OK. One needs to learn lighting, aperture, shutter speed and focal length to take a decent pictures with DSLR. Can you share what will be the best setting (focal length, aperture, shutter speed, ISO or program modes) for the following common situations:
1. Indoor party in a restaurant or living room with incandescent lighting with the subject within five feet
2. Close up shots of flowers, humming birds in an outdoor setting with moderate day lighting at a distance ten to fifteen feet
3. Fireworks show on July 4th
4. Outdoor group photos/portraits with historic monuments or background
5. Sporting events
6. Kids and toddlers in a indoor living room situation
Please share your thougths
Depends on your lens but here is what I would say would be a good setup with some common lenses.. i'm not a pro and am just starting out so i post this hoping others will correct me and maybe i'll learn something too!
Here is what I'd use with my Canon 60D (hand held)
1. Indoors. 17-55 Canon F2.8 (or Tamron 17-50 F2.8). no flash. ISO between 400-1000. Aperture F2.8. Focal length probably around 17 for waist-up or 30-40mm for a shoulders up. Shutter speed could vary with the focal length. You can go somewhere between 1/20 - 1/50th of a second.
2. Outdoors. If you want close ups from 10-15 ft you'd need a zoom lens here. I have a 70-300 f/3.5 - 5.6 that works good outdoors in bright lighting.
3. Fireworks. I have trouble on these mainly getting auto focus to hit the right spot so using manual focus helps. This year I got some decent shots using my 17-50 f/2.8 tamron lens. I couldn't zoom in real close, but you don't really need to for a larger fireworks display if you are relatively close. (I was at a baseball game watching the fireworks so they were pretty big in the sky from where I sat.) --- f/2.8 helps here with grabbing a lot of light at lower ISO (less noise). But I'd have to mess with it and test a few shots before I could get the settings right. Maybe 1000 ISO with f/2.8. This would also depend on how much motion you want to capture too. Tough one for sure.
4. Outdoor Group. Good range is good here .. travel lens comes to mine (18-200) for outdoor shots with group closeups (wide) and distant monuments you want to zoom in on.
5. Kids indoors. This is where the prime lens comes in.. I have a 30mm Sigma f/1.4 that I love love love indoors with the 4 month old. I can shoot all day in low light with no flash and low ISO and I can grab so much light. 30mm; f/1.4 - 2.0; 1/20 - 1/40; ISO ??. I cheat with the 60D and set everything in manual except the ISO.. so I'm not real good at that yet -- I'd have to test some out and adjust.. trial and error, but I'm still learning.