Getting Rid of blur

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by 5ubz3r0, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. 5ubz3r0
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    5ubz3r0 New Member

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    Hi!

    I have asked this question in another thred of mine but thought it would probably gain more attraction in it's own.
    I took this pic a few days after I received my Nikon D5000 (I'm very new to photography) I just took this pic whilst playing with the settings on my camera and quite liked it. Looking at it closely I realised his hand is blured :grumpy:. How can I stop this from happening? Apart from adjusting the shutter speed. Can this be amended in programmes such as Photoshop and Lightroom 2? Like a sharpening tool? Please let me know!!

    [​IMG]
  2. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    No, you can't really fix blur with photoshop or other programs.

    Consider it like this. If you want to 'fix blur', what are you really wanting...sharpness. So if you have, for example, a blurry hand, you would need a sharp hand to 'fix' it. A digital image is just a collection of pixels...if you want to change or remove something, you have to replace it with something.
    So unless you have (within that image or in another one) a sharp hand that can be used to actually replaced the blurred one, then you are S.O.L.

    There are sharpening tools in both Photoshop and Lightroom...but they don't actually fix blur. They increase the contrast between shapes/colors (pixels).
  3. Overread
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    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member

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    Motion blur in a photograph is one thing that photoshop can't get rid of* so you have to fix this in camera - sometimes its worth it to even underexpose the image to ensure that blur does not occur (one can add brightness and work with a darker shot to far more extent than with the unfixable blur).
    I would strongly recomend the book Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson - it is aimed at beginners but goes into enough depth in an understandable language that you can build up a good understanding of exposure and how aperture, shutter speed and ISO work together to give you an exposure.

    Essentially for you to stop motion blur you need a faster shutter speed on the camera so first lets look at the settings you used on the shot (you can get this from the properties of the image file - right click and go to properties - then details - then scroll down to find aperture, shutter speed and ISO)
    f4.2, ISO 800 and for some reason opera is not reading the shutter speed... but regardless this tells me that you had your aperture at a wide (small f number) setting and thus were letting in more light. (infact considering the kit lenses you were probably at the widest aperture the lens could achive at that focus point).
    ISO is also pretty high as well as 800 - and you will have seen the effect of this in the shot by seeing more noise (dots) over the image. This is the limit of ISO since whilst rising the ISO will give you a faster shutter speed it also increases your noise. At what level this becomes unusable is mostly down to personal taste and the shooting conditions.

    Ok so with the light you have in the scene you still have the blur - what's next? Well boost the local lighting - which means reflecting more light onto the subject or flash. With the popup flash you often get rather harsh lighting and a counter to that is to use a few folds of white toilet paper (or any similar fabric which is white) and wrap it around teh flash head - that will give some softness to the light - not much, but enough to help take the edge off


    *some graphic artists might very well be able to of course, but it would take a lot of hours and a lot of skill and work to fix in just a single shot
  4. gsgary
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    gsgary Well-Known Member

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    1/60 @ 135mm is way too slow, this is probably as good as you are going to get with the equipment you have, best bet is shoot him outside in good light
  5. 5ubz3r0
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    5ubz3r0 New Member

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    Thank you both for very informative replies.

    Big Mike: Thanks again, Unfortunatly I dont have a sharp hand to replace :( I could take a pic of mine and replace it but I fear it would be to big! lmao!

    Overread: Once again thank you. So basically everything about my photo was wrong! lol. My lense taking this picture was a Tamron 70-300mm. Shutter speed was 1/60, I could of done with 1/120? or 1/160?
  6. Overread
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    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member

