Portraits for C&C

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Josh220, Jun 19, 2009.

  1. Josh220

    Josh220 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    This was my first attempt ever taking portraits, so any opinions/advice will help greatly. They were all taken with my SB-600 flash, on camera. Thanks for looking!

    1.
    Shot at 90mm at 1/60sec f/5.6

    [​IMG]

    2.
    Shot at 62mm at 1/100sec f/5

    [​IMG]

    3.
    Shot at 62mm at 1/125sec f/5

    [​IMG]



    For #3 my own critique is that I let her hold her arms against her body causing them to look larger than normal (she only weighs about 105 lbs). She did it in #2 also. My mistake for not catching that during the time of capture. I also don't like how her loose shirt doesn't show her figure from the side. Otherwise I think they turned out good considering it was my first attempt.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2009
  2. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    C&C per req:

    Nice work. You've actually done a good job with the flash lighting, especially given that she is wearing a white top.

    1. Good lighting/exposure. The skin tone is perhaps a bit red, but that's minor. My main critique with this image is the composition. It would be much better to have her framed so that she appears to be going into the image rather than out of it. Basically, have the blank space image left on the right.

    2, 3. In both of these I see the same issues; the subject is too close to the edge of the image with excess blank space. As well, be cognizant of your backgrounds. Even though they're softly focused, the strong vertical elements of the are still distracting.
     
  3. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I like the first one the most; but, like tirediron said - I think she needs to be on the other side of the frame. A vertical crop might work too (basically, cut the image in half).
     
  4. Josh220

    Josh220 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks guys. Here are some new crops, any better? I didn't go full vertical on #1 because it left way too much space above her head, so I just made it smaller.

    #1
    [​IMG]

    #2
    [​IMG]

    #3
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2009
  5. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I like these better.

    #1 is almost square - I would take it all the way and square it up.
     
  6. Sherman Banks

    Sherman Banks TPF Noob!

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    Pretty nice work! I'd say you got some pretty good results for just firing it at her. They all look like they could use a touch more exposure but easily done in PP. Get yourself some triggers and get that bad boy off the camera!
     
  7. Josh220

    Josh220 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks,
    I only have the D60 right now, and I am trying to wait on the D300 since i haven't even had the D60 for 2 months. I don't want the wired hot-shoe, especially if it's something I won't need when I upgrade. Is there anything else I could do while I have the D60, that won't become unnecessary with the D300? Or am I pretty much SOL until I get the D300? Can I fire the SB-600 wirelessly with the D300 or do I need the SB-900 for that?
     
  8. Sherman Banks

    Sherman Banks TPF Noob!

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    Yes, you can fire wirelessly on the D300, but for your camera now you can go with a wireless trigger system. I did a review of the Cactus V4's which came out in March here. I have to say I'm quite impressed with them and for the cost, it's much nicer on the wallet than a set of PW's. It'll allow you to keep saving for the better body.
     
  9. Josh220

    Josh220 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'll have to consider that if I can keep myself from getting the D300 in the next couple months (I would highly doubt I make it until the end of summer, but we can hope!)

    Would it be better to fire 1 flash wirelessly, or have one on the camera, and have it trigger another one for side lighting? Like a SB-900 with my 600?
     
  10. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    My advice; get the flash off-camera. Pick up a Cameron sync cord for Nikon systems and just do it. It'll give you way more flexibility. The on-camera flash is flattening your lighting, removing a sense of direction and movement. They could be much more dynamic with some more shadows giving more definition to the features of her face. Just getting the flash further off the optical axis will be a good start though (just don't shoot into their eyes from below unless you're going to clone the catchlights somewhere else in post; catchlights in the bottom of the eyes are just freaky...).

    Edit: So many posts before I put in mine. Blast.

    Having your main light off-axis/camera will almost always be a good thing. You can use an on-camera flash for fill, but getting them all off-camera will give you more control.
     
  11. Sherman Banks

    Sherman Banks TPF Noob!

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    I don't think the 900 on the body will fire the 600. This has been discussed so somebody please correct me if I'm wrong but the SB800 is the only flash that can act as commander. I wouldn't do that route anyways because you don't want a flash on axis with the camera, that's where you get your flat light. You'd be much happier having two flashes off axis/off camera which allow you to shape your subject with the light. That's not to discount what you can do with a single light either (which is a lot). If your saving for that new body and just want to get your flash off camera, $50 for the V4's is money well spent getting used to shooting this way. And when you upgrade bodies, you can buy into Nikon's CLS system with more SB600/800/900's.
     
  12. Sherman Banks

    Sherman Banks TPF Noob!

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    ^I owned the D60 and don't remember it having anywhere to run a cord (and nothing on my D90 either) so you'd have to get a hotshoe/pc jack adapter for both your flash and body, plus the cord. Not worth it in my opinion but it's definitely an option.
     

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