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Old 02-17-2018, 08:19 PM   #5
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Hilldale, West Virginia
Posts: 3,603

Originally Posted by bbrant View Post
Nice work Loyd! I've never been able to pull off one of the shots. How far in advance do you fire the the shutter? As soon as you see the glow of the headlight or a little before/after?
It varies depending on the scene, conditions, and my desire for the composition. I do try to aim for at least 20 seconds of exposure in most circumstances.

Once you can see the scene begin to illuminate from the headlight, it's time to start (but there's usually no penalty for starting earlier), and I always end the exposure right before the headlight(s) is visible. Knowing how bright the result will be based off the camera settings, the type of headlight(s), and the atmospheric conditions is something that is only possible from a lot of practice. It took me years to get to the point where I know exactly what to do to get a usable result with a very high degree of confidence.

shot 1 was 90 seconds, f5.6, iso 100 in a light fog
shot 2 was 167 seconds, f2.8, iso 100 in a humid but fog-less atmosphere
shot 3 was 90 seconds f8, iso 400 in a heavy rain (mile long straight-away that allowed plenty of time for the headlights to work their magic).
shot 4 was 34 seconds, f6.3 iso 400 in a heavy fog. I could have halved the expsoure time to get the same level from the headlights due to the S curve behind the signal, but I wanted to introduce some red into the fog from the signal.

Loyd L.
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