Gallery check please.


TPF Noob!
Jul 8, 2013
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Acworth, Georgia
I am somewhat new to photography. No photo school or professional experience. My gallery is linked below: Any thoughts (good or bad) are appreciated.

I think you should post the images here.
I just reviewed your portfolio and looked at 50 images or so. I will give it to you straight. This is what I see. I see some patterns. You have access to good cameras and lenses, but are making a couple fundamentals errors over and over. On the D800, f/2.8 with that lens is not good enough, and also, you're missing focus on shots made at f/2.8, like on mockingbirds for example, but also on the old Cadillac grille in the woods...shot with the 10.5mm lens at f/2.8...or the rabbit shots at f/2.8 at 200mm at 1/4000 second...your exposure choices are not giving you the ultimate lens quality the D800 NEEDS for the photos to look first-rate. On the rabbit on lawn shot for example--wide-open on a sitting rabbit at 1/4000 kills the image quality by being two f/stops away from the lens's peak, at 1/1000 second, amply fast to freeze the still rabbit. On the Cadillac... 1/50 second at f/2.8 hand-held on a "detail shot"...not good detail shot wide-open from 4 need more depth of field and the optimal aperture on a lot of your shots. Barbed wire for example, f/6.3 is NOT enough DOF from 6 feet to pull focus, and that ruins the "pattern shot" you are striving to show. On the shot titled what is it?--you DO have enough DOF to cover the scene, and the shot is thus successful.

Watch out for the over-saturated Velvia look, as in Petit LeMans and sucking; yellows and greens that are into the neon spectrum are often too gaudy. Strongly consider re-evaluating your use of f/2.8 with a D800. Start favoring more DOF, in order to show the subjects in better focus, with better technical image quality. Pay a bit more attention to getting the exact right composition. You are seeing a lot of "tripod-made photos", stuff that demands perfect composing and crisply-shown images, but are shooting them hand-held. There are types of images that must be shot from a tripod...or they are not successful.

There are many photos made with what I would consider rather odd exposure triangle decisions, such as the frequent f/2.8 use, and the 1/4000 at f/2.8 when f/5.6 at 1/1000 is almost the perfect exposure for an ultra-high resolution FX camera like the D800 on natural-world scenics. Stop shooting wide-open with the 10.5mm as well. If you make these changes, you will have fundamentally more appealing images. Overall, I see you have an eye for scenes of interest, but the technical decisions, like the missed focus and the shallow DOF shots are not allowing these scenes to get to those higher-level "scores" on the site you host at. You're working in a genre where technical proficency and making the exact, optimal exposure choices has a HUGE impact on the quality of the images. On these types of compact scenes and close-ups shot with the 105mm macro lens, or the 200mm, the focus must be good and the DOF must not intrude on the subject matter. Like the three butterflies...or the red insect...those gotta be at f/22...with good light, you cannot pull focus on three butterlfies at f/6.3 at ISO 800 and make an impressive three-insect shot, same with the three strands of barbed wire...
What Derral said, but one of the first images, the macro of the bee the flash reflecting on his eye makes it look dead.

Don't shoot me Derral
Thank you very much for the help. I too have been struggling with getting images to be sharp. Again i have never had any formal photo education and have no friends that wnjoy photograpby to learn from. I will begin using more DOF. Being the noob i am i suppose i was always thinking i should be shooting wide open. Question: were there any photos that had alot done right?
Thanks again.

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