Critique please

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#1 Macky-San on 5 years ago

hello everyone it's been quite sometime since I last posted. I would love some critiques on my photo's. Now these photo's been done a span over 3 conventions, 1st one being done in Kita-kon, next 2 done in Anime North and the last 2 done in Ai-kon which are my recent work. I've also been playing with a remote flash at AN and Ai-kon.






#2 youta on 5 years ago


The cosplayers themselves look amazing, but you seem to have focusing issues. The second one almost nails it but you needed a bit more DOF to get the entire face in focus. The third is focusing on the weapon(?), the fourth on the front of her hair and I'm not sure what happened with the other two. If at all possible make sure the eyes are in focus, and perhaps use a smaller aperture.

I really do like the portraits, the expressions and overall tone of the photos is pretty good. You found great models too!

#3 nathancarter on 5 years ago

Agreed entirely with youta's post. Exposure, composition, and processing are all pretty good. In the first one, you kept it nice and high-key without losing any detail in the lightest tones (good job).

But the focus is just a little bit off in all of them, just enough to make the eyes and lashes soft. Looks to be front-focused just a little bit - the first one is focused on the seam at the shoulder, the second one is maaaybe OK, the third one is focused on the hand/weapon, the fourth is focused on the hand & weapon, the last is focused on the boot laces. When you're shooting with an ultra-thin DOF, you've gotta make sure to nail it right on the iris & eyelashes. This is especially tough to do when the hair gets in the way.

#4 Macky-San on 5 years ago

Thank you both for your observation... Although I have to admit my eyes aren't all that great, I do have abit of a hard time pushing the viewfinder against me while I wear my glasses. Last time I shot without my glasses the pictures didn't turn out that great.

Thank you for the critiques and I'll definitely try harder to focus better!

#5 KVN on 5 years ago

The photos themselves are very good, but focus is off on virtually all of them

#6 jeproxshots on 5 years ago

1st image: comp is good, focus needs work, Models face is like a deer trapped in headlights... tell her to squint with her lower eyelashes a little. (not sure if that makes sense. look up "peter hurley squinting"
2nd image. Compostion is bad, due to the fact her arm comes back up. IE peoples eyes are attracted to lines and that arm acts as a line. as it connects to the edge of the image with no return line as it just runs off the image and it just kills the image... if her full arm or at least up to the bend showed it would act as an intersecting line bringer my eyes back up to her face.
image 3: focal point. comp is good but personally i would lower the cropping or camera about an inch lower to square everything up

last 2 images are good but just focal point.

How are you focusing your images? are you using multiple points. manual focus? if you are doing than change to spot focus. I wear glasses to so i know what you mean about not seeing well through the camera. Because you wear glasses trust your cameras focal point system and change to spot auto focus this will allow you to think more about composition. choose a focal point nearest to the subjects eyes and then re compose while holding that focal point. You can do this with center focus as well, focus the eyes and then reframe the photo but becareful with center focus if you shoot with a very wide aperture. Note this method might not work well when shooting against very dark subject against a bright background. ie shooting into the sun... if you have to do something like that aiming at the subjects feet with a moderate aperture may or maynot work.

#7 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

If youre on a crop body they make magnifiers for the viewfinder although im not sure how well they work (i bought a 1.3x and it did make things bigger at the expense of cutting the edges out so your framing may take a hit). Pro body's have bigger viewfinders. If youre not using focus points manually that could definitely help you, and if you are you may want to see if your camera body supports lens adjustments to keep things tack sharp).

I like your colors, framing, and your general style.(love the 2nd one) .just need to see what measures we can take to get your focus locked down. The last pic is loaded with green chromatic aberration along the edges of the chair that can be removed in photoshop.

#8 shumi31 on 5 years ago

I like most of the photos here, specially the second one.

#9 Macky-San on 5 years ago

Loving all the critiques so far!

Alright yes I'm using manual focus with multiple points, so I'll take your advice on changing focus spots and I actually do switch to a wide lens, so I'll make note of that next time. As for a magnifier, I'm might actually look them up in my local town here. I've also need to start adjusting the diopter meter as well since my index finger does bump into it from time to time.

I appreciate the tips and advice.

#10 nathancarter on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=Macky-San;4924723]Alright yes I'm using manual focus with multiple points, .[/QUOTE]

Can you clarify what you mean by this?

You're manually focusing, or you're manually selecting the points that the camera will use to autofocus?

#11 Macky-San on 5 years ago

Oops, I'm using manual focus.

#12 nathancarter on 5 years ago

Without a "real" diopter, it's hard to manually focus using modern cameras. The viewfinder just isn't designed for it.

If you're using a Canon, and you prefer to manually focus, you might try a couple of things:
- Use Live View, and move the cursor box to the important part of the subject, zoom in to 5x or 10x, and manually focus.
- Download and install the Magic Lantern firmware, which has Focus Peaking - this means it will highlight the areas that are in focus. So even if you're having trouble telling what's in focus on the LCD, just watch for the focus-peak highlights - adjust focus until the important parts (e.g. the eyes) are highlighted. You still have to use the LCD, but you don't have to zoom in. It looks like this, the yellow highlights or the red highlights show what's in focus:



#13 Macky-San on 5 years ago

Thanks I really appreciate the help nathan! I'll try both of these methods out next time on my shoot.