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07/13/2007 11:03:48 AM · #1
Everything Manual

I couldn't cross-post this because of the formatting I used...

Do you shoot everything in manual mode?
07/13/2007 11:08:33 AM · #2
No. Studio shooting is fully Manual but I use AV half the time for outdoor stuff and manual half the time. Just depends if I'm happy with what I'm seeing from the AV setting. If it seems too blown out or something I'll just set it manually and get what I want.

oops.typo

Message edited by author 2007-07-13 11:09:53.
07/13/2007 11:14:21 AM · #3
I used to when i was forcing myself to become comfortable with it, and to learn exposures etc.
Now i sometimes 'cheat' with AP.
Most of the time in M though.
07/13/2007 11:22:15 AM · #4
Av mode for almost everything. But the moment flash or studio light becomes my main source of light, I switch to manual.

07/13/2007 11:25:05 AM · #5
Originally posted by dwterry:

Av mode for almost everything. But the moment flash or studio light becomes my main source of light, I switch to manual.


Ditto. :)
07/13/2007 11:26:58 AM · #6
I use Av mode for probably 80% of my shots. If I've got a moving subject, the shutter becomes the priority. I don't do studio work, so the only times I've used manual are for the rare night shot.
07/13/2007 11:27:04 AM · #7
Originally posted by dwterry:

Av mode for almost everything. But the moment flash or studio light becomes my main source of light, I switch to manual.


As above, though if shooting motorsports and want to pan, then switch to Shutter priority...
07/13/2007 11:37:23 AM · #8
I use Av quite a bit and manual for flash/strobe shots. Tv for action. Hell, I'll even put the camera in "professional" mode if conditions are right.

Message edited by author 2007-07-13 11:38:19.
07/13/2007 11:56:45 AM · #9
That's a good article, John. Well done!

In my work, I tend to use manual about half the time, whenever I'm using a tripod basically. When I am hand-holding I tend to use Tv to lock in a shutter speed, unless I'm doing hand-held macros, where I use Av and lock in desired DOF.

Here's my basic thinking: in either Av or Tv mode, you are either letting the camera determine the exposure or you are using the exposure compensation dial, which I dislike because I tend to forget I have moved it. Using manual exposure is basically like using the exposure compensation dial except you get to play with two parameters at once. Anyway, I'm so used to it from the film days that it works for me.

R.
07/13/2007 12:11:47 PM · #10
I usually shoot in Av or Tv mode, but then use the bracket (+/-) adjustment to over or under expose the meter reading depending on the subject (backlit, heavy reds/yellows, etc). I probably use Av 75% of the time and Tv 10%. Rarely use full manual, but like Bear points out my approach accomplishes pretty much the same thing, albeit based on the in camera meter rather than a handheld off-camera unit.
07/13/2007 12:21:22 PM · #11
John,
Very informative and well written article.

I'd like to add another theory: Inertia

The importance of learning manual mode was impressed in my mind when I started with my first SLR. It has been a long, slow process for me to learn and understand the relationships between ISO, aperture and shutter speed and how to use them for the desired artistic effect.

Although I realize that a priority mode is more efficient and reliable, I find it difficult to give up the habit of experimenting with manual settings, in all of my shots.

The results is that I usually get one properly exposed shot for every 10 bad ones. Guess It's time to tighten up and take this good advice.

Message edited by author 2007-07-13 12:22:01.
07/13/2007 12:25:58 PM · #12
Manual always. Honestly never used the other modes so I can't even really have an opinion on them. I do know that between spot metering and experience I can pretty much dial in the correct exposure from the start.
07/13/2007 12:41:52 PM · #13
The dynamics of what is being shot determines what mode I use.
I use manual mode for most all my shooting when I have the time to scan the scene and meter the areas being shot, using the center/partial metering mode, going for the brightest area, then adjusting one bar to the left of center.
When going for motion-related shots and I've done a few test shots, then set in Tv mode to keep the results consistent, but still find myself using manual mode when I've got what I want and the lighting isn't changing.
When using the depth of field for effect, I switch over to Av mode sometimes, but still favor manual mode for these kind of shots.
When in point & shoot mode, where things change to rapidly for me to fiddle around with the camera, P mode works well and find the results fairly good for the most part.
The key to using manual mode is being so familiar with the camera's settings, you can change the settings without ever taking your eye out of the viewfinder. One click to the left, thumb on and one click to the right.

