Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Lazy Photographer, Jun 10, 2010.
Here are a couple more photos from my friend's daughter's birthday party last weekend.
I see four common issues with these images. They all range from slightly soft to very soft, the monochrome conversions are somewhat mid-tone rich and lacking contrast, and the backgrounds are rather cluttered and distracting, finally, each one is somewhat under-exposed. I would suggest working to improve one area at a time. That is: don't worry about the fancy stuff (monochrome conversion) just yet. First, find some nice, plain backgrounds and practice getting your exposures right. Once you're getting good exposures, concentrate on composition and expression, and then when you're happy with that, try converting those images.
Just my $00.02 worth - your mileage may vary.
Thanks for your technical input, John, much appreciated.
The shots are somewhat soft because I was trying the in-camera "portrait" style filter (not the auto portrait mode). I probably should have stuck to the standard filter.
As for exposure, I always have a time with that, since what I see on the display after the shot is always slightly darker than what I end up with on the computer. I try to compensate for that but often over compensate. My thinking is I'd rather the shot be slight under exposed than over exposed. What I should have done is used the exposure bracketing feature and fired off three shots.
I did try to work on more contrast in post processing, but found the skin became a bit "blotchy" so I decided to keep the contrast to a minimum. I usually like my shots sharp and contrasty, especially b & w shots.
As for the background, the shoot wasn't really planned. I was just firing away in the backyard during the party, trying to catch certain moments and "looks." There are a lot of shots from the day that would have been keepers if not for the background spoiling them.
Thanks again for your straightforward answer.
I'm not very good with gimp, but for this version I just tweaked curves:
That's very nice, White. But see the blotchiness on her cheeks? That's what I was trying to avoid. I do like the treatment, though. Thanks for your help.
Using the "P" mode? Isn't it about time to take the training wheels off? lol Getting the correct exposure is rather quite simple. When the -2..1..0..1..+2 is on zero you are correctly exposed on whatever you have the center of the camera on (when spot metering is turned on). I would rather tell the camera how to think than hope it has the same ideas that I do.
It just seems to be a waste of $800 when a good point and shoot is less than $150.
But that's just me and I'm cranky today!
You might want to crack the manual to learn the difference between Canon's Auto Portrait Mode (which I didn't use, I shot in Aperture Priority) and Canon's Picture Style Filters (which is entirely different). Or if that's too much work, maybe reread my post where I clearly stated I wasn't talking about the Portrait Mode.
By the way, Jason, when you get through looking up the difference between Portrait Mode and Portrait Picture Style, you might want to take a moment to learn what that "P" on the dial actually stands for. Sorry, bud, but it's not for "Portrait." I'd tell you but I don't want to spoil the surprise.
I'm selling my little Panasonic point & shoot, if you're interested. I'll even throw in the manual -- it's much shorter than the one for your XSi so maybe you'll bother to read it.
Nothing to say that hasn't been said. I's just like to add that she's a very pretty little girl, and you got some great expressions. overall I like these
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