was merely opportunistic shooting though and I was just using it as practice in our last hour in Rome before leaving for the airport. I wanted to avoid disturbing the other customers too. I had not thought about "up the nose"!

    The Spanish steps shot was one of a few I took of this couple and I tried various vantage points. It was a difficult environment because the Spanish steps are tourist central and there are constantly people milling around. The couple were actually not posing for a photographer: they had their own camera (5D and L glass) on a tripod and were posing for about a millisecond in front of it! I captured some nice shots of that, but I just liked the "couple" quality of this shot. I had hoped that I would have achieved more background blur.

    It's all practice. Street photography is an art I think. Not I skill I have at all mastered.

    Here is another example, again, unprocessed so far, of the same couple setting up.

    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Adrian
    Last edited by Adrian; 30th May 2013 at 07:15 AM.

  18. #18
    Clactonian's Avatar
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    Mike Bareham

    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    "In simple terms you had no business being at ISO2500 on a 5DMkIII, a camera quite capable of much higher ISO. You should have been at about ISO6400, to begin to be considered as “prepared for street work” shooting inside the Vatican Buildings, when using an F/2.8 lens."
    Forgive me Bill, but I couldn't help smiling at this. I know your comment was camera specific but I am limited to ISO 400 for relatively noise free shots! That doesn't make street shots an impossibility but just underlines the points made in several posts that planning is the essence, couple with a nice fast lens. In my case a prime, either 35mm f2, 50mm f1.8, 85mm f1.8 or 180mm f2.8. Not that I would necessarily lug that lot about.

    I think one of the key factors in gaining success is to analyse your failures, don't just discard them at first viewing. The EXIF information is very telling usually. The number of failures that I have where stupidly I had more headroom on the aperture adjustment that would have given me more shutter speed and saved the day are legion. Conversely there are those shots in bright light that gave me complete freedom of choice and I still didn't nail the shot for want of more or less depth of focus. It's so annoying to be wise after the event!
    Last edited by Clactonian; 30th May 2013 at 08:27 AM.

  19. #19
    William W's Avatar
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    William (call me Bill)

    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    . . . My head tells me ISO 2500 is very high. Reality is for that camera ISO 6400 is fine.
    Good-oh!
    *
    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    This was merely opportunistic shooting though and I was just using it as practice in our last hour in Rome before leaving for the airport. I wanted to avoid disturbing the other customers too.
    The other patrons wouldn’t have minded you standing up – it’s Italy: if you were stranding up, chances are you’d be charged less for the coffee, too.
    *
    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    The Spanish steps shot was one of a few I took of this couple and I tried various vantage points. It was a difficult environment because the Spanish steps are tourist central and there are constantly people milling around.
    Sure I do understand, but:
    The Spanish Steps are more difficult during Fashion Week in Rome . . .
    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    *
    Quote Originally Posted by Adrian View Post
    It's all practice.
    Agree. Well, not ALL practice – but a LOT OF practice, yes.
    And also, sometimes using chutzpah to get in, to make the exact and very precious shot, you want.
    Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses
    *
    The shot of the guy setting up the camera and the woman being ‘pleasant and waiting’ has more ‘A Story’ to it: that’s nice; a better shot.

    ***

    Quote Originally Posted by Clactonian View Post
    "In simple terms you had no business being at ISO2500 on a 5DMkIII . . ."
    I couldn't help smiling at this. I know your comment was camera specific . . . etc . . . I am limited to ISO 400 for relatively noise free shots! I think one of the key factors in gaining success is to analyse your failures, don't just discard them at first viewing. The EXIF information is very telling usually.



    Firstly my phraseology: I have previously had conversations with Adrian and as it occurs to me, he is used to that manner of direct address in his workplace and so I anticipated he too might have smiled reading those ‘stern’ words which I chose to use.

    Secondly, addressing your comment about your situation: why specifically are you limited to ISO400?

    Thirdly, your comments about analysis and EXIF: I agree.

    Before EXIF, some of us kept Shot Diaries, I still do.
    How else can we effectively move forward without reference to the all the data, from whence we came?

    WW

  20. #20
    Adrian's Avatar
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    Re: Trials & tribulations of street shooting lenses

    I have no issue at all with directness. I prefer it. Gets the point across and if I thought my work was perfect I would not be asking for advice. The advice is valuable. The critique generally helps me see things I would not otherwise have thought about. Even statements of the seemingly obvious are helpful: for example "you had no business being at ISO xxx... "did indeed make me smile. I had engaged finger on camera without sufficiently engaging brain! Absence of planning was not something I had really thought about and it may be obvious, but the fact is amateurs like me will make rookie mistakes. We only shorten the learning curve by discovering these mistakes.

    Adrian

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