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Old 03-22-2013, 11:49 AM   #16
Pixel Dust
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 519

Agreed. It has to be one of the worst lighting conditions for a character meet. The place is dark, cavernous and non white walls, so you can't bounce the flash, direct only. When I do use flash I already have the flash exposure compensation about a -1. Then bump the ISO up a bit. Those two things make sure the subject isn't too bright and the shadows aren't too black. And definitely shoot in RAW format.

Now for the actual dining area. As long as the windows are behind you, no flash and wide aperture is fine. But those stained glass window are awesome. Don't you want them in the picture too? Without blowing them out?

That is me in the photo, but I had set up the camera in manual mode before I handed it off. You will need flash for this, since it is a severely back-lit scene. The flash is TTL, though -1 exposure compensation. The goal is to expose for the windows by having the ISO as low as possible and shutter speed as fast as possible (dependent on how bright it is outside). In this case it was very bright so I did ISO 100 and shutter speed 1/200. (You can't go faster than 1/200 on the D5100 with flash) The flash then should properly expose the foreground.

Also, don't leave the 35mm 1.8 at home. It's great for dark rides (no flash, of course)
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