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Photography Question 
Carolyn Swadley

How to shoot action in a well lit building

I have an Olympus E-510 camera. I can take outdoor sports/action shots just fine. But I tried to take pictures at a dog show where it was well lit, stayed on the sports mode and they turned out blurry. The lights also reflected off the shiny floor. I'm going again this weekend, any suggestions? Perhaps put on aperture mode and high ISO?

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12/3/2009 11:38:35 AM

R K Stephenson
BetterPhoto Member Since: 10/5/2007
  Hi, Carolyn,

I'm not familiar with the Evolt E-510 so I have a more general suggestion that might help:

Rather than use one of the creative modes, try selecting aperture priority or shutter priority. That way you can control the speed and aperture to your liking.

You can select an aperture, e.g., to get the bokeh (background focus) you want and then bump up the ISO until you get a shutter speed to your liking.

With the Evolt's built-in shake compensation, you should probably be able to hand-hold at 1/30 or so, maybe lower with practice or while panning.

As far as the shiny floor, you can try getting "low" which may limit the light reflections from overhead lights.



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12/3/2009 1:05:09 PM

Randy A. Myers
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/20/2002
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  I'm not saying you are wrong, but I have never shot an indoor venue that was well lit. It looks bright to the eye but your shutter speed and aperture will tell you the real story. The only thing you can do is to raise the ISO to achieve a suitable shutter speed. Study the EXIF data on your previous shots and calculate how much you need to raise the ISO. Example: 1/60 sec @ ISO 100 equals 1/125 sec @ ISO 200 equals 1/250 sec @ ISO 400 equals 1/500 sec @ ISO 800 and so on. A faster shutter is the only way to reduce blurriness. The minimum shutter speed without action is at least 1/focal length. In other words, 100 mm focal length needs at least 1/100 sec. or 200 mm needs 1/200 sec. Add in action to the shot and the speed needs to increase to compensate unless you are panning, then that's a another discussion altogether.

You will need to adjust your position to reduce the shine on the floor. A polarizer would fix that problem but you can't afford to lose the 2 stops of light it requires since you are already having problems with achieving a fast shutter speed. Good luck!

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12/3/2009 1:50:23 PM

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