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Old 12-20-2008, 10:51 AM   #1
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Arrow Bonus Photo Challenge #2: Holiday Lights {12-20-08}


'Tis the season for brilliant and wonderful holiday light displays! They're on the tree, around houses, in windows, about yards, along the streets and in all the shops! We love looking at them and admiring how pretty they are but they are not the easiest to always capture with the camera. Especially because they are best filmed in dim to none extra light.

Here are a few helpful tips:
1. Secure the camera, either by using a tripod or by setting it on something solid and sturdy.
2. Turn off the flash.
3. Increase the ISO/film speed settings.
4. Try using your camera's timer setting.
5. Take lots of pictures!



Can't wait to see all of your holiday lights!
Happy Holidays to everyone!


First pic is of our Christmas tree, second pic is from Biltmore Village in Asheville, NC and the third is the Christmas tree at the Hampton Inn we stayed at.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DWQliving08 sm.JPG (45.1 KB, 85 views)
File Type: jpg lighted trees.JPG (40.0 KB, 82 views)
File Type: jpg Hampton tree sm.JPG (100.4 KB, 96 views)

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Old 12-21-2008, 10:36 AM   #2
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I just took these last night, using a tripod, and every other light was off. The second one had my son, in the striped shirt, and his friend. I just love the 'glow' from the tree




C
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Old 12-21-2008, 03:01 PM   #3
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How Beautiful! Love that warm golden glow you captured!!! And the boys gazing up at the tree is just soooo SWEET!!!
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Old 12-21-2008, 06:19 PM   #4
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Angie, I LOVE that third picture....can you share with us what your settings were on the your camera for that one? I took some of my tree and they are awfully yellow looking....I love around the tree is just perfect!
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Old 12-21-2008, 08:29 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HeartfeltGreetings View Post
Angie, I LOVE that third picture....can you share with us what your settings were on the your camera for that one? I took some of my tree and they are awfully yellow looking....I love around the tree is just perfect!
Thanks! Now the third pic had a lot of background and ceiling lighting going on all around. Whereas the first pic of our tree was done only with the Christmas lights and a few candles lit. I don't know how yellow-y looking your pics are but generally Christmas lights seem to look best with that golden-yellow glow to them in pictures. Gives off the feel of the warmth to the season.

Manual settings for third pic:

Exposure time 1/10
F number 2.8
ISO speed ratings 100
Metering mode Spot
Light source Normal
White balance Auto WB
Flash Off
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Old 12-21-2008, 09:25 PM   #6
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I love all the Christmas light pictures, but the best of all is Conni's photo of the boys at the Christmas tree! I love the way the light reflects on their faces. That's one for the books!
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Old 12-21-2008, 09:41 PM   #7
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Default Bonus photo challenge #2

I know this is cheating a bit, but these were taken one week ago while on holiday in Texas. It is way too cold here in Ontarion right now to be standing outside with a tripod and besides, at the moment it is too stormy. Photo one, a decorated bridge at the Schlitterbahn amusement park in New Braunfels. Number two, lights on the buildings at the same park. The third photo isn't really a Christmas light photo, but I just had to share it with you. De-icing our plane at Chicago Midway. So thankful for the men who brave the cold and wet to provide this necessary service to keep us all safe in the air.
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Old 12-21-2008, 10:46 PM   #8
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Beautiful photos ladies. Love them all!
Angie, thank you for sharing the photo settings on your third picture. It really is beautiful as are all of your photos.
Connie, both of your pics are gorgeous but I agree with Ina, the photo with the boys is just stunning.
Ina, all your photos are pretty. That one of the de-icing is really neat.

I will see if I can take some photos tomorrow. Not many people around here have lights on their homes (we have a few, but not many). So I will see if can find somewhere that has some photo ops.
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Old 12-22-2008, 06:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrapnstamp on the farm View Post
I just took these last night, using a tripod, and every other light was off. The second one had my son, in the striped shirt, and his friend. I just love the 'glow' from the tree




C

Connie, I love the one with your son and his friend. Their profiles are just so precious.
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Old 12-22-2008, 08:49 AM   #10
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Sounds like the techniques for photographing Christmas Lights/Trees/etc is not unlike those for getting great Fireworks images. I've had some success with my little point-and-shoot, but i've found there is no substitute for full manual control when in those more extreme lighting situations.
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Old 12-22-2008, 08:52 AM   #11
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Beautiful pictures ladies! I love Christmas lights!!! Connie, the one with your son and his friend is awesome! I love it!
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Old 12-22-2008, 09:59 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by yellowrose46 View Post
I love all the Christmas light pictures, but the best of all is Conni's photo of the boys at the Christmas tree! I love the way the light reflects on their faces. That's one for the books!
Thanks, I love that one too!!
C
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Old 12-22-2008, 10:03 AM   #13
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Ina your pictures are great, love the de-icing


Thanks for all of the praise on my shots. Here is how the real story goes, about 2 weeks ago we went out and bought both of my sons real cool matching shirts, the white with blue stripes. My daughter has a nice navy shirt too. Al the while thinking about getting them dressed up to take these pictures with the tree. Then my X phones and wants the kids for the weekend, and I only end up with my youngest and his friend in the picture. Oh well maybe next year I will try earlier in the season, to make it my christmas card

C
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Old 12-23-2008, 06:28 AM   #14
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Angie, I love your pictures, especially the tree lined sidewalk. I also like how the hotel tree is reflecting in the window (along with another tree outside?).

