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Photography
Questions about shooting your models and dioramas? Ask here.
Photography question
irish
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Pennsylvania, United States
Joined: October 21, 2005
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 02:42 AM UTC
I am in the market for a digital camera.

Do any of you have any suggestions? I was considering the Canon Rebel XTi.

The second question is, do any of you use a macro lens, and does it give better results?

Thanks,

irish
Tojo72
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North Carolina, United States
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 02:46 AM UTC
My camara has a macro setting to give better results for close-up shots

Ihave a sony dsc-150 but i believe there are newer models now
jowady
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 03:07 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I am in the market for a digital camera.

Do any of you have any suggestions? I was considering the Canon Rebel XTi.

The second question is, do any of you use a macro lens, and does it give better results?

Thanks,

irish



Personally I use a Nikon D70. A macro lens is indespensible when photographing models, it allows for the close up shots that you need for detail.

John
t34-85
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California, United States
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 03:10 AM UTC

Quoted Text

I am in the market for a digital camera.

Do any of you have any suggestions? I was considering the Canon Rebel XTi.

The second question is, do any of you use a macro lens, and does it give better results?

Thanks,

irish



Forget the XTi, it doesn't have a good viewfinder (it will be dark and tunnel-visioned at high f-numbers, which is exactly what you need to have everything in focus) and it doesn't have a spot meter (which you will definitely need to get the correct exposure), i.e. it's not particulary suited for macrophotography. Get the new Nikon D80 ($999) with the Micro Nikkor 60mm f/2.8. (about $350.) You'll be amazed with the results.
RichardM
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Quebec, Canada
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 03:23 AM UTC
Most, if not all digital cameras have a macro function. I would say that this is essential if you want to take pictures of scale models.

I bought a Canon PowerShot A400 for less than $300CAN (camera + 512Mb memory card + recheargable (sp?) batteries) and it work for me.

I think the primary question is how much are ready to put on a new camera. After that you have to look for the following:
- Resolution (Megapixel) The more the better.
- Macro function: what's the closest distance you can zoom on an object.
- what kind of memory card do the camera use and what are the price of those cards.
- Color balance functions (again, I think that all digital cameras have it). This will help having the right colors when you take pictures inside with regular light bulbs.

Maybe not the best answer but this should help you a little
slodder
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North Carolina, United States
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 05:53 AM UTC
I use a Nikon Coolx 4800 and I like it a lot. lots of complements and it's easy to use.

I use high res. and the macro (closup) setting.
gbkirsch
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Ohio, United States
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 06:13 AM UTC
I use a Nikon d50 with a Tamron 18-200 Zoom. The zoom allows me to get in close from a distance which seems to enhance the photos of models. Sounds like the guys here have some serious hardware. Must be something about modelers and good photographic equipment?!

Good luck,
Gary
Mojo
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Ontario, Canada
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 06:23 AM UTC
I shoot a Panasonic Lumix FZ20.. So far i have been amazed at the quality of pictures it produces.. I say that because I am a total noob when it comes to cameras and photography..


Dave
jowady
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Posted: Monday, November 06, 2006 - 06:51 AM UTC
[. Get the new Nikon D80 ($999) with the Micro Nikkor 60mm f/2.8. (about $350.) You'll be amazed with the results.[/quote]
]
Yeah, the 60 micro, at 1:1 is a pretty nice piece of hardware!

John
Shturmovik
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Massachusetts, United States
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 05:53 PM UTC
I have seen alot of great photographs browsing the forum. I was wondering if you can share your expertise. What kind of background do you use, where to get it and how much it costs. How do you set up light around the model? If you had only 6 pictures to take what angles would you choose? Also, I have a Canon PS S500 (I think). It does have a macro setting and a x3 optical zoom. Would this be sufficient to take decent close-up pictures. So far I cannot seem to get it right. Do you use optical zoom at all when taking pics or just get as close as you can with the camera?
AJLaFleche
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 07:05 PM UTC

Quoted Text

What kind of background do you use, where to get it and how much it costs.


If you take a look at my photos. you'll see a few backdrops. The single color stuff is nothing more than remnants from any fabric store. You can get this stuff for a couplle dollars a yard. the scenic one is a photo I found on the web and printed. It's taped to the back of a styrofoam box. Cost is the paper and ink.

Quoted Text


How do you set up light around the model?




Quoted Text

If you had only 6 pictures to take what angles would you choose?

Centered on each corner and slightly above and one each high angle from the front and rear.

Quoted Text

Also, I have a Canon PS S500 (I think). It does have a macro setting and a x3 optical zoom. Would this be sufficient to take decent close-up pictures. So far I cannot seem to get it right.


Best to post some pictures to get a critique of your technique. Each camera set up is different. All my pics are taken with a six year old Sony FD95 with only 2.1 megapixels.

Quoted Text

Do you use optical zoom at all when taking pics or just get as close as you can with the camera?


Depends. I usually use the macro feature coupled with the spot meter to get close ups. There are times, though, I'll drop back and use the zoom feature with the flash. I usually do both and post the best pictures.

