Monday, February 4, 2008

Same Old Same Old?

Eight-second exposure without fill flash...

Eight-second exposure with fill flash...

When I started this blog last summer, my intention was to model it a bit after one of my all-time favorite photography and information blogs, Fog Bay. I try to feature something new and different, but interesting every time I post here. I confess, though, I haven't been as diverse as I'd like to be and I find that rather than posting one photo of something--like National Cathedral, for example--I post three or four photos over as many days.

The same is true of today's entry. I was out last night taking pictures of the Lincoln Memorial at night. I've already posted pictures and information about this memorial previously, so instead I'm going to steal a page out of Debi Cates' book (another blog I love) and ask you which you prefer.

Both of these were taken one right after the other. Please pardon my lack of photography jargon. I'm still learning here. The first one was an eight-second exposure without fill flash; focal length: 9.57 mm, exposure bias: -2; f 3.2. The second photo was also an eight-second exposure, but this time I used fill flash. The focal length was 7.30 mm, exposure bias: -2, and f 2.8.

Which do you prefer?

Photo copyright: D.C. Confidential, 2/08


Dusty Lens said...

You pose a tough question, here. Both are beautiful in different ways.

The top photo is brilliant white and blue spotlights up front. This projects a cool sharp photo. The bottom photo casts a warmer tone where the front spotlights appear to be shadowing.

I am leaning toward the top photo as my favorite.

For my own curiosity, I am wondering what camera you use, and what white balance you set your camera too.

D.C. Confidential said...

Dusty Lens: Thanks for the feedback. Both photos have, as you point out, equally beautiful qualities depending on the look you're going for.

Don't laugh, but I'm using a point-and-shoot. More specifically, a Canon A630 PowerShot. I try to keep my photo editing to a minimum and use the iPhoto software that came pre-loaded on my MacBook. (When I'm employed again, I'm going to add Adobe PhotoShop to my computer.)

As for white balance, I don't know what that is (but I'm gonna go out right now and find out!), so I'll have to get back to you on that.

Lara said...

wonderful both! although, I'd say too, that my favourite is the first one. I agree with not editing the photos :).

Fénix - Bostonscapes said...

I like the top photo better because I'm thinking that it reproduces more closely what your eyes saw that night. Yes?

Thanks for the link to Fog Bay, that's a great blog. :)

D.C. Confidential said...

Lara: I agree with not editing most photos. I have a few, though, that end up looking better cropped and balanced than they would otherwise. But on the whole, yes, I try not to mess with a picture.

Fenix: You are right! That said, though, I find what the fill flash does absolutely fascinating. (I really do need to get myself into a photography class.)

Fabrizio - ikol22 said...

First one. By the way please consider in future that flash may be used to lit up subject not far more than 6 meters (almost 20 Ft). Built in flashoes generally doesn't go over 4 meters.

This to say that to use flash or not doesn't change how the picture come out. Anyway cameras generally turn speed at 1/60 and F/stop at 5.6. Point and shot cameras either modifies white balance. This the reason because the second one it's "yellowish" and not natural.

D.C. Confidential said...

Fabrizio: Grazie for the information. When I took these pictures, I was at least 150 ft. away. I use a Canon A630 PowerShot, but I'm hoping to take a class one day and upgrade my camera to something a little more professional.