Amateur "photographer" looking for critiques

unholygrail

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Hi, I am new to the forums. I would like to go into wedding photography eventually, when I have better equipment and hopefully have done some assisting/second shooting. Right now i'm living in a country where I don't know a lot of people and my time is limited to make friends...I work 24/7...So most of my pictures are self shots...I'm not a narcissist I swear :D.

I'd really like a critique of my style, color, etc. and any tips I can try to improve. Be brutally honest.

Here is a self-shot when I dyed my hair red


And when I dyed it back to my natural color lol


And these were before I got my DSLR...Not meant too seriously...Mostly just for instagram and tumblr..But I like how they look :)


If I had a real model these kind of pictures would be perfect.

Unfortunately this doesn't give much of an idea of how i'd be as a wedding photographer. But I'd love a critique anyway. What can I stand to improve? Particularly in the first two pictures and the last picture, all of which were taken with my new camera and were not intended only for instagram.
 
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tirediron

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Welcome to TPF! First of all, it's really difficult (and IMO, somewhat unfair) to critique self-portraits too harshly as there are just so many things that the photographer has to deal with. To me, they're probably about the single most difficult type of photography to do well. That said, The first two are fine, albeit perhaps slightly soft. Always add a little extra of field when shooting self-portraits just to make sure. The last one I really like and if you'd got it focused, had the camera level & square to the window frame and not cropped the little bit of window image right, this would have been a GREAT shot! When you are shooting self-portaits one tip is to place a focusing target where you're going to be, and lock the focus on that. (FWIW, I would do that last shot 200 times if that's what it took to get right!)

As far as getting models, assuming you live in/near a reasonably large metropolitan area, Model Mayhem is a great resource for models. Granted, that most of the ones who will work for free (Refered to as TFP or "Trade for print") aren't the most experienced, and there is a high flake factor (lots of cancellations, no-shows, etc) you find some (about one in four is my experience) who are actually serious and want to work. I use MM any time I want to experiment with stuff, try something new, or just shoot for fun.

Wedding work is a whole 'nother animal, and it's not something that you want to consider until your skills are more polished and your equipment is appropriate, BUT, second-shooting is a GREAT way to learn and experience the industry.
Hope that helps!
 

Ilovemycam

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Pretty gal!

Get some books on self portraits and blast away.

Your beautiful!!
 

tirediron

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And if you are interested in self-portraiture, check out some of Kundalini's posts in "People". He's probably the most prolific and most skillful self-shooter on TPF.
 

Shipman

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I like all of the posted pictures, the personals are really good, youre a gorgeous girl.
 

_gingerstocking

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Another idea would be to set something in the window sill, focus on it, set the timer, then throw the object on the floor as you position yourself.

But I like the shots. I wish #1 had some more lighting on your face. Otherwise, you have the eye.
 
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unholygrail

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Thank you for the thorough reply! I agree with you on the cropping. I was unsure about it but I was limited in space and I didn't want to use a super wide-angle camera.

I'm not a huge fan of MM but I think I will have to look at what's going on in my city and see if I can make use of that site. Looking at what I posted here, it's clear that I need to get in contact with a few models before I can build a portfolio...I Can't go around showing 100 self-shots lol. So thanks for the suggestion.
 
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unholygrail

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Thanks everyone for the encouraging comments. It's nice to hear I have a "good eye." Now I know that I just need to focus on the technical aspects a little more and I should be headed in the right direction.
 

jwbryson1

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And if you are interested in self-portraiture, check out some of Kundalini's posts in "People". He's probably the most prolific and most skillful self-shooter on TPF.

Plus, he's gorgeous! :taped sh:
 

jwbryson1

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Right now i'm living in a country where I don't know a lot of people and my time is limited to make friends...

So, you are FROM the US and living abroad now, or from abroad and living in the US?
 

e.rose

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1. Can you PLEASE come to Nashville so I can photograph you? You are *seriously* beautiful, girl! :hug::

2. I love these. I really, really do. Like Schwetty said, you have a great eye! My only complaint would be that you're out of focus on the last one, but you already know that. Other than that, your processing, composition, lighting... it's all great. How long have you been shooting?

3. What is drawing you specifically towards wedding photography? Do you genuinely love the idea of spending long days with a couple on their wedding day? Or is it just the idea of "That's where the money is"?? (If that sounds harsh, I don't mean it to be... I'm just trying to get and idea of where your mindset is. Some people genuinely LOVE wedding photography... and love love... and capturing it... and whatnot... haha. Other people just get into it "for the money".)

4. Is your work posted somewhere online I can follow? :)
 

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