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    hmm no no I think you missunderstood (or I wrot it badly). You used the widest aperture - f4.5 and a high ISO. Combined together that gave you a shutter speed of 1/60sec in that lighting. The only way to get faster was to use a wider aperture (smaller f number) which that len's won't do at longer ranges; or use a higher ISO (myself 800 is the limit I will go to any higher and noise kills the image quality and even 800 is rather too high - 400 is my max most times).
    The final bit is that sometimes there is just not enough light for an image (especailly indoors where it is infact quite dark photography wise) and so boosting the lighting is the only method left open - save for changing the location
  7. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    The rule of thumb, to avoid blur from camera shake, is that you want at least 1/focal length. So if you are shooting at 300mm, you will want at least 1/300 for a shutter speed. Some also say that you should take the 'crop factor' into that equation, (1.5 for your camera) so you'd want a shutter speed of 1/450 when shooting at 300mm. That's going to be hard to do when your max aperture is only F5.6 (you would need very bright light).
  8. 5ubz3r0
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    5ubz3r0 New Member

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    I deffinatly need read that understanding exposure book. I was looking at it the other day. Will buy it at the end of this month. I'm going to go home and look at my Camera and keep adjusting to see what effects what (like you said ISO and aperture gives your shuter speed) I thought I could adjust my shutter speed manually without combining ISO with aperture?
  9. Big Mike
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    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member

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    Well, you can adjust it...but it will affect your exposure.

    Maybe try to think of exposure (the basis of photography) as a triangle between shutter speed, aperture and ISO. You need all three in order to make an exposure. There is a certain combination that will give you 'correct' exposure for a certain amount of light. (correct being a subjective term).
    So let's say the combination for your shot is F8, 1/125 and ISO 100. You can adjust the shutter speed, but unless you also adjust the other settings, it will change your exposure. So if you change the shutter speed to 1/250 (on stop faster than 1/125), you would need to open up your aperture by one stop to F5.6.
    Now if you wanted to adjust your shutter speed another stop, to 1/500, then you would need to open up the aperture another stop to F4.
    The problem is that sooner or later, you will hit the maximum aperture of the lens. In your case, the maximum aperture of that lens (at full zoom) is F5.6, so you couldn't open the aperture that far.
    However, you could adjust the other aspect of the triangle, the ISO. So if you want the shutter speed to be 1/500, and the aperture is maxed out at F5.6, then you would have to increase the ISO to 200.
    If you increased the ISO to 400, you could use a shutter speed of 1/1000. You won't get much (or any) blur at that speed.
    The trade off is that higher ISO will give you more digital noise.

    (Keep in mind that these are just examples, your settings will depend on the light that you are shooting in).
  10. ClickCrazy
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    ClickCrazy New Member

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    There is some great advise here and should all be tried , however I am surprised no one has mentioned one obvious culprit. Camera shake , a tripod is always advisable. If your camera has vibration reduction you could try that as well.
  11. HikinMike
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    HikinMike Well-Known Member

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    ....and in this particular shot....a 4 year-old moving around! :thumbup:
  12. 5ubz3r0
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    5ubz3r0 New Member

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    Thanks again for all of your advise!

    My Lens says f4-5.6, how comes I can only go down as far as 5.6?

    Yeah there was a thred on some website explaining the triangle of exposure - but was at work so had to be called to fix some servers.

    Faster Shuter speed is less in qualitys isnt it?
  13. Overread
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    You're mixing shutter speed and ISO up -
    Higher ISOs mean more the camera sensor is more sensative to light - thus it allows for a faster shutter speed yes - but in raising the ISO you also raise the amount of noise in the shot. Higher noise levels will impact your shots with lower overall quality - at what level this becomes a problem is dependant on the camera body and the users own judgement.

    Faster or slower shutter speeds won't affect image quality - however a faster shutter speed will freeze motion whilst a slower one will blur it.
    The only time that shutter speed affects image quality in the manner you are thinking is when the shutter speed is set to a very long exposure (well into several minutes) and then the camera can suffer hotspots and other visual degradation.

    edit - on the lens front you can shoot at f4, but you also have to be at the shortest focal length for that lens - moving to the longer focal length the aperture will stop down (get smaller) until it arrives at f5.6 at the long end of the lens.
  14. Derrel
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    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Your photo was taken at f/4.2 at 1/60 second at ISO 800, with the lens focal length set to 135mm. In other words, your 70-300mm zoom lens was pretty much wide-open at its 135mm focal length setting. The reason the boy's finger is blurred is that he is moving AND the ambient light exposure was a moderately generous f/4.2 at 1/60 at ISO 800.

