Experience sharing of playing slow door scenery photography

I have taken many sea photos in recent years and summarized some experiences to share with you. This time I went to Heiyan Cape, Xichong, Shenzhen. Although it had been raining the day before, the next morning, there was only dark clouds flowing and no rain. Although seeing the sunrise became an extravagant hope, there was still a surprise – that is, the change of clouds and huge waves.

In the view of a photographer, the good weather is not sunny, but has the necessary picture elements – at least one bright spot. Starting from the Xichong Simple Village Inn at 5:00 a.m. and arriving at the Black Rock Corner, it was more than 5:40. The sky was a little dark. I saw that the tide was very big. I found a stand, set up a tripod and camera, and prepared to shoot. The wave was really big this time, and my stand was even a little dangerous. In fact, during the shooting process, the body and feet of the machine had been wetted by the surging waves twice – heartache! However, safety is the first priority. Stand up and don’t be swept away by the waves!

Okay, let’s cut the crap. Now summarize the main points of shooting,equipment:

Body: Nikon D700 – the full-frame machine has excellent performance in controlling noise

Lens: Nicole 16-35/4 VR – ultra-wide angle lens can make the picture full of tension, which is necessary for making large films

Filter: dimmer ND8 (slow down the shutter speed), gradient gray GND 0.9 (reduce the light contrast between the sky and the sea)

Shutter line: color timing shutter line (timing function is very important)

Tripod: Jinzhong 640A (stable tripod plays an extremely important role in the clarity of the picture)

Others: cleaning cloth (wipe the fog and water drops at any time), flashlight (check the terrain), anti-skid shoes (the rocks are slippery after the rain, be careful), umbrella (in fact, if it really rains, hurry to withdraw!)


Step 1: composition

It is very important to find an angle. Even if you have good technology, without a good composition angle, everything is useless! My composition principle is that the picture conforms to the golden section rule – there is no more beautiful composition than the golden section~of course, some people like to take a non-mainstream picture, that’s different!

So I found a low angle, with the lens slightly downward to get more foreground, while the sky only accounts for 1/3, or even less. But this time the change of the sky clouds is a bright spot, so I took the sky a little more.

At this time, there will be a problem. Because of the lens distortion, the sea level will be distorted. This is unavoidable in the early stage, and can only be corrected in the later stage. Pay attention to the level of the sea level when composing the picture. If the sea level cannot be seen clearly because the light is too dark, you can set the sensitivity ISO a little higher, and take a quick test shot with a large aperture before adjusting it.

Step 2: Focus

In fact, most scenery shots are manual focusing, because we need large depth of field photos, so the cooperation of aperture and focus is the key.

According to the theory of depth of field, there is a conversion relationship between the appropriate aperture value+foreground view+focus. However, it is not so complicated here. When you convert for half a day, the opportunity and inspiration for shooting may be lost, especially for children’s shoes with poor math, they may faint directly! With my experience, the best way is to accumulate shooting experience and form a shooting intuition.

Here, I use F16 for aperture, and focus manually (come back a little from infinity, don’t hit infinity)

If you have to use auto focus, you can use a flashlight to illuminate the foreground and then focus.

Step 3: Exposure

Exposure is the focus of the whole shooting technology.

according toLandscape photographyThe exposure rule of the is that on the histogram, the highlight part and the dark part are not allowed to overflow, that is, they cannot be over-exposed or underexposed. Like many beginners’ scenery, the white clouds turn into pieces of paper, and the dark part is a piece of dead black, which are all unsuccessful works.

Therefore, to control the exposure is to control the detail contrast between the bright and dark parts, so that the two ends of the histogram do not overflow, which is the purpose of our shooting technology.

At this time, it is estimated that there are children’s shoes to ask. Why must it be so? This is determined by the word “eye care”. Do you feel dazzling when you see a piece of dead white? And when you see the darkness of death, do you feel depressed? The eye-catching degree of the picture determines the quality of the picture. I don’t need to explain this!

Well, after that, the children’s shoes without dizziness can continue to look down: in order to obtain perfect exposure, the accumulated technical experience of long-term shooting is essential, and at the same time, the results of the later stage should be considered when shooting in the early stage.

Light metering is the key

Light metering is to measure the light and see what combination of aperture and shutter value is required for shooting. Here, I made a visual observation based on the intuition of long-term photography. It is very difficult to measure light when the light conditions are relatively dark, and experience has become a valuable secret. Here, instead of using ND dimmer, I only added a piece of 0.9 GND gradient gray. The exposure parameters are as follows: ISO 100, F16, 98 seconds, automatic white balance.

As you can see, due to the long exposure time, the accumulation of time has turned the waves into fog, and the clouds into wire-like, producing a dreamlike effect – this is the charm of slow door! Now take a look at the RAW format original.

You can see that the exposure control is very successful. (In fact, they often fail.)

Precautions during shooting

(1) The tree wants to be quiet but the wind is still, and the previous efforts will be wasted if there is a slight vibration, so the shutter cable should be fixed properly (it is a better way to tie it to the tripod with Velcro);

(2) Prevent the sneak attack of the waves at all times. It is a good opportunity to shoot when the waves hit, but the wet body matter is small, and the wet machine matter is big!

(3) When the big wave recedes, it is better to press the shutter again. At this time, the waves will be made into silk, rather than when the big wave comes, the slow shutter will make the picture white;

(4) Prepare a cleaning cloth at any time to wipe off the water droplets on the filter lens, otherwise the post-treatment will be uncomfortable;

(5) The exposure should make the dark part brighter, while the highlight should not overflow;

(6) Pay attention to safety. Don’t make the plane crash and people die!

In addition, it should be mentioned that some photographers like to shake the black card, but in my opinion, the long exposure requires the cloud wiredrawing, and the sea waves become fog, and shaking the black card will reduce the exposure time of the sky, causing the cloud wiredrawing to be interrupted, and can not achieve good results. Therefore, filter+long exposure is the best slow-door sea shooting method.

When it comes to light metering, many children’s shoes have questions to ask. In fact, I have only one suggestion: keep the histogram to the right, but don’t overflow the highlight, and try to reduce the contrast. The following are several histogram references:

The fact is that if the early kungfu is in place, the later stage will be relatively easy. If the early kungfu is not in place, the later stage will not be able to handle it. A skillful woman can’t cook without rice! So shooting a good material is a great help for post-processing!

Key points in later stage

Now I have a very good material. When I open it in PS CS6, the CAMERA RAW control panel will pop up and make a simple adjustment:

(1) The method of correcting the distortion of the picture: filter — lens correction — self setting (rotation, distortion…)

(2) To remove the image stain, method: stain repair brush tool (remove one spot)

(3) Control the shadow tone of the picture (contrast, sky brightness, dark highlight details). Method: copy the current layer – set it to soft light blending mode – adjust the opacity – adjust the shadow highlight of the image to adjust the details

If necessary, create a new layer, gradient gray, soft light, and adjust the opacity.

(4) Color mixing method: use the optional color to adjust the layer and increase the cyan color.

(5) Sharpness, method: original image sharpness (quantity 80, radius 1), small image sharpness (1000 pixels wide, quantity 300, radius 0.2)

If necessary, use a mask to sharpen the part.

Final work completed: