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20/10/2014 - 8:18 AM

Front on jump

Front on jumpGood angle, composition and background. For that, full marks. The fence is hugely dominant and I look at that rather than horse and rider. That's lighting or after work or both. A bit of dodging to lift the horse and rider, possibly. It may be a touch under exposed, so try a general brightening, than darken the fence if necessary.

14/10/2014 - 3:43 PM

Hud Hud.

Hud Hud.Basically, the tonal range is too great. You need the foreground brighter, but the brighter area of the sky darker. You may be able to do something in software, but, I suspect, not enough. I hate to say it, but HDR might have been the way to go, or a graduated ND filter. How many people regularly carry such items unless on a known commission?

08/10/2014 - 3:51 PM

Edwardian Portrait.

Edwardian Portrait.I think anyone will pick up the halo. It is pretty obvious and not natural. This could be very good. The basic quality is there, but your processing is over the top. You need to have a word with whoever sets up the club lighting. You need a lityke more on the face with brolly or soft box and a sugnificznt power reduction on the backlight.

There is z real skill in studio multi light set ups and a club is not always the best venue. Each light should be set and calibrated with a flash meter, or test shots taken and adjustments then made.

05/10/2014 - 8:19 AM

What are you looking at??

What are you looking at??Willie says all. There are two main technical criteria for basic image making which apply almost all of the time. Get the exposure right. get the main part of the image sharp. The conditions here are not going to let you do that. A powerful flash would be the only answer but then the image would scream 'flash'.

You needed more light and it is just not there. Fast shutter speed in excess of 1/500 and keep off the creative settings. They do nothing to help you learn.

You have baisically done as well as you are going to in the situation regardless of any other methods.

26/09/2014 - 7:38 AM


destinyFine content, well exposed and sharp, but either initially, or in conversion the image has gone flat with a compression of tones. You may be under exposed due to all that white foam I would think. Brighten things up a bit and you have a fine image.

18/09/2014 - 9:25 AM

Dark Skies

Dark SkiesMixed feelings. Good to try a different effect rarher than just a record, but as a keen aircraft fan, I would like the Triplane a bit more distinct. I would go for full detail in the aircraft, or a full sihouette, which could be very dramatic. Put that aircraft, in near silhouette, in front of a good sunset and you have the Hun in the sun. A real potential classic.

The current effect is a little flat with compressed tones.

18/09/2014 - 8:50 AM

little 'n' Large

little 'n' LargeNot bad at all. The low viewpoint is almost mandatory, and so many don't bother. I have no problem with your settings, everything is obviuosly under control. Ideally, the lighting is a little flat and a bit of directional light would add some compositional strength. A weak flash from the side on an extension lead?

Not sure about the colour? Obviously you know if the fungi were exactly this colour. Looks a bit warm with slight magenta overtones? Obviuosly, that is only critical in a pure record image.

16/09/2014 - 5:30 PM

September in the Cairngorms

September in the CairngormsA nice shog in many ways. The problem, for me, is that it's just a nice day. Ideally you need mist, divrse lighting, contrast. Something to add some impact and thus to lift it. Nothing to really give it a zing.

07/09/2014 - 8:27 AM

Forgotten Knight

Forgotten KnightA lot of potential faults, but it is very strong with great impact. I'm not sure if the standard mods would actually improve things or remove some of the power of the umage?

Horizon tilts.
Flare to remove, bottom right.
Highlights on left completely burnt out.

Does it matter here? Not usually me, but I do find this quite strong.

26/08/2014 - 8:07 AM

Round the bend.

Round the bend.A perfectly good shot of it's type and generally very well done. It lacks a bit of impact as a high speed sport, the same effect as frozen racing cars.

I think I might have cropped really tight to the horses, and then kept shooting to get just horses heads and riders faces filling the frame. Try tracking autofocus and the shutter on continuous, then fire in bursts.

26/08/2014 - 7:48 AM

Pintail lake revisited

Pintail lake revisitedBetter in landscape format for a rather better chance of a decent composition. Still lacks a definate subject, but you should be able to do something with the tress.

It's not sharp, and that is due to 1/40 se and f20. Why use those settings? f8 would be enough with then a far faster shutter speed. Even on a tripod, if you were, wind will cause blur at such low shutter speeds.

25/08/2014 - 8:15 AM

Critique please.

Critique please.Lots of comment above so I shall go down a different route. This is OK but very ordinary in pose and composition. You now need to think,of decent poses and stories. In my days, many years ago, of semi glamour shooting I used background paper and/or cloth to get rid of wall and floor joints unless the room was part of the image.

Here, she is far too close to the background.

I had lots of props. Chairs, bits of plastic tube, hula hoops and so on for the model to pose with to make things interesting. Studio shooting is not easy, and this is a fashion shot, but without a satisfactory setting. Better to remove the background altogether.

My last regular model was keen and looked in magazines, finding poses she would like to do and bringing different outfits and props. We also played with back lights, coloured gels over flash tubes, tin foil backgrounds, christmas lights well back on black giving out of focus colour.