    I got this information from the EXIF file: it says you shot in Auto Mode 3. I don't know what that mode is on the D5000, but if you want to insure that you never get slight motion blur, the shutter speed needs to be FAST enough that not much light from continuous lighting in the room can make a part of the exposure. If you had shot with the shutter at 1/200 second, and the lens also at f/4.2, the exposure would have been made virtually 100 percent with the flash.

    If the shutter is allowed to "drag" (that is the term, drag, as in 'dragging the shutter) down into the very slow speeds like 1/6 to 1/15 second, there can be some very heavy,severe blurring. Where this shot was, at ISO 800 at 1/60 second at f/4.2 is sort of a borderline or gray area...I think you'd find that flash shots indoors at parties and gatherings like this will look "cooler" in terms of white balance, and also "sharper" and definitely without any blur if you jack the shutter speed up to 1/200 second in Manual mode, and set the flash to TTL automatic mode at an aperture of something like f/6.3; that will give you what used to be called a FULL-flash shot, meaning that ALL of the exposure is fully from the flash.

    What you have here is a "balanced flash" shot, what Nikon calls TTL-BL, or TTL flash, balanced lighting. TTl-BL works best in dimmer lighting like this, indoors, or wherever the light is low. Of course, it has drawbacks and advantages. Nikon's TTL mode is not the same as TTL-BL.
  15. 5ubz3r0
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    5ubz3r0 New Member

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    There is so much stuff to consider when taking a photo! I knew what I was getting into when I decided to take up photography, but it seems when I think I get somthing - somthing comes around and makes it so much more difficult. I deffinatly now understand that the shutter speed for that was far to slow for my particular subject. I will deffinatly look into my flash settings aswell - I'm not 100% sure if I used a flash for this shot. I was across the room from him.
  16. Overread
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    Yep it can be a tricky road to follow - just take it one step at a time a your pace and be glad that the digital camera costs you nothing to take photos with (whilst film cameras would cost you for every roll of film).
    I'd also say try to shoot less at night indoors and a little more in daytime. Good light really makes a massive difference to photography whilst woking with poorer light things get a little more tricky and often one has to make sacrifices to get the image (eg higher ISOs)
  17. 5ubz3r0
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    5ubz3r0 New Member

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    Noted!

    So in summary!-

    Poor lighting = more ISO to brighten up the picture as the sensor will be more sensitive to light, but the higer the ISO, the more noise I will get in my shot.

    Make sure when not using a tripod and shooting a moving object, use a much higher shutter speed.

    And most of all - learn and understand about proper exposure!
  18. Overread
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    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member

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    And don't forget as well as raising the ISO you also have the aperture to use as well - the smaller the number the bigger the aperture which means more light getting into the lens - which means faster shutter speeds.

    And the book Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson which should help a lot with these things :)
  19. 5ubz3r0
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    5ubz3r0 New Member

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    I will deffinatly be looking into the book. Will probably buy it on Monday. Doesn't aperture relate to Depth of Feel? or Field?
  20. Overread
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    Yes - the wider the aperture the smaller the depth of field. That is one reason why even if you have lens with a very wide aperture (like a 50mm f1.4) although you can open it up all the way to f1.4 to get more light in (And thus need less ISO and also lessen the need for flash) you then have to balance that against your focusing and depth of field and make sure you get it right. Often you see comments from new users of such wide aperture lenses wondering why they can't get both eyes in focus and if there is a fault with the lens.

    But add to that another dimension - depth of field is also relaited to the focal length of the lens as well as the distance between the lens and the point of focus (subject). If you take a shot of a person at 1/2 a foot away from the lens at (say) f 2.8 you will have a very small depth of field, nose and eye might not all be in focus at the same time - but take the shot from several meters away and suddenly you can more easily fit nose and eyes together in the same f2.8 aperture which was failing before.
    Focal length also has an effect, but I am unsure as to how big an effect it has when compared to the distance aspects.

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