October 20, 2014, 11:56:46 PM

Author Topic: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance  (Read 1730 times)

TWI by Dustin Abbott

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How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« on: February 17, 2014, 08:51:22 AM »
My last article brought a certain amount of controversy, so I post the next in the series with some trepidation ;D

I did take to heart some of your suggestions, so let me be clear about what this little article is:  it is a brief look into the why of what was going on in my head when I chose the subject to shoot along with a few technique tips of how I took the shot.  It's a mix of a little photography philosophy and a few technique tips for framing and producing pleasing, complimentary bokeh.  I realize that there is a broad ability range on this message board, as there is in the greater audience of the people that visit my site.  I in no way am trying to be offensive or even self-promotional with this series; I want to help people.  A few of you seem offended by that, and, if you are, then please disregard this thread and move on to something that is interesting for you.

Here's a little snippet of what the article is about, and if you want to read more...click through.

"Why I Took the Shot

Winter came early this year, and shows no signs of being in a hurry to leave. It has been a hard one. Cold, bleak, and with heavy storms. Winter at its best can be fabulously beautiful, but amongst all the seasons it is also most likely to come with a lot of dark, dreary days.

It doesn’t help that as winter sets in, most of the color gets leeched from the world. The trees are bare (other than the evergreens), and that, combined with frequently overcast skies, leaves the world a pretty bleak place. I often feel like the world has become monochrome.  It seems at times like I am stumbling around the woods looking for something with just a hint of color to photograph.  Desperate…..for…..color!!!

It is for this reason that I have a special place in my heart for the beech tree.  It breaks the rules...
" to read more, click herehttp://dustinabbott.net/2014/02/how-and-why-i-took-the-shot-2-persistance/..."

Thanks for you time, and, I sincerely hope this helps someone...
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How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« on: February 17, 2014, 08:51:22 AM »

surapon

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2014, 09:34:59 AM »
Thanks you, Sir Dear Friend/ Teacher Mr. Dustin.
You are a great Teacher, who can point us to get the best / unique point of views/ Good Photos,  by just observe and modified the back ground light---to support the main subject.
Yes, Sir. I have learn from your point of views and your technique + your artistic ability of Photographer that only 5-10% of the photographers in this world have.
Have a great workweek, Sir----Please keep on doing your great work for us.
Surapon

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2014, 12:26:29 PM »
.
Glad to see you're persisting, Dustin. For all the talk I see about "visualization" and such, I've often seen resistance here to posts concerned with actually thinking about composition and equipment and shooting specifications -- and what the intention was when a shutter was actuated. I strongly believe it's worth discussing.

You're example this time was so much like one I did last fall that I decided to share it -- and reinforce you're points about lens selection and background and bokeh.

There's a tree across the street from my apartment. The arborists among us will have to say what it is; I'm not oriented that way. The leaves take on a great golden, orangish glow in autumn. In 2012 I took some shots of the leaves in their full color using a 135mm lens to isolate and do a sort of portrait of one or more leaves. I got an adequate shot, but it wasn't as good as what I wanted, so it bothered me all the following year. Last fall (2013) I was determined to get a better rendition -- as our Jewish friends say, "Next year, in Jerusalem."

The right day came in early November, and I went out in late afternoon with the 135mm mounted on the 5D3. The background leaves can provide a great bokeh with the 135 at wide aperture, and I took a bunch of those. One problem becomes DOF when you have to look up into the tree. The angle is not head-on to the leaf you're using as a subject so you need a larger DOF to get the majority of the leaf in focus. Narrowing down the aperture to accommodate DOF then degrades the bokeh somewhat. Not having a ladder to get a head-on shot, I turned my attention to some leaves out on the end of a branch where a portion of blue sky would provide a contrasting background.

I ended up with shots like the one posted here. Most of the target leaf is in focus at f/4.5. That blurs out the sky pretty well so it's just a blue background with a hint of cloud. A wider aperture would not have provided enough DOF given the angle on the leaf. A narrower  one would have slowed down shutter speed too much for the breeze that kept the leaves dancing. And finally, there were banks of clouds moving across the sun -- so much persistence was needed waiting for the right light and a break in the breeze.

Specs on this image: 5D3, Canon 135L, f/4.5, 1/500, ISO 160.

