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Thread: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

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    Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Project 52 week 1

    This will be a challenge for me. I feel I struggle with composition and technique, but the only way to improve is to have a go and see what happens.
    This photo is a start, eye's slightly out of focus, composition, (you tell me) . But I'm keen to improve.
    Have a good year everyone.
    Greg

    Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

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    It looks like the focus point was the lower wing. I would have had my focus point on the head or eye. Does your camera show you the focal point in the review image in camera? If so, where was it? Flies are hard to capture up close. You usually need a good reach to get a good shot without them moving or flying away like a 100mm or 180mm macro lens. The composition and DOF are good with a nice soft focus background to concentrate your focus on the subject you just need to get your subject in a nice sharp focus. This is a good start though. You're on the right track.

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    First off, I am not sure how you can differentiate between the two. For me, they go hand in hand. Compositionally/technique-wise in this hsot, you need a little more depth in your focus (close down a stop or two) and more saturation in the color balance as it is a bit thin. I would also move the fly back to the upper right a bit to omit the feeling it is goind to nuzzle its way out of the frame. Leaving the empty area to the right doesn't do anythign for the frame and cropping it tighter really won't help much as the nose is still to close to the leading edge.

    Mine is a bit too dark, but I am working on a school computer, uncalibrated monitor, and no way to set up transfer accounts...in other words, blind inone eye, deaf in the other...
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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Great start Greg. I think Rob has given you some very good feedback and advice. I really like the colours and background in this shot and even though there is room for improvement, it's certainly a keeper.

    Wendy

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    For me, Greg, there are two reasons why I photograph insects.

    One is to produce a generally pleasing image but also, and often more important, to enable a clear identification of the little critter.

    So your clear shot of the wing veins firmly places this fly into the Tachinidae family, which probably wouldn't be possible with an eye based shot, even if that was more visually pleasing.

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    Good point Geoff.

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Thanks for the advice and encouragement everyone.
    Going out over the weekend to put it into practice.
    Hopefully you will see a better result next week.
    Greg

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Project 52 week 2

    Here is my second attempt at capturing a sharp insect shot.
    I'm happier with this one. I tried to focus on the head and eyes as suggested last week and used a higher f stop to give me a larger dof.
    The photo was taken using a Tamron 90mm macro on my Sony a55 using a tripod, iso 800, f/11, 1/125 sec
    I slightly cropped the image to adjust the position of the fly, increased the colour saturation and fiddled with highlights, shadows and sharpness.
    Would be happy for anyone to improve the photo if you like.

    I havent set myself any guidelines for this project other than trying to get a better understanding of photography and become more adept with my camera.
    Thanks Greg

    Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Nice shot Greg. I like shooting insects too (unfortunately hunting season is closed for the moment and we are waiting for spring) and I like the detail you get in this one. Composition wise I am happy as well, the fly is what captures my attention, the colour is nice and there is no other distraction. Have a look at the Post your insects thread as well for some other examples.
    I love to see more of this over the coming weeks.

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Thank you Peter,
    If your happy, I'm happy.
    I was trying to get a shot of a bumblebee in flight, but it's really hard. They wont keep still
    There are some fantastic photos in the post your insects thread and I will be posting some more. My aim is to get a sharp photo of a insect in flight, any tips?
    Greg

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    I'm just thinking about a little crop on the right, Greg. I suspect it would still show the flower petals but give a little more impact to the fly. You could probably lose a little from the top if you want to retain the same ratio.

    Colour and focus are excellent.

    Bumblebees in flight? Wow!

    The only times I have been successful is when they are landing or just taking off; and you often get a good flower background as well under those conditions.

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Great capture Greg. I think a crop on the right might work better as well.

    I have enough trouble catching bees stationary for long enough to take a photo let alone when they're in flight!

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Thanks for the comments guys,
    Is this what you mean with the cropping or did I take it too far.
    With the bumblebee in flight thing, my ambition is to get a sharp focused photo of any insect in flight. As you said though Geoff, it will probably be on take off or landing.
    Want to try and push myself in this project.
    Greg.

    Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Quote Originally Posted by gregj1763 View Post
    Thank you Peter,
    My aim is to get a sharp photo of a insect in flight, any tips?
    Greg
    Very difficult Greg, but great if it succeeds. I have tried it a couple of times, but so far luck plays a bigger role than skill. The problem is that I shoot macros only, so focus is close to the lens and DOF is limited. Flash would help I think, but I don't like using flash outdoors, as I move around a lot and shoot handheld only. It gets too heavy with the 105mm lens and all. Ideally focus is on the eyes, but how to get that when they fly to or from the flower?

    Two examples from the insect thread: first Bobo with two great shots. I am not sure how he did it, but focus is good and they are definitely flying. And one from me. Focus is on the insect close by, but the other one was good enough. More luck than skill, but I would love to get more of these.

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    Great work. I like the crop. Bees in flight, really? Could you pick a harder insect for an inflight shot LOL good luck. I hope you are successful, that would make for a great image. Hope your panning skills are up to snuff Greg.

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    The second one is really sharp and colourful! How were you able to avoid scaring your model off?

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Thanks Rob, Frank & Peter,
    I can see the improvement in the second edit with the cropping. Thanks for the advice. Had a good look through, Post your insect and there are some amazing shots in there. Think I might add mine now.
    Maybe I have set my goals to high to get an insect in flight shot but if I can't it wont be from lack of trying. Keep you posted.
    Frank, It was a cool morning even though it's summer here so the insects were sluggish and I had my camera set up on my tripod low to the ground. My camera has a flip out lcd screen so I was able to compose the shot
    without having to move around too much. So I just sat and waited. Patience pays off.

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Great tip, Greg! Thanks!

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    With macro photography, Greg, there are often two alternatives which deserve equal merit. That crop shows off the fly much better. But there is an alternative slighter crop which has more of the flower.

    Frequently, it is deciding between an insect with an interesting background or a flower which also contains an insect. And because I have great difficulty in deciding which is best, I often make two different edits.

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    Re: Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

    Project 52 week 3

    Wanted to get away from macro this week and was lucky enough to be working on a farm out of town.
    Went down to a lake at the bottom of steep hill to work on some HDR shots which I might post when I work it all out.
    Looked up and saw this shot. I liked it because of it's simplistic theme and the contrast between the field and sky.
    Used a polarising filter when I took the photo then some slight colour saturation in PP
    Greg

    Project 52 by Gregj1763 (Greg)

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