Conni, your tree shots are beautiful. I love the two boys together, the glow on your son's face is precious. Warm & inviting, this would make a good card!

Ina, I love the lights on the bridge. The de icing of the plane at Midway is really cool too! Great photos!!
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Old 12-23-2008, 06:29 AM   #15
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Ina your pictures are great, love the de-icing


Thanks for all of the praise on my shots. Here is how the real story goes, about 2 weeks ago we went out and bought both of my sons real cool matching shirts, the white with blue stripes. My daughter has a nice navy shirt too. Al the while thinking about getting them dressed up to take these pictures with the tree. Then my X phones and wants the kids for the weekend, and I only end up with my youngest and his friend in the picture. Oh well maybe next year I will try earlier in the season, to make it my christmas card

C
Funny how the unexpected gave you a picture perfect picture...literally! Here's to next year!
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Old 12-23-2008, 04:07 PM   #16
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just a quickie of our mantle...

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Old 12-23-2008, 05:19 PM   #17
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Ok I'm new to this forum but I'll give it a try. We went to look at lights the other night and took this one. It was actually 2 pics and I merged them in pse. There's some blur in the middle. I just got this lens and am still getting used to it.

ok it made my pic smaller because of the width so you can click here to see it bigger:
http://img72.imageshack.us/img72/93/xmaslights1mv3.jpg
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File Type: jpg xmaslights1.jpg (19.7 KB, 48 views)
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Old 12-23-2008, 05:33 PM   #18
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Jen, I love the lighting in this picture...beautiful mantle!

Hi Gale, what a cool merging of pictures. What kind of lens did you get?
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Old 12-23-2008, 05:41 PM   #19
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Gale, too cool!!!! I love the merging! I bet it would look great blown up!
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Old 12-23-2008, 07:33 PM   #20
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Thanks Ladies. The lens is the Canon ef-s 17-55 F2.8. I mainly bought it for the IS and the fast aperture. It's expensive (to me) so I want to master it but I'm not that great to begin with. lol
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Old 12-24-2008, 07:37 AM   #21
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Oh... okay, I'll try this. Lights never really work too well for me, but thanks for your tips, Angie!! It just might work...
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Old 12-24-2008, 11:19 PM   #22
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So I was sitting in my living room this afternoon with all the lights off and the lights on the tree on. I was struck by how the lights were hitting a present we have for DD that is wrapped in silver paper.

(No one has Christmas lights around here so this was as close as I could get for this challenge.
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File Type: jpg bonus 2 holiday lights package reflecting.jpg (167.5 KB, 67 views)
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Old 12-25-2008, 12:28 AM   #23
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Here's a pic of a couple of our christmas tree lights. We use the G9 (I think that's what they're called) and they are like pearly globes. I love them. You can also see one of our hallmark ornaments there (veggies tales-I love the hallmark character ornaments) and also a glitter ball ornament that my kids made. I lightened this a bit, sharpened (I took it handheld at 1/40. I LOVE the IS on this lens) and then re-blurred the lights a bit since the sharpening made them look weird.
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Old 12-25-2008, 12:30 AM   #24
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So I was sitting in my living room this afternoon with all the lights off and the lights on the tree on. I was struck by how the lights were hitting a present we have for DD that is wrapped in silver paper.

(No one has Christmas lights around here so this was as close as I could get for this challenge.
That looks so neat. I love the silver paper.
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Old 12-25-2008, 06:57 AM   #25
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Here's a pic of a couple of our christmas tree lights. We use the G9 (I think that's what they're called) and they are like pearly globes. I love them. You can also see one of our hallmark ornaments there (veggies tales-I love the hallmark character ornaments) and also a glitter ball ornament that my kids made. I lightened this a bit, sharpened (I took it handheld at 1/40. I LOVE the IS on this lens) and then re-blurred the lights a bit since the sharpening made them look weird.
That looks awesome Gale! Love the veggie tales ornament!
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:09 PM   #26
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dh wanted some close up shots of the lights on the tree so I did this and then did one of the mantle at my moms last night.
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:13 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duckwaddlequack View Post

'Tis the season for brilliant and wonderful holiday light displays! They're on the tree, around houses, in windows, about yards, along the streets and in all the shops! We love looking at them and admiring how pretty they are but they are not the easiest to always capture with the camera. Especially because they are best filmed in dim to none extra light.

