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View Full Version : Photographing Ejecting Brass Question?


MuNgEr
03-11-2007, 2:41 PM
Yes its a random question, but for those of you who have taken successful photos of someone at the range with successive shells ejecting, I have a photography noob question.

What ISO and etc were you using?

I haven't tried but Im thinking my 24-105 F4 L might be to slow to stop the action? Ill be rather bummed if you need a F2.8!

Thanks,

Lateralus
03-11-2007, 2:44 PM
.....

i tried it until i got it right......


ive still got the pic somewhere.....

TacFan
03-11-2007, 2:46 PM
Yes its a random question, but for those of you who have taken successful photos of someone at the range with successive shells ejecting, I have a photography noob question.

What ISO and etc were you using?

I haven't tried but Im thinking my 24-105 F4 L might be to slow to stop the action? Ill be rather bummed if you need a F2.8!

Thanks,

I would put the ISO at 100 if it is at an open range. Why do you want to go so low with the apeture ? I would keep it higher unless you didn't want any details in the background and only on the subject. With my Canon 30D, I would not have a problem capturing it. Set your shutter speed.

Jicko
03-11-2007, 3:05 PM
Depending of what camera do you use.

With a digital SLR it is a lot easier than a regular digital camera since the lag between you pressing the button and the camera actually taking the picture is a lot less.

With that said, I have succeed in taking some before I've got my dSLR.... the trick I use is to watch the trigger finger of the shooter.... and when he pull the trigger... you push the button at the same time... and of course.... try many many times.... :D

MuNgEr
03-11-2007, 4:30 PM
Depending of what camera do you use.

With a digital SLR it is a lot easier than a regular digital camera since the lag between you pressing the button and the camera actually taking the picture is a lot less.

With that said, I have succeed in taking some before I've got my dSLR.... the trick I use is to watch the trigger finger of the shooter.... and when he pull the trigger... you push the button at the same time... and of course.... try many many times.... :D

Yes its a Canon 350D, and I wanted to get a sharp shot oof the shoter and the shells, but the fastest lens I have is an Ef 10-22@3.5. That seems to wide so next best is my 24-105L F4.0 but I was reading that to freeze fast action most use 2.8 glass.

So I take it I can do it with my glass and my remote trigger on a tripod with some experimentation? Ill set it in bust mode and fill up a card. Those shots are very cool so I will give it a whirl:)

Jicko
03-11-2007, 4:37 PM
Yes its a Canon 350D, and I wanted to get a sharp shot oof the shoter and the shells, but the fastest lens I have is an Ef 10-22@3.5. That seems to wide so next best is my 24-105L F4.0 but I was reading that to freeze fast action most use 2.8 glass.

So I take it I can do it with my glass and my remote trigger on a tripod with some experimentation? Ill set it in bust mode and fill up a card. Those shots are very cool so I will give it a whirl:)


POST PIC! :D


I've got the same camera too... ;-)

Very good price on it these days... < $600 w/ the stock 18-55mm lens

I do have a 50mm/1.8f lens... that's very affordable too ~$100

I'd be interested to figure out HOW to get a shot (picture) of the ejecting case with the case "in focus" and everything else blurry.... I am thinking that I may have to *estimate* the trajectory of the case, and set the camera perpendicular to that path, then use manual focus to preset the focal point....

TacFan
03-11-2007, 5:01 PM
POST PIC! :D


I've got the same camera too... ;-)

Very good price on it these days... < $600 w/ the stock 18-55mm lens

I do have a 50mm/1.8f lens... that's very affordable too ~$100

I'd be interested to figure out HOW to get a shot (picture) of the ejecting case with the case "in focus" and everything else blurry.... I am thinking that I may have to *estimate* the trajectory of the case, and set the camera perpendicular to that path, then use manual focus to preset the focal point....


low apeture number (f number) and fast shutter speed.

Matt C
03-11-2007, 5:05 PM
http://a69.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images01/40/l_d58445f05d4f96c252b29833adf4c144.jpg Like this? :P

ocabj
03-11-2007, 5:05 PM
Just pick the fastest shutter speed that gives you a properly illuminated photo in the lighting conditions you have. Outdoors in sunlight will make this easy. Then use the continuous shooting feature. I just checked the specs and the Rebel XT should be able to do 3 shots per second.

TacFan
03-11-2007, 5:19 PM
http://a69.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images01/40/l_d58445f05d4f96c252b29833adf4c144.jpg Like this? :P

shutter speed was too slow on that pic. It's a nice pic but notice how the shell is in blurred motion but everything else is sharp. Should be the other way around.

