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The beautiful Treena modeling one of my bouquets.
I need to get a good photoshop package as i've discovered no matter how many shots you take there will always be a flaw to be found,like hair out of place, face shine ,shadows, bla bla!

Tags: Flowers and plants Portraits and people

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


Irishkate Plus
7 41 111 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 1:16PM
Overall Clare a very good image.
The flowers are beautiful and tone really well with the dress.
The simple hair style avoids unwanted clutter.
The pose is good, more comfortable looking than an awkward stance
if not used to modelling.
Not much shadow - well done!
A few things to clone out - little mark at bottom right of chair
and the healing brush would smooth the very small lines and shine
between brows. Treen's lucky she can wear hair off her face and not have any wrinkles!
The chair is a good contrast for the dress but a more neutral colour would show off dress even better.
Very good for an absolute beginner.
KateGrinGrinGrin MumWink

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rayme330 5 17 1 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 1:25PM
A really good shot, Clare well exposed, sharp and with smooth skin tones. Well done.

26 Nov 2012 2:04PM
you have got the skin tones spot on, Kate, has summed it up well so good for you Clare, keep at it

banehawi Plus
13 1.7k 3779 Canada
26 Nov 2012 2:48PM
The shot is underexposed Clare. The reason its underexposed is that youve used a flash pointed directly at shiny surfaces, - the satin dress, the chair, and the camera, seeing the reflected light, underexposes the shot. Use a diffuser, or bounce the flash. Also, you shot down, not a good idea as the legs are out of proportion. You will also notice the legs are a different tone to the rest of the lady as less light had reached her legs. You need to be down at her level, shooting straight at her. Yes, - so go out an get a copy of Photoshop, or use Gimp or a free package.

Ive uploaded a mod with exposure corrected. her face and skin are not only better exposed, but the colour is also better, and Ive corrected the legs to balance. The dress will have more shine, - as satin should, and your flowers look better too. Get into the habit of checking your shot in the LCD after taking it, - use the histogram view, it will tell you immediately if the shot is exposed properly of not. This one would shot underexposure by close to one full stop.

Hope this helps,


Sooty_1 7 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 4:03PM
Im sorry, but i have to disagree with a lot of the above, apart from Willie.
There are a few things not going for you here. If you make bouquets, I would think you have a good idea of colour and design? Why put the blue bouquet against a blue dress? Your model looks bored, the chair does nothing and the angle and focal length are not flattering.
Diffusing the flash would soften the light, reduce the harshness of the shadows and reduce the hotspots.

Get down to the model's height, use a more sympathetically coloured chair, or do away with it altogether. More light is called for as you can see from the colour balance of the background, which would help the bouquet to stand out more too. Engage with the model for a more interested expression and use a much lower ISO for better picture quality.

Good processing software will help a lot and enable you to achieve a lot more, but the photo must be better in the first place - processing can only do so much.

Focus_Man 7 481 631 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 4:27PM
Some good advice in the two sections immediately above, I would like to add a bit more for your consideration.

If you are modelling bouquets using a bride' as a 'model why not get the bride dressed up as she would be at a wedding (headress, gloves, high-heeled shoes etc) and have her pose by a church with the flowers held as a real bride would do on the great day?

All I am saying is, to make life easy for yoruself as a beginner, go outdoors where lighting will be much better as you can choose the day yourself when it is what I call 'Cloudy-bright' ie bright enough for a decent exposure but not too troublesome in terms of dealing with shadows and direct sunlight. Then you can have a portfolio showing just the flowers as well as a bride holding them.

Over time and different models you will be able to build up a nice sales briochure of all the things you can do, and those that you offer for sale.

What I wouldn't do is use full aperture as you have here with ISO set at 2500. Start off with ISO say 250, stop down and use f8 for starters until you learn more about 'depth of field' are feel better able to use differential focussing (throwing the background out of focus.) You have a nice camera if you want to do your own advertising read your manual and more importantly, read all the help you can get in the critique gallery so that you can master the art of photography.

collywobles 13 4.0k 10 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 4:29PM
Sorry Clare but you have spoilt this one by not thinking about what you are 1) wanting to take and ) not seeing what you have in the viewfinder. You should have postioned your camera much nearer to eye level, The brown chair clashes with the lovely colours in the dress, and finally that shadow behind the models head is a real big NO! NO!
ugly 9 9 57 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 7:05PM
It a good image...
I feel that you are a little high and we are now looking down on her..
I think you should get to eye and that will make her square on and a more powerfull image..
The flower are nice but may be the body position on that chair good but you need to move her in the frame slighty to one side of the frame...

paulbroad 10 123 1198 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 7:25PM
Sooty and Willie have it. You should not put blue flowers against a blue dress, and I'm not a stylist, but I do understand colour and complimentary colours. The model does need to relax a bit and look happy for advertising shoots.

Your settings are wrong. You should not be using ISO2500 a wide aperture and flash. Ideally the flash should be off camera, but a diffuser would help on a powerful hot shoe gun. The first major buy for the keen photographer should be a powerful hot shoe gun and independants make good reasonably priced units.

F8 and a low ISO plus flash and diffuser to do what you seem to want.

