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Near Black Backgroound

Moderator: richardlbong

Near Black Backgroound

Postby richardlbong » Tue Mar 02, 2010 3:40 pm

On the field, you can achieved a great near black background by using your flash.
Canon 40D, Sigma 150mm + 1.4x TC, 1/100, f8, ISO400
This Eurema blanda snelleni (3 Spot Grass Yellow) was shot at Dairy Farm Nature Park sometime ago. The camera was set around 3 stop under and the Canon 580EX Mk2 flash was flipped up in bounce position with a white reflector mounted at the flash head to deflect the light from the flash towards the butterfly and the flower. The butterfly and flower is lit by the reflected lighting from the flash. Just make sure the backgroound is not too close to the subject and you'll achieve a near black background. If you are using a direct flash, set tthe flash to a -1 stop and you can still get the result, but make sure the EV of the camera is way under. A few trail and error attempts will help to achieve the desired results.
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Re: Near Black Backgroound

Postby adrhall » Mon Dec 10, 2012 6:31 pm

Great tip... i'll try this for sure... do you find that 3 stops under is a norm or is it hugely different shot to shot? Nice shot by the way :)
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Re: Near Black Backgroound

Postby laurence leong » Tue Dec 11, 2012 10:24 am

My experience is, it depends on how dark the background is. If it is really dark, whatever settings are used, the background will turn out dark.
If the background is not so dark, using a higher ISO will help to bring out the colour of the background, but the intensity of the flash must be brought down so as not to overexpose the subject. More often than not, except in good sunlight, the M setting is used.
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