Sunday, 3 April 2011

First/Last Wedding with Canon 5D

Yesterday I shot my first wedding with my repaired 5D - which just happened to be my last wedding for this 2010/11 season (hence the confusing title).

And I've got to say that I really enjoyed using the Canon 5D again. Switching ISO,  EV and Apertures on the fly went relatively smoothly. I didn't fumble with switches or settings too often and looking through my set of images after the shoot the exposures look fairly consistent.

Train at Shantytown.
Canon 5D and 28-105mm @f8
 The wedding was at Shantytown - a local historic park that is a very popular wedding venue. They have their own (small, dark) church, although another popular option is to get married outside. My couple (Diane and Paul) got married in the church - which at this time of year (early Autumn) at 4.00pm makes for a very dark interior. I got there early to check light levels and with my 28-105mm lens attached I was managing to get about 1/30th sec at f3.5 on ISO 640.

Why ISO 640? Well, I read somewhere (and heard recently on Scott Bourne's Photofocus podcast), that Canon sensors run smoother in multiples of 160. So rather than setting it at ISO100 - ISO160 is actually more noise-free? Which also means 320 is cleaner than 200, and 640 is cleaner than 400! Go figure.

Anyway, I decided that I wanted to have the versatility of my 28-105mm zoom, rather than switching to my 50mm f1.8 prime for the extra low-light speed - but I was going to have to deal with a little movement blur because of this. Cranked the ISO up to 800 (yeah, I know, it's not a multiple of 160) for a bit more shutter speed, and hoped for the best.

I was actually pretty pleased with the results. Noise is OK at ISO800, and I didn't loose too many due to subject blur. I looked for 'pause points' - moments when the action wasn't to frenetic - and got a pretty decent hit rate.

Canon 5D with 28-105mm @ f4.5 ISO160
Looking back over the images from the day, I'm thrilled with the performance of my Canon 28-105mm f3.4/4.5 zoom. It is a very sharp optic, even shot wide open, and the colour rendition and detail is perfect for portraits. As a walk-around lens for the 5D it's almost perfect - but for the church interior images I was a little worried and felt a bit limited. An f2.8 aperture would have been better, as well as Image Stabilization, but you're talking big dollars for both of those.

I can, however, have one of them - Image Stabilization - in a lens that is very similar: Canon's 28-135mm f3.5/5.6 IS. This lens is talked about in the same breath as the 28-105mm, with the same good image quality, but with extra reach at the telephoto end - and with the addition of IS.

So after reviewing the images in the evening, and mulling over the day, I decided to take the plunge and get one! Just like the 28-105mm they are very reasonably priced on Trademe - and I found a new one going for half price from a guy who had one bought for him as a present, that he'd never used, because he has 'L' glass!

Canon 5D with 100mm macro @f2.8

Also got to use my friends 100mm macro for some of the portraits - wide open at f2.8. The lighting was beautiful, and the above shot of Paul and Diane is straight out of camera - no dodging, burning etc. The quality of this lens is simply amazing. Not to mention the sensor on the 5D. It really is a great wedding camera. I'm actually quite stunned at the series of portraits I took with this lens at the wedding. They look like I've done a whole heap of work on them in Photoshop, but in reality I've done zip. Nada. Zero to them. Just good light, a great camera, and an amazing lens  - combined with a fun couple who gave me the time I needed to get the natural portraits they were after. 

All-in-all a great first up experience, shooting with the Canon 5D again, on my last wedding for this season. Great way to end the year.

1 comment:

Thanks for your reply. I really appreciate you taking the time to comment on this post. I will get back to you as soon as I can.
Thanks again
Wayne