Sunday, May 30, 2010

Balloon Day - 2010

Saturday was Balloon Day for us.  We started with our long awaited and multi-scheduled Balloon flight.  The rest of the day was spent in Frankenmuth, MI for a balloon festival (and doggie festival).  The holiday weekend so far has been wonderful and except for a Friday night/Saturday morning work issue - has been perfect so far.
The total day has expanded my use for photographic tools and tricks to get some really good shots.  So far this weekend, there have been over 150 shots.  I had to throw away about 10 for either unfocused or some other rookie mistake.  For shots in changing environments - and no shots in AUTO - it was a good day.
The ISO minimum on the D90 is 200.  For the day, I could have used much lower.  So I was really forced to using some tricks - and for the most part came away with some really good shots.
First, I used a polarizer almost all day.  For the early morning balloon ride, there was enough light at 6:30 AM to allow the polarizer to work.  Later in the day, with full sunlight I could set the WB to Daylight and back off the exposure by one full step.  That setup seemed to work for most of the day.  As dusk approached, I could move the exposure back to normal in increments.  For the balloon glow, I had the ISO set to 650 and the exposure upped by a step.  For the most part, the night shots turned out real well.
So it was a great day - had a lot of fun.  And have a better idea for the Nikon settings for a sunny day!

1/50 f/8
Aperture Priority
ISO 200
Focal length 50 mm (105 mm for 75 mm film)

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