invite for pics

Discussion in 'Photography' started by crispin, 5 Jun 2009.

  1. crispin

    crispin

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    Hey all :)

    a number of people would like to get suggestions on their photography and how to take the shot, the basics around getting it a little better.

    if you want to choose 1-3 pics and post them here I'll try get a few guys together that can give you an educated input into some of the aspects of photography, what to look for and what you are getting wrong.

    unfortuantley we cant go through and crit hundreds of pics, so choose which you want and use this a serious section if you can, it takes a while to do a decent responce to a pic.

    Also, without a semi decent camera where you can do the basics of changeing shutter speed, appeture and white ballance, we wont really be able to help.. Thats to say point and shoot isnt much else you can change.
     
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  3. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    I will take up that offer Crispin.

    First of the hardware, i have the 350D cannon with 2 lenes one is 17 to 55 i think and the other is 75 to 300. I also have a small tripod.

    Two things are frustrating me at the moment..... one is getting any sort of close up shot.... Zoa's or SPS for example, nothing comes out clear.... this shot is the best one of like 15 i took of this piece


    [​IMG]

    with 9 points of focus i often battle to direct the camera onto the right target .... for eample here it may have taken its focus point on the rock to the left.

    My other frustration is the depth of colour....you know my nennie, and your pics of her are stunning, no matter what settings i try i cant capture its colour, and usually parts of it are out of focus........

    [​IMG]

    This nennie is stunning but in this pic, looks like it is suffering from too little light .....

    I have hundreds of other questions but will leave it at this for now......

    Also please be specific with instructions .... the termanology evades me with camer's... so when you tell me to do something with the aperature then pls tell me exactly what setting to look for if you know what i mean !!!

    thanks Boet :thumbup::thumbup:
     
  4. Broder

    Broder Mudshark

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    I can never seem to get anything totally in focus, even when using small apertures. This is about as good as it gets. Is it just a crap camera (Panasonic FZ8) or is there something wrong with it or the operator?

    [​IMG]

    Even this one, where the camera was on a tripod and I was sober, seems to be out of focus. Is it time to fork out some serious moola on a better camera with a better lense?
    [​IMG]

    Please Crispin.... help me get a crisp pic.
     
  5. Tony

    Tony

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    Neil. See my answers in red

     
  6. Tony

    Tony

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    Mudshark see the answers to Neil's which is similar to yours. You have to chnage the way the camera focuses to centre focusing instead of the camera trying to focus on everything. Also try using a sports setting.
     
  7. crispin

    crispin Thread Starter

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    nice answer tony :) next time do us a fav and add after the quote, that way i can quote you (not niel in this example) and add to what you say without retyping :)

    Niel you need to move out the auto mode. What tony says about focal points is very true but the best way is to go onto manual settings and select the focal point you want. On my camera thats done by going toi manual mode (cant me done in auto) and press the small botton top right on the back of the camera body.

    You are looking for AF point selection. (Auto focus point selection)
    You will see the back lcd screen light up with yellow dots when its in auto mode (full selection) that means that when any of those dots hits a focal point the camera will beep....and it selects which one it wants.)

    Now hit the "set" button in the middle of the controll. The camera goes into "manual AF point selection "and the centre one lights up. navigate right or left, up or down depending where on the frame you want focal point.

    Now even if the lense is set to autofocus, the camera will only look at the focal point you have selected and will focus on that point only.

    I often use this in manual focus.

    a simple example is a giraffe feeding behind vegetation. on auto settings the camera takes the vegetation infront and focusses on that, the animal behind would be out of focus. By manual focas with manual focal points you can focus through the shot and get the animal in focus.


    Having said all that neil, i think your first problem with that first pic is its deep in the tank and you are not square onto the subject. Go try getting square on first and your focal points will be sharper, then look to change the settings
     
  8. crispin

    crispin Thread Starter

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    More the operator than camera:p and yes id say that camera is limiting what you can achieve, although youve got passable shots anyway.

    i agree with tony on your focal points....kind of nothing in focus but its all close. I would try move off apperture settings with your fish pics and work with shutter speed rather. Think of shutter speed as "stopping power" When you want to take a pic of something at the specific split second it happens (a water drop hitting water for example) you need to freeze it at that moment. Fast shutter speed (1/1000 sec) or so. But often a camera cant get enough light as the apperture is too small (always remember that these two have to work in ratio) so the pic gets underexposed. With the first pic the shutter speed is slightly too slow, i am not sure of the shot settings but you needed to push it a little due to water movement. See those white dots in the water collum behind the convict? a slightly higher shutter speed would have "stopped" their movement and cleaned the pic up alot.