Mute
03-11-2007, 5:26 PM
If you want to freeze the cartridge without blur, chances are you'll have to go up to at least 1/1000th, most likely faster. Set your shooting mode to continuous and try to start firing just a touch before you fire the weapon. It make take a couple of tries. Use your camera's shutter-priority mode so you don't have to worry about the rest of the settings. If blurring the background isn't important to you, then choose a slightly higher ISO so you can have more depth of field for a sharper picture. It will be a little more forgiving if your focus is slightly off. It will be even better if you can shoot off a tripod with a remote shutter release.

shark92651
03-11-2007, 7:49 PM
Ok, I know this is cheating but just use photoshop or paint.net and add all the crisp flying brass images you want :D

MuNgEr
03-11-2007, 7:53 PM
If you want to freeze the cartridge without blur, chances are you'll have to go up to at least 1/1000th, most likely faster. Set your shooting mode to continuous and try to start firing just a touch before you fire the weapon. It make take a couple of tries. Use your camera's shutter-priority mode so you don't have to worry about the rest of the settings. If blurring the background isn't important to you, then choose a slightly higher ISO so you can have more depth of field for a sharper picture. It will be a little more forgiving if your focus is slightly off. It will be even better if you can shoot off a tripod with a remote shutter release.

OK thats the plan!

I want to try to get 2 ejecting shells in sharp focus (but I would settle for one) along with the rifle (something like this but sharper brass http://alholic.wordpress.com/2006/08/01/the-beauty-of-ejecting-brass/. I'm thinking its going to take some time....lol. If need be, ill rent the 70-200 2.8 L from Cal's for another try:D
BTW. That web link was just a google attempt to find an example, I have no idea what its other content is (disclaimer....lol).

Thanks all

maxicon
03-11-2007, 9:20 PM
I want to try to get 2 ejecting shells in sharp focus (but I would settle for one) along with the rifle (something like this but sharper brass http://alholic.wordpress.com/2006/08/01/the-beauty-of-ejecting-brass/. I'm thinking its going to take some time....lol. If need be, ill rent the 70-200 2.8 L from Cal's for another try:D
BTW. That web link was just a google attempt to find an example, I have no idea what its other content is (disclaimer....lol).


That's a pretty durn good picture. Very dynamic, with the smoke trailing, and the bit of blur on the brass gives the feel of motion. The blurred background keeps the focus on the shooter and the brass; your eye goes to the shooter first, then follows the smoke trail out to the brass.

Looking at the original, the depth of field is very narrow - only the bolt area and the barrel nut are in sharp focus. The brass and smoke are actually moving out of the focal point.

I'd bet the photographer had a hundred or more photos that this one was culled from, and I imagine it was cropped to give the excellent visual balance it has. The only way I can imagine making it better would be if the shooter was on full auto and you had multiple piece of brass flying out of the frame, as you're talking about.

So, you're going to need a very fast shutter speed and a wide open aperture, and you'll need to take quite a few pics to get the right one. You might want to look into renting a very fast and expensive fixed focal length lens - I'm not sure 2.8's going to do it for you, and you really don't need zoom for a pic like this if you get the distance right. You'll need to manually focus on the area of brass trajectory, and take bursts as fast as your camera allows starting from when the shooter pulls the trigger. You'll definitely want a tripod. I'd also recommend having a laptop on site to look at the pics, as pics that look sharp on the camera's viewscreen can be seriously flawed on the big screen.

trouble
03-11-2007, 9:24 PM
Assuming you're shooting with canon dslr equipment:

Set the camera to Tv mode. This will allow you to pick what shutter speed you want and the camera will do the rest.

Make sure your shooting "Drive" mode is set to repetitive continuous shooting. It looks like multiple squares on top of each other and is changed by pressing the drive-iso button and then spinning the dial on top.

Ok, next step... Aim the camera at the shooter, half press the shutter, look in the viewfinder and see what shutter speed you're at and what aperture it picked. Turn the little dial on top until your shutter speed is set to 1/1000. Now look back in the viewfinder and see what aperture it picked. As long as it's not blinking, you're OK. (>=4 on your lens) If it's blinking, you'll have to raise the ISO to be able to use that fast a shutter speed (not bad up to 400 or maybe 800 if you're not printing big).

Now, aim the center spot at the gun... press and hold your trigger while the shooter presses his and you should be able to get a decent shot.

Alternatively, you can just switch to sports mode (the little running guy) and the camera will select iso 400, continuous shooting, center focus point and a good metering setting. You should be able to change the shutter speed as high as it will go with the top dial.

Hope that helps!

