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Thread: how do you shoot 1 to 3 second exposures

  1. #11

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    Sep 2007
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    Re: how do you shoot 1 to 3 second exposures

    I do 2-10 second exposures all the time with wetplate. I uncover and cover the barrel lens with a darkcloth, counting. No stop watch, not even a second hand wristwatch. But I can count seconds very accurately because of my former work as a signals analyst.

  2. #12
    darr's Avatar
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    Apr 2005
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    Re: how do you shoot 1 to 3 second exposures

    I do as Bob suggests except I say “one and a two and a ...” to myself. Anyone that has studied a musical instrument can keep an accurate tempo. The metronome beat is embedded in my head. When I have to keep a lot of time, more than 10 secs, there is my wonderful phone with all kinds of photo apps installed. This is not hard and you’ll get use to it after a few good shots.
    Website: photoscapes.com
    Photo Blog: darrlene.com

  3. #13
    Nodda Duma's Avatar
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    Re: how do you shoot 1 to 3 second exposures

    If my meter wants 1.5-3 seconds, it will often mean Iím not shooting wide open, and therefore not going for a narrow Depth of Field look. So... I will often stop down another stop so that the exposure time is longer, say 3+ seconds. I shoot bulb and count the seconds off. Lengthening the time reduces the counting error, making it a smaller percentage of total exposure with net result that exposure time is more accurate.
    Newly made large format dry plates available! Look:
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  4. #14

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    Mar 2005
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    Newbury, Vermont
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    Re: how do you shoot 1 to 3 second exposures

    I'll typically use the "B" setting for times between 1 and 15 seconds...and "T" for longer times. The trick with relatively short intervals (between 1 and 5 seconds) is to be decisive with the shutter control (cable release), and yet in a way which assures that no movement is transferred from the release to the camera. This is why I like using longish (20") cloth covered releases, further making sure that my release hand is close enough to the lens to avoid any sort of pulling of the release. I also try to take care that for longer exposures I can place the free end of the cable release in a way which does not allow for any kind of swinging movement during the exposure.

    As for timing accuracy...I'll look at my watch for a few seconds prior to making an exposure, getting a good sense of cadence (of elapsed seconds) prior to making an exposure. If I'm doubting my capacity for accuracy...I may even do one or two "blank" exposures with the darkslide in place (also good for checking for cable-induced camera movement).

    I also do exercises to help gauge timing accuracy - for the reason that I sometimes find myself ready for an exposure only to realize that I've forgotten my watch! So...when I find myself wide awake at 3am - I'll look across the room at my digital alarm clock...and start to count when the minute changes to see how close I can come to guessing an exact minute. Typically I'm within one second. I used to offer this exercise to students as a bonus question on exams - a given student sitting quietly across from me as I watched the seconds go by for a full minute. Two big mistakes...One - using the word "Mississippi" (or "alligator") - the result is (typically) too long! And two...starting a count with the number 1 - which entirely omits the interval between 0 and 1 second.

    Yeah...I know - obsessive, right? And about those long mississippi's - they're actually useful in accommodating reciprocity failure...right? Perhaps, but the way I see it, the methodology for accommodating something like reciprocity failure, or depth of focus for that matter, should always be as precise as possible to help ensure meaningful, repeatable, and satisfactory results.

  5. #15

    Join Date
    Jul 2016
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    bay area, CA
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    6

    Re: how do you shoot 1 to 3 second exposures

    many thanks to all that replied. I think i have my game plan worked out. having been a pro drummer for years and recording in the studio with a click track, ill just get the 60 beats per minute thing going in my head and use that on bulb. no need to over think this.

    thanks again

    john

  6. #16

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Oso,Washington
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    77

    Re: how do you shoot 1 to 3 second exposures

    I have a 30 sec face, stop watch, wind and go.

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