Back Modifications (4)
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Apple mint

By Hobs
Couple of weeks ago I received a lot of advice about getting better depth of field into my Photographs, as you will see from the photo's on my profile.
Being very disappointed with my Fujifilm finepix S8650 and its limitations I went out and purchased a Fujifilm Finepix HS50 EXR.
After a couple of weeks of getting to grips with this camera I am hoping everyone will again offer their advice once more.
Is the depth of field in this photograph ok? Have I got to much? Should I of tried to blur the background a bit more? I have loads of questions however I would very much appreciate all constructive comments as where I am still going wrong. In fairness I am about 55% happy with this photo.

Tags: Plant Close-up and macro Herb Mint


banehawi Plus
16 2.3k 4161 Canada
5 Nov 2014 11:47PM
Hi Stephen.

Can you tell us what mode you used for this shot? Was it aperture priority?

Was it using a Macro mode?

This will help with answering the questions.

Its a nice image too btw.


Hobs 5 United Kingdom
5 Nov 2014 11:54PM
Hello Willie.
This was indeed taken using Macro mode. You have to forgive me as im not sure about aperture priority. I had the camera in manual mode where I belief I was able to set the shutter speed and aperture setting.
Hope this helps.
paulbroad 13 131 1289 United Kingdom
6 Nov 2014 8:13AM
Difficult to tell if the colours are right. They look very pastel and soft with a less than vibrant green in the background. I suspect very flat lighting with little contrast. You used macro mode so is the flower very small? If it is a large bloom, macro would not be necessary.

The depth of field is reasonable here, but, compositionally, the main detail of the flower head, the sharp bit is too near the right side and should be to the left. Your camera will probably not have apertures smaller than f8, and the smaller the aperture, the greater the depth of field. I would begin my learning curve on aperture or shutter priority depending on subject. Aperture here.

The flower head looks quite sharp, so you are on your way. Keep submitting and experimenting.

banehawi Plus
16 2.3k 4161 Canada
6 Nov 2014 1:04PM
Hi Stephen. Thanks for the response.

Lets look at the settings. f/5.0 with a focal length of 4.8mm will give a deeper dof that f/2.8 at 4.8mm; I used f/2.8, as its the widest that the camera is capable of.

So, if you used Aperture priority, setting it to f/2.8 with give a shallower, more blurred background. BUT, this also depends on how close the camera is to the flower.

If its close, as Macro implies, the difference will be very small. So assuming the camera is close, the settings look fine, and the out of focus is acceptable. But do try f/2.8 and see what you think, if blurring is what you want. Also try increasing the distance between the camera and the flower.

Theres a trade-off here too. The shorter focal length will give more depth than a longer focal length at the same aperture. So longer focal length is something you can try, however, the camera will not allow an aperture smaller than f/5.6 at some point in its zoom range. So try different combinations of focal length, distance, and maximum aperture.

To convert the focal length of this camera into 35mm DSLR terms, multiply any focal length by 6. You may be able to look up dof charts for full frame cameras and get a feel for your depth of field.

I will download the image and see if I can suggest and changes.


banehawi Plus
16 2.3k 4161 Canada
6 Nov 2014 1:54PM
I have added a few mods Dtephen. They are all of course done in Photoshop, and in general, the tweak is deeper blacks, and a little more light. This is most likely due to the light conditions when you took the shot, and not anything to do wiht how you shot it.

I have taken a look at shots from this camera on flickr, and see many really good close shots. The majority, if not all closae shots are using a longer focal length.

Take a look and you can see the setting people use; THIS is an example of what can be done.

HERE is a link to all the uploaded images from your camera.


TanyaH Plus
17 1.3k 409 United Kingdom
6 Nov 2014 1:57PM
Hello as well from me, Stephen

As I don't either own, or have ever used, the camera model you're using, I can't comment on the technical side of things - and anyway, I think Willies got that one covered above. However, looking at the image on a purely pictorial level, I really like the fact that you've chosen to look down onto the leaves, rather than photograph them side-on, and potentially get all sorts of distracting background.

What you've done here works, although for me you could have gone even closer to really fill the frame with the leaves. Alternatively, you could crop down in post processing software to create the same kind of effect.

As far as I'm concerned, the depth of field you've got here is pleasing, as it certainly does isolate the leaves away from the background clutter quite nicely. However, you could also go much more (depending, of course, on camera settings, mode used and what you're able to do and not do to effect that depth of field).

I've done a very quick mod where I've (a) cropped in a bit more and (b) selected the leaves and then blurred the background clutter using Gaussian Blur in Photoshop, to try and simulate how it may look with a much shallower depth of field. I also darkened the whole image a touch, just to really bring out that gorgeous glow in the middle of the leaves Smile

One thing I'm puzzling about though ... all instances of Apple Mint that I've ever seen are green, not pink ... ?? Your exif data settings above don't list the White Balance used, so I can only guess that the camera has done something weird with the colour balance, or that you've played with it after taking it? (Or, it's possible that there IS pink apple mint somewhere in the world, and I'm completely clueless about its existence Grin)


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