Message edited by author 2007-07-13 12:47:01.
07/13/2007 01:29:43 PM · #14
i use manual all the time. i guess i just got used to it with the old Pentax K1000 and i just feel comfortable shooting that way.
07/13/2007 01:34:47 PM · #15
Originally posted by Brad:


The key to using manual mode is being so familiar with the camera's settings, you can change the settings without ever taking your eye out of the viewfinder. One click to the left, thumb on and one click to the right.


The great thing about the 20D is two control wheels; in manual mode you spin one for shutter and one for aperture. It's super-easy.

R.
07/13/2007 01:42:02 PM · #16
Originally posted by Bear_Music:


The great thing about the 20D is two control wheels; in manual mode you spin one for shutter and one for aperture. It's super-easy.


Yeah, that is one thing that kinda sucks about the Rebel XT. that extra wheel would be super nice. I mis that about my 35mm gear.
07/13/2007 01:48:19 PM · #17
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Brad:


The key to using manual mode is being so familiar with the camera's settings, you can change the settings without ever taking your eye out of the viewfinder. One click to the left, thumb on and one click to the right.


The great thing about the 20D is two control wheels; in manual mode you spin one for shutter and one for aperture. It's super-easy.

R.


Heh. So does the D200, which is my first SLR (digital or film). I just assumed all of them had two wheels!

Anyway, I'm usually in Av mode. But I like to do a fair amount of night shooting, and then I'm in manual. When going for stop action, I switch to Tv, except for when it's low light, when I force the aperture open and take whatever shutter speed I can get after ramping up the ISO.
07/13/2007 01:54:03 PM · #18
M when shooting macro with flash
Av when not shooting macro with flash
Av with max x-sync locked for studio portraits (unless the dag preflash makes people blink ... then M)
07/13/2007 01:55:34 PM · #19
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

Originally posted by Brad:


The key to using manual mode is being so familiar with the camera's settings, you can change the settings without ever taking your eye out of the viewfinder. One click to the left, thumb on and one click to the right.


The great thing about the 20D is two control wheels; in manual mode you spin one for shutter and one for aperture. It's super-easy.

R.


I hadn't really thought about it before, but that's something I miss from the old film days ... one wheel on the lens for aperture, and the other on the body for shutter speed. The pentax only has one double duty wheel on the camera body, and a little button you have to push to change aperture in full manual ... which, now that I think about it, is probably why I shoot in Av so often. Even when I want to control shutter speed, I do that more often by just stopping down the f/stop rather than switching over to Tv mode
07/13/2007 02:07:36 PM · #20
Originally posted by the article:


I do strongly believe that knowing how to do it is important to any photographer.


My thoughts exactly. Great writeup BTW.
07/13/2007 02:08:35 PM · #21
Originally posted by jmsetzler:

Everything Manual

I couldn't cross-post this because of the formatting I used...

Do you shoot everything in manual mode?


Nice article and very cool bridge shot.

I find myself shooting in Av most of the time. But when I do studio shots I only shoot in manual. I never shoot in P and very rarely use Tv.
07/13/2007 02:19:52 PM · #22
Hey, it's digital, why not?

Actually, I normally have it on AV mode. Sometimes I put my camera in Tv with outdoor flash because, I don't want to go over my flash sync.

I'll use manual for indoor flash. Or when I've used my lightmeter to over-ride the exposure lock.

My wife regularly gets pissed at me when she picks up my camera to take a picture. I'll always have it set to something special (Av f4 with +1 exposure because the exposure lock was fooled). I just tell her when she picks it up to switch it to P mode and shoot.
07/13/2007 02:49:53 PM · #23
Backlighting can also get me into manual mode. For example, I wanted to shoot my family against the ocean, with the sun at their backs. I metered the water, then went to manual to lock in those settings so nothing would change between shots or when I pointed the camera at them instead of the water (I realize I could've used exposure lock, but manual let me make adjustments if I wanted). Then I turned on the flash and played with the flash power until it all looked good.
07/13/2007 03:01:18 PM · #24
Originally posted by levyj413:

Backlighting can also get me into manual mode. For example, I wanted to shoot my family against the ocean, with the sun at their backs. I metered the water, then went to manual to lock in those settings so nothing would change between shots or when I pointed the camera at them instead of the water (I realize I could've used exposure lock, but manual let me make adjustments if I wanted). Then I turned on the flash and played with the flash power until it all looked good.

Here's a bit on how to do that for anyone reading this thread: (scroll down)
1/3 or 1/2 EV steps
07/13/2007 03:24:37 PM · #25
I use AV mode 95% of the time. I have started underexposing 1 stop because I like the results better. Not sure if that is a Canon thing, or just within my camera, but it seems to give better contrast and colors.
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