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 Help Wanted - Overexposed images on AV mode
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Mike Hamer
Engineer



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  2:38:29 PM  Show Profile  Visit Mike Hamer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
A camera buff I am not...and I need a little advice. I have a standard point and shoot digital camera - the Canon PowerShot A95. I've been having a problem with overexposed images whenever I set my camera to AV mode. As soon as I click the picture, the whole scene in my monitor brightens up far too much and renders the picture useless. Perhaps there is an issue with my camera - or perhaps with the photographer. Any advice would be appreciated.
Mike Hamer
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
http://www.bostonandmaine.blogspot.ca
http://www.craftsmanstructures.blogspot.ca
http://modelrailroadsivisit.blogspot.ca

Country: | Posts: 11492

railphotog
Fireman



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  3:02:59 PM  Show Profile  Visit railphotog's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Just guessing here. What aperture do you set your camera at? Most simpler cameras will close down to f/8, which actually gives a decent depth of field. Perhaps you're leaving it at the maximum aperture of what - f/3.5 or so, and there's just too much light for a proper exposure. Normally when using the Av mode - Aperture Value - the user sets the aperture (lens opening) and the camera selects the shutter speed. If your camera's shutter speed cannot pick a long (or short) enough time to be open, then it could result in overexposure or underexposure.

What have you selected for the ISO? Normally the slowest one is best for quality and should allow a long enough shutter speed for a proper exposure. If you're using a high ISO (sensor sensitivity), there may be too much light for that setting.

Try it with the lowest ISO, smallest aperture and see what the camera says. There should be some kind of exposure warning in the viewfinder - something blinking that's telling you it cannot give a proper exposure. If this happens, then reduce the amount of light on your subject.

That's all I can think of.




Bob Boudreau
My model railroad photography website:
http://sites.google.com/site/railphotog/

Edited by - railphotog on 03/01/2009 3:05:27 PM

Country: Canada | Posts: 4027 Go to Top of Page

Peterpools
Engineer



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  3:04:09 PM  Show Profile  Visit Peterpools's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Mike
I'm just coming to grips with digital photography but finally found that shooting in manual mode gives me the control I need for proper exposures. If your camera is setting the the shutter speed and aperture the best way to set the proper exposure would be to first point the camera at something 'mid tone' and then either press the shutter half way down to hold your setting or if the camera has exposure lock press that, then recompose and shoot. I know it sounds like a lot to do, but this is an effective manual way to control the exposure. Also in the manual, see if you can adjust exposure settings. There are normally a number of ways to 'help' the camera metering system do what you want it to.
Peter
BCT



Country: USA | Posts: 12335 Go to Top of Page

Mike Hamer
Engineer



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  6:47:02 PM  Show Profile  Visit Mike Hamer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Thanks, Bob and Peter. I'll try out what you have mentioned. Really appreciate the advice!

PS, Bob...my ISO speed setting was on automatic and my +-0 was set at 0.

I'll do some experimenting around.


Mike Hamer
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
http://www.bostonandmaine.blogspot.ca
http://www.craftsmanstructures.blogspot.ca
http://modelrailroadsivisit.blogspot.ca

Edited by - Mike Hamer on 03/01/2009 6:51:34 PM

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Bbags
Administrator

Premium Member


Posted - 03/01/2009 :  7:07:02 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mike,
I also use a Cannon point and shoot,the Power Shot A540.
I also consider myself to be a novice with the camera.

I take almost all my pictures using AV and make sure the setting is f/8 which is the best the camera offers.
The camera then automatically sets the shutter speed.

I sometimes take pictures with different ISO's such as 400. 200, and 100 since the pictures are free and then use the ones that work the best for me.
I also play around with the exposure compensation setting and use from -1/3 to 1/3 as well as zero.

So I would try the different settings with the pictures to see which works the best.



John Bagley
Modeling the Alaska Railroad in HO in Wildwood Georgia.

Edited by - Bbags on 03/01/2009 7:58:29 PM

Country: USA | Posts: 13310 Go to Top of Page

Rick
Administrator

Premium Member


Posted - 03/01/2009 :  7:11:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mike, the pictures I'm used to seeing from you are normally very good. I'm sure the settings that you've listed here are the same that you've always used. If that's the case, maybe there is a problem with the camera?