Discussing the decisions made about equipment, composition, specifications, etc. are very useful. For me, this tends to keep all these things in mind when I shoot instead of just looking only at one or two aspects. On a good day, I do a lot less "I wish I had thought about..." when I come home with the images.

Thanks again.




Walter: Were you listening to The Dude's story? Donny: I was bowling. Walter: So you have no frame of reference here, Donny. You're like a child who wanders into the middle of a movie and wants to know...

andy

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2014, 01:56:07 PM »
Hey Dustin,
I would like to say I always enjoy your posts even if I do not comment. It is great that you have the courage to put your thoughts, process and work out there for everyone to see.  I hope you never let your creativity be controlled by negative comments from others. Most of us here realize that tearing something down is so much easier, and less of a contribution, than putting yourself and your work out there.
Have a good one,
Andy

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2014, 11:57:00 PM »
Great article, Dustin.  I think you did a better job explaining the primary purpose of the series, which is how to create a shot that has meaning.  Being well versed with your equipment and having a technical understanding is great.  With that you can purposefully compose the frame and configure the camera to create the photo to match the message.

Some people have ideas they want to convey but lack the technical skills or equipment to create the right image.  Others have gained the technical skill and equipment to make technically right photos, but lack any particular meaning.  But if you can combine the two, you become a true artist, and great things result. 

Most things I've read here and other places focus primarily on the technical aspect, how quickly a lens focuses, how sharp a lens is in the corners, or how much vignetting you get at a certain aperture.  It's great to finally see some emphasis on the message side of photography, and it has certainly given me much to think about what I want my next photo to say.

Keep it up, I look forward to the next one.

--Ron

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #5 on: February 19, 2014, 12:20:03 PM »
-------------------------------
"Because of the framing choices, I had to do very little in post.  I’ve added a bit of contrast and slight bit of saturation (I add no saturation in camera, preferring to do that in post) through a preset I’ve made.  I’ve only used Adobe Lightroom for the adjustments to these images."
-------------------------------

dustin, i would like to say that i have loved most of your images due to its color, composition and the feeling from them (so calm).  however, with your above direction of editing your image, i would think it might be a little more than it has been said.  i think there are additional tweaks with clarity/sharpness (lower), tone mappin'/split tone, etc.

please let me know as if i am correct since i am currently trying to, myself, learn post processing and composing for color even though my eyes have little problems with color, not color blind (since i was a kid)

thanks very much...

Famateur

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2014, 01:37:24 PM »
Dustin,

Thanks for another great post. Count me as one who always enjoys the photos you share, and adding the "you were there" context is appreciated. As they say, "A picture is worth a thousand words." Sometimes, though, it takes "a thousand words" to fully appreciate a photograph.

Cheers...

« Last Edit: February 19, 2014, 07:04:23 PM by Famateur »

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2014, 01:37:24 PM »

TWI by Dustin Abbott

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #7 on: February 20, 2014, 02:00:44 PM »
Thanks to everyone for the nice feedback.  I've been out of the loop a bit here, and that will probably be the case moving ahead for a bit.  I've been a little too busy and am trying to step back.  Take more time to make pictures and less time talking about them.
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Arctic Photo

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2014, 04:55:53 AM »
So you only want people thinking this is a fantastic 'series' commenting so you only get positive comments? Then why do you expose yourself on the internet in the first place?


Albi86

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2014, 10:06:09 AM »
I appreciated this one much better than the previous. The shot itself was more interesting and the technical explanation behind the composition was indeed nice. Thumbs up!

However...

I in no way am trying to be offensive or even self-promotional with this series; I want to help people. 


Fair enough.  I absolutely am trying to drive attention to my website to continue building my brand.  I have no problem acknowledging that.


Seriously?

Arctic Photo

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2014, 10:21:59 AM »
I appreciated this one much better than the previous. The shot itself was more interesting and the technical explanation behind the composition was indeed nice. Thumbs up!

However...

I in no way am trying to be offensive or even self-promotional with this series; I want to help people. 


Fair enough.  I absolutely am trying to drive attention to my website to continue building my brand.  I have no problem acknowledging that.


Seriously?
There's a word for that

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Re: How (and Why) I Took the Shot #2: Persistance
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2014, 10:21:59 AM »