December 16, 2017, 06:07:43 AM

Author Topic: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?  (Read 4664 times)

drmikeinpdx

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2017, 11:54:19 AM »
Thanks for starting a fun thread, YuengLinger!  Count me with the group that constantly adjust my DOF depending on the background and the overall concept for the shot.  For exampe, I adjust it depending on which body parts of my subject I wish to be in focus.  Not all of my photoshoots are with models who have perfect bodies and shallow DOF is a great tool that allows me to avoid a lot of photoshopping when doing nude portraits for paying clients. 

My favorite lens for this is my Canon EF 50mm F/1.2 L, but I have several others for special situations.   I don't often use it wide open, because the zone of focus is too thin at my typical working distance.  You have to hunt around in the photo to find the sharp area and I feel that takes away from my goal of capturing the personality of my subject in an image that has instant impact on the viewer.   Around F/2 is probably the sweet spot for me. 

I do use my EF 35mm F/2 IS wide open a lot and my 24-70 Mark II is almost always wide open at F/2.8.  When I want deep DOF, I tend to use the 24-105 in order to have the greater focal length options.

If anyone wishes to see how I vary my technique for different human subjects, you are welcome to take a quick browse through this "safe for work" gallery:http://www.beyondboudoirphoto.com/p1015610154
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blog:   http://www.BeyondBoudoirPhoto.com

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2017, 11:54:19 AM »

YuengLinger

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2017, 12:54:40 PM »
Thanks for starting a fun thread, YuengLinger!  Count me with the group that constantly adjust my DOF depending on the background and the overall concept for the shot.  For exampe, I adjust it depending on which body parts of my subject I wish to be in focus.  Not all of my photoshoots are with models who have perfect bodies and shallow DOF is a great tool that allows me to avoid a lot of photoshopping when doing nude portraits for paying clients. 

My favorite lens for this is my Canon EF 50mm F/1.2 L, but I have several others for special situations.   I don't often use it wide open, because the zone of focus is too thin at my typical working distance.  You have to hunt around in the photo to find the sharp area and I feel that takes away from my goal of capturing the personality of my subject in an image that has instant impact on the viewer.   Around F/2 is probably the sweet spot for me. 

I do use my EF 35mm F/2 IS wide open a lot and my 24-70 Mark II is almost always wide open at F/2.8.  When I want deep DOF, I tend to use the 24-105 in order to have the greater focal length options.

If anyone wishes to see how I vary my technique for different human subjects, you are welcome to take a quick browse through this "safe for work" gallery:http://www.beyondboudoirphoto.com/p1015610154

Great gallery!  Enjoyable to look at.  What I like is the excellent craftsmanship employed on such a variety of scenarios and subjects.  Instructive too.  Thanks!

Clearly you go beyond camera skills into the much more difficult realm of...people skills.  Your clients must be very happy.

stevelee

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #17 on: October 01, 2017, 01:51:54 PM »
"Lazy composer" hit home to me, in that I recently had the idea of composing 95 pieces for orchestra during October, as a sort of 500-year celebration.

95 pieces for the 500th got a chuckle from me  ;D. You wouldn't  be planning on nailing them to a door anywhere would you?  ;)

Probably not nailing, since the two churches here where I could get away with it both have glass doors. Maybe just tape them. I already have a nail on my front door where I hang my Christmas wreath, so I could use that.

Here it is October 1 already, and I’m leaving in an hour for the rest of the day, and I haven’t written any music, so I have apparently already taken the "lazy composer" option.

CanonFanBoy

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2017, 02:25:28 PM »
"Lazy composer" hit home to me, in that I recently had the idea of composing 95 pieces for orchestra during October, as a sort of 500-year celebration.

95 pieces for the 500th got a chuckle from me  ;D. You wouldn't  be planning on nailing them to a door anywhere would you?  ;)

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GMCPhotographics

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #19 on: October 01, 2017, 02:51:01 PM »
Isolation by dof is a timeless composition choice. It's actually a very hard discipline to master effectively. For my UK wedding work, fast primes are a requirement due to the low light and the lack of flash usage. So I would choose differential composition choices because I had the ability. On brighter days (we do get them) I would choose F2.8 zooms and my composition choices would change somewhat. Placement is the same regardless of DOF. But slim DOF does allow a photographer to remove anything that is a distraction to the main subject.

Mikehit

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #20 on: October 01, 2017, 03:50:38 PM »
An interesting choice of title - I am not sure why using a shallow DOF would make you 'lazy'. You still have to think about composition and the background colours, even when unrecognisably blurred, still have to match with the mood and the subject.

Don Haines

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2017, 06:56:55 PM »
Reminds me of a recent product shoot...... F1.4 for the product to achieve maximum separation, and F16 for an overall shot to get both the subject and the background in focus.....

The short answer, is do whatever the situation and customer requires.....
The best camera is the one in your hands

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2017, 06:56:55 PM »

Normalnorm

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2017, 09:33:56 PM »
Composition and DOF are two different things.

Irrespective of DOF, lousy composition negates almost anything else you are trying to do.

Shallow DOF has its uses but they are far fewer than its proponents think.
If one looks at the vast bulk of commercial images, a moderate to deep DOF is typical.

Shallow DOF is a cliche beaten to death by relative newbies (new in the last five years) as a signifier of expertise. IMO the only thing it signifies these days is that the user believes it adds artistry automatically and that they bought a fast lens.

LDS

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2017, 09:01:55 AM »
Really depends on what the subject, the environment, and the meaning of the photo dictates (unless you're following a commission and you'll do whatever asked to do). What's the relationship between the subject(s) and the environment? That often dictates which DoF will work better - there are some degrees between "everything sharp" and "everything totally out of focus". Sometimes, discernible shapes but blurred may work better.

Anyway, I usually don't like extremes - especially when they require a great deal of processing - because they become soon preposterous and tiring - often looks to me like a modern kind of Pictorialism, I don't like both photographers.

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Re: Do fast primes make you a lazy composer?
« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2017, 09:01:55 AM »