Helpful Posts Helpful Posts:  0
Results 1 to 15 of 15

Thread: New Stella pics

  1. #1
    purplehaze's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,648
    Real Name
    Janis

    New Stella pics

    So I traded the Manfrotto 055 for the 190CXPRO last week and am finding it and the Acratech GP ballhead are super versatile for shooting around the house, at least. Thanks to all who encouraged me to take the plunge! Among other things, my new tools have enabled me to re-visit the theme of Stella sleeping (or trying to). Here are a couple of shots I got last night for your comments and criticism, one with the zoom and the other with my prime, both exposed for 0.6 sec at f/5.6 and 400 ISO.

    This with the 18-105mm: at 40mm, f5.6 5/8 sec iso400
    New Stella pics

    and this with the 50mm 1.8: also f5.6 5/8 sec iso400
    New Stella pics
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 19th January 2011 at 05:40 PM. Reason: add exif data

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    le Mans France
    Posts
    367
    Real Name
    Thierry

    Re: New Stella pics

    I prefer the second one where the nose of your dog is visible. Your depth of focus is alittle bit too small 1.8, I suggest F4

  3. #3
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Windsor, Berks, UK
    Posts
    16,397
    Real Name
    Dave Humphries :)

    Re: New Stella pics

    Quote Originally Posted by tb72 View Post
    I prefer the second one where the nose of your dog is visible. Your depth of focus is alittle bit too small 1.8, I suggest F4
    Hi Thierry,

    I have added the EXIF data to help above each of the shots - I think Janis was talking about the lens, not the aperture used.

  4. #4
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Windsor, Berks, UK
    Posts
    16,397
    Real Name
    Dave Humphries :)

    Re: New Stella pics

    Hi Janis,

    The instant impression I get is that these need a white balance for the light.

    You need something neutral like a Whi-Bal card, or even a sheet of paper*, in one of the shots, even if only a WB setting shot, so you know what settings to use for the main series.

    * the purist will say, rightly so, that 'a sheet of white paper' is not a reliable neutral shade due to bleach tones and even fluorescent dyes added to make it "super white" - but it's probably closer than not trying - I do have a Whi-Bal card (but almost always forget to use it )

    I prefer the first of these two, although I think we get more concentration on the eyes with 10% crop off across the bottom that removes the foreground (realtively) brightly lit strip of blanket.

    Good work for such a slow shutter speed,
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 20th January 2011 at 08:36 PM. Reason: I forgot to add * comment

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    3,090
    Real Name
    Wendy

    Re: New Stella pics

    Hi Stella, as a member who has an old unmanageable tripod, but knows she should use one, I found this post very interesting. I went back and had a look at your old shots without the tripod, and my goodness what a difference in sharpness. I think the same lens was used but these are a big improvement and a great motivator for me to take a look at some tripods. Are they really that much handier to use if you have a better one. The one I have right now is too clumsy and hard to set up (it's not a ball head) and I would never get a shot if I tried it for anything other than a still life shot.

    Anyway nice work. I'll let others comment on the other technical aspects, and I think you've already received some good advice, but detail wise I would say these look very good. I prefer the first one, because she looks on the alert, but the situation is not bad enough to warrant getting up. The second one is very good too, but she looks so sad and dejected that it makes me feel the same.

    Wendy

  6. #6
    Peter Ryan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    1,971
    Real Name
    Peter

    Re: New Stella pics

    Hi Janis,

    I see definite improvement here and agree with the others.

    I did notice in the Exif data that all in-camera settings like contrast and saturation are set to normal but Sharpness with is set as ‘soft’. I was wondering if this is deliberate or by accident.

  7. #7
    purplehaze's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,648
    Real Name
    Janis

    Re: New Stella pics

    Thanks for all the comments.

    Thierry - point taken about the extra depth of field.

    Dave - yes, I struggled with the white balance. I was shooting under tungsten light and should perhaps have adjusted the white balance in-camera. I dialled the temperature back a bit in Aperture, but obviously that was not what it needed. I actually have a grey card and will try to spend tonight learning how to use it. One thing I noticed in the first pic, especially, was what seemed to me to a bit of a reddish pink colour cast in the bedskirt and on the top of Stella's head. Possibly dumb question: could this be reflected light from the sheet above, which is suspiciously close in colour?

    Peter - I think it says Sharpness - Soft because, based on advice I read here and elsewhere, I had created a Picture Control based on Standard that removed the in-camera sharpening completely. For these two photos I accepted the default sharpening for RAW in Aperture (Sharpening .50 and Edges .64) and then applied Edge Sharpen (Intensity .81, Edges .11, Fall-off .69). I am still totally winging it when it comes to sharpening. I bought the Real World book recommended here and started reading it, but lost my way after a while, because of not understanding how to translate the PhotoShop controls to Aperture. I gather both you and Dave find the pics still a bit soft? I know what oversharpening looks like to my eye, but not "just right".

