Out and About CC and a PP question

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by mdith4him, Apr 14, 2010.

  1. mdith4him

    mdith4him TPF Noob!

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    Hi everyone,

    I've been practicing more with my camera and have a couple pictures I'd like your opinion on. How's my composition? Is the focus sharp or not so much? Would a different DOF make the picture look better? What's your opinion on my post-processing? I have PSE (a trial version) so I've only been playing around with it for about 2 weeks. Here are the pictures and the PP question is at the bottom.

    I have a Canon T1i with the kit lens.

    1. f/8.0; 1/200; ISO 200. I wish I had gotten a slightly larger DOF so the tips of the leaves were focused!
    [​IMG]

    2. f/5.6; 1/250; ISO 200
    [​IMG]


    3. This is the original (no PP). f/8; 1/160; ISO 100
    [​IMG]

    4. This is the PP version. I liked the colors in the original (the pink and green against the blue sky), but I also kinda like this.
    [​IMG]


    My PP question is this: When you take a picture do you have a very clear idea in your mind of exactly what you want it to look like after PP? Or do you take pictures, then open it in a PP program and look at it and think, "OK, how can this be made better?" and start fiddling with various settings? When I open my images I have a hard time "seeing" what I want it to look like when I'm done. Since I don't have an image in my head, I wind up playing around endlessly with different things trying to find something that looks good. It's fun...but also frustrating. Is this just something that takes time (knowing what you want) or do I need to learn something else about colors, effects, and other design aspects of photography to know what will look right on certain photos? How long did it take you before you felt comfortable in the PP program you use?


    Thanks :)

    ~Meredith
     
  2. D-B-J

    D-B-J Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    On a normal day, i will grab my camera, a tripod, and walk around for an hour or more and take pictures of anything. I look for inspiration, instead of knowing what i want. I then will upload them and go "hmm.. this could be a lil more contrasty.. etc" and edit them accordingly.

    I recently grabbed a macro that looked pretty good on the camera lcd, but i uploaded and found it to be blown. Check this link out, it describes it in more detail.

    http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/hdr-discussions/200327-hdr-one-jpeg-worked-i-think-c-c.html

    I often will rack my brain for a good way to edit a photo and make it better. I am only a beginner, but editing is a fun step in the process :)
     
  3. burstintoflame81

    burstintoflame81 TPF Noob!

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    I like number 3 a lot ( although it seems just a tad overexposed to me ) . The other ones....not so much.

    As for your PP question...I can only speak for myself, but I think most would agree with the majority of what I am going to say. I always start with the basic global adjustments ( things that effect the picture as a whole ). These would be color,tone,contrast adjustments. Then you can get into other things like vibrance, saturation, skin smoothing, dodging and burning etc. I usually wait until the end to crop ( and possibly add a watermark depending how I was going to use the image ) and then finally, I add a little sharpening and save the file in the size I want. Thats all your basic stuff though. Its just the routine. But the image sometimes dictates other stuff that is more artistic and based on taste. Like using selective coloring, different black and white styles, or hand tinted looks etc. That stuff usually gets done by me on 2 different occassions 1) when I set out with that type of look in mind for the image from the beginning, or 2) when I have tweaked an image but still feel like it is missing something or just isn't working as a basic color image, I would try things like a cool color temp. or cyanotype in saturation, etc.

    But thats just me.
     
  4. Bitter Jeweler

    Bitter Jeweler Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    When faced with a subject in the field, I analyze it to see what I can do with it later. Clicking the shutter is just the begining.
     
  5. mdith4him

    mdith4him TPF Noob!

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    So how do you determine what looks right in terms of color, tone, contrast, etc? Do you know what you're looking for or do you just "play" until it looks "right?" I have trouble knowing what contrast looks good and what is too much (same with other things like saturation, tone, etc.). I hope it starts to get more natural, but right now I just don't know what any given photo "needs" to be completed.
     
  6. burstintoflame81

    burstintoflame81 TPF Noob!

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    It will get more natural, but its always going to be a matter of taste when post processing.

    Here is something to try...

    How To: Fixing Low-Contrast Photos | Photography - PopPhoto.com Offers Camera Reviews and Exclusive Photo Tips Get the issue thats out on stands now for the next step that lets you choose the graypoint to fix color casts. I think this was a very good tutorial especially for just starting out. It will help you get good contrast and also correct color casts ( the latter is the one thats in the new issue ).
     

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