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The Brass

By WeeGeordieLass    
Spotted at a Vintage Steam, Car and Farm day near Blackpool yesterday. We just happened to see the signs whilst driving around and made our way there with only a couple of hours to closing time. It was a shame we didn't have more time as there were loads of photo opportunities.

This shot of the Brass Band playing is one of my favorites. I set my camera to single point focus and focused on the man in the middle.

I'd appreciate any crits and suggestions as to how I could have used different camera settings or tried a different composition.

Thanks for looking

Elaine Grin

Tags: Photo journalism General 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.


iancrowson Plus
8 211 146 United Kingdom
1 Jul 2013 12:38PM
Interesting photo. Good composition and the reflections are great.
I feel that your selective focusing has not totally worked. I would prefer to have all three men in sharp focus in this composition.
I can't tell how far away you were but say say 40ft if you had used f11 and 1/200sec all three would be sharp using the technique of spot focusing on the middle one. ...this calculator allows you to enter camera details and a play will give you info to consider.
I think it was a stabilised lens you used so 1/200sec should be fine without a tripod.
The people in the background are nicely out of focus but would be sharper at F11 which would not be as good.
Public events are difficult as its difficult to take control of camera position etc.
These are my views, see what others think,

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boov 5 2 United Kingdom
1 Jul 2013 1:36PM
Super image
1 Jul 2013 2:59PM
Hi Ian,

Thanks for your views - they're always appreciated. Thanks for the link....very interesting and helpful Grin

I think you do have a point about the selective focus, and I took a few shots of these lovely guys and a couple had the three all in focus, but the compositions weren't too good.

I liked this one the best though, as I thought it had the best composition and was more interesting. I like the way most of the man in the middle is sharper than the other two......including his reflection in his trombone.

I'll bear in mind what you said about the f stop and shutter speed and next time I get the opportunity for a shot like this I'll give it a whirl.

Thanks for your help and opinion Ian GrinGrin
1 Jul 2013 3:00PM
Hi Jim,

Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment I'm glad you like the shot - much appreciated GrinGrin
mrswoolybill Plus
11 1.2k 1929 United Kingdom
1 Jul 2013 3:28PM
The selective focus would work for me if it was on the nearest instrument. A significant chunk of frame devoted to a blurred foreground subject is difficult to pull off, particularly something hard, bright like a brass instrument. The foreground is the area that we could reach out and touch so it needs to be hard, tactile. What lies behind it can recede into softness.
Brass instruments are wonderful for the distorted reflections that you can catch in the instrument bell. Hope you got some more of those!
1 Jul 2013 8:16PM
Hi Moira,

Thanks for explaining where and how I went wrong with the selective focusing. I'll know how to use that technique next time Grin

I did see the potential of reflections in the instruments and had a try but wasn't impressed with my efforts. I've uploaded a couple of them as variants.

Thanks for your advice Moira. I'll be a bit wiser next time I'm faced with an opportunity like this.


Elaine GrinGrin

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