    Wendy - I am thrilled with my tripod/head combo. For these shots, the tripod was nearly flat, with the centre column flipped out horizontally (Manfrotto PRO model). The Acratech GP works as a ballhead and a gimbal head and it is on a panning base so I have virtually unlimited range of movement. You should take your cameras into a store and try out some different options. Given all the outdoor work you do, you might like the Acratech because it is very lightweight - only a pound - and designed in such a way that it is easy to keep clean (dirt falls through). It can also be used upside down with a rail for panoramas. Getting this equipment has considerably opened up learning opportunities for me on these dark, cold nights.

    Again, to all, thanks for the help.

  8. #8
    Peter Ryan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    1,971
    Real Name
    Peter

    Re: New Stella pics

    Hi Janis,

    If you shoot RAW then the settings are irrelevant but I would bring sharpening back to normal. I do not know Aperture so to try and give you something to go by I have sharpened the first one. I did brighten a little with Curves. The really good thing is that you focused on the eyes and they are sharp. Well done.

    New Stella pics

  9. #9
    purplehaze's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    1,648
    Real Name
    Janis

    Re: New Stella pics

    How's this?

    New Stella pics

    I took a few test shots with the gray card and got as many different results. (Stella just flat out refused to hold the card steady as I asked her to.) Nevertheless, I fiddled a bit more with the temperature, and got something close to what I should have, I think. I also pulled the black point back a bit, pulled in the white point, fiddled some more with the edge sharpening and cropped as per Dave's suggestion.

    Pity about the tail covering her nose, but I'll keep trying. Failure's the best teacher, n'est-ce pas?

  10. #10
    Peter Ryan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    1,971
    Real Name
    Peter

    Re: New Stella pics

    I think you are doing very well Janis. You are even getting the language down pat now. BUT I would get rid of any model who refuses to hold the grey card. I can see the stubbiness in her eyes. She has to go.

  11. #11
    speedneeder's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Owensboro, KY
    Posts
    1,532
    Real Name
    Brian

    Re: New Stella pics

    On the point of sharpness settings. I have a canon and shoot RAW with the NEURTAL setting. I didn't think this would affect the sharpness of the RAW image, is this correct? For most of my pics, I leave the sharpness at 0 in DPP, though on occasion I have turned it up to draw interest to the focal point of the image.
    I'm not trying to take over this thread, just wanted some clarification on in-camera sharpness settings when shooting RAW (Canon EOS 400D btw).

  12. #12
    Peter Ryan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    1,971
    Real Name
    Peter

    Re: New Stella pics

    Hi Brian,

    You are correct and it is good you asked the question. I did start off my reply at Post #8 with that clarification, as I did not know Janis was shootning RAW when I originally commented.
    Last edited by Peter Ryan; 20th January 2011 at 11:32 PM.

  13. #13
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Windsor, Berks, UK
    Posts
    16,397
    Real Name
    Dave Humphries :)

    Re: New Stella pics

    Quote Originally Posted by speedneeder View Post
    On the point of sharpness settings. I have a canon and shoot RAW with the NEURTAL setting. I didn't think this would affect the sharpness of the RAW image, is this correct? For most of my pics, I leave the sharpness at 0 in DPP, though on occasion I have turned it up to draw interest to the focal point of the image.
    I'm not trying to take over this thread, just wanted some clarification on in-camera sharpness settings when shooting RAW (Canon EOS 400D btw).
    Hi Brian,

    I am not a Canon user, but I would say, with 99.9% certainty, that the setting in camera will not affect the RAW image. However, there is a chance that the camera's setting might get automatically applied to the image as it passes through DPP. But if you have it set to 0 there, then it's probably ok.

    Cheers,

  14. #14
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Windsor, Berks, UK
    Posts
    16,397
    Real Name
    Dave Humphries :)

    Re: New Stella pics

    Hi Janis,

    Now I have seen the crop I suggested, it places undue emphasis on the tail and I think (sorry), that your original crop, like in Peter's version, was better

    Now it is brighter, another thing that is more obvious is that you got a catchlight in both eyes and that really helps it.

    Yes, something colorful just out of frame, if lit, can reflect onto the subject (and/or grey card).

    Cheers,

  15. #15
    speedneeder's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Owensboro, KY
    Posts
    1,532
    Real Name
    Brian

    Re: New Stella pics

    Dave, I believe you are correct. I am 99.9% certain!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •