My Living Room, brought to you by Canon


So my buddy dropped by and got my computer to play nice with my new camera, so I’m good to go. Above are the first two shot with my new toy. It’s only my living room, but that’ll have to do until I get out of the house with it. Both were shot at ISO 1600, F2.8. The first is with a shutter speed of 1/8 and -1.33 EV, and the second is at 1/6 and -2.0 EV. I’m not sure when the shutter speed gets too slow to be hand held. I think they came out great. My old p & s could never get anything close to this, with this light. I’m not 100% sure about focus on these, but they’re close enough for a start. I’ve still got lots to learn, as you can imagine. If you click on the shots you can see full sized versions. Well, not FULL sized, as I resized them for the net. They were originally 9 megs a piece. I did a bit of editing, which seemed to bump up the file size.

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18 Responses to My Living Room, brought to you by Canon

  1. milkayphoto says:

    Nice to see you finally ‘playing’! As a general rule, an experienced photog can hand-hold down to the reverse of the focal length. So, if your focal length is 80mm, then to have a crisp-clean shot, you need to shoot at a shutter speed of 1/80s or faster. Some lenses are more forgiving than others and there are tricks you can use to steady yourself. A GOOD photog (ahem) can shoot at slower shutter speeds but not consistently. 1/6s and 1/8s are DEFINITELY too slow of a shutter to get a crisp shot. Didn’t you also get a pretty neat tripod? USE IT! 🙂

    • davecandoit says:

      Thanks Tracy, good to know. So if I’d cranked up the ISO to 3200 the shutter speed would have shortened, right? But if I really want to ensure a fast shutter in low light conditions I guess I should shoot in shutter priority, no? My camera allows me to limit the ISO but I know some, like yours I believe, allow you to also set a min. shutter speed. Mine doesn’t. I’ve set the max ISO to 1600 for now. Maybe I should change it to 3200.

      Yeah, got the tripod and for something like this I would have used it but I really wanted to see what I could do with hand held.

      If you were shooting this scene sans tripod, what priority mode would you have shot in?

      • milkayphoto says:

        Yes, that is correct. Higher ISO makes your sensor MORE sensitive to light resulting in a faster shutter speed. The trade off is digital noise. Not sure how good the Canon is at higher ISOs. The new Nikons are truly impressive, tho, I rarely shoot above ISO 640. I just like noiseless images.

        Shooting in shutter priority in low light situations doesn’t necessarily solve your problem. The camera can only ‘open up’ the lens so wide, so when it is maxed out (like at F/2.8), and you are in shutter priority, your images will most likely be way underexposed. I don’t have a min shutter speed set.

        I typically shoot in Aperture Priority mode (99% of the time) and would +/-EV to get the look I desire. Sometimes, I go into manual mode, which I may have done in this situation. Definitely would have used a tripod, and depending upon the shutter speed, might have also used a remote cable release. Oh, and I wouldn’t have used F/2.8 (too shallow DOF for a scene) but would have wanted to be around F6.3, F/8, maybe higher depending upon the lens. I might also have bounced some flash to get some fill light. You just never know. 🙂

  2. aswirly says:

    Hooray!! Hooray!! You’re first 2 shots (FINALLY, sheesh) lol. Awesome that you did this handheld with the low light. I agree with Tracy though, 2.8 too shallow. Hey, nice living room btw 😉

    • davecandoit says:

      Thanks Amber. Yeah, I knew F2.8 would create a shallow DoF but I was trying to catch as much light as possible. I’m going to try it again at a higher f stop using my tripod.

  3. Cool, we finally see it. BTW, I pulled the trigger on a D90 just today, but like you, I will be spending some time with the manual. We shall see soon. Congrats, look forward to seeing the new, improved Dave (if that’s possible).

  4. davecandoit says:

    Thanks a million, Tracy, that’s so helpful.

  5. Jan Smith says:

    Your living room is so cozy looking. 🙂 You sound like you know a lot more about shutter speeds, camera settings etc. than I know. Boy do I need to take a class. 😦

    Anyway, I’m glad you’re playing around with it. Good Luck to you and thanks sooooo much for the mention of my new blog. You’re a sweetheart.

    • davecandoit says:

      Thanks Jan. Knowing the technical side of photography is helpful and something in which I’m very interested, but all the technical knowledge in the world can’t replace a good, artist eye. Your photos are simply terrific and prove my point.

      If you have some interest in the technical side, I strongly recommend you pick up the book, Understanding Exposure. It’s very easy to read and filled with photographic examples that complement the written descriptions.

      Best wishes on your new blog. It sounds interesting. I hope you get lots of visitors and contributors.

  6. davecandoit says:

    That’s great, Bob. I’m sure you’ll find it handy. I’m waiting on a T1i book since the T2i books won’t hit the stores until June/July.

  7. lynnwiles says:

    I’m so glad that you got your camera and computer to talk to one another. Great first attempts. Most people would try out their new camera on a sun filled day, not on a challenging low light situation. But as you said, a P&S could never have done that. So, Bravo to you Dave!!!

    • davecandoit says:

      Thanks Lynn. From what Tracy says it would seem I used a shutter speed too slow for hand held. What’s worse is that I was holding the camera over my head when I took these shots. I’m surprised they came out at all.

      • lynnwiles says:

        Hey you are writing to a hand held only, tripod phobic person here. No apologies needed. By the way, after leaving my comment, I realized that I tried out hand held low light interior shots first too. Two peas in a pod, enjoying low light photography.

  8. uncoveringyou says:

    LOL all this technical input…all i was thinking was..cozy looking place!! 🙂

  9. davecandoit says:

    Lynn: I guess great minds think alike! 🙂

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