What am I doing wrong?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Bluckii, Apr 15, 2008.

  1. Bluckii

    Bluckii TPF Noob!

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    I offer people photo sessions and copies of their pictures for free in order to gain experience and learn so I can someday become a pro photographer. I did an engagement shoot yesterday at the beach around 2pm, I've heard that is not the best time but that was the only time the couple could do it.

    I was using a 100mm Tokina lens and my aperture was 9 (around there) and shutter speed was between 100-160...I have so much trouble with this lens because any time I need to bump my aperture to get more in focus, I don't have enough light so I have to decrease my shutter speed and it causes camera shake, which is what I think my problem is here. I use a 430EX speedlight but it didn't help me any because with this lens I have to be so far back that it doesn't do me any good. All I have is a stock lens and this portrait lens to use.

    Below are two separate pictures the one from the engagement shoot and another of my daughter that I took a few months back. How come in the engagement shoot the picture is not crisp and the colors are flat, but the picture of my daughter is crisp and colors are vibrant? Any help would be greatly appreciated.


    Thanks Brooke!

    *I don't know why this first photo is not showing up...but the link works to view the photo*

    http://i79.photobucket.com/albums/j128/bluckii/ForumImg.jpg


    [​IMG]
     
  2. bla

    bla TPF Noob!

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    Hey there Bluckii,

    Can't say I know that much about wedding photography, but judging from your picture, I think you might have decreased the shutter speed a bit too much and over-exposed the image. The beach photo is quite bright (at least on my screen), and there's some loss of detail. Try keeping the exposure higher if you get camera shake; you'll also get a slightly darker image, some more contrast and possibly more saturation on the colours.

    There also isn't much colour in the picture at all, I would consider switching it to monochrome, as the rather bland colours of the clothing don't add anything to your image.

    For next time, I would suggest looking for a less messy background: the shrubs and apartments in the back distract from your subjects. If this isn't possible, you could open up your aperture to blur out the background and foreground more, keep the focus on your subjects; this will probably help with your camera shake and exposure as well.

    You got a great capture of the couple's expression, and I think this would be great with some more contrast and if you change it to monochrome. You could also add a slight vignette to bring the focus toward the middle.

    Maybe check out these sites:
    http://photo.net/learn/wedding/
    http://photo.net/interviews/jeff-ascough
    http://photo.net/learn/wedding/equipment
     
  3. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The photo looks fine to me. If you open up the historgram you can see that "technically" there are blown highlights, but theyre are in the area of the picture youre not focused on. The photo might look "bland" simply because they choose to wear not so "bright" colors. Nothing wrong with that. A closer flash shot might have brought out the vibrance of their clothing, but you haven't done anything wrong here. Maybe play with it a little bit in photoshop to make it pop out a little bit, or even desaturate the colors down a bit to give it an intentionally "flat" look. . .
    http://img187.imageshack.us/img187/1879/forumimgandseditsz7.jpg
     
  4. Jim H

    Jim H TPF Noob!

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    What were the conditons like? Sunny, overcast?

    Actually f/4.5 @ 1/125 with an ISO of 200. You also used a custom white balance (any idea how you set that?) and a medium contrast tone curve. Seems like this would be overexposed for just about any lighting condition at 2:00 in the afternoon.

    You lost me here. Changing the aperature will give you more or less depth of field, but with a prime lens such as this, your feet do the focusing when the focus ring runs out.

    It doesn't look out of focus to me. You should be able to hand hold that 100mm lens @125 easily.

    If f/4 was the target aperature (ISO 200) on a:

    heavily overcast day - 1/500
    cloudy - 1/1000
    hazy - 1/2000
    sunny - 1/4000

    Give or take somewhat - watch the histogram on your LCD.
     
  5. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Some people have issues holding a camera shake free at 125th. It took me several months of conscious effort and lots of practice to get motion free pics at 1/60th, but its not easy.

    Why is the OP using F/9? Why not F/5.6-F/8 or so for faster SS?

    Also having just one lens is going to limit you. At 100mm on a cropped sensor, you are going to need to stand quite far back to get a wide pic.

    An 18-50 F/2.8 Sigma HSM Macro is going to let you be in the same room with them and get a nice wide pic at the same time. VERY sharp and awesome for portrait work a little closer and/or wider.

    Considering flash, you should look into using an off camera flash.
     
  6. Bluckii

    Bluckii TPF Noob!

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    Thank you so much for all your suggestions, you've all helped tremendously!

    I def. did overexpose all of those pictures, I was trying to get their faces to be lighter, but my flash only lets me do a ss of 200 when it's on...I am in full manual mode too...I can't figure this, out...back to the manual I go.

    Again, thank you so much for taking the time to help me.
     
  7. Jim H

    Jim H TPF Noob!

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    Just a suggestion (take it for what it's worth) if you are having problems with figuring out exposure, might want to check out this link: Ultimate Exposure Computer. This is a primer more than anything else to help you understand how available lighting conditions can be controlled via your exposure settings. It is not intended to be the end all-do all of exposure control, but it is an excellent place to start.
     
  8. Bluckii

    Bluckii TPF Noob!

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    Thank you so much, i am going to check it out!
     

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