Country: USA | Posts: 22959 Go to Top of Page

Mike Hamer
Engineer



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  7:32:46 PM  Show Profile  Visit Mike Hamer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hello again, thanks to everyone for the advice. I have always used the automatic setting except for selecting to F8 which is the maximum my camera will allow. It was about the only thing I ever fiddled around with. Taking the advice here, I went in and changed the exposure from 0 to -2, which is the lowest my camera allows and saw an immediate improvement.

Perhaps I had inadvertently made a change while testing something out in the past as I have had this issue for a few months and only was able to take reasonable shots using the auto setting. Thank you all!

Anyway, here is a before/after shot in the same area on my layout to show you the issue I had been encountering and the improvement with the setting at -2.



The 'before' showing what I had been encountering.



Improved shot thanks to your assistance.


Mike Hamer
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
http://www.bostonandmaine.blogspot.ca
http://www.craftsmanstructures.blogspot.ca
http://modelrailroadsivisit.blogspot.ca

Edited by - Mike Hamer on 03/01/2009 9:21:50 PM

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Peterpools
Engineer



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  7:36:46 PM  Show Profile  Visit Peterpools's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Mike
Photo 2 looks great. When all else fails, some of the simple on line photo programs will automatically adjust the brightness and color correction. Can't tell you how many times in the past, these programs came to the rescue.
Peter
BCT



Country: USA | Posts: 12335 Go to Top of Page

railphotog
Fireman



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  7:40:57 PM  Show Profile  Visit railphotog's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Looks better Mike! A suggestion re the ISO - set it manually to the lowest number for better quality images. If you leave it on auto for a dimmer scene, the camera will boost the ISO/sensitivity instead of using a longer exposure. This is built in automation so you don't ruin a photo with too long an exposure when hand holding. With the camera on a tripod (you are using a tripod aren't you?), the length of the exposure doesn't matter.






Bob Boudreau
My model railroad photography website:
http://sites.google.com/site/railphotog/

Country: Canada | Posts: 4027 Go to Top of Page

Bbags
Administrator

Premium Member


Posted - 03/01/2009 :  8:05:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mike, i agree the second picture looks good.

I also use the Cannon ZoomBrowser EX program that came with the camera to edit my pictures and you can also make adjustments there.



John Bagley
Modeling the Alaska Railroad in HO in Wildwood Georgia.

Country: USA | Posts: 13310 Go to Top of Page

Selector
Engine Wiper

Posted - 03/01/2009 :  9:08:35 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have a two year-old Canon A710is Powershot that has AV and M modes. I set the ISO for 200, then in AV I set the F ratio to 8.0 (or whatever is the highest for the camera within reason..often anything higher than F20 or so can be counterproductive), and then go to M (for Manual)and take photos under a given type and density of lighting, using a tripod and shutter delay, all the while adjusting the shutter timing. Once you get to the computer and see what you have done, if you kept a brief record, you'll know what to set the shutter for and can then fiddle with lighting for shadows and so on. But, I agree that shooting in M is often the best way to go.

-Crandell



Country: Canada | Posts: 197 Go to Top of Page

Mike Hamer
Engineer



Posted - 03/01/2009 :  9:25:15 PM  Show Profile  Visit Mike Hamer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Thanks everyone, once again. Bob, I will take the ISO off auto and set to the lowest value I can, which is 50 on my camera. (I always use a tripod when I photograph at home. When I visit friends' layouts I sometimes handhold if I don't bring it along with me.) I'm going to have fun trying out this newly learned info. Thank you all for taking the time out you've put forth to assist me here - much appreciated!

Mike Hamer
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
http://www.bostonandmaine.blogspot.ca
http://www.craftsmanstructures.blogspot.ca
http://modelrailroadsivisit.blogspot.ca

Edited by - Mike Hamer on 03/01/2009 9:28:01 PM

Country: | Posts: 11492 Go to Top of Page

Rick
Administrator

Premium Member


Posted - 03/01/2009 :  9:36:27 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
As everyone already said, the second picture looks very good. I'm glad nothing was wrong with the camera and it only needed a setting change.


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