NYC Subway Photography

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Ubertrout, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. Ubertrout

    Ubertrout Guest

    Hey all...I purchased a Nikon D40 about a year ago (with the 18-55 non-
    vr kit lens), and I'm still relatively new to DSLR photography /
    manual controls. This weekend (hopefully) I'll be going on a tour of
    the abandoned Old City Hall station in New York City, which is known
    for, among other things, being lit by skylight. I'd like to get some
    photos, but I won't have a tripod, and I'm guessing the lighting
    situation will be a bit challenging. I was thinking of setting the
    camera to Shutter mode and experimenting a bit, but if anyone has
    specific suggestions for that (it's supposed to be cold but sunny on
    Sunday) or other suggestions, they'll be much appreciated. Thanks in
    advance.
     
    Ubertrout, Jan 7, 2009
    #1
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  2. Ubertrout

    slide Guest

    A monopod helps a lot and is a lot easier to deploy / carry than a
    tripod. Can you manage that?

    If this is a once in a lifetime sort of thing which is extremely
    important to you, then consider renting a lens.
     
    slide, Jan 7, 2009
    #2
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  3. Ubertrout

    Wayne R. Guest

    If you're in Manhattan, you owe it to yourself to hit B&H Photo. It's
    a hoot for anyone the way the place is organized/operated, and
    especially good for anyone with technical interest.

    Do NOT forget to check the hours before you head there; they're
    atypical.

    Map:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/find/jsp/area_map.jsp

    Hours:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/find/HelpCenter/HoursOfOperation.jsp
     
    Wayne R., Jan 7, 2009
    #3
  4. Ubertrout

    Ubertrout Guest

    They told me specifically no tripods. I'm not sure about monopods,
    but I'd worry they're feel the same way. This isn't per se once in a
    lifetime, but I can't say when I'll be down there again.

    Regarding B & H, I keep thinking of going there but never make it. I
    live within a block of J & R, so I usually go there.
     
    Ubertrout, Jan 7, 2009
    #4
  5. Ubertrout

    Peter Guest


    Without a tripod it's difficult, but you might want to place the camera on
    the ground, or some steady surface you find and then take at least three
    exposures, over, under and neutral. then merge to HDR.

    IIRC it's a neat place. I remember it from the days it was in operation.
    How did you get the trip?
    Can other's join? If you prefer you can contact me offline, just remove the
    obvious.
     
    Peter, Jan 7, 2009
    #5
  6. Ubertrout

    null Guest

    You will probably want to use a higher ISO setting then the default. A
    higher ISO means greater sensitivity, so short exposure times. Now the
    downside is that higher ISO settings result in more noise. Noise is seen as
    random colored pixels in the image. So you might experiment with different
    ISO settings beforehand to see how bad the noise gets.

    I would guess that the D40 can use at least ISO 800 without major noise
    settings, and maybe 1600 in a pinch.
    Each doubling of the ISO setting results in a halving of the exposure time,
    so going to ISO 800 from 200 might mean, for example, going from 1/15 of a
    second to 1/60 of a second, so might mean the difference between a blurred
    pic and an acceptable one.

    HTH!
     
    null, Jan 7, 2009
    #6
  7. Ubertrout

    slide Guest

    Ask them why no tripods. It may be the setup time demanded by them.
    Monopods demand no setup time at all (well almost instantaneous).
     
    slide, Jan 8, 2009
    #7
  8. Ubertrout

    Wayne R. Guest

    I haven't tried it but the idea of a string/chain hanging from the
    camera mount hole to give you something to stand on & lift against
    always sounded like a clever idea...

    Should be a 1/4x20 screw hole, I think.
     
    Wayne R., Jan 8, 2009
    #8
  9. Ubertrout

    dj_nme Guest

    Or, a 1/4" BSW bolt.
    which-ever one is available to you.
    The depth of a tripod socket isn't enough to make any differences in
    thread profile in any way meaningful.
     
    dj_nme, Jan 8, 2009
    #9
  10. Ubertrout

    Ubertrout Guest

    Goodness Peter...you really dated yourself. Old City Hall station
    hasn't been in operation since 1945. But thanks to both you and null
    for the helpful advice...I'm going to try to use it. Also thanks for
    the thoughts about other devices, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to go
    handheld...it's not worth hassles.

    Regarding tours, the NYC Transit Museum runs them for members once a
    month or so.
     
    Ubertrout, Jan 8, 2009
    #10
  11. Ubertrout

    dj_nme Guest

    Garry Douglas wrote:
    I'm not sure what you're planning to attach it to.
    A handrail?

    The idea behind the "string monopod" is like what appears in the
    following picture (found with GIS):
    <http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1072/923096265_f501fed678.jpg>
    Tension on the string tends to stop the camera from wobbling about too much.
    All it requires is a length of string, a 1/4" BSW bolt and your foot.
    A diagram this time (found with GIS as well):
    <http://farm1.static.flickr.com/2/1678313_51a003a521.jpg>
     
    dj_nme, Jan 8, 2009
    #11
  12. Ubertrout

    Paul Furman Guest

    I was curious what it looks like:
    http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&safe=off&q="New York" "City Hall" subway
    It looks like super-wide angle would be useful, so maybe try some
    stitched panoramas. Staying on the wide end of the zoom will help with
    shake problems.

    --
    Paul Furman
    www.edgehill.net
    www.baynatives.com

    all google groups messages filtered due to spam
     
    Paul Furman, Jan 9, 2009
    #12
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