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Thread: My Dog

  1. #1

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    My Dog

    After bombing on my first picture post over in the nature group , I thought I'd try again. This time I'm submitting a picture of my good friend and constant companion, Thomas.

    My Dog

    EXIF Data:
    Camera: Canon Rebel T1i
    Lens: Canon EF-S 18-55mm @ 55mm
    ISO800
    F-stop: f/10
    Shutter Speed: 1/125

    I'm curious to hear everyone's thoughts!

    Cheers!

  2. #2
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: My Dog

    Hi Adam,

    After bombing on my first picture post over in the nature group
    Not sure you did, did you, no one does that here and besides, you'll learn more from mistakes (I should know).

    I think it's not bad, but would respond well to a few PP methods;
    Look at grey point in Levels; make it 1.2 or 1.3 to get more detail into the dog's body, or maybe use Fill light in ACR if starting over from RAW
    Tone down the sunlit seat cushions in the background
    Sharpen the catchlight in the eye

    Hope that helps,

  3. #3

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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post
    Not sure you did, did you, no one does that here and besides, you'll learn more from mistakes (I should know).
    Haha, I know! I'm just giving myself a bit of a hard time is all. The critiques that I got were welcomed and very helpful.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post
    I think it's not bad, but would respond well to a few PP methods;
    Look at grey point in Levels; make it 1.2 or 1.3 to get more detail into the dog's body, or maybe use Fill light in ACR if starting over from RAW
    Tone down the sunlit seat cushions in the background
    Sharpen the catchlight in the eye
    I'll certainly try all of the above; PP is a bit of a dark art to me. As such, any PP suggestions I can get my hands on I'll certainly try out! Perhaps if I get time today I'll repost it with your suggestions!

    Thanks Dave!

  4. #4
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: My Dog

    it must have been a challenge just to keep the dog still. Animals love attention and usually when they see a camera pointed at them they want to investigate what that strange item is, does it dispense food?

  5. #5
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowman View Post
    Animals love attention and usually when they see a camera pointed at them they want to investigate what that strange item is, does it dispense food?
    Ah, so that's why they ruin my composition and focus whenever I get the camera out
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 22nd January 2011 at 09:13 PM.

  6. #6
    djg05478's Avatar
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    Re: My Dog

    Hi Adam - Thomas is very handsome, but I'm very biased about dogs in general (I'm sure I've taken 1000s of mine ). I don't have much more to offer in regards to the photograph that hasn't already been mentioned by the fellas who know way more than I do.

    Since I'm always trying to take pix of mine I recently put a red velvet blanket over their dog bed so if they are being incredibly cute or handsome and I want to catch the moment they're already on a decent back drop. The dog bed is also placed where there isn't a lot of room clutter and junk. I know its not always possible, but hey, every lil bit helps.

    ..and if you need any inspiration, check out this guy and his take on dog photography
    http://www.timflach.com/

    Debbie

  7. #7

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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowman View Post
    it must have been a challenge just to keep the dog still. Animals love attention and usually when they see a camera pointed at them they want to investigate what that strange item is
    For the most part that's usually true of Thomas, too. However, when he's mid-sunbathe he's not budging until the sun moves.

  8. #8

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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by djg05478 View Post
    I recently put a red velvet blanket over their dog bed so if they are being incredibly cute or handsome and I want to catch the moment they're already on a decent back drop.
    Thanks Debbie, that's a clever idea. Getting an animal to pose is like asking mountains to move. I'll have to consider it, although I don't know how I'd feel about the dog having a fancier sleeping space than me.

  9. #9
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by djg05478 View Post
    Hi Adam - Thomas is very handsome, but I'm very biased about dogs in general (I'm sure I've taken 1000s of mine ). I don't have much more to offer in regards to the photograph that hasn't already been mentioned by the fellas who know way more than I do.

    Since I'm always trying to take pix of mine I recently put a red velvet blanket over their dog bed so if they are being incredibly cute or handsome and I want to catch the moment they're already on a decent back drop. The dog bed is also placed where there isn't a lot of room clutter and junk. I know its not always possible, but hey, every lil bit helps.

