27 July 2011

Pre-course exercise: shutter speeds

This exercise asked you to take a series of pictures of a moving object with a range of shutter speeds; the collage below shows my partner Gary juggling.

The images were captured at: 1/800, 1/400, 1/250, 1/125, 1/80, 1/50, 1/30, 1/15, 1/5, 1/3, 0.625, 1s and 2s.  All were taken at a focal length of 24mm on shutter priority mode, with some exposure value adjustments (some of the pictures have less than perfect exposure - it was the first time I'd used the EV mode on my camera!).

In the first image, all the elements are in focus, although the end result was very grainy.  Images 2 and 3 are almost frozen apart from some very slight blurring around Gary's left hand (and around the green ball in 3).  Image 4 has blurring around the hands and forearms, and image 5 is the first in which none of the balls are in focus.  In images 6 and 7, the balls are starting to leave trails and individual fingers are not discernable, and in the eighth, one ball is invisible because of the speed at which it was moving.  By image 9, the forearms as well as the hands have been reduced to flesh-coloured impressions, and we can only see the trails of the balls, not the balls themselves.  Images 10 and 11 show the merest hint of where moving objects have been, and in the final image both limbs and balls have effectively disappeared.  Gary's head, torso and shorts remained more or less in focus for the whole series, although naturally they are sharper with faster shutter speeds.

My favourite shots from the collage are 2, 6 and 9.

9 is the one I prefer overall because it's quite ambiguous; the viewer is reasonably sure that the activity they're looking at is juggling, but the level of blurring means there's still an element of doubt.  However, as an illustration of the act of juggling, I think maybe 6 is a closer representation of what you actually see with the naked eye, and I like the slightly surreal element of 2 as Gary is looking at an object which seems impossibly suspended in mid-air - like a much less cool version of cats being thrown at Dali :)

No comments:

Post a Comment