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Taking pictures outside at the park

edited September 2012 Posted in » Nikon D3100 Forum
I will be taking pictures outside at a park (building my portfolio) and would like to know what is the best ISO to set my camera on. How do I obtain the best close-up shots (18-500mm lens)? Any tips on lighting would be great. Thanks everyone!


  • edited September 2012
    First of all did you mean 18-55mm lens?

    ISO all depends how much light is available on the day. If its nice and clear blue skies and the sun is out use the lowest ISO you can, so on the D3100 it would be 100.
    Try to avoid harsh lighting (when the sun is the highest, try shooting in the golden hours just before and after sunrise/sunset). If you have no choice but to shoot in daylight, try moving into a shaded part but not too dark. Avoid your subject looking into the sun, or else most of the shots will be ruined because they will be squinting if its directly behind you.
    Avoid harsh shadows that fall onto the face. Take a moment and take a look when you place subjects in full light. If you can get someone along to be your helper and take a big piece of white card, you can use this to reflect light onto the subject so it's evenly lit.

    Anyway I'm going into too much depth; I shall keep it simple. ;)

    Use a tripod and take the VR off if your lens has it, as this can cause blurred shots.
    Choose a low f/stop. For portraits I use f/4-5.6 but you can go lower.
    I would choose AF-S and use spot metering, but if you don't understand the concepts of it stick to matrix. Focus area I normally have on dynamic. Use the focus points and focus on the eyes; recompose and take the shot.

    That's just a few pointers for quickness. Hope it helps.
    If you want more info let us know. I'm sure there must be a few others who may help.
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