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Thread: My baby girl!

  1. #1

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    Lynn Fox

    My baby girl!

    Hello! I've been gone a while but I have had my camera attached to me and I've been practicing

    I'd like some feed back on this shot of my little one. I'm posting the original image and what I've come up with after processing.

    original
    My baby girl!

    final
    My baby girl!

  2. #2
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: My baby girl!

    Hi Lynn,

    Welcome back

    Glad you've been practicing.

    Just quickly on this, in your PP you have addressed many issues.

    What more?
    Dress baby in something less patterned.
    Clone out, or tone done (below the face tone), any background highlights you can't deal with by cropping.

    Must dash,

  3. #3

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    Re: My baby girl!

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post
    Hi Lynn,

    Welcome back

    Glad you've been practicing.

    Just quickly on this, in your PP you have addressed many issues.

    What more?
    Dress baby in something less patterned.
    Clone out, or tone done (below the face tone), any background highlights you can't deal with by cropping.

    Must dash,
    Thank you for your comment and great advice. I cloned out the background as suggested and then found that the [unfortunate] blanket in the foreground was too bright. I tried to selectively tone it down but I am not really happy with the result. I think the only solution will be to crop the blanket out entirely?

    See changes...
    My baby girl!

  4. #4
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: My baby girl!

    Lynn, your point of focus is on the blanket in front of the baby, not on the baby's face. This could happen if your focus is planned to key on the part of the image closest to you, rather than on the important area. Cameras do not know what we are interested in. It could also be however, that you prefocused and either you of the baby moved a bit before ypu tripped the shutter. When shooting with a large aperture, the DOF is very slight and extremely critical!

  5. #5

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    Re: My baby girl!

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    Lynn, your point of focus is on the blanket in front of the baby, not on the baby's face. This could happen if your focus is planned to key on the part of the image closest to you, rather than on the important area. Cameras do not know what we are interested in. It could also be however, that you prefocused and either you of the baby moved a bit before ypu tripped the shutter. When shooting with a large aperture, the DOF is very slight and extremely critical!
    Thank you Richard I appreciate your comment. I do try to prefocus and I find that still sometimes my focus is a bit off. Perhaps I shouldn't be using multipoint focus? If you have some advice that could help me improve in this area that would be great. (I do understand that you can't just aim the camera and hit the shutter...)

  6. #6
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: My baby girl!

    Quote Originally Posted by lynnfox1975 View Post
    Thank you for your comment and great advice. I cloned out the background as suggested and then found that the [unfortunate] blanket in the foreground was too bright. I tried to selectively tone it down but I am not really happy with the result. I think the only solution will be to crop the blanket out entirely?
    Hi Lynn,

    I had a play, meaning I tried lots of things until I thought I had improved it

    I started from the original colour and played quite a bit to get this;
    My baby girl!

    then did a mono conversion, a bit more playing and;
    My baby girl!

    My first thought was to not clone to black, but to the mid-grey that was there, unfortunately, I see now that I have neglected the cloning properly on the right hand edge of frame, all sorts of nasty repeating patterns are visible, forgive me

    I have also done a significant downsize to even up sharpeness across the image.

    Richard is correct about the focus being off, although I do note from the EXIF that this was f7.1 at 50mm on a Nikon D3100 at 1/200s and iso 100. I would definitely advise against using multi-point, I (almost) never use anything but single point and position the active point to be where I want it sharp, on her eyes in this case.

    You seem to know the basics of PP, so I won't go into horrendous detail in what I did, but the highlights were:
    clone out the stuff on right (badly)
    sharpen eyes, hair, mouth and nostrils
    lighten face
    blur blanket
    clone out high contrast bead on it
    tone down the bright bits of pattern on jacket
    crop to put eyes on a third and remove some extraneous foreground and background bits
    downsize to 700px tall (from about 1300px)
    10% 100px local contrast enhance
    a bit of red to restore colour to face
    sharpen 0.4px, 110% 1 threshold
    save colour
    mono convert at default (I tried channel mixing but nothing really helped without making something else worse)
    50% 100px local contrast enhance

    (and that's me not going into detail)

    The aim was to retain the essence of the moment, your daughter safe on someone's lap, in clothes you recognise and with facial tones preserved so it looks natural. I'm fairly pleased with them and learnt a lot doing it (win-win), but no doubt someone with more experience could achieve better.

    Cheers,
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 4th May 2012 at 09:06 PM.

  7. #7

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    Re: My baby girl!

    Dave,
    Thank you. I see there is a dramatic improvement in giving life to the eyes after your pp. Now that I think of it one of the things that has been bothering me about my portraits is dead looking eyes. I'll change to single point and focus on the eyes and that should help me quite a bit I'm guessing.

  8. #8
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: My baby girl!

    Quote Originally Posted by lynnfox1975 View Post
    Dave,
    Thank you. I see there is a dramatic improvement in giving life to the eyes after your pp. Now that I think of it one of the things that has been bothering me about my portraits is dead looking eyes.
    Yes, I hadn't really noticed the lack of it in yours, but the brightening and a lot of local sharpening has brought out some useful detail and catchlights, even from a jpg

  9. #9
    JPS's Avatar
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    Re: My baby girl!

    Lynn,
    a lovely picture; but must confess Mr Humphries PP work has just finished it off to perfection. One day I hope to be able to give advice like his. But for now I can only offer my congratulations.
    Well done to you both on a 'Team effort' just proves how good this site is for learning and friendship.

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