Photoshop itself costs an arm and a leg and is really not necessary. Photoshop Elements or Paintshop Pro will do the job admirably.

iancrowson Plus
7 211 146 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 7:37PM
This is a nice photo of a smart young lady sitting in a rather colourful chair. She looks a little unhappy.
I make the following comments on the basis that this is a marketing picture.
The bouquet is only a small part of the image, a cream or white dress would make them stand out. If the aim is to market flowers they would stand out more if you included just part of a bride. Say a model wearing a lovely dress and just include shoulders to lower waist. Like....just a glimpse of a really classy bride holding a beautiful bouquet. Your customers need to see a nice dress and really prominent beautiful flowers. (which they are)
Your customers are women looking for a beautiful bouquet for the most important day of their life. Looking at your flowers they do look lovely but stuff is sold by creating the right quality image.
Here you present a lot of distractions to viewers of your flowers, a worried looking tattooed woman sitting in a naff chair with difficult to see, therefore insignificant, flowers. Think about the image you want to present to your customers.
Not a bad image overall photographically.Lots of suggestions on technique above although the quality would probably be good enough for buyers of bouquets.
Irishkate Plus
7 41 111 United Kingdom
26 Nov 2012 8:57PM
That's a lot to absorb Clare.
I'm learning from it too!
These experts are exactly that,
so you should take it a bit at a time.
I'd go for PGrinhotoshop Elements 11
because digital Magazines with discs show you how to use it.
Meanwhile download Picasa or Gimp(I've no experience of that)
just to see what they do. choose one - don't confuse yourself!
when you come to do it for real for your flowers, you'll approach it all differently.
Meanwhile you're learning about photography.
26 Nov 2012 9:54PM
Thank you all for your critique, im a bit confused why my ISO is 2500 when i set it at 100?
Focus man, i appreciate your views however in 2012 ,brides do not always get married at a church,wear 'traditional dress' or want photos that look like every other bride in the last 20 yearsWink
I chose that shot out of many with happy expression for the mystery of The 'blue' bride, i'll put a smiley one up tomorrowGrin
Ian crowson- the chair is retro and i personally love itWink
banehawi Plus
13 1.7k 3779 Canada
27 Nov 2012 12:09AM
ISO 2500 was uploaded by the exif data in the image file Clare. Please check your data on the original and lets know if the \iso here is wrong for certain, and \i will take it up with the \it team.


netta1234 5 382 2 Wales
27 Nov 2012 7:30AM
A great set Clare,lovely flowers,lovely dress,and a pretty bride,and fashion does change,so nothing wrong with blue.
Carry on Clare and you will soon be as good as your mum.Smile
paulbroad 10 123 1198 United Kingdom
27 Nov 2012 8:22AM
v2 is much nicer in every respect, but the lighting is still very 'on camera'. V3 could be nice, but is under exposed again.

Doesn't that bouquet look so much better on white. You are not necessarily looking at fashion here, but at selling. To promote a product, colour is critical. I am no good on fashion, but I know what makes me look. Getting the colours right to promote and sell is a different issue to pure fashion.

Focus_Man 7 481 631 United Kingdom
27 Nov 2012 8:55AM

Quote:Focus man, i appreciate your views however in 2012 ,brides do not always get married at a church,wear 'traditional dress' or want photos that look like every other bride in the last 20 yearsWink

All I was getting at Clare was to try to make the model look like a bride to show what the flowers will look like when held by a bride, your prospective purchaser. So I was suggesting taking up a standing pose as made by a bride and then show a few frames of the flowers alone and then more with the bride as she would be on the great day. Although not all brides get wed. in a church - a lot still do of course so we can't really exclude a potential place outside of which to display our wares if we want to sell!

The background could as you say not of necessity be a church but to my mind a place where weddings take place would help market your product by placing it into the area where it is to be displayed following purchase.. I apologise if I failed to make myself clear.

Tibetan 5 3 England
27 Nov 2012 5:45PM
Nice photo's like them, regards Leon.GrinGrinGrinGrinGrinGrin
iancrowson Plus
7 211 146 United Kingdom
27 Nov 2012 6:06PM
Did not mean to have a go at your furnishings. Nothing wrong with the chair as house furniture but as a photo prop, no because of it's colour, it stands out to much, hits the eye first.
The two V's you added show the flowers off to perfection.
What we really don't know with these photos is are they images to market bridal flower bouquets or bridal shots? It will help people making serious critique to know this and keep on them on track if you state the aim/ purpose of taking a photo. "Lovely flower" or "lovely picture" type comments will not help you improve. The guidelines for the critique gallery asks people not to leave these sort of comments.
I can only agree with Frank's sentiments, remember that to sell anything an impression and context needs to be created suitable for the product. Out of focus background suggesting lovely surrounding, expensive hotel grounds, a lovely beach maybe, some suggestion of ambience to sell your lovely bridal flowers.
Jocelia 6 2 1 Australia
29 Nov 2012 2:36AM
You certainly have some critique to go though here Clare.
It all sounds quite frightening to me but thought I'd put my
two penneth in to say. Yes lovely captures for starters and with all the advise
you will learn from it no doubt.. Keep it upů..GrinWink


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