Want to create an image that has a long exposure where the movement is smooth in your Sony a7 Series camera? You can with the app called Smooth Reflection, which can be found in the Sony PlayMemories store. Author Richard Harrington gives a broad overview of how Smooth Reflection works in your Sony a7 Series camera to create a long-exposure image.
- We're here at the historic mill and behind me is the actual wheel that turns when water hits it. Now, the gear isn't currently engaged but you can see that the water is starting to hit the surface and flow across. What I'd like to do is really drag that action out. Now, there's a great app called Smooth Reflection that is designed for lots of different situations where you have water or mist or waves and let me walk you through some of the choices. If I go into the menu settings here, I'll go ahead and bring this up and you'll see that essentially there's a wide range of options.
So the choices here include the ability to shoot reflections at twilight. This is really good if you want the water surfaces to reflect light. The one I'm gonna use here which is for water flow, which is gonna turn flowing water into really a more smooth looking image. They have another setting that's specifically designed for a silent type look. So it take the surface of water and makes it look very still We also have another option here which is great for smoke or haze, which works well if you have mist on the lake and another for a monochromatic image or the ability to dial in custom settings.
Well, let's take this up here to that 2nd one for water flowing. Now, these are similar to long exposure photography but it's little bit different. Rather than taking one exposure with a really long shutter speed. It's gonna take several shots and then blend those together in camera. This is essentially a digital trick to simulate long exposure photography. Rather than taking one long shot, it's gonna take sever shorter shots and then average the details together in camera.
Now this type of processing ends up giving you a JPEG image. So it's important that you pay attention to how things are set up. Let's go through a couple things with the camera first. Because you're gonna be taking multiple exposures and blending them, it's absolutely essential that you are on a tripod. You want the camera rock solid and not moving. This isn't long exposure photography but if there's movement in between the shots, it's not gonna composite correctly. So get that camera or on a tripod and locked up. And then of course, tighten everything down so you don't get any movement.
Once that's done, you can go ahead and frame up your shot. Your camera's gonna need to be in a mode like aperture priority but most of the settings are gonna be driven by the app itself. Alright, let's go into the app. In this case, I've got the settings selected and if I press return, you'll see that it triggers it ready to go. But this is fine if we wanna use the default settings. So let's do that. I'll press the shutter button halfway and let it auto-focus. Add the timer engages.
And it takes a series of photos. Once it gets enough photos in the can, it's gonna blend those together in camera to generate a new JPEG that simulates the look of long exposure photography. Now, we'll take a look at true long exposure photography later, but to pull that off, you're gonna need a variable or a neutral density filter to really knock down the light entering the camera. This app on the other hand will work with standard lenses without the use of any filtration. Alright, you got the basics down.
Let's explore customizing the settings a bit.
In this course, Rich Harrington takes you on a tour of the Sony app ecosystem, highlighting some of the best a7 apps and showing how to get the most out of them. The course is geared toward the a7 models, but its basic concepts apply to any Sony Alpha-series camera that is supported by Sony's PlayMemories store.
- Keeping your firmware up to date
- Purchasing and installing apps from PlayMemories Camera Apps
- Using your smartphone as a remote
- Syncing to your smartphone
- Creating time-lapse videos with the a7
- Shooting multiple-exposure images
- Correcting lens distortion
- Creating stop-motion animation
- Stylizing photos in the a7
- Painting with light
- Photographing star trails
- Shooting long exposures
- Creating light shafts