Monday, February 25, 2008

Balancing light

Everyone likes to look at a lovely sunset. I like to photograph them too, but sometimes sunset (and sunrise) photos can be a bit boring. Often all that is missing is a point of interest in the foreground to balance the image.
This picture was taken in Russell, on the north island of New Zealand, and was one of the longest-lasting and most beautiful sunsets I have ever seen. Seeing the sun set over water gives a special ambience and some clouds in the sky also add interest.

When I was taking photographs, I came across this couple sitting on a bench at the harbour, just enjoying the sunset. Although they were sitting directly under a street light, I needed some fill flash to give a bit more detail to the foreground. In hindsight, it might actually be slightly too much fill, but I am not that unhappy with the end result.

With these shots, there are actually two exposures - the ambient light, in this case the sunset, and the subject to be lit by the flash. Generally, if you set your camera to expose for the ambient light, your camera can provide the proper exposure for the flash.

EXIF: Nikon D70; Nikkor 18-70 mm DX; ISO 200; 1/100 sec; f5.6

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