This pose is spot on. Attractive girl who knows how to stand.

Now think pose, impact, composition!!!!!

24/08/2014 - 7:22 AM

its called a Hodo

its called a HodoYou are very under exposed. You needed post processing, but you really need to get the exposure right on taking. You should easily be able to adjust exposure in a RAW converter, but you must understand RAW processing techniques.

You used spot metering? Forgive me, but do you fully understand what spot metering is and does? You must meter from a surface that approximates to 18% gray reflectivity if one is available, then lock that reading in or set it on manual. Spot is the most accurate metering method used correctly.

I suspect you just pointed the camera and shot. Spot will rarely work correctly if you do this.

You have a superb camera there. You must get he basics right and exposure is the absolute starting point. Learn to use Spot, but shoot on matrix metering until you do.

23/08/2014 - 11:59 AM

ed2go Assignment 2 - my lily

ed2go Assignment 2 - my lilyYour info says the flash did not fire and I see no sign of it. A decent image and it is a pleasure to see someone bothering to use a tripod for such shots, as you should if time allows. A flash fill would have added a bit of sparkle and impact. Did it fire?

You are using a compact, so you are restricted. If you can, try manual and go into the flash menu and instruct it to fire every time. If it is on auto, it would not fire here.

oin a tripod, you should not have been at those settings. A much smaller aperture for depth of field and thus slower shutter speed protected by the tripod. But, remember subject movement due to wind!

A compact will probably not go more than f8, but aperture priority, f8 would do.

Jewelweed (Impatiens capensis), with morning dewQuite a strong image as is but a greater depth of field would be even better. Not sure wha aperture range you have, and tiny apertures on none specialist macro lenses can result is soft images. Ideally about f11 or 16 if the lense quality will take it and a tripod to deal with the long exposure.

You are relying on a degree of back light here and that is important to the efrect. Given time and equipment, you could set up a flash out of shot slightly behind the subject onan extension lead to emulate that lighting and give the intensity to get the small aperture.

Whilst high ISO is one route, critical quality will suffer and a minimum ISO is always the best choice if possible.

Toen wij uit Rotterdam vertrokken (when we left Rotterdam)The huge danger with not using AWB as the standard setting is that you forget to reset for each shot in different lighting, or that you don't really understand colour tempersture. I would leave the camera set on AWB for grab shots as it usually gets things close to correct.

Then, if you understand, use your own chosen settings for specific shots or sequences providing you understand what the colour temperature implications are.

Russian doll feeding her chickensA polariser will not stop this because the reflected light is not polarised. Even a diffuser will not stop glare on shiny surfaces, but should help reduce it. The answer is not easy. Very flat lighting in the first place, then brighten and up the contrast to put some punch back.

The pro answer is a light tent. These are used for shiny small objects. Completely surrounf the object with a white translucent object with a hole for the camera lens, then light the light tent fromthe outside as evenly as possible.

21/07/2014 - 8:35 AM

Portrait attempt

Portrait attemptNot bad at all, and I like the tight crop. The lighting is not ideal. Rather flat giving low contrast and mainly mid tone grey which causes that flat effect. You need a bit more light to brighten things up, but a touch of extra contrast here will help.

Natural light portraits can be very nice, but you still need a bit of modelling in that light. Enough to give some shadows, even faint.

16/07/2014 - 7:49 AM

Susie at Glendalough House

Susie at Glendalough HouseYou have a good basic image but, as above, it is very under exposed. You have first rate gear, you have shot in RAW and on manual.

Does the unprocessed image look under exposed. I assume it must. How did you meter? If shooting in manual, you must have something to base the settings on? No idea what stage you are at, but this will have looked very under on the LCD, so I guess the metering was out.

Having said that, you shot in RAW, and you should be able to easily recoup this degree of under exposure in a RAW file.

Are you getting the basics right?

OK, the light level was very low, but you must get exposure and focusing right. Absolutely basic requirements.

Shoot in RAW + Best JPG. Shoot one on auto and one on the manual setting you think is right. Auto will be close, Best JPG will be close. Compare the results and work on the RAW file to get an image better than the Best JPG.

Often better, in my opinion, to keep sharpening in RAW low and give it a final boost in the image processor as necessary.

07/07/2014 - 7:54 AM


FlowerThis is rather nice. I would normally prefer the narrow plane of sharpness nearer the front, but it seems to work well here. Steer clear of close up lenses. Even the best degrade performance. Extension tubes are probably the cheapest way into macro photography, giving light loss due to extension, but no degrading of light.

A zoom lens is not a good bit of kit for macro at any time. On tubes, you need to be careful of the focal length used, wide not being a good idea, and fof macro you will regularly need f18 to f22 for depth of field. Most zooms are not at their best at such apertures.

Buy tubes and a 50mm 1.8 lens. Cheaper than a macro and the combination will work well, if much slower than a dedicated macro lens.

The real answer is a macro lens. I would always recomment the Sigma 105mm. The lens many magazines use to test camera bodies.