    ..and if you need any inspiration, check out this guy and his take on dog photography
    http://www.timflach.com/

    Debbie
    Interesting images, thanks for sharing the link. The photographer is definitely a rule breaker (rule of thirds, cropping, etc.) but successfully uses his technique to lead the viewer's eyes throughout the image.

  10. #10
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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by acalhoon View Post
    For the most part that's usually true of Thomas, too. However, when he's mid-sunbathe he's not budging until the sun moves.
    Typical Diva behavior.

  11. #11
    djg05478's Avatar
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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by acalhoon View Post
    Getting an animal to pose is like asking mountains to move.
    Photography and dog training go hand in hand. Getting the dog to "pose" is an excellent opportunity to practice Sit/Stays, its a win/win - you get to take pictures and you're also working on training a dog a really basic skill every dog benefits from.

    There's a pic of my dogs by the Christmas tree in the album on my profile page.....I owe that one to the power of hotdogs.

    Debbie

  12. #12
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    Re: My Dog

    Nice pup. Intelligent looking. Nice light glancing across his face. I like it.
    I do notice that lounge/sofa behind him shining away in the distance. A little movement to the right, assuming it was possible, might have helped to exclude it.
    I wonder what it would have looked like if you dropped the aperture to around f4, and nailed the focus on the eyes. This would allow you to drop the ISO to 200 and leave the shutter speed at 1/125th or just a little faster (which is good since he would probably be twitching his nose, ears and glancing about the room with his eyes without warning or permission). It might blur the sofa a little more making it less distracting. A B&W conversion might also make the sofa a little less distracting along with a little burning. Having said that you probably only had 3/10 of a second to grab the shot!
    Hope you don't mind my meagre offerings.

  13. #13

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    Re: My Dog

    Hans,

    Thanks for the nice comments and the suggestions.

    Could I go back in time, I'd have dropped the ISO to 100 or 200. There was a lot of noise on the wall behind him in the original file, which I cleaned up using my demo version of Lightroom 3, but it makes Thomas look a little bit plastic-y (at least I think).

    Likewise with the aperture. Going back, I would have opened the aperture as far as I could have. For my lens at that focal distance, I think it'd be on the order of f/4.5 or f/5.0.

    Alas, as someone who's never had a SLR/dSLR up until a few weeks ago, I was (and still am), learning the ins and outs of my dSLR. At the time, I was forcing myself to use manual mode and spot metering to set the exposure and just left the ISO where it happened to be without thinking. I'm really pleased that I managed to get such a nice exposure, but I know that the composition could have been more carefully thought out.

    As I mentioned, I'll probably go back and fiddle in Lightroom using all the suggestions posted here and post the results.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hans View Post
    Hope you don't mind my meagre offerings.
    Not in the least bit! Thanks again for the suggestions.

  14. #14
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    Re: My Dog

    Alas, as someone who's never had a SLR/dSLR up until a few weeks ago, I was (and still am), learning the ins and outs of my dSLR
    Adam,
    Putting your pics up for review and comment can be a bit deflating and knock the confidence out of people at times.
    The most important thing about taking photos is to enjoy it. If you like what you produce, then really that is all that matters, and take what we say with a grain of salt. Have a look at any pro's work and you will find plenty of flaws and technical mistakes, let alone the hobbiest's. Be an artist first and technician second (though some might disagree).
    I just detected a little flatness in your tone (correctly or not), but you are doing a fantastic job with so little experience. Don't get deflated. Let's see some more great shots of that beautiful dog!

  15. #15

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    Re: My Dog

    Quote Originally Posted by Hans View Post
    I just detected a little flatness in your tone (correctly or not)
    Time for a tune up on your flatness detector, Hans!

    Honestly, I'm having an absolute blast; I am really enjoying learning about photography! Most of all, I've been VERY happy with my output, particularly for my skill and experience level.

    I can see how my "alas" comment may have come off as a bit self deprecating, but really, it's more of a "live and learn" comment. I'm actually happier that I can say, "Alas, I would have done such-and-such differently," because that means I'm learning and making progress!

    Maybe somewhere deep down, there is a small part of me is disappointed that the forums didn't start revolving around my pictures the moment they were first posted. I'm not hurt, I know that'll come with time. HAHA

    Thanks again, Hans.

  16. #16
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    Re: My Dog

    Time for a tune up on your flatness detector, Hans!
    Phew! That's good!

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