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Author Topic: Depth of Field, composition and thinking it through...  (Read 5360 times)

trentchau

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Re: Depth of Field, composition and thinking it through...
« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2012, 12:14:33 PM »
I recently did some passport-style head shots of a couple musicians with the 180 macro at f/11. In retrospect, I wish I had stopped down more -- the hair against the white background is softer than it should be.

So there -- portraiture with a slow macro stopped way down, but still not enough. Go figure.

Cheers,

b&

Step back and crop in :)  On some lens F16 could look worse than F11.

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Re: Depth of Field, composition and thinking it through...
« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2012, 12:14:33 PM »

TrumpetPower!

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Re: Depth of Field, composition and thinking it through...
« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2012, 12:26:27 PM »
I recently did some passport-style head shots of a couple musicians with the 180 macro at f/11. In retrospect, I wish I had stopped down more -- the hair against the white background is softer than it should be.

So there -- portraiture with a slow macro stopped way down, but still not enough. Go figure.

Cheers,

b&

Step back and crop in :)  On some lens F16 could look worse than F11.

Well, I literally had my back to the wall...short of breaking out the sledgehammer, that wasn't going to happen...

...but the 180 is specifically designed to be stopped way down. It's a macro lens, remember?

And, besides. This was on a 5DIII, and the results aren't ever going to be printed bigger than 8" x 10". Diffraction is no way, no how going to be the limiting factor.

Cheers,

b&

trentchau

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Re: Depth of Field, composition and thinking it through...
« Reply #17 on: August 06, 2012, 12:30:18 PM »
I recently did some passport-style head shots of a couple musicians with the 180 macro at f/11. In retrospect, I wish I had stopped down more -- the hair against the white background is softer than it should be.

So there -- portraiture with a slow macro stopped way down, but still not enough. Go figure.

Cheers,

b&

Step back and crop in :)  On some lens F16 could look worse than F11.

Well, I literally had my back to the wall...short of breaking out the sledgehammer, that wasn't going to happen...

...but the 180 is specifically designed to be stopped way down. It's a macro lens, remember?

And, besides. This was on a 5DIII, and the results aren't ever going to be printed bigger than 8" x 10". Diffraction is no way, no how going to be the limiting factor.

Cheers,

b&

Hey sorry, you know what you are doing obviously.  Sorry you didn't get the shot you exactly wanted :)

Just playing around.  Just reiterating the fact that it's more than just aperture.  My 85 1.2L II looks better at F11 than 16, and my 100 2.8L macro did also.

distant.star

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Re: Depth of Field, composition and thinking it through...
« Reply #18 on: August 06, 2012, 02:29:41 PM »
I think the background of the photo doesnt add anything to the image in this case. Its just a tree, some houses and a tower. Plus its blurred also when u check full size. The focus is totally on this girls face and the fence.

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I disagree. The power of this image is the starkly focused human surrounded by a cold, institutional setting -- fences in front, fences behind, a tree horribly disfigured by topping, featureless architecture with buildings crowded atop one another and what's probably one of those safe "playgrounds" where children learn to be penned in and not take chances while they are under constant surveillance. And while a tower may be implied, I looked hard and never saw one. The blurring of the background enables it to be correctly identified yet still carry the theme of human hemmed in by faceless institutions.

That's how that particular image plays for me, and to dismiss the background as meaningless is a disservice to the overall image.

I think the message of the original post is to simply think before shuttering. What's the point of the image? Does the background add or distract from the message? A great thing about f/1.4 is it can be used as an instant portable backdrop when needed. But, it's not always needed and doesn't always help the story.

If a picture really is worth a thousand words, I want my full thousand when I create that picture. If I have to show freckles and eyelashes, so be it. If I have to show a teaming bazaar in the background, so be that.

I consider it good personal progress over the last few years that I now almost always screen a scene before raising the camera. I want to see what's in the background and think about what it does to the overall image.
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...

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Re: Depth of Field, composition and thinking it through...
« Reply #18 on: August 06, 2012, 02:29:41 PM »