Double Down for the Double Exposure

An Atlanta photographer gets a triple exposure of the Truist Plaza building downtownTriple exposure of the Truist Building in downtown Atlanta

Photo Fun in Downtown Atlanta

A couple of weeks ago, I went with my friend Lauren's meetup group, the Atlanta Urban Photo Walkers (AUPW), on a photo walk in downtown Atlanta. There were only seven of us and we had a blast wandering around downtown getting photos. 

I should qualify that statement. 

I was mostly having a blast until I hit the "button of death" (as Lauren calls it) on my Lumix and I lost easy/quick control of my ISO setting button. Ugh. 

I still have no idea what I did and I'm still working on how to get it back! Interestingly, this is one of the things I love about photography. It doesn't matter that I'm a professional, there's always more to learn.

Thankfully, Lauren had a workaround via the quick menu to gain back control of the ISO but it's kind of a pain. 

When Golden Hour hits, you only have a short window of time to get the photos you want bathed in that special golden light, and I spent most of Golden Hour fiddling with my camera. 

About the time I hit the button of death, the security guard at Truist Plaza came out and kicked us out with the words, "You got one of those cameras, somebody's making money."

That's the same attitude all the building owners have around Atlanta which is frustrating. 

We were out having fun and enjoying each others' company as we practiced our photo skills, and it's just such a drag to get kicked out of what feels like a public place, even though I realize it's private property.   

Sabrina, another AUPW regular, was talking about discovering her multi-exposure mode and that reminded me that my Lumix has a multi-exposure setting that's pretty cool, so I started experimenting with it. 

That's how I got the above photo, which I loved. I think that was three shots. 

Lots of modern DSLRs and mirrorless cameras have a multi-exposure setting, so if you're interested in trying it out, pull up your camera manual and see if your camera is equipped. 

The Lumix g85 multi-exposure setting is pretty basic and it may be similar on other DSLRs and mirrorless cameras.

Go to your shooting menu and scroll down until you see "Multi Exp." Click on the start button and take a photo. Then move the camera to where you want it for your next shot, click on the next button, and then take your next photo.

I can't remember how many photos it will let you take in total but when you're done, you click on "done" and it merges the photos in-camera. 

It's a great feature.

Remember to set up and focus each shot as you normally would. As you move to the next shot, you'll see a ghost-like image of where the first shot was to help you decide where you want to take your next shot. 

You can change the shutter speed and aperture settings for each separate shot too. 

I used to take double exposures with 35-mm film on my Pentax many years ago. The process was a little more involved.

I had to take a photo, then lift the film rewind lever and hold it in place while simultaneously pushing the rewind button on the bottom of the camera while moving the film advance lever forward. This released the shutter to take another photo while leaving the film in the same spot so I ended up with one exposure over the top of the other. 

If you're using film, remember to reduce the light by half (one full stop) when you're taking your two shots. That way, you won't over-expose the film. I'm guessing not too many people reading this will be running out to take double exposures on their film camera but it's fun to try if you ever get the chance. 

Since I missed most of Golden Hour, I got sidetracked and played around with intentional camera movement. I liked this one of the Catholic Basilica downtown:

An Atlanta photographer plays with intentional camera movement for a nighttime photo of the Basilica downtown

For this shot, I set the shutter speed at 1/4 with f/4.6 (I needed light!). I focused and then as I squeezed the shutter, I quickly dragged the camera downward. I was pleased this came out with everything so well in focus considering the shooting conditions. 

We then went inside the Marriott Marquis and the Hyatt Regency. I love, love, love John Portman's architecture. I'll show some of those photos next week. 

After that, we all went up to Nikolai's Roof on top of the Hilton for an after-meetup nightcap before going home. 

It was a fun evening. If you're in the Atlanta area and you like taking street photos, look for the Atlanta Urban Photo Walkers on Meetup and come to a meetup. 

See you between the raindrops!