Working with Long Exposures

Because the Rebel T2i produces such good images at longer exposures, and there are so many creative things you can do with long exposure techniques, you'll want to do some experimenting. Get yourself a tripod or another firm support and take some test shots with long exposure noise reduction both enabled and disabled (to see whether you prefer low noise or high detail) and get started. Here are some things to try:

■ Make people invisible. One very cool thing about long exposures is that objects that move rapidly enough won't register at all in a photograph, while the subjects that remain stationary are portrayed in the normal way. That makes it easy to produce people-free landscape photos and architectural photos at night or, even, in full daylight if you use a neutral density filter (or two or three) to allow an exposure of at least a few seconds. At ISO 100, f/22, and a pair of 8X (three-stop) neutral density filters, you can use exposures of nearly two seconds; overcast days and/or even more neutral density filtration would work even better if daylight people-vanishing is your goal. They'll have to be walking very briskly and across the field of view (rather than directly toward the camera) for this to work. At night, it's much easier to achieve this effect with the 20- to 30-second exposures that are possible, as you can see in Figures 5.20 and 5.21.

■ Create streaks. If you aren't shooting for total invisibility, long exposures with the camera on a tripod can produce some interesting streaky effects, as shown in Figure 5.22. You don't need to limit yourself to indoor photography, however. Even a single 8X ND filter will let you shoot at f/22 and 1/6th second in full daylight.

Long Exposures With Filter

Figure 5.20 This alleyway is thronged with people, as Figure 5.21 With the camera still on a tripod, a 30-you can see in this two-second exposure using only the second exposure rendered the passersby almost invisible.

available illumination.

Figure 5.20 This alleyway is thronged with people, as Figure 5.21 With the camera still on a tripod, a 30-you can see in this two-second exposure using only the second exposure rendered the passersby almost invisible.

available illumination.

This Korean dancer produced a swirl of color as she spun during the 1/4-second exposure.

■ Produce light trails. At night, car headlights and taillights and other moving sources of illumination can generate interesting light trails. Your camera doesn't even need to be mounted on a tripod; hand-holding the T2i for longer exposures adds movement and patterns to your trails. If you're shooting fireworks, a longer exposure may allow you to combine several bursts into one picture, as shown in Figure 5.23.

Canon 550d Long Exposures

Figure 5.23 A long exposure allows capturing several bursts of fireworks in one image.

■ Blur waterfalls, etc. You'll find that waterfalls and other sources of moving liquid produce a special type of long exposure blur, because the water merges into a fantasy-like veil that looks different at different exposure times, and with different waterfalls. Cascades with turbulent flow produce a rougher look at a given longer exposure than falls that flow smoothly. Although blurred waterfalls have become almost a cliché, there are still plenty of variations for a creative photographer to explore, as you can see in Figure 5.24.

■ Show total darkness in new ways. Even on the darkest, moonless nights, there is enough starlight or glow from distant illumination sources to see by, and, if you use a long exposure, there is enough light to take a picture, too. I was visiting a lakeside park after dark and saw that the dim light from the lamps in the parking lot provided sufficient light to see a distant stand of trees. A 30-second exposure with the lens almost wide open revealed the scene shown in Figure 5.25, even though in real life, there was barely enough light to make out the closest tree. Although the photo appears as if it were taken at twilight or sunset, in fact the shot was made at 11 p.m. It was a new moon that night, so the main illumination was starlight, spill light from the parking lot, and a distant city (which added a sunset-like effect to the sky at the horizon that shows at the far side of the lake).

Long Exposure Water
Figure 5.24 A 1/4-second exposure blurred the falling water, as the cooperative bird remained still.
Powershot Long Exposure
Figure 5.25 A 30-second exposure on a dark night revealed this lakeside setting, illuminated only by starlight, spill light from a parking lot adjacent to the shore, and distant city lights.

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Digital Camera and Digital Photography

Digital Camera and Digital Photography

Compared to film cameras, digital cameras are easy to use, fun and extremely versatile. Every day there’s more features being designed. Whether you have the cheapest model or a high end model, digital cameras can do an endless number of things. Let’s look at how to get the most out of your digital camera.

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  • keith
    How to do long exposures canon eos rebel 2ti?
    8 years ago
  • patricia
    How to take long exposure shots on rebel t2i?
    8 years ago
  • James
    How to take a long exposure picture with a canon 550d?
    8 years ago
  • Tauno
    How to set canon 550d for night shots?
    8 years ago
  • halle
    How to take a long exposure picture on a canon eos rebel t2i?
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  • Barbara
    How to shoot long exposure on canon eos 550d?
    8 years ago
  • EIJA
    How to perform long exposure on canon eos 550d?
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  • arsi
    How take long exposure light trails canon 550d camera?
    7 years ago
  • emiliano
    How to take blurred waterfall shots canon 550 d?
    6 years ago
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    How to take long exposure pictures canon t2i?
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    How to take 2 exposure pictures with canon 550d?
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    How to take long exposure shots in daylight with canon 550d?
    6 years ago
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    How to take long exposure photos with a canon 550d?
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