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How to Focus and Take Pictures with Live View on Your Canon EOS 6D

Live View is the bee’s knees when it comes to taking pictures with your EOS 6D. You have a much larger view of your subject and you can compose pictures holding the camera low to the ground — which beats crawling on your belly — or over your head. To take pictures in Live View mode:

  1. Press the Start/Stop button.

    What’s in the lens’s field of view appears on the camera monitor.

  2. Press the shutter button halfway to focus the scene.

    When you shoot in Live View, the camera uses the default FlexiZone-Single focusing mode, which gives you a single autofocus point in the center of the LCD monitor. You can use the Multi-controller to move the AF point when you use the default FlexiZone-Single focusing mode. When the camera achieves focus, the autofocus point turns green.

    The default autofocus mode works great when shooting in Live View mode, but you have other options.

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    To display the electronic level while shooting pictures in Live View mode, press the Info button to cycle through the information displays until you see the level.

  3. Press the Shutter button fully to take the picture.

    The LCD monitor displays the image almost immediately. After the designated image-review time, the monitor returns to Live View mode.

  4. Press the Start/Stop button to exit Live View mode.

    The camera automatically exits Live View mode after the time designated by auto power off.

When you shoot in Live View mode, you hold the camera in front of you. Therefore, you can’t hold the camera as steadily as you can when shooting through the viewfinder. Using a lens with image stabilization helps, but if you don’t have one, shoot at a higher shutter speed than you normally would. Otherwise mount the camera on a tripod.

When you shoot in Live View mode in hot conditions or in direct sunlight, the internal temperature of the camera increases. A white warning icon appears when the internal temperature of the camera is near the danger point, and a red warning light appears when the temperature is at the danger point. Press the Start/Stop button to stop Live View when you see this warning and let the camera cool down before taking any more pictures.

When you shoot in Live View mode, you have three focusing options. Two options are used for taking photographs of landscapes and objects, and the other focusing mode is used to detect faces. To specify the autofocus (AF) mode:

  1. Press the Menu button.

  2. Use the Multi-controller button to navigate to the Live View Shooting Settings 1 tab.

  3. Use the Multi-controller or the Quick Control dial to highlight AF Method and then press the Set button.

    The Live View AF Method options display on the camera LCD monitor.

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  4. Use Multi-controller or the Quick Control dial to highlight one of the following options:

    • FlexZoneAF: When you choose this mode, the camera uses the sensor to achieve focus. You have a single autofocus point in the center of the LCD monitor. If the autofocus point is not over the part of the scene or subject you’re photographing that must be in focus, you can use the Multi-controller to move the autofocus point to the desired position.

    • Live Mode (Face Detection): Uses the sensor to focus but detects faces.

    • Quick Mode: Uses the camera AF sensor to focus the image. This mode is quicker than using the camera sensor. The Live View image momentarily blacks out while the camera achieves focus. You also have all 11 autofocus points to work with.

  5. Press Set.

    The selected focusing mode is used whenever you shoot images with Live View.

If you prefer to use one of the Live View focus modes, you find the camera has a difficult time focusing, and you have a lens that lets you focus manually when in autofocus mode, twist the focus ring until the scene is close to being in focus and then the Live View focusing should snap the scene into focus.

To focus the camera while using Live Mode focusing:

  1. Press the Start/Stop button to enable Live View shooting.

    An autofocus (AF) point appears in the center of the image.

  2. (Optional) Use the Multi-controller button to move the AF point.

    Move the AF point over the part of the image that you want the camera to focus.

  3. Press the shutter button halfway.

    When the camera achieves focus, the AF point turns green and the camera beeps.

  4. Press the shutter button fully.

    The camera takes the picture.

To focus the camera with Live Mode (Face Detection) focusing:

  1. Press the Start/Stop button to enable Live View shooting.

    An AF point appears in the center of the image.

  2. Press the shutter button halfway.

    The camera sensor detects faces in front of the lens by placing a rectangular AF frame over it. When the camera achieves focus, the frame turns green and the camera beeps. If the camera detects multiple faces, an AF frame with a right- and left-pointing arrow appears. Use the Multi-controller button to drag the AF frame over the person who's the center of interest and who should be in focus.

  3. Press the shutter button fully.

    The camera takes the picture.

To focus with Quick Mode focusing:

  1. Press the Start/Stop button to enable Live View shooting.

    An autofocus frame point appears in the center of the image.

  2. Press the shutter button halfway.

    The AF points for the autofocus point mode you specify for standard shooting appear on the camera LCD monitor. A white frame appears over the AF points. The point(s) used to achieve focus turns green.

  3. (Optional) Use the Multi-controller button to move the white autofocus frame.

  4. Press the shutter button fully.

    The camera takes the picture.

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