Hallowe’en Challenges

So. You want to go out and shoot pics of the kids trick-and-treating at Hallowe’en?

Challenges, challenges.

  1. It is dark. Backgrounds get very dark.
  2. Slow shutter speeds result.
  3. But bright bits are too bright.
  4. And flash can blow out everything.
  5. There is nothing to bounce that flash off.

There is no single answer, but there are strategies. And your strategies will centre around:

  • Avoiding blur. Fast lenses will help, as will correct exposure (if the picture is dark, you need to make it appear dark enough, which means faster shutter speeds.)
  • Being aware of the light. It is, and should look, dark.
  • But also, avoiding the bright parts of the images from getting overexposed.
  • Equalizing flash and ambient parts of the image.
  • Perhaps diffusing your flash.

So these tips will help:

  • Use high ISO: 800 or 1600.
  • If possible, fast lenses (low “f-numbers”).
  • And if possible, wide angle lenses – these are easier to focus and to use at slow shutter speeds.
  • You can use White Balance set to the “wrong”setting to get more eerie light (try “daylight” or even “cloudy”).
  • Expose to make the image dark (exposure compensation, minus, when most of the picture is dark, or manual exposure mode).
  • Consider using a monopod.
  • When using flash, considering turning that down (using flash exposure compensation, minus).
  • Consider using a gel on the flash – perhaps a slight CTO gel.
  • Consider turning your camera upside down and bouncing the flash off the ground, for ghoulish effect!

The good news: you have a few days to practice!



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