Advice to New Owner: #8 Blowing in the Wind

Started Dec 23, 2001 | Discussions thread
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Steadman Uhlich Senior Member • Posts: 1,123
Advice to New Owner: #8 Blowing in the Wind

OK....you got that new super dooper lens and this great camera (the D30)...and now your kids and wife/husband are tired of you snapping shots of them doing what people do...

So...you think..."I'll go out in the garden and take some closeup shots of bugs and flowers (in season or geographical locations)."

Problem...the wind. Yep. The wind blows whether you like it or not. And now that you have snapped some shots of the flowers...and then look at them on screen...they look sorta "soft" or blurred because they moved in the wind... Or...the light was bright sunshine and the contrast is too high between the highlights and shadows on the flower petals...(critical with a digital camera...your highlights may get blown out). What to do?

ADVICE: Buy two umbrellas.

Why umbrellas?

Simple solutions are the best. Here is what you can do...

1. Buy two umbrellas (larger size) one black and one white. They don't have to be fancy umbrellas. Just avoid colors and stripes etc...

2. Find your flower.

3. Put your camera on a tripod (or use the 28-135 IS which is great for this...no need for the tripod and zooming into the subject)

4. Open the umbrellas and put one on each side of the flower. Use them to block the wind so your flower will be in relatively "still air." You don't have to have a umbrella stand or anything in most cases. Just open up the umbrella and simply let the handle/shaft support the umbrella on the ground. When open, the two shafts should usually be pointed to each other..so the umbrella fabric makes a "clam shell shape" above the flower. Use the white umbrella on the side where the light is coming from...or use it above the flower to diffuse the light. Use the black umbrella on the "shadow side" of the flower. Now you have a "Steadman's Instant Outdoor Macro Studio." Try it...you will like it.

Umbrellas like this are cheap and they fold up in a snap...and they are dependable. You can carry folded umbrellas easily and they are handy for other purposes too...(wink). Just be prepared for a few funny looks when you take them out on a sunny day...

Now that Canon version of the umbrella may cost you a bit more...(wink)

Another example of cheap tools and clever technique that help the shot.

Good Luck and Good Light

Steadman

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