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Author Topic: Critique my Progress?  (Read 1118 times)

lady

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Critique my Progress?
« on: May 13, 2012, 03:29:06 AM »
I made a thread a couple of months back (can be found here) asking for advice because my pictures on my 7D seemed "dull".

I'm mostly a hobby photographer. I don't do it for money unless someone explicitly asks me to (this has happened once, but it wasn't a huge job they just wanted prints and offered to pay more than the prints would cost so I made a decent profit). I just do things for the enjoyment of documenting every day life and memories.

After seeing some of the suggestions in that last thread, I followed through, and I think I've improved a ton. Let me know what you think.

Most of my pictures can be found here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kreebby but for the sake of keeping things specific I'll only post a few choice samples.

Same dog, though older. Same park, too.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kreebby/7180043844/#in/photostream/

Ignore the random shoe, he got in the way of my picture last minute.


Portrait of sorts (very candid)

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kreebby/7180077038/#in/photostream/

Same exact water at the same part of the beach as in the other thread:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/kreebby/7180084990/#in/photostream/

What do you guys think?

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Critique my Progress?
« on: May 13, 2012, 03:29:06 AM »

ShokTHX

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Re: Critique my Progress?
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2012, 11:44:40 AM »
I think you have improved very much. I like that you are getting to the dog's eye level (as someone suggested in the old post).
The last one with the dog in the water I think is the strongest here. It's technically good and has decent composition. That and the wet dog has a great look. :) Also notice how much better the image is when you take the leash off and don't have that distraction in the photo.

How I would improve the other three:
The biggest problem with the first (with the ball) is the background is distracting (mostly the tables and the sky is also close in  value to both the ball and the man.). I think if you shifted your camera angle you might have been able to separate from the background a bit more. Other than that, I think this shot is just fine and the color and exposure look good (not bad getting detail in the dog and the man's skin).
The one with the shoe looks a little cold on the color balance yet especially if you compare it the nice warm white balance you have on all the others. I'd white balance so the shadow is warmer since only 1/4 of the dog is getting the direct sun. Also, the dog's head seems to be abnormally large. Might not be the right lens for the shot. Finally, I'm not letting you off for the shoe. It's digital and the 7D has a pretty good buffer. Shoot some more shots and get one without the shoe. :) It's not a 12 exposure roll of film where you have to hold back.
The portrait of sorts looks right on with exposure and color. Focus is good. Everything is technically good. It might be better if the dog filled the frame a bit more (the head most often should not be dead center like this), Oddly, I like the edge of the owner's body in the photo although the leash is distracting.

You might want to think about getting closer to the dog's face and filling the frame with it. Unless you have added to your lens collection even the 50mm with the 1.6 crop is going to seem a bit distorted close especially with dogs. You might want to think about a bit longer lens that can focus close.

This is all very nit-picky and if you warm up the white balance on the shoe, I think most people would be glad to have images like this of their dog. You've improved your dog photography a lot.


Pets can be a very difficult subject and dogs can be right up there with some of the hardest of pets (it depends on the situation and the dog). They are small. It can be hard to get them to be still long enough to compose (let alone get focus on the eye). Sometimes they get nervous and just won't look right even if you get the perfect shot. Cats can be far worse - they will simply be stubborn and refuse to be photographed.

Great shots,
James

lady

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Re: Critique my Progress?
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2012, 02:23:16 PM »
I think you have improved very much. I like that you are getting to the dog's eye level (as someone suggested in the old post).
The last one with the dog in the water I think is the strongest here. It's technically good and has decent composition. That and the wet dog has a great look. :) Also notice how much better the image is when you take the leash off and don't have that distraction in the photo.