PS, since you're in Massachusetts, I hope you'll be coming by Valleycon 17 in Chicopee this Sunday (Shameless plug!)
staff_Jim
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 08:04 PM UTC
Hmm....well personally I don't think there is anything wrong with any of the Canon Digital SLR's. Having used a first-gen Digital Rebel for over 4 years now. And most of my model photography is just using the standard 55mm lens as well.

Some recent photos I took with it

Good luck with your search.

Jim
Shturmovik
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Massachusetts, United States
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 08:57 PM UTC
Thanks for your responses.

Here are some pics I took last weekend with my camera.

http://www.armorama.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=SquawkBox&file=index&req=viewtopic&topic_id=95642&page=1

This was done in the kitchen which has a bunch lights built into the ceiling all around, but I did not use any focused close-up light source.

I couldn't get the camera to focus very well even with the macro function. It could be due to my hands shaking (No I'm not an alcoholic). Do you use tripods when you take pics or just hold the camera in your hands?
AJLaFleche
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 09:16 PM UTC
Took a look at the pics and found a review of the camera. You do have a macro mode and a spot meter. You may need to play with the controls to find these options.
Try increasing the amount of light. I'm not a fan of outdoor model photos since I find the shadows too harsh, but try that.
Also, try dropping back a bit and use the zoom to get a larger image.
Your backdrop doesn't allow me to tell if it's out of focus. If yuo toojk the same pictures again with a figure or even a bottle of paint at the back, I could tell if this is a focus issue.
Do you have a tripod? Even a small table model might help but it doesn't relaly look like there;s a lot of motion, just a slightly fuzzy image. Consider the self timer, as well.The camera may be reading too many places in the image to get a good clean focal point.
Shturmovik
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 10:14 PM UTC
This may sound as a stupid question but what is a spot meter? I'll take a look at the manual to see if I can figure out how to use it.
AJLaFleche
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 10:31 PM UTC
Your camera normally reads light from all over the image and averages those values. I think the stuff I read dsaid there wer 9 discrete readings used for this average. A spot meter chooses a very small area dead center in the image and reads the light from there to arrive at the desired settings. With my camera, the spot meter also sets the focus at that central spot. According to the online descrition, you should have this feature which willprobably show up as a cross hair in the viewfinder. Search your menus.
Shturmovik
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Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 10:42 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Your camera normally reads light from all over the image and averages those values. I think the stuff I read dsaid there wer 9 discrete readings used for this average. A spot meter chooses a very small area dead center in the image and reads the light from there to arrive at the desired settings. With my camera, the spot meter also sets the focus at that central spot. According to the online descrition, you should have this feature which willprobably show up as a cross hair in the viewfinder. Search your menus.



Great! Thanks for all your help. I'll try to follow your advise and make new images at some point then post the two alongisde to compare.
dbudd
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Pennsylvania, United States
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Posted: Friday, August 03, 2007 - 05:30 PM UTC
The canon you mentioned is a good camera, don't mess with the macro lenses what you need is an extension tube. It makes the focusing distance very short so you can get an extreme close up, but the depth of field is short. Attached is a low quality jpeg of a picture I took using an extension tube, you can actually read Krupp Werks on the wrench and see the scratches on the dime in the original.

dbudd
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Pennsylvania, United States
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Posted: Friday, August 03, 2007 - 05:42 PM UTC
For some reason that picture didn't show up in my last post so the link is below. One more thing to keep in mind Canon and Nikon people are moral enemies, once you get one type of SLR you stick with it because as you upgrade the camera you stay with the same brand so you don't have to buy new lens. So, go to a site like http://www.dpreview.com/ do some research and get a camera that suits what you are looking to do, beyond just photographing models.

http://public.fotki.com/dbudd/stills/dime2.html

http://public.fotki.com/dbudd/

AJLaFleche
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Massachusetts, United States
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Posted: Saturday, August 04, 2007 - 04:29 AM UTC

Quoted Text

The canon you mentioned is a good camera, don't mess with the macro lenses what you need is an extension tube. It makes the focusing distance very short so you can get an extreme close up, but the depth of field is short. Attached is a low quality jpeg of a picture I took using an extension tube, you can actually read Krupp Werks on the wrench and see the scratches on the dime in the original.




There ya go, Pilgrim. You had the site URL bracketed by img tags. You need to right cluick on the image, choose "Properties" and copy the the address in the middle of the next box.
gsmith
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Kentucky, United States
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Posted: Sunday, August 19, 2007 - 03:10 PM UTC
With photography you always get what you pay for, ask yourself how much are you willing to spend. I am a diehard Canon man, I use a Canon Eos5D and i shoot models exclusively with a 100mm macro lens. if you would like take a look at some of my pics, tell me what you think. the set up is also very important, the settings on the camera make all the difference when using macro.
[url]http://www.smithmilitarymodeling.com[url]
go here and go to the gallery first, you can see that background as well as foreground are both clear showing all of the details of your work. all of the pics on this site were shot with macro.

let me know what you think,
Gary

Oh, and the lighting, I use three lights but they need to be in front of the camera facing the subject but out of the shot frame. it's real easy once you do it a time or two.