June 30, 2018 at 2:25 pm #31740
I was out in my yard this week taking pictures of flowers and such. These are two of the pictures that I took; I’d love to hear comments that anyone may have on either of the pictures: composition, camera settings, etc.
Camera: Nikon D3100
I shot these in Manual Mode.
Forsythia Leaves – mid-afternoon
Focal length: 150mm | ISO: 800 | Aperture: f/5 | Shutterspeed: 1/250
Day Lily – early morning
Focal length: 200mm | ISO: 100 | Aperture: f/5.6 | Shutterspeed: 1/500July 2, 2018 at 5:08 pm #31776
With the day lily I would a use smaller f-stop -maybe f/8 or f/11. When you’re zoomed in that far there is very little depth of field, consequently the whole flower is not in focus. Even at f/11 the background should still be plenty blurred. Also remember that the focus falls 1/3 in front and 2/3 behind were your focus point is. So focus on the front of the flower.
The forsythia leaves are in focus even at f/5 because they’re not as 3D.
But other then that, the pictures look great!July 4, 2018 at 6:11 pm #31821
Love the intentional placement of leaves in the first one, and blurry background of course. Appears slightly back-focused. I wonder what it would look like in B&W….the light, middle leaf is up against a dark splotch of background, and I think there’s some really neat contrast there.
The second one is awesome. Sharp. Colorful. Great contrast. Great placement. Good job.July 5, 2018 at 10:44 am #31826
@blessingscaptured, thanks! I will try to get outside and try it with a more narrow aperture to see if I can get the whole flower in focus as you mentioned.
@jamesstaddon, could you explain what you mean by “back-focused”?
Here’s the first pic in B&W. I find it interesting to see it in that perspective; my brother-in-law’s mom has an eye disorder and one of the effects of that disorder is that she is color-blind, so this is how she’s sees everything all the time! She has never seen color in her entire life!July 7, 2018 at 12:44 pm #31880
@blessingscaptured, here is a similar photo with a more narrow aperture 🙂 What do you think?
ISO: 400 | Shutterspeed: 1/200 | Aperture: f/18July 7, 2018 at 5:26 pm #31892
I really like that last one! it’s really bright and “clean” 🙂July 9, 2018 at 7:58 am #31912
@LydiaBennentt that looks great! I like how the whole flowers is focused now. I’m always having to remind myself to narrow down my aperture when I’m taking close ups.
One other thing. I know that it’s hard to get the light right, And use a narrow aperture; but I noticed that the center of the flower is shaded and dark. Maybe you could turn the flower around, use a flower that was pointed at the sun, or take it at a different time of day.July 11, 2018 at 12:12 pm #31994
could you explain what you mean by “back-focused”?
Using the exact spot that’s supposed to be in focus as your point of reference, “back-focused” is when behind that spot is actually what is in focus, and “front-focused” is when in front of that spot is actually what is in focus.
In your photo, since the leaf that is your subject is not completely in focus (whereas all the other leaves are in focus), it feels like the photo isn’t focused properly. The focus is on the stem of the subject leaf instead of on the broad area of the subject leaf, leading me to comment that it was back focused.July 11, 2018 at 9:00 pm #32019
Thanks, @jamesstaddon, that makes sense!
So, after a picture is taken, is there a way that you can see where the focus is in the picture other than just eyeing it, or is there some way in-camera that you can see where the focus point was?
Sometimes when I’m taking a picture, I think I’m focusing properly, but then afterwards when I look at later it’s not in focus as much as I thought it was…July 18, 2018 at 3:14 pm #32149
During image capture, some high-end cameras have focus peaking. This highlights the area that is in focus before you take the picture.
After taking the picture, there’s no way to know exactly. You can enable/disable focus point display during image playback (https://support.usa.canon.com/kb/index?page=content&id=ART169050&cat=9128B&actp=LIST&showDraft=false), but that just shows you which focus point you were using and doesn’t factor in any focus-recomposing that happened while taking the shot. You might find that helpful, though, considering your question.July 19, 2018 at 6:36 pm #32195
Ok well besides the fact that I have a Nikon and am not finding “enable/disable focus point display during image playback” on my camera, I do tend to focus-recompose a decent amount of the time, so it may not be helpful anyways.
…I should probably just work on being more aware of where I’m focusing 🙂
Thanks, James!July 24, 2018 at 4:44 pm #32324
My Pentax DSLR has an option to zoom with one click to 8x magnification as soon as the picture is taken. I often use that feature to check for critical focus where I want it: (on the eyes, during a portrait shoot for example).July 25, 2018 at 11:37 am #32341
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