Looking for some advise on these few photos.....

Wm

7DMKII
Jun 11, 2018
85
8
LA
So im very much a beginner and am trying to figure this out. I took a bunch of pictures in this sunset/night trying to get a few good ones. I think I may have even tried Auto - cant remember.... Anyhow, can anyone give me a few pointers on what settings can yield better results?

I was shooting in M mode.

I exported these from LightRoom as .jpeg and hope the exif info is available. If not, please respond and ill put it up.

Thank you much.

Test-2.jpg Test-3.jpg Test.jpg
 

Ramage

EOS R5
CR Pro
Aug 27, 2019
589
1,183
With that light you will likely need to exposure stack in order to expose for the sky and the landscape.

Basically (very basically) you take a shot with the landscape exposed the way you like and then take another shot with the sky the way you like and then blend the two images in LR or PS(better)

There are lots of good tutorials online about doing this.
 
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Wm

7DMKII
Jun 11, 2018
85
8
LA
With that light you will likely need to exposure stack in order to expose for the sky and the landscape.

Basically (very basically) you take a shot with the landscape exposed the way you like and then take another shot with the sky the way you like and then blend the two images in LR or PS(better)

There are lots of good tutorials online about doing this.
Humm, thats too bad. I was hoping to keep it simple, i.e., exposure settings, iso, etc.. So, even in the church building shot, with not a huge sky interference, tripod and setting alone would not yield a good shot either?
 

Ramage

EOS R5
CR Pro
Aug 27, 2019
589
1,183
You can try and just expose for the church and then add a grad filter to the sky masking for luminosity but the 7DMkII is not the best for dynamic range (highlight and shadow recovery) so I would still recommend exposing for the darkest areas and lightest areas in 2 exposures. With static subjects this works best.
 

Czardoom

EOS RP
Jan 27, 2020
295
655
You've done a good job exposing for the sky - which in a sunset photo is the main thing. I would just try and lighten the shadows in post production. I don't have lightroom, but I am sure they have a lighten shadow slider of some sort. I shoot a lot of sunset photos and have never phot stacked, nor do I have a ND filter, so neither of those methods are necessary. You might get very good results, but if you, like me, just want to keep things simple, then with today's cameras, you can lighten shadows considerably. I have Photoshop elements and was able to take your test-3 photo and lighten the shadows with just the one command, then added just a touch of brightness and contrast. So, I think your camera settings are fine as long as the sky is exposed well, which in your case, they are.
 

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Wm

7DMKII
Jun 11, 2018
85
8
LA
You've done a good job exposing for the sky - which in a sunset photo is the main thing. I would just try and lighten the shadows in post production. I don't have lightroom, but I am sure they have a lighten shadow slider of some sort. I shoot a lot of sunset photos and have never phot stacked, nor do I have a ND filter, so neither of those methods are necessary. You might get very good results, but if you, like me, just want to keep things simple, then with today's cameras, you can lighten shadows considerably. I have Photoshop elements and was able to take your test-3 photo and lighten the shadows with just the one command, then added just a touch of brightness and contrast. So, I think your camera settings are fine as long as the sky is exposed well, which in your case, they are.
Ok. Thats helpful. So in your opinion, with the church photo, the sky is the best to have exposed "correctly" ? In general , yes?? Tks much
 

AlanF

Stay at home
CR Pro
Aug 16, 2012
8,560
11,268
You've done a good job exposing for the sky - which in a sunset photo is the main thing. I would just try and lighten the shadows in post production. I don't have lightroom, but I am sure they have a lighten shadow slider of some sort. I shoot a lot of sunset photos and have never phot stacked, nor do I have a ND filter, so neither of those methods are necessary. You might get very good results, but if you, like me, just want to keep things simple, then with today's cameras, you can lighten shadows considerably. I have Photoshop elements and was able to take your test-3 photo and lighten the shadows with just the one command, then added just a touch of brightness and contrast. So, I think your camera settings are fine as long as the sky is exposed well, which in your case, they are.
I did similarly with PS, using Image - Adjustments - Shadows and Highlights (PS standard setting). For the second, I lowered the brightness a tad as the sky became a little bleached.

Test-3.jpg

Test-2_1.jpg
 

Ramage

EOS R5
CR Pro
Aug 27, 2019
589
1,183
Test_update.jpg

Best I could do with a Jpeg, personally I do not like the amount of noise in the shadows but I did what I could with the file. @Wm you can get decent results with a single exposure but for the cost of a few bits of data and a little time you can expand what you can do in post.

