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Photography Question 
Vincent Farina

Disney Night Shows

I recently purchased a point and shoot (Olympus Stylus 170mm Zoom) and took it to Disney World. It took really poor shots of the nighttime shows, particularly an incredible one called Fantasmic, which probably has some of the worst picture conditions.

It basically takes place on a dark mountain, though the main characters are pretty well lit when they perform. It has fireworks and some costumes that I believe are black-lit. None of the characters move particularly quickly, however most of the shots were blurred. When I zoomed all the way in, a character would just about fill the frame, so I figured I was taking really great close-ups.

I could hear the shutter stay open for 1-2 seconds, then advance the film. Most of the pictures produced very bright blurs against the dark background. Other night shots of their light parades produced bright swirls of light against the black sky. It looks like the pictures would have been fine if the shutter was quicker.

I took back the camera, and am looking at moving toward an SLR, particularly the Nikon N65 with a 200mm zoom (not as expensive and supposedly easy to use). After reading a few of the articles, a camera with Shutter Priority has definitely sparked my interest.

So I have a few questions. Does anyone have any tips or experience with shooting this show or these conditions (shutter speeds, etc.)? Do you think the N65 can handle it or do you have any other recommendations?

I appreciate any help you could give me.

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10/10/2002 10:00:19 PM

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