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Tis a zoomy based conundrum

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Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 7:40 PM

Having settled into a 'comfort-zone,' of image taking and happy (ish) wiith my results; I now at least know what kind of picture taking I like ... (accepting one's limitations that is.)

I run with a Canon 500 DSLR and have two lenses that use mostly. The Canon 55 - 250 zoom and a 17-85 Canon.

I actually like the results that I get from the 55-250 zoom and am generally happy. Mostly I photograph my Bonsai and associated Kusamono or (accent) plantings. I use now my garden as a backdrop so depth of field to blur out background is great. I'm honestly happy with results, but clarity despite using elements is still an issue. I photograph in RAW and process to jpg for viewing on my Apple Mac and or everything I do is for my Wordpress website or my Bonsai club WP site or even Facebook. I never print anything, so restrictions on quality are what screen one happens to view on.

Maybe 'you' will say for what I do I am duly sorted. On the other hand I just sort of feel I can do better. With Bonsai which I have been into for three decades; I keep a detailed photographic record. I now view on my HD Apple Mac and enjoy generally what I see.

Maybe though I can do better than the Canon 55-250. Maybe not?

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28 May 2012 - 7:40 PM

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Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 7:46 PM

Oh; and I meant to say if I want advice I'll only take what comes here ... 'warts' n-all Smile

Carabosse
Carabosse e2 Member 1139496 forum postsCarabosse vcard England269 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 7:46 PM


Quote: clarity despite using elements is still an issue

As you are into quite a specialist type of photography, it may be that a prime lens - with a wide aperture to maximise background blurring - would suit your purpose. What sort of zoom setting do you usually use for the bonsai photos?

Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 7:55 PM

Ahhh, point taken. When I look it would seem to be around the 90-120 mark. Mostly.

Carabosse
Carabosse e2 Member 1139496 forum postsCarabosse vcard England269 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:04 PM

Don't know if something like the Canon 100mm f2 lens might suit? Not only is the aperture wider but the general quality of the lens should be a noticeable step up from the 50-250mm zoom,judging by tests/reviews on the web.

Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:14 PM

This is interesting. With the lower f number I have noticed it is harder to get everything in focus with edges getting a blur which is a pain to be honest. Probably me being thick as per usual. Crystal clear subject with background blur is all I ask for Sad

scottishphototours

Mozzy,

The Tamron 90mm Macro lens is the one for you - supremely sharp, superb results, lovely bokeh and a steal at around 300, even better secondhand. I bought mine 20 years ago and still use it to this day... a classic lens and ideal for your purposes.

llareggub
llareggub  4711 forum posts United Kingdom
28 May 2012 - 8:25 PM

I recently sold my canon 55-250mm lens as it wasn't long enough for what I wanted to shoot and am saving for something in the 400-500mm length, having said that for what it does and how much it costs it is a superb lens.

For shooting a static object where you can get as close as you want you don't really need to be photographing at any great telephoto length so you could pick up a canon 50mm f1.8 get the out of focus effect for 60-70GBP used and keep your nifty 250 for other stuff... The canon 50mm f1.8 is incredibly sharp and the f1.8 gives you all the out of focus effect you could ask for, although the Bokeh is not all that creamy it is by no means horrible Smile

I'm not sure if you have one of the fancy Shmancy smart phone thingies (my phone is basically an alarm clock) but you can download an App called DOF master which will tell you how deep your depth of focus is if you are a given distance from a subject at a given f stop and focal length. Give it a try, I used to use it for studio shots and after about a year it kinda sunk in and it is now pretty natural for me to pick my DOF looking at a shot in limited circumstances.

On the downside the 50mm f1.8 is flimsy but if you look after your kit it should not cause you an issue.

sherlob
sherlob e2 Member 82332 forum postssherlob vcard United Kingdom125 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:33 PM

Are you sharpening your images for a lower resolution? i.e. screen/internet? This made a huge difference to my work.

Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:33 PM

This is interesting; really. I already have and have had a 'nifty fifty' for some time now. Yes it takes a 'so-so' image for me but I just go to the Canon 55-250 for getting the image how I want it. I do have a 95-120 (ish) setting mostly but have also used the 200-250 setting frequently. When I di, I am around 3-6 metres away from my subject.

Is this making sense? Or is the 55-250 Canon as good as it might get for me? I'm reading every word in your replies.

Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:37 PM


Quote: Are you sharpening your images for a lower resolution? i.e. screen/internet? This made a huge difference to my work.


Quote: Are you sharpening your images for a lower resolution? i.e. screen/internet? This made a huge difference to my work.

Yes but not always. I use RAW all the time now and only tweak by way of filter / high pass / overlay. Yes to be fair I do play with contrast / brightness; etc and will on occasions use layers to get what I LIKE to see. This may not be what a purist would want but I kind of know what I like to see via the ol Apple Mac 21.5" screen.

Carabosse
Carabosse e2 Member 1139496 forum postsCarabosse vcard England269 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:37 PM

Perhaps you need to get much closer with a shorter focal length. That way it is easier to blur the background.

Helpful Post! This post was flagged as helpful
Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:45 PM


Quote: Perhaps you need to get much closer with a shorter focal length. That way it is easier to blur the background.

I'll have a go with my 'nifty fifty' tomorrow and see what happens. Maybe I am missing the wood for the trees.Sad

Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:49 PM

I took this with the 55-250. It is OK (ish) but I feel I could do much better.

ritta-purchase.jpg

Mozzytheboy
Mozzytheboy e2 Member 4550 forum postsMozzytheboy vcard United Kingdom3 Constructive Critique Points
28 May 2012 - 8:57 PM

Again with the 55-250. But not great I think.

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