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Canon EOS Crop Sensor for HD
APS-C sensor cameras including the 80D, 70D, 7D Mk. II, 7D, EOS M and Rebel models for HD video recording.


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Old February 28th, 2010, 08:18 PM   #1
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How to fix this shot when the sun is low?

Hi, I was shooting some test footage today at the park and the sun was very intense. Is this something I could of fixed while shooting? I was using a 30mm Sigma Prime on a 7D. I'm totally new with this camera and couldn't seem to fix this.

Filter?

My info says that it was 24p 60/120 and daylight balanced.

Is it a F-Stop issue. I tried everything but the detail around his face would get too dark if I changed my settings?

Any recommendations?

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Old February 28th, 2010, 09:32 PM   #2
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You can lower the contrast. Try the Neutral Picture Style. Go one level deeper in the menu and set contrast and detail to the minimum. Reduce Saturation slightly. This will give a more neutral, flat result. If you want to bring back contrast and sharpness, you can do that in post. The idea is to capture all of the information with little processing so you can work with it later.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 02:05 AM   #3
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Don't shoot in direct sunlight. It's the sun. It's intense.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 02:55 AM   #4
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That's poor advice Steve. There's nothing wrong with shooting in direct sunlight, you just need the right tools and the right strategy.

Jon is right, lowering the contrast would have helped. You can do this in-camera as described or you can have someone hold a reflector or you can move to an area of open shade.

Generally, it's good to shoot later in the day, when the shadows are longer and the contrast softer. Your shot here should be warmer, of course you can color correct by adding a little red/yellow, but next time try a different WB - the sun at sunset is about 2K.

In this instance, some ND to help isolate the little fella with a shallow depth of field would have been good, also you could have chosen a better angle - get down to the child's height or lower and choose an angle with a better background. Looking down on children is rarely a good perspective.

Direct sunlight can be challenging, but there's no reason to be scared of it and certainly no reason why you can't achieve great results.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 06:54 AM   #5
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I wasn't shooting in the direct sunlight. My back is to the sun. It was about 4pm and it was a bright sunny day, I couldn't avoid it. He was running around the park like crazy!



Thanks for some of the tips John and Liam.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 11:14 AM   #6
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Put my two cents in then saw I was typing the same thing liam did. Great minds and all that.
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Last edited by Nick Hiltgen; March 1st, 2010 at 11:18 AM. Reason: I didn't read before posting.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 07:12 PM   #7
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A soft focus or diffusion filter will also help decrease the contrast considerably, as well as give the image a nice, somewhat dreamy look. Plus, it'll take away the harshness of the digital image and slightly decrease the amount of aliasing. These filters are available in different strengths.

With a more controlled subject, you can also use a big diffusion silk, which would be held over the subject.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 07:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelly Langerak View Post
I wasn't shooting in the direct sunlight. My back is to the sun.
Umm--that's about as direct as you can get...

Maybe you mean, you weren't shooting into the sun? Because that would probably have looked a lot better (yes, they tell you not to do that in the most basic photography instructions). Most glamorous looking photography is done in a late afternoon backlit environment, or in direct (as in, sun behind you!) very late afternoon light. Shooting backlit usually requires fill on a fully sunny day, so you'll need help with that--if you are clever you can find a location near a white building that acts as a natural bounce!

I think that if you had stopped down another 1 1/3 stops, your second image would have been quite nice.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 07:25 PM   #9
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Kelly,

I would recommend a different internal picture profile. Canon has loaded the 7D with lots of features for different shooting situations but this also looks like an optical issue as you suggest.

You can use three different filters to help control some of this issue.

The first would be a Polarizer. A good Circular Polarizer will knock down 1.7 to 2.1 stops of light, increase color saturation, and add a bit of depth to the image.

The second would be a Diffusion filter that affects contrast. Any old diffusion filter won't do. You will need to go with a Schneider Black Frost or Tiffen Black Pro Mist. The Black Pro Mist will affect the black levels more than the Schneider Black Frost so you will need to decide which look you want to go for. The Black Frost is available in strengths of 1/8 to 2 but I suggest a 1/4 at most due to banding issues with most HD video that comes up in higher strengths.

The third filter would be the Schneider Digicon #1 filter. This filter compresses the dynamic range captured by the camera by knocking down highlights by about 10% and bringing up black levels by about 10%. If you properly readjust your gamma settings, you can get some beautiful results without a look that a Black diffusion filter as mentioned above will give you.

Either the Black Frost or the Digicon (or some other diffusion filters not mentioned here) will both resolve some if not all of the aliasing issues present in the 7D/5D cameras.

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Old March 1st, 2010, 07:45 PM   #10
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The filters are a good idea. Also, you can go to the camera's Natural setting and crank the contrast way down. Then, as Charles suggested, drop the exposure down a stop or so. Both shots are a bit hot, I think.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 08:20 PM   #11
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Ryan:

How would the Digicon help with aliasing? Does it have that significant a diffusing effect?

I haven't tried those yet--was going to shoot some tests with my now-old-school Ultracons to see how these cameras respond (every new camera seems to "like" certain filters and not others--quite exhausting)! Any comparison notes on the Ultracon vs Digicon?
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Old March 2nd, 2010, 03:24 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Nick Hiltgen View Post
Put my two cents in then saw I was typing the same thing liam did. Great minds and all that.
You are obviously a very smart man:)
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Old March 2nd, 2010, 04:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Papert View Post
Ryan:

How would the Digicon help with aliasing? Does it have that significant a diffusing effect?
I bet it would make it worse. More detail = more stress on the codec = more aliasing. Since Ryan works for Schneider, maybe he'd care to show us some examples. Some big claims being made in that post...
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Old March 2nd, 2010, 06:07 PM   #14
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Aliasing is not caused by more stress on the codec. It is strictly a byproduct of the downscaling method of the sensor. If you recorded an uncompressed stream (and some people have done this already), the aliasing would still be there.
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 01:55 AM   #15
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Yes that's right. But my point remains, more detail = more things to alias, whether it's caused by pixel binning, line skipping or anything else.
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