    a rule of thumb though is never shoot hand held below a shutter speed of 1/60. Below that you must use a tripod
     
    Last edited: 5 Jun 2009
  9. crispin

    crispin Thread Starter

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    knowing the depth of color that nennie has, that is an astoundingly poor pic:p. and knowing you, you can take the crit.

    i honestly think you have a couple of difficulties with this shot, the biggest is the colour of light you are working in. (same in all tanks so I raise it here)

    Often people place actinics in the front of the hood, and this is the first and strongest light a camera is seeing, often giving this washed out blue hue to the pic. Try shifting your bulbs around in hood and see if you cant put a whiter light near glass. NOTE: i am guessing at your light configeration as i have never seen inside your hood so you will know better.

    also your WB (white ballance) is way out, but thats beyond me to explain. Tony could you explain white ballance?
     
  10. gaboon

    gaboon

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    Check your ISO settings as well, the lower the iso the better the colour saturation. I wouldn't go higher than 400 as the pics will come out grainy.
     
  11. Tony

    Tony

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    Will do:razz:
     
  12. Broder

    Broder Mudshark

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    Thanks Crispin. I'll up the shutter speed to about 1/250th. That's about all the camera will allow with all of the lights on. The aperture will be 2.8 then and underexposed by a stop. I think I've got to spend the money on a decent setup.
     
  13. crispin

    crispin Thread Starter

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    try f3.5 and 1/125 or so as well.
     
  14. crispin

    crispin Thread Starter

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    mudshark, will your camera allow you to shoot at 1/80-1/200 without a flash? if so then use that a bench mark to shoot with, set on a faster speed to start taking pics and click the shutter speed down untill you are getting the correct ratio.


    i am just saying that I found changing shutter speed to be esier in the beginning, over changing apt settings
     
  15. Broder

    Broder Mudshark

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    Cool... I'll experiment this weekend.
     
  16. Ross

    Ross

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    I just want to add to this. I only shoot with the center focus point selected.
    If you want to focus on something that is not in the center of the frame, center your subject, press the shutter button half way down so that you get focus on your subject, and then without letting go of the shutter button, recompose your image and take the pic.

    If you are going to use this method, just be careful of where the light is metered from as the camera will meter on the focus point. 99% of the time this will be fine. If it is not fine, you can also lock your exposure to another portion of the image but this is beyond this post.

    One other bit of info that goes hand in hand with this, don't get stuck shooting with your subject in the center of the frame. Moving the subject around in the frame (using the rule of thirds) can add a huge amount to your image (not only fish and tank pics)

    When focusing on animals of any kind, including fish, always make sure your focus is on the eye (unless you are really trying to show something else). Humans are drawn to the eye bu instinct and a eye that is out of focus will confuse the whole image.
     
  17. Ross

    Ross

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    In images like we are trying to show here, I think it is important to choose a subject and stick to it. There is to much going on in a our tanks and this can be distracting. If you can compose your shots tighter and minimize the distractions. If all else fails, crop your images.

    I think this image cropped is a lot better than the original image, firstly it is showing the subject clearly, there is not distractions from the background and the clown that was a huge distraction.

    [​IMG]

    Also notice the fish is not centered in the frame, it has space in the image to 'swim' into.
     
  18. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    right so crispy you definately know your stuff.... my actinics are at the front ! ....

    thank you all so much for the pointers, i have a lot of playing to do !!!

    cheers :thumbup::thumbup:
     
  19. crispin

    crispin Thread Starter

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    lucky guess :)

    actually not, ive thought about that for a while, its why i ma trying to get a bank of 80w t5's or t12's into my hood rather than MH. more for photography than sticks:)
     
  20. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Crispin, tony et al,

    Thanks so much for all the advice ...... here is my latest efforts, much better in my opinion but still a way to go. Crispin, you have a canon right? how do you adjust the F stop value (i think thats what it is, mine is at 5.6 all the time)

    Please be brutal with your feedback !

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]



    :thumbup:
     
  21. Tony

    Tony

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    Looking good. Pics one is perfect, good exposure, the front is perfectly focused wiht the background blurring out.

    Pic two the camera doesn't know where to focus and is a little overexposed. Try an underexpose by one stop. This will yield richer pictures and check your metering settings.

    Pic three while sharp is just a little overexposed.

    Pic four shows that you are using a centre metering as the lit up/bright ares seem washed out. For this you can do two things, take a light reading by pointing at a bright spot in your tank then using that reading to take the pic or turn on an auto bracket where the camers will take three pics of different exposures. You need a tripod for this one.

    Pic five is perfect with you probably going for a lower F-stop keeping all in focus. The colours are rich.
     
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