MardiGras Photo Critque Requested

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#1 figment1986 on 5 years ago

I am asking for all critiques on this photo.

[IMG]https://fbcdn-sphotos-e-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-prn2/t1/1655900_606595382723422_1233697914_n.jpg[/IMG]
[URL="https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=606595382723422&set=ms.606595382723422.606595386056755.bps.a.606595372723423.1073741857.532877073428587&type=1&theater"]https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=606595382723422&set=ms.606595382723422.606595386056755.bps.a.606595372723423.1073741857.532877073428587&type=1&theater[/URL]

Info:
1/30 second
F4.5
Focal length 29
ISO3200 (cloudy evening)

#2 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

Can you post the originals on flickr (free 1 tB of storage) so we can see what else is going on. At the size its being displayed itd be hard to tell it apart from a mobile phone shot.

As for composition framing is everything....and sometimes it relies on you moving to make the shot interesting, sometimes its asking the models to move, and most of the time both. The giant head behind the model is distracting like a giant BK king peeking up at them, and the head on the right side of the frame throws off the balance, some could argue the trees on the other side might balance it out but I dont think it jives. I would have tried to ask them to move in between the heads and move over to the left to shoot,where things are a bit more balanced...or focus on one of the heads and have them pose on each side of it. The girls are photogenic and it looks like you got the shot of them but I'd have probably gone portrait instead of landscape or went with a wider lens if there were a lot of interesting things you were trying to show.

I dont think youre thinking about the shot, it seems like you see 2 subjects that are interesting or pretty, you stopped and asked...they posed you pulled the camera up and just took a snapshot. The subjects themselves are symmetrical to each other (although the green ones elbow was pointed too far in). If you dont want to pose them move around, get different angles and zoom out and in until you see something that makes you say "Yeaaaahhh baby" in a british accent.

#3 figment1986 on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=jonashley;4825146]Can you post the originals on flickr (free 1 tB of storage) so we can see what else is going on. At the size its being displayed itd be hard to tell it apart from a mobile phone shot.

As for composition framing is everything....and sometimes it relies on you moving to make the shot interesting, sometimes its asking the models to move, and most of the time both. The giant head behind the model is distracting like a giant BK king peeking up at them, and the head on the right side of the frame throws off the balance, some could argue the trees on the other side might balance it out but I dont think it jives. I would have tried to ask them to move in between the heads and move over to the left to shoot,where things are a bit more balanced...or focus on one of the heads and have them pose on each side of it. The girls are photogenic and it looks like you got the shot of them but I'd have probably gone portrait instead of landscape or went with a wider lens if there were a lot of interesting things you were trying to show.

I dont think youre thinking about the shot, it seems like you see 2 subjects that are interesting or pretty, you stopped and asked...they posed you pulled the camera up and just took a snapshot. The subjects themselves are symmetrical to each other (although the green ones elbow was pointed too far in). If you dont want to pose them move around, get different angles and zoom out and in until you see something that makes you say "Yeaaaahhh baby" in a british accent.[/QUOTE]

I actually tried to pose them, but other guests were trying to get their photo too... problem when you're working with theme park performers. I'm going to try to fix the shot next weekend. too much went wrong on sat to name and a lot was my fault. but I did shoot manual, with clouds, with flash in a raised position.

how is the lighting? do i need to fix that? I can easily fix the poses and way the image is put together, but i care about the lighting more right now since that was where most people criticized me before.

#4 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

Exposure from what I can see thus far looks fine, no harsh shadows on face, though sometimes a fill flash can fill in some light shadows and also give it a certain "pop". The blacks and greens of her dress\hair and disappearing into the background so a little more exposure couldnt have hurt but its livable. If you had better lighting (or forced more lighting via flash\speedlight) you could have gotten out of the 1/30th of a second danger realm. At 1/30th of a second, camera shake and slight movements can ruin sharpness and make for some fuzzy things...possibly the fingers on the green glove could be from movement but I cant tell until the original is posted.

If your body\lenses have image stabilization I think youre ok with 1/30th of a second on a still subject...I think the general rule (for non OS\IS\VR) is handheld camera shake can easily appear when youre shooting below 1/60th of a second. On a full frame camera the min shutter speed you would want to prevent handheld camera shake is to put a one over your focal length...e.g. 100mm would be 1/100th , 200mm would be 1/200th...For a crop sensor the true 35mm equiv is roughly 1.5x , so your 200mm becomes a 1/300th of a second.

#5 WonJohnSoup on 5 years ago

In terms of just lighting, there isn't really any shaping or control over that it seems. Not saying this as an insult, but that's essentially one of the biggest things of a "snapshot" as opposed to a directed shoot. This looks like it was just overcast or in shade with maybe some on camera fill flash or something. But really, there's no shaping to the lighting whatsoever. In a "bumrush everyone shoot the pretty girls quick" kind of thing, there's really not much you can do, but there's also not much critique, either.

If you're looking into getting a true grasp of lighting, I would go back to directing toy models until it just "clicks" on day. It wasn't really a slow incremental leveling up in lighting skills for me. It suddenly just happened and I went 5 times up in level. Then once I had a real idea of what was going on, then I would advance in smaller but still significant leaps. Before all that when I was using only "found lighting" with no manipulation or assessment of the environment in regards to lighting BEFORE I shot, there was really no progress.

I would grind at lighting practice with the toys until the breakthrough happens. When that happens the whole game changes. At least it did for me. Good luck.

#6 Sufida on 5 years ago

I can't help but feel drawn to the face....

