View Full Version : Need help with Christmas tree/lights pics with digital Rebel

12-07-2005, 01:55 PM
I love my camera but do not know alot about it yet.

I am trying to take pictures of my kids in front of the tree or alone just holding strands of lights. How can I get the lights and the kids to show up in a low light setting?


12-07-2005, 02:17 PM
Try using the "Night Portrait" mode on the camera and tell you kids to stay still even after the flash fires. The flash should illuminate the kids and the slow shutter speed will allow the backround to fill in. If they move while you are doing this you will get motion trails. Use a tripod or set the camera on something if you can to prevent blurriness from camera shake.

12-07-2005, 07:42 PM
It didn't work. :confused3 No blur from movement but the kids either turn out fuzzy, dark or blue!

Any other ideas?

12-08-2005, 09:59 AM
Blue? Never heard of that one! If there is not blur from them moving, it would have to be either the camera is focusing on the tree instead of the kids or camera movement from the slow shutter speed. Make sure that when you frame the picture that one of the red dots in the viewfinder is on the kids. You can't pick your focus point when in the night portrait mode so what ever is center in the viewfinder that is what the camera usually will decide to focus on. And with the digital Rebels you can't focus on your subject press the shutter half way and recompose the shot. It ruins the exposure. So try to have one of the kids in the center of your shot so the camera sets the proper focal length and exposure.

12-08-2005, 12:27 PM
Since you are dealing with a digital camera, there is a digital trickery that you can use.

Set your camera up on a tripod. Take a shot in Program AE mode of the tree without the kids - this shot may be a 1-2 second exposure, so use the camera's self-timer when taking the shot, which will allow any vibration from pushing the button to stop before the shot is actually taken.

Next, let your kids get into the shot. Be very careful not to move the camera or change the zoom, or the two shots won't match. Take this shot with the flash on, which will make sure the kids come out with the right exposure.

In Paint Shop Pro, Photoshop, or whatever digital editing program you have, combine the two pics. There are several different methods to use that will allow you to adjust the tree pic and the kids pic independently to get the best result.

12-09-2005, 02:24 PM
Thank you, I'll try tonight!