View Full Version : Breaking Waves

03-28-2010, 05:33 PM
Hello All.
Would appreciate some feedback and thoughts on this image.

I realy did struggle to produce good shots of waves breaking, I spent an hour experimenting but could not seem to find the correct settings, I shot 185 pictures and probably only got 5 useable images.

Can any body give me some ideas camera settings, I know fast shutter speeds must be used to freeze the water, I struggled to know what F number to use e.t.c

Also settings for shooting water so you get a creamy effect again i know a slow shutter speed should be used and a ND grad filter 9+ (but Idont own one)

I tried some but totaly over exposed the shots, they couldnt be saved!!

Mad Aussie
03-28-2010, 08:50 PM
The ambient light in the location makes a big difference to both questions.

For capturing waves/droplets then shutter speeds of upwards of 1/2000th may be needed because they are fast and small. Therefore you need fairly bright light on your subject.
I use manual focus for this too. You can't expect the auto fpcus to handle so much movement so I focus on the spot and fire away. For this I would start with using shutter priority and see how that goes. Adjust manually from there if needed.

For the 'veiled' or 'silky' water it's the other way around if you have no ND filters. You need low light. If you have a Circular Polarizer then that will help reduce the light a bit.
Whack the f-stop up high to further reduce light and allow you to drop the shutter speed. As a rule of thumb you are going to need to get that shutter speed down to below 1 sec if possible.
Don't focus on the water, it's going to be blurred anyhow ... focus on a rock or tree or something. Tripod needed obviously.

Have fun :)

04-01-2010, 03:25 PM
Interesting result you posted here.
As for freezing the water, youl will need a fair daylight, I like morning and after noon hours best for that, as to creamy water without nd filter, youd want a overcast day, or very early in the morning, iso 100 and tripod. And it usually works better on wide angle shots.