On any other camera, just set sports mode or action or shutter speed mode and set it as fast as will allow. If your camera supports multiple burst shots you should be able to get something in the air.

formerTexan
03-12-2007, 12:30 PM
...
If need be, ill rent the 70-200 2.8 L from Cal's for another try:D

I think you might try for a 50/1.8, 50/1.4 or 50/1.2L before reaching for the 70-200/2.8 if you're aiming for high shutter speeds.

The 50/1.4 can be had for about 300+shipping, and makes for a great low-light lens, as well as being tack sharp when stopped down just a bit to f/2.8.

The only issue with using a 50mm lens is that you may need to be closer to the shooter than when using a 70-200, and may get brass hitting you or the camera. Put on a good quality, multi-coated, clear UV filter to protect the lens, whether you're using the 50 or 70-200.

jaymz
03-12-2007, 1:06 PM
http://a69.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images01/40/l_d58445f05d4f96c252b29833adf4c144.jpg Like this? :P


Has anyone noticed that the lady holding the revolver has INCREDIBLY long arms!:eek:

1919_4_ME
03-12-2007, 1:19 PM
Looks better when you take it from a angle...:D







http://img65.imageshack.us/img65/7385/casing2zz9jb9ah5.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

shark92651
03-12-2007, 1:22 PM
Has anyone noticed that the lady holding the revolver has INCREDIBLY long arms!:eek:

Not only that but she has somwhow managed to poke the revolver out of this gentleman's nose.

shinigami
03-12-2007, 1:24 PM
Has anyone noticed that the lady holding the revolver has INCREDIBLY long arms!:eek:

LOLOLOLOL!!!!:D :eek:

----

On a side note, as formertexan said, a 50 f/1.8 is a nice lens to start with, fast and cheap. Play with your shutter speed and ISO settings and find the best one that works, I can't really tell you what settings to use as I'm not at the actual site (don't know how much light available). Trial and error is your friend.

Jicko
03-25-2007, 8:59 AM
How's this?

http://images22.fotki.com/v754/photos/2/26966/4756782/IMG_9725processed-vi.jpg

maxicon
03-26-2007, 9:46 AM
That's technically pretty good - caught the brass with minimal motion blur, but just enough to give it a bit of a dynamic feel.

Compositionally, it's static and cluttered. There's not a feel of action, and it almost looks like someone threw the brass past the gun, because there's no smoke, the brass is visually right on top of the gun and in a more cluttered part of the photo, and it looks like it's heading straight for the camera.

The background is distracting because of the patch of green above the barrel - even if were more unfocused, the color patch would distract the eye. Getting more of the hillside with the even grey/brown grass would help that.

Since the gun fills up the whole frame, and the brass is back there with the eotech, magpul, shooter's hands, etc, there's no visual "pop" to the brass. Because the hands are one of the brighter parts of the pic, they pull the eye there first, but are boring. Then you go to the brass, but there's no excitement there either.

Also, the chopped-off buttstock is a little distracting to me, as it interrupts the lines of the gun and unbalances it. Non-gun folks wouldn't care so much about that, though.

If you look at what makes the military-style photo so good, all these elements work together - there's a high visual density to the left (but without anything obvious to distract the eye), tapering off to the gun and a large blank space with the smoking brass flying through it. The composition leads your eyes from the soldier to the flying brass, and it gets more dynamic as you move across. All the colors work together to avoid distraction - important because the brass isn't a real strong visual element on its own, but it has life and action against the blurred, uniform background.

There's a bit of color from the flag patch off to the left, but since it's on the side and slightly out of focus, it's really a bonus bit of visual interest that doesn't resolve until you've taken in the whole photo, and that it's a bit of flag in a sea of camo and earthtones adds a great piece of emotional attraction.

That's really quite an excellent photo, and there would be no shame in trying to duplicate it in the process of getting your own photo techniques fine-tuned.

http://img65.imageshack.us/img65/7385/casing2zz9jb9ah5.jpg

Fjold
03-26-2007, 9:58 AM
http://a69.ac-images.myspacecdn.com/images01/40/l_d58445f05d4f96c252b29833adf4c144.jpg :P


How did you get the mini-pistol to shoot out of your nose?

Tyler
03-26-2007, 11:05 AM
It is a lot easier to capture flying brass when the gun is full auto :D

http://www.pictures.evilperson.com/COLTSMG.jpg

jaymz
03-26-2007, 12:15 PM
How's this?

http://images22.fotki.com/v754/photos/2/26966/4756782/IMG_9725processed-vi.jpg


Super gluing your brass to the red dot doesn't count!!:D