Please Help

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by holly375, Jul 4, 2010.

  1. holly375

    holly375 TPF Noob!

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    I have just started with my photography business. I am only doing outdoor portraits at this time, but want to start doing natural light indoor photography too. I have two questions. I am using a Nikon D90 with an 85mm 1.8 lens. It gives such a beautiful background, but sometimes if I have more than one person in it one person becomes blurred or it will picup the basket instead of the baby. Does anyone know how I could fix this problem.

    My second question is, I could really use some tip for natural lighting for on location indoor home photography. I want to do my best to make sure they don't look like just snapshots. I am doing a newborn at the end of this week and want to make sure they look beautiful, but I want to be able to do more than just b&w. Thanks for any help.
     
  2. subscuck

    subscuck No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The first part of your question is a depth of field issue. If you're shooting wide open, you need to understand that just because you can shoot at 1.8, it doesn't mean you should. At 1.8 your DOF is razor thin. If the person in the shot who's OOF is even slightly out of the plane of focus, they will indeed be soft with a wide aperture. No lens, fast prime or otherwise, is at it's sharpest wide open, so stop it down a couple of stops. This will give you a deeper DOF. With an 85mm, you'll still get a nice blurred background, and it will require far less sharpening in PPing.

    As far as the basket being in focus, and the baby OOF, how is your AF set up? Are you using all AF points, or center only? If you're using all AF points, then your camera is selecting the point over the highest contrast area in the scene, which may not be where you want it, and with a wide aperture, well, see the paragraph above. Most people who've been shooting a while almost always use center point only so they know the camera's focusing on what they want, not what the camera wants.

    As far as your second question, I'll leave that to someone more knowledgeable on the subject of lighting.

    I would also suggest googling something along the lines of "understanding depth of field", as well as "depth of field calculator". This will help you out a lot.
     
  3. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    You sound like the carpenter that had just started a carpentry business, but didn't know how to use the basic tools: a hammer, saw, or a level.

    I agree with subscuck about DOF and using f/1.8. It sure sounds like you have some gaps in your understanding of the more basic technical aspects of photography.

    As far as, "natural lighting for on location indoor home photography".

    North facing windows give the best and most consistant light quality throughout the day, if they are big enough.

    Even with a good north facing window you will at least need a good, big reflector (or 2) for fill.

    If you don't use supplimental lighting, your natural light photos will more often than not just look flat. Shooting natural light only is difficult to get right.

    Another problem you will have with "natural lighting for on location indoor home photography" is white balance, because of mixed lighting and/or color casts from furniture and walls.

    Are you familiar with white balance?
     
  4. R.D.

    R.D. TPF Noob!

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    you know, If you are going to put the money into the camera why not dish a few hundred out on a basic photography course at a local community college?

    seems reasonable, that is my plan and I only consider it a hobby.. I guess finances would be a consideration but I have this hobby well budgeted for my income.
     
  5. ghpham

    ghpham TPF Noob!

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    *sigh*
     

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