I like the composition and the people in front add scale. The glow from the windows matches the sky nicely.
 
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Wm

7DMKII
Jun 11, 2018
85
8
LA
Thanks all for the tips. All good ideas for next time..... I also did not notice the small halos next to the bell tower until I started messing around here. I guess they are distortions from the clear filter?? May I impose for more suggestions please? Here are a few more pictures I took and now notice they are out of focus. they are indoor shots from inside a museum which ive done before but never had focus problem. These are .jpeg from original .cr2 converted to .dng and then .jpg for export here. I only applied remove chromatic aberration and enable profile corrections inside LightRoom (don't even remember what that is).... what's the focus issue from???? Maybe I did not wait until the AF was done before shooting? I have a bunch like this
. Focus.jpg Focus-2.jpg Focus-3.jpg Tks!
 

becceric

Making clumsy photographic mistakes since 1980
CR Pro
Oct 30, 2016
116
182
Thanks all for the tips. All good ideas for next time..... I also did not notice the small halos next to the bell tower until I started messing around here. I guess they are distortions from the clear filter?? May I impose for more suggestions please? Here are a few more pictures I took and now notice they are out of focus. they are indoor shots from inside a museum which ive done before but never had focus problem. These are .jpeg from original .cr2 converted to .dng and then .jpg for export here. I only applied remove chromatic aberration and enable profile corrections inside LightRoom (don't even remember what that is).... what's the focus issue from???? Maybe I did not wait until the AF was done before shooting? I have a bunch like this
. View attachment 199266 View attachment 199267 View attachment 199268 Tks!
Can you check what shutter speed was used on these? They all have the blur evenly “smeared” in a given direction. I assume motion blur is the culprit. Unfortunately I know of now way to correct that issue in post.
 

Wm

7DMKII
Jun 11, 2018
85
8
LA
Can you check what shutter speed was used on these? They all have the blur evenly “smeared” in a given direction. I assume motion blur is the culprit. Unfortunately I know of now way to correct that issue in post.
Thanks for looking. Its been awhile since ive shot.... and am beginner. So, in order, all f5 and .5 sec, .8 sec, .5 sec.
 

old-pr-pix

EOS RP
Dec 26, 2011
433
70
Camera shake. Unless using a tripod or some other solid support most people would need to keep shutter speed faster than 1/30 sec. or so to avoid camera shake with a 7DII. Assumes 'normal' focal length lens. Newer cameras with IBIS allow most shooters to go down to ~1 sec. hand held with acceptable results.

Longer focal length lenses would necessitate faster shutter speeds. Rule of thumb is 1/focal length for full frame (i.e. for 200 mm lens slowest recommended shutter speed would be 1/200 sec.) Crop body needs faster shutter speed to avoid camera shake (or a tripod). Many say 1/(2xfocal length) or 1/400 sec. for 200 mm lens.
 

Wm

7DMKII
Jun 11, 2018
85
8
LA
Tks oldprpix. That’s good info. Would you have any suggestions as to what the tiny halo circles next to the bell tower are caused by? I’m guessing sunlight and filter interference - for lack of proper terminology.
 

Joules

doom
CR Pro
Jul 16, 2017
1,717
2,130
Hamburg, Germany
Tks oldprpix. That’s good info. Would you have any suggestions as to what the tiny halo circles next to the bell tower are caused by? I’m guessing sunlight and filter interference - for lack of proper terminology.
Rule of thumb for the right exposure time is 1/(crop factor*focal length) so for a 50 mm focal length on an APS-C camera, you shouldn't expose for longer than 1/(1.6*50) = 1/80 s. Any longer than that and you'll either need a tripod, great image stabilization or enormous luck to get a sharp image.

As for those bright circles, is it possible you just accidentally clicked on the image with a brush a few times while editing in lightroom?

They look like dusg spots, but it is weird that they are brighter than the surrounding image.
 

Wm

7DMKII
Jun 11, 2018
85
8
LA
the ones I posted have not been edited. Cant figure it out. Light shadow??
 

privatebydesign

I post too Much on Here!!
CR Pro
Jan 29, 2011
10,433
5,656
Could they be drops of water, be it from light drizzle or maybe condensation?
Probably not, they are most likely on the sensor. If water or dust is on the front element of the lens it is out of focus so won’t have any definition or defined edge, those rings/circles do have definition so must be closer to the point of focus. Most probably dirt or oil on the sensor.