Here are a few helpful tips:
1. Secure the camera, either by using a tripod or by setting it on something solid and sturdy.
2. Turn off the flash.
3. Increase the ISO/film speed settings.
4. Try using your camera's timer setting.
5. Take lots of pictures!



Can't wait to see all of your holiday lights!
Happy Holidays to everyone!


First pic is of our Christmas tree, second pic is from Biltmore Village in Asheville, NC and the third is the Christmas tree at the Hampton Inn we stayed at.
gorgeous shots
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:14 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrapnstamp on the farm View Post
I just took these last night, using a tripod, and every other light was off. The second one had my son, in the striped shirt, and his friend. I just love the 'glow' from the tree




C
wow I love how this turned out its perfect
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:14 PM   #29
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I know this is cheating a bit, but these were taken one week ago while on holiday in Texas. It is way too cold here in Ontarion right now to be standing outside with a tripod and besides, at the moment it is too stormy. Photo one, a decorated bridge at the Schlitterbahn amusement park in New Braunfels. Number two, lights on the buildings at the same park. The third photo isn't really a Christmas light photo, but I just had to share it with you. De-icing our plane at Chicago Midway. So thankful for the men who brave the cold and wet to provide this necessary service to keep us all safe in the air.
I love that bridge shot the reflection looks great
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:14 PM   #30
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just a quickie of our mantle...

I love the lighting on this shot
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:15 PM   #31
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Ok I'm new to this forum but I'll give it a try. We went to look at lights the other night and took this one. It was actually 2 pics and I merged them in pse. There's some blur in the middle. I just got this lens and am still getting used to it.

ok it made my pic smaller because of the width so you can click here to see it bigger:
http://img72.imageshack.us/img72/93/xmaslights1mv3.jpg
very cool. so how do you merge them together?
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Old 12-25-2008, 07:23 PM   #32
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very cool. so how do you merge them together?
Photoshop elements has a photomerge feature but it really doesn't work for me most of the time. It's easier to just do it manually. Here's how I do it:

open both images in photoshop elements (or whatever-I have cs2 but prefer to use PSE most of the time)

note the size of each one including the dpi. Make a new file the same dpi and big enough to fit both images side by side (or top and bottom or however you want).

Drag both pictures onto the new canvas. Position them so that they make one pic. If they overlap you can lower the opacity of the top layer temporarily to make it easier to line them up. Then change the opacity back to 100%. If necessary you can use the eraser to clean up the top layer (like if they overlap a little bit off).

Flatten layers and save.
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Old 12-26-2008, 07:01 AM   #33
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Very nice pics everyone....I will try and get out of my house and go shoot tonight if the wind will die down below hurricane force. My tripod broke last week and I haven't been to repair it (4 hour drive one way) so my shots will have to be hand held...thank goodness for in camera stabilazation.
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Old 12-26-2008, 08:13 AM   #34
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I took these while I was in Georgia visiting my husband's family. I tried using an ornament to reflect the Christmas lights. I took one of my kids lighting a luminare and one of an outside tree.
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File Type: jpg Christmas lights reflected.JPG (53.2 KB, 46 views)
File Type: jpg Christmas light 1.JPG (58.6 KB, 47 views)
File Type: jpg Christmas lights 2.JPG (63.5 KB, 40 views)
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Old 12-26-2008, 10:15 AM   #35
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Every year, one of my sisters sets up a miniature tree and puts her American Girl dolls around it. It's really cute! I took some pictures of them, because the way they were standing looked adorable.

In the ornament picture, the only problem is... it's a shiny ornament, so you can see my camera reflected in it! (I used a macro setting for that one)

I situated the doll in the other picture so that the light reflected off of her glasses. (I used a super-macro setting for that one)
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File Type: jpg Heather.JPG (21.8 KB, 40 views)
File Type: jpg Ornament.jpg (35.1 KB, 47 views)
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Old 12-26-2008, 10:15 AM   #36
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I took these while I was in Georgia visiting my husband's family. I tried using an ornament to reflect the Christmas lights. I took one of my kids lighting a luminare and one of an outside tree.
How pretty!! Lights are so hard to get, aren't they? You did a great job!!!!!
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Old 12-26-2008, 11:57 AM   #37
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Our house on a snowy night, and our polar bear inflatable.
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Old 12-26-2008, 12:25 PM   #38
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Gorgeous pics, Lisa!!
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Old 12-26-2008, 12:54 PM   #39
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Quote:
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Our house on a snowy night, and our polar bear inflatable.
I love the snow and the lights together. So very pretty.
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Old 12-26-2008, 12:58 PM   #40
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nice pictures everyone.
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