Multiple flash, how would you go about this?

Discussion in 'Exposure Discussion' started by hammy, Jun 3, 2006.

  1. hammy

    hammy Member

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    Alright, so I photograph bands and musicians a lot.
    I want to get a multiple flash shot of this drummer with my camera stationary on a tripod. Perhaps only 2 or 3 flashes, with each flash freezing the drummer in a different position. I will fire my flash manually, off camera. I'll be most likely using my 35mm, but perhaps MF. Using black and white film, Tri-x 400 maybe? I'd probably plan on doing a 15 or 20 second exposure, and would fire the flash manually during this time. Though I'm unsure, really.

    In my experience with these types of shots, I usually end up majorly blowing out my whites and usually just an unrecognizable image.

    If you wanted to get this shot, what would you do/how would you do it?

    Thanks for any help!
     
  2. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    Hammy

    Determine both exposures according to their required apertures. Make sure the apertures required are balanced.

    Example:

    Let's assume your ambient exposure for 16s requires f/4. Now make sure that the flash is in that range. If the flash exposure requires f/16, but your camera is set to f/4 for the ambient exposure, the flash will overexpose by 4 stops.

    You are most likely to be more flexible with the ambient aperture. Set your flash to manual, determine what aperture the flash needs and set your ambient aperture and time accordingly. This way you can also control which to be the dominant exposure.
     
  3. Nick Zentena

    Nick Zentena Member

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    Meter for the flash with the film speed adjusted to the number of pops. So for three flashes set the meter to 3200.

    If you don't have a flash meter set the flash on auto with the aperture 3 stops more open then the camera.
     
  4. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    If you have a Nikon flash e.g. SB 28 you can use the stroboscobe feature on the flash.
    It will atomatic fire the set amount of burst at the set rate when its triggered.
    It will do so with any camera with a PC cord.
    I wouldn't use a 20 sec exposure. 3-4 secs tops and more likely 1-2 sec.
    The drummer is moving alot during that amount of time.
    Set your shutter speed and an appropiate F-stop depending on distance from flash to subject and the amount of ambient light you want to record.
    set the flash to 1 herts and 3 bursts (3sec exposure 1flash/sec) and shoot.
    Using a long cord (I have a 5 meter costumized multiblitz cord) you can optimize your flash and camera positions.
    Cheers, Søren
     
  5. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    Oh by the way. Beware of over/underexposure. objecs not moving will recieve the full amount of flashes you deliver so if e.g. the drumset is white or very shiny it will probably be overexposed. If the drummer is wearing a dark shirt or jacket and the drumsticks are black, arm and drumsticks may be underexposed.
    Cheers, Søren