Rear Curtain SYNC on Nikon N-70
I decided to give my Nikon N-70 a workout. Well, perhaps a bit of exercise is a better discription. Anyway, I have wanted to use the rear curtain sync feature of the camera with flash. I've gotten mixed results, and I'm wondering if I'm using this correctly.
Situation #1. I was camping with my son and his Cub Scouts, and I wanted to take a photo of him and his friends playing with sparklers at night. I set the camera to rear curtain sync, placed it on a tripod, lit the sparklers, and wanted to have the flash fill in the extra light for better exposures. Well, I couldn't get the camera shutter to fire. I guess it was too dark, and I couldn't get the camera to focus. In any event, I did get one picture but it was when I left the flash off. Can I prevent this problem by manually focusing the camera, or setting the camera to AF-C?
Situation #2. I was on a trip in Las Vegas, and took my camera along. I set the camera on a tripod, set to rear curtain, and took a few photos using the timer. (Basically I set the camera up, released the shutter, and jumped in front of the camera for the photo.) The background looks perfect, but the foreground with me in it is over exposed. I'm thinking that I had the camera focused at the bright lights of the casinos in the background, and the flash was trying to blast away at max power for this distance. If this is the case, can this be prevented by setting the focus to my distance from camera? Again, do I need to set the camera up manually?
The first one you're dead on. In program modes, anything but manual it's gonna be tough to get it to fire when there is no reflectance edge for the sensors to use to focus. Manual is the way to go. Consult the guide numbers for the proper aperture setting for your flash to subject distance. Probably the culprit of situation number two as well. You have made the camera to gather in much more distant light and it does not take into account the rapidly flying body that will soon interject itself into the viewing area because the body is not there yet. So the exposure is up a bit and the flash knocks you out of the park.
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