first post! beginner photographer looking for critiques

hyeunny

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$DSC_0297.jpg$DSC_0302.jpg$DSC_2277.jpg$DSC_2283.jpg
Hi there, my name is Hyeunny nice to meet you all, I've been a lurker of this forum for a while, but finally decided to post today. I started taking photography seriously starting 4 months ago with the purchase of my first DSLR and it's been an absolute blast! I realized that my passion is people photography and would love to one day maybe get into portrait and wedding photography :). I would really like to get some feedback and improve my skills as a photographer and this forum seems like a great place for that. Here are some shots that I took of my significant other in the past couple of weeks, I would appreciate any feedback regarding composition/editing/technique/etc. Once again, nice to meet you all!!
 

BrianpStudios

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Reflector or fill flash would have been nice with these photos. If you're going for portrait photography don't be afraid to give directions so your model looks their best, not that your model doesn't look great. Also good shot on the railroad. Not too big on the other ones.
 

frommrstomommy

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#1 is my fav of these as well.
 
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hyeunny

hyeunny

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Thanks for the feedback! Brian, can you elaborate on how I would use a fill flash and what kind of effect that would have? My limited understanding is that fill flash is to remove harsh shadows, but I am not quite sure how to use it in settings outside of that:wink:
 

BrianpStudios

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Fill flash can be used in various situations. It can be used to fill shadows or it can be used to soften shadows. Whether I'm indoors or outdoors I use bounce or fill flash to just even the exposure a bit more. Fill flash doesn't have to be dramatic. I expose to however I want the background and set my flash on manual. You can adjust according to what effect you want. And by no means is fill flash or a reflector mandatory. But a flash and reflector are good tools to have in your arsenal. When I photograph weddings at night, bounce and fill flash work wonders on the quality of the images I produce.

Experiment with smooth white foam board. Can be purchased 2 for a $1 at most places that sell stationary. Makes a great reflector or bounce card. It takes a lot of practice and trial and error to learn how light and your camera will work together. I shoot everything in manual to make sure everything is exactly how I want it. Over time you will read your situation whether you need to apply fill light or not. Mixing it up is a good thing. Don't over exhaust your photos will all fill flash photos. Do a set with fill flash and review them quickly. Decide whether you should adjust or change your setup completely. Being a photographer and thinking on the fly is a skill set that develops over time. You have a terrific start. You understand composition, you have good framing. Keep it up.

Forgot to add. I use a mini Westcott softbox over my flash to soften the light. I lose a couple stops but it gives great results.
 
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hyeunny

hyeunny

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Thanks Brian! Really appreciate the advice, I will definitely give manual flash a try, to be honest I've just been trying to figure out the other aspects of photography and have only been using ttl-mode on my flash, thanks for the tip :)
 

DanOstergren

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I really like your use of natural light. The only shot I dislike is the black and white one; I feel as if too much of her face is hidden from the camera.

When you edit, do you adjust the curves at all? What software are you using?
 
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hyeunny

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Thanks Dan! I am trying to learn the most out of using natural light because I am an absolute newbie when it comes to flash photography and have not even attempted off camera flash yet :blushing:. When I edit I use lightroom 4 and I usually play around with white balance, contrast and some sharpness to get the most out of my photos.
 

BrianpStudios

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Thanks Dan! I am trying to learn the most out of using natural light because I am an absolute newbie when it comes to flash photography and have not even attempted off camera flash yet :blushing:. When I edit I use lightroom 4 and I usually play around with white balance, contrast and some sharpness to get the most out of my photos.

Lightroom 4 is great. Brush tool is your best friend.
 
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hyeunny

hyeunny

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Thanks Dan! I am trying to learn the most out of using natural light because I am an absolute newbie when it comes to flash photography and have not even attempted off camera flash yet :blushing:. When I edit I use lightroom 4 and I usually play around with white balance, contrast and some sharpness to get the most out of my photos.

Lightroom 4 is great. Brush tool is your best friend.
Haha yes I actually figured out how to use the gradient filter and brush tools this morning! :thumbup:
 

BrianpStudios

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YES! great tools in Lightroom. When I first started photography I kept everything natural. I did little to no post. I never crop my photos. But after time Adobe software has been a huge asset. I try and stay as true as possible to not using post, but hey, we got to do what we got to do sometimes.
 

caseyrbrown

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YES! great tools in Lightroom. When I first started photography I kept everything natural. I did little to no post. I never crop my photos. But after time Adobe software has been a huge asset. I try and stay as true as possible to not using post, but hey, we got to do what we got to do sometimes.

Couldn't be more true. I was so surprised at the quality of photos that came out of lightroom..
 

BrianpStudios

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View attachment 52415$DSC_0297.jpg

Thank you hyeunny for letting me do some lightroom adjustments with your photo. This is a great photo. A little about what I did. I did not use any curve adjustments. I used the brush tool for this whole photo. I change between my flow and density while adjusting the exposure and temperature in various parts of the image. This is what I got. The original is still the best one! Just some boredom and wanted to show off lightroom.

For some reason the color looks funny on the preview but click on the image to see what it should look like.

EDIT: go to second page to see the second edit of hyeunny photo. The second is more natural and not as "over" done as this one.
 
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Robin_Usagani

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sorry brian P, not digging your edit.

Seriously though OP, all of the shots I did that I absolutely love, it looks awesome straight out of the camera. The edit I do is very minimal. I just do it to enhance it a little bit. You are on the right track (no pun intended). Keep doing what you are doing.
 

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