Ballet shoots of this year

Started May 15, 2009 | Discussions thread
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imqqmi OP MOD
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Thank you all!
In reply to imqqmi, May 16, 2009


Thanks! I usually set WB to incandescent/tungsten (like Mike said) as the lights are based on that. I then tweak WB in lightroom (I always shoot in raw)


Thanks Yogi, it was indeed, but with my new workflow I can process up to 200 shots per hour using lightroom. I used DPP or zoombrowser RIT last year which took a lot more time and I had fewer tools to edit the image.


Most shots I've selected were in better light. Good exposures at settings like 1/200ss iso 1600 and f/2.8. I'll post a few examples of some extremes where noise is very visible. The trick during post processing is to slightly clip the blacks and use a bit of contrast so that the noise drops below the threshold and it can't be seen.


I can imagine that. Last year I spoke with some advanced amatures who video taped the show using three cameras at different angles. He had a live editing table to roughly edit it on the spot while also having the original video streams available for refining. I was pretty impressed with the results. I got a dvd and the image qaulity was ok. For me I feel more comfortable with a dslr


Thank you Sydney, no flash was allowed and I would never use flash in such cases anyway. The lighting team put a lot of time and effort in creating an atmosphere that plays a big part of the experience. A flash would take that away in literally a microsecond. Some argue that it also poses a danger to the dancers falling off the stage because they may be disoriented.


Thanks! 1600 iso isn't so bad, especially at these downsized shots. I sometimes don't even use noise reduction or sharpening. Printing such shots at about 20x30cm looks great and little noise can be seen, if it's exposed well.

Thank you SkyTamer!


No flash and WB was set to incandescent, but I usually tweak WB because they often use blue and yellow spotlights to create semi white which it isn't. The WB in LR ranged from 2500 to 4000K and green/magenta from -30 to +30 depending how much green or magenta spotlights were used. In one scene there was magenta from one side and green from the other. It's difficult to choose a good WB in such cases. If one color is neutral the other is so dominant that it hurts your eyes.

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For more tips for those who are interested in shooting on-stage performances/recitals see this thread:

This is as low as I go for these kind of shots. Sigma 30mm f/1.4 @ f/1.4, 1/100ss iso 1600 3 stops underexposed. I used lightroom noise reduction at 15/15 lum/chroma. Resized and sharpened. I was amazed it focused at all. It looks a bit like 1600 ASA film grain and is kind of pleasing:

Kind regards

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