I think the previous two posts hit it though. There isn't much to say as there isn't anything super awesome or horrifically bad about it. It's just your sort of standard photo most people would take at these sort of events and the same quality/editing applied to it as well. The only thing I would say is the burger queen seems more in focus than the subject which makes her the subject to my eyes.

Admire you using manual and trying to learn, but I would practice a bit more and use what we have told you until you start seeing some real results. Purpose of critique isn't so much to just pick apart or praise something, but to gather knowledge so it can be applied to further photos. That one piece of advice might not pan out right away, but it will over some time.

You could have also combined your old photo thread to this thread for critique. It would of been easier to comment on both photos together as they suffer similar problems. They are also a little off topic, not that I mind that usually.

#7 nathancarter on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=WonJohnSoup;4825606]In terms of just lighting, there isn't really any shaping or control over that it seems. Not saying this as an insult, but that's essentially one of the biggest things of a "snapshot" as opposed to a directed shoot. This looks like it was just overcast or in shade with maybe some on camera fill flash or something. But really, there's no shaping to the lighting whatsoever. In a "bumrush everyone shoot the pretty girls quick" kind of thing, there's really not much you can do, but there's also not much critique, either.

If you're looking into getting a true grasp of lighting, I would go back to directing toy models until it just "clicks" on day. It wasn't really a slow incremental leveling up in lighting skills for me. It suddenly just happened and I went 5 times up in level. Then once I had a real idea of what was going on, then I would advance in smaller but still significant leaps. Before all that when I was using only "found lighting" with no manipulation or assessment of the environment in regards to lighting BEFORE I shot, there was really no progress.

I would grind at lighting practice with the toys until the breakthrough happens. When that happens the whole game changes. At least it did for me. Good luck.[/QUOTE]


Spot on, both points.

If you can't control the lighting, can't direct the models, can't choose the background, and are fighting a crowd of other people, then there's really not much you can do to distinguish this from a snapshot. There's nothing wrong with snapshots of cute girls, but ... let's call it what it is.

Technical critique: Heavy jpeg compression, either through your editing/processing, or because of Facebook hosting, have destroyed any image quality. Try rehosting on Flickr or Smugmug or ...well, almost anywhere that's NOT facebook. If you're now managing your photo library with Lightroom, make sure to export using a quality of 83 or higher, and DON'T limit the file size in kb.
If you're using Lightroom (or any other software to compress jpegs, really), here's a good read:
[url]http://regex.info/blog/lightroom-goodies/jpeg-quality[/url]

A tiny bit of fill flash would have helped a lot, I think. Don't use the flash as the main light; instead, underexpose by about half a stop using shutter/ISO/aperture, then use flash to lift the subjects just a little tiny bit.

Aesthetic critique: The girls are cute, but the pose and expression are boring. The framing is crooked enough to be distracting; if you can't hold the camera straight due to injury, then frame it much more loosely so you can straighten/crop in post. The huge faces - yeah, I know those are a staple of Mardis Gras - but those huge faces are really distracting from the subjects. If you could have posed the subjects to be framed by the faces, or had them intact with the faces in any way, the shot would have been much more compelling, even with technical flaws.

#8 Access on 5 years ago

You always have to be aware of backgrounds, esp. when the background has hues that are roughly the same as the subjects.

Technically, I would be aware that the 'rule of thumb' doesn't necessarily apply when shooting people, 1/60 shutter or faster even at the wider focal lengths. Unless they're doing a very good job of standing still.

#9 figment1986 on 5 years ago

Took this last sat... am in in the right direction?

[IMG]https://scontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/t1/q71/s720x720/1904086_609580465758247_1927439721_n.jpg[/IMG]

[URL="https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=609580465758247&set=a.606595372723423.1073741857.532877073428587&type=3&src=https://scontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/t1/1904086_609580465758247_1927439721_n.jpg&size=641,960"]https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=609580465758247&set=a.606595372723423.1073741857.532877073428587&type=3&src=https://scontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/t1/1904086_609580465758247_1927439721_n.jpg&size=641,960[/URL]

#10 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

framings better than the last for sure... but please for the love, post the originals on flickr so we can see it in high detail and look at the exif. Ill comment more when youve posted it up on flickr.

#11 figment1986 on 5 years ago

[QUOTE=jonashley;4829718]framings better than the last for sure... but please for the love, post the originals on flickr so we can see it in high detail and look at the exif. Ill comment more when youve posted it up on flickr.[/QUOTE]

fine... i'll post this one up there. I don't have a smugmug uploader for mac yet...

Uploaded a HQ copy to my flickr:

[IMG]http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5517/12608927034_62b84cfe39_b.jpg[/IMG]
[url]http://www.flickr.com/photos/figment1986/12608927034/[/url]

#12 fam-cosplayphotographer on 5 years ago

Thank you! SOOOO much more detail when you post it on flickr though its still a small version (683x1024)

Focus looks good. pose and framing are good.. yes her dress wire touches the edge of the frame but thats only a minor knit pick.
Flash firing was the right thing to do...though one would argue that you might want a little more power to the flash here..purposely over expose them so you can back it down in post and make the background damn near black....which brings me to the main issue ...which is the sunny building which destroy my idea of turning the background black....its also a big distraction point...its no giant head but in color and distraction...its still there...it overpowers the dark colors of your characters...moving to your right and having them shift where your background would have possibly been all shade would have been nice.

This is still one of your stronger images. PS...if you shoot me the raw file of this image I think I can do some pretty cool things with this...my email is jonashley69 atgmail dotcom if you have the raw and i'll edit it and give it back to you.

Once again, stronger image, a lot better.

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