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Thread: Need help with post

  1. #1

    Need help with post

    Hi, anyone knows how to process the pictures to achieve such an outstanding result as these photographers do:

    http://meninenuotrauka.lt/en/portraits/ and http://www.wed.lt/lt/profilis/id/609/page/1


    Thanks

  2. #2
    JPS's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with post

    Hi Edvinas,
    welcome to CiC.
    The short answer to your question is 'Yes'. But there is no short cut, if you are new to photography. Reading (CiC tutorials), practicing and posting to the forum, to obtain good C&C is one way to go.

    You don't tell us much about yourself, are you an experianced photographer? What camera do you have? If you can give us some more information, we will try and help you.
    Don't forget you can edit your profile and add your real name and a rough location; just as I have done, if you wish.

    I look forward to seeing one of your pictures.
    John

  3. #3
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with post

    Hi and welcome to CiC.

    I'm not quite sure what you are looking for here.

    I think you probably like the composition in the images and certainly for the first photographer, the shots are being done with a fast lens (f/2.8 and faster) shot wide open to produce a shallow depth of field. I see some catchlights in the subjects eyes in some of the images, so the photographer is using fill flash in some of the images as well. Some of the shots have some materials in the foreground (leaves and branches) that are totally blurred out and that gives some softness to the images.

    The second photographer has more of a mixed bag but uses shallow depth of field as well and seems to be overexposing some of his / her shots (something that I don't think works particularly well). There are some back lit shots, etc. I don't particularly like most of this photographer's work.

    Most of what I see here are pretty standard photographic techniques tied together with compositional elements. I find that some of these work, while others really do not. Check out some of the tutorials on this site or look at some books on photographic composition, photographic techniques and small flash techniques.
    Last edited by Manfred M; 29th December 2012 at 10:02 PM.

  4. #4

    Re: Need help with post

    Hi John,

    I am just a beginner. Photography is my hobby. You can see my work at http://www.facebook.com/EdvinasZvirblisPhotography or www.edsparrow.co.uk I use Nikon D700 and D800E. I post process my images with a Capture Nx.

    GrumpyDiver,

    I know what the first photographer use to take those pictures. It is a Nikon D3 now D4 and 95% of his shots are with 85/F1.4 and he rarely uses a flash. Second one is a Nikon shooter as well. D4 + 24-70; 70-200 and maybe a fix.

    What I like is the skin tones and clarity of the pictures. Also a WB is very accurate...

    Thanks,
    Edvinas

  5. #5
    JPS's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with post

    Edvinas,
    As Manfred said in his post, skin tones, clarity of pictures and accurate WB are all standard photographic techniques.
    I've had a quick look at your web site and you have some very good shots there.
    I would suggest posting some of your shots; the one's your not happy with, say why you are not happy with them, I'm sure you will get some feedback from the members that will help you to move forward on your journey.
    John

  6. #6
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with post

    Ed - I was able to look the metadata on a few of the files you have on your website. What really struck me is that you seem to be shooting with a 50mm lens, both on the D300 and the D700. I think that may be part of the "look" issue. I generally use either my f/2 105mm DC or my f/2.8 70-200mm lens when I do portraits on my D800. I find a 50mm is marginally okay on a crop frame sensor, but way too short for portraits on a full frame. I do use my f/2.8 24-70mm for group shots though. Try something a bit longer, I think your shots will look a bit more flattering and you should have smoother out of focus backgrounds when shooting at close to wide open.

    The other thing I was trying to figure out is the PP you do on your images. I wonder a bit about your sharpening, curves and vibrance settings. The skin tones in the sites you like look like they have been warmed up a tiny bit and in fact there is quite a yellow cast in some of the images. Unfortunately, the metadata has been stripped out of the images, so I can only guess as to the PP that was done on them.

  7. #7

    Re: Need help with post

    Manfred, I am thinking to buy 85mm F/1.4. What do you think about it vs 105mm f/2 or 70-200mm f/2.8 ? I have a 24-70 f/2.8 +50mm f/1.4.

    About my PP. For sharpening I use a high pass filter. Than a simple S curve, with reduced blue channel to give the skin a warmer/ yellowish colour. Tham increase the contrast with a u-point on the background.

  8. #8
    shreds's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with post

    Hi Ed

    The lenses you have together with the camera bodies are a very capable bit of kit, but as already said above, a bit short for portrait purposes.

    I also note you have the outstanding 800E which will demand more PP due to the different internal arrangement of this camera, which I am sure you are well aware.

    The 85mm is a good portrait lens although I would try out the 105mm too before you decide. I never use my 24-70 for this sort of photography. Are you planning to shoot outdoors as well as inside?

  9. #9

    Re: Need help with post

    Hi Ian,

    I mainly shoot inside. You are right about a D800E, I am still struggling with a skin tones from this camera...

  10. #10
    shreds's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with post

    Despite having great affection for NX2, I wonder if CS6 or my other fave, Capture One Pro might render better results, but you will need to spend more time with the RAW(NEFs) from the 800E.

    I would also spend a bit more time thinking about backgrounds and lighting, they are crucial.

    I found this review of the 105mm f2 which may assist.

    http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/105mm-f2-dc.htm

  11. #11
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: Need help with post

    Quote Originally Posted by Edvinas View Post
    Manfred, I am thinking to buy 85mm F/1.4. What do you think about it vs 105mm f/2 or 70-200mm f/2.8 ? I have a 24-70 f/2.8 +50mm f/1.4.

    About my PP. For sharpening I use a high pass filter. Than a simple S curve, with reduced blue channel to give the skin a warmer/ yellowish colour. Tham increase the contrast with a u-point on the background.
    I find the f/2 105DC to be a wonderful lens; it is super sharp and the DC results in lovely bokeh (and is half the price of the f/2.8 70-200mm). It's a fast focus, even though it uses the camera's focus motor. I find the 70-200mm to be much more versatile, because of its range. It is super sharp, for a zoom. I do think about an 85mm lens, but it is a bit short for my shooting style; if I do go for one, I might get the f/1.8, which while not as fast as the f/1.4, it is about 1/4 the price and is optically sharper.

    From a PP standpoint look at using the unsharp mask rather than the high pass filter and you might want to look at the vibrance and to a lesser extent the saturation control (vibrance does not affect the skin tones, but gives you punchier colours, just like increasing the saturation).

  12. #12

    Re: Need help with post

    Thanks for replies guys !

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