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Photography Question 
Michael Affronte

Shooting Skaters in a Dark Rink

I'm giving my daughter a skating party this weekend, and I already know the rink will be very dark. I don't have a flash yet (other than what's attached to my Canon Digital Rebel already). I would like to use this opportunity to practice and learn, but am worried about the lack of lighting, and trying to get action photos with fast and slow shutter speeds...

Any advice?

Many thanks! Michael!

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8/10/2004 11:06:27 PM

Dave Cross   Hi Michael. This is my 2c ... your mileage may vary :-)

-- Forget the built-in flash; it just won't have the reach (try it if you want).
-- Shoot RAW, so you can easily fix the horrible colour casts from those mercury lights.
-- Use the fastest lens you own, if it's only a short lens, get closer.
-- Maximum ISO on the camera, the DRebel has a pretty quiet sensor.
-- You may find that manual focus works better that auto.
-- Pan with the skaters.
-- Try shooting with -1 stop on the exposure compensation (that will give you a faster shutter speed) and then open up by 1 stop in the RAW converter (that little +/- symbol in the top left of the RAW converter window). This is the digital equivalent of "push processing." Try it with 2 stops (getting a bit noisy).
-- Take your tripod, use the built-in flash in "slow sync" mode for some interesting effects (does the DRebel do 2nd curtain sync??). Slow sync (I think it's call "night" on the DRebel) will also give you reasonable group shots and avoid the black background you will get just using the flash.

Enjoy the party, and take LOTS of pictures (they are free).


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8/10/2004 11:28:07 PM

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