Two bugs and a bug-eater for cc


No longer a newbie, moving up!
Feb 8, 2011
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Raleigh, NC
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Went out yesterday to one of the local nature parks to try and get some a) exercise, and b) photo practice. Most of the shots were either fairly pedestrian or fatally flawed. I think I was killing my DOF by zooming in and having the aperture wide open, so I'm seeing a lot of "missed focus" shots. These are the three "best" - which doesn't necessarily imply "good".

1) Spider

Spider by Rich1760, on Flickr
I think the focus is a little in front of him, but the other shot was even worse. May also be too centered, but I think having the leaf off to the right offsets that a little bit. (Sharpened in Raw Therapee, but otherwise SOOC)

2) Dragonfly

Dragonfly by Rich1760, on Flickr
Personally, this is probably the best of the set. If anything, maybe crop a little more off the right? (Cropped and sharpened)

3) Lizard

Lizard by Rich1760, on Flickr
I think he's probably a little soft, and certainly not much DOF to work with (the tail goes out of focus fairly quickly). Could possibly also stand to be a bit brighter, but when I tried to adjust it didn't look right. (Some positive exposure comp, sharpened, and cropped)
I can't critique as I am a newbie, but I just wanted to say that if/whenever i can get my hands on the right lens, I will for sure be trying these kinds of pictures. I love nature&animals . My son is always saying OH mommy there is a bird/squirrel outside ! I had to tell him I don't have a good lens for far away pictures,or even real close up ones. :( But *I* personally love all three . I'm sure you had fun taking those, regardless if most didn't come out as you hoped. ;-) And what luck to see all three of those subjects and get them to "pose" for you at the same location .
Christine - I see by your sig that you have an 18-200 lens. What you may not realize about my pictures is that I used my 75-250, so your lens would probably get you something similar. (Creative cropping also lets me expand the image.) I should have stopped down my aperture some (and maybe upped my ISO if necessary) to increase my DOF. I also couldn't get any closer than about a meter and still be able to focus, but then again if I did I'd probably scare at least two of my subjects away.

A question to other - more experienced - readers: Would I have been able to get similar images if I'd used my 18-55 lens? I'm thinking I would probably have been able to get a bit wider DOF but might not have been able to zoom in as close to my subjects. Is my thinking at all correct?

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