How I would improve the other three:
The biggest problem with the first (with the ball) is the background is distracting (mostly the tables and the sky is also close in  value to both the ball and the man.). I think if you shifted your camera angle you might have been able to separate from the background a bit more. Other than that, I think this shot is just fine and the color and exposure look good (not bad getting detail in the dog and the man's skin).
The one with the shoe looks a little cold on the color balance yet especially if you compare it the nice warm white balance you have on all the others. I'd white balance so the shadow is warmer since only 1/4 of the dog is getting the direct sun. Also, the dog's head seems to be abnormally large. Might not be the right lens for the shot. Finally, I'm not letting you off for the shoe. It's digital and the 7D has a pretty good buffer. Shoot some more shots and get one without the shoe. :) It's not a 12 exposure roll of film where you have to hold back.
The portrait of sorts looks right on with exposure and color. Focus is good. Everything is technically good. It might be better if the dog filled the frame a bit more (the head most often should not be dead center like this), Oddly, I like the edge of the owner's body in the photo although the leash is distracting.

You might want to think about getting closer to the dog's face and filling the frame with it. Unless you have added to your lens collection even the 50mm with the 1.6 crop is going to seem a bit distorted close especially with dogs. You might want to think about a bit longer lens that can focus close.

This is all very nit-picky and if you warm up the white balance on the shoe, I think most people would be glad to have images like this of their dog. You've improved your dog photography a lot.


Pets can be a very difficult subject and dogs can be right up there with some of the hardest of pets (it depends on the situation and the dog). They are small. It can be hard to get them to be still long enough to compose (let alone get focus on the eye). Sometimes they get nervous and just won't look right even if you get the perfect shot. Cats can be far worse - they will simply be stubborn and refuse to be photographed.

Great shots,
James

Thanks!

I actually really appreciate that you're getting nit picky and giving me ways to improve. There are always ways I can improve and any feedback is great (most of the people I show my pictures to say things like "oh nice pictures you have a good camera" and "nice dog", I recently used my point-and-shoot to take some pictures and had someone complimenting the detail my dslr gets, they failed to notice it was me that made the shot work, not the camera). Every bit helps.

In the photo where the dog's head is abnormally large, he is actually sticking his neck out towards me. I think I took a few shots and I'll have to dig through an see if I have one where he isn't doing that. However, I do need a better portrait lens. For this I was using the 17-40mm, but I also own a 50mm f/1.4. I'm still trying to fine tune my future lens collection and decide which combination would work best for me.

Right now my plan is to get a 24-70mm (probably this winter?) and eventually sell the 17-40mm for a 16-35mm. Another thing I'm considering is grabbing an 85mm (I've been told they are invaluable) because compared to the other lenses I want it's very affordable. I also need a lens that can focus closer up to things, and a macro lens/macro adapter. I don't do a lot of macro photography, but on occasion I've found things like bugs or ticks or even slugs that I wish I could get closer to to focus in more detail, but the 50mm has to be x distance away. So thanks :)

Axilrod

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Re: Critique my Progress?
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2012, 02:00:45 PM »


Right now my plan is to get a 24-70mm (probably this winter?) and eventually sell the 17-40mm for a 16-35mm. Another thing I'm considering is grabbing an 85mm (I've been told they are invaluable) because compared to the other lenses I want it's very affordable. I also need a lens that can focus closer up to things, and a macro lens/macro adapter. I don't do a lot of macro photography, but on occasion I've found things like bugs or ticks or even slugs that I wish I could get closer to to focus in more detail, but the 50mm has to be x distance away. So thanks :)

If you are interested in an 85mm and also are interested in Macro photography, it may be worth getting the 100mm Macro f/2.8 (non-L or the IS L version), both versions are excellent but the IS would help since the sensor size of the 7D effectively lengthens the focal length to 160mm (which can be tough to handhold). 

I didn't see your first pictures, so I don't have a frame of reference, but I think your shots look great.  Getting eye level with your subject is crucial and can make all the difference in the world, so nice job.
5DIII/5DII/Bunch of L's and ZE's, currently rearranging.

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Re: Critique my Progress?
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2012, 02:00:45 PM »