Back Modifications (3)
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Willow Lake in Prescott AZ

By makeupmagic    
I am trying out settings suggested from Kelbyone. I would like to know if the photos are any crisper than previous photos.
thanks, Marilyn

Tags: Landscape and travel Prescott AZ Willow Lake

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12 Aug 2019 7:17AM
Do you think it looks crisp, Marilyn? What kind of screen are you viewing it on... desktop? laptop? tablet? phone?
These were "suggested" settings? Which ones, specifically? They seem rather odd to me, frankly.

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mrswoolybill Plus
12 1.5k 2066 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2019 9:44AM
I too am curious about the advice you have been given regarding settings! A plus 2/3 stop exposure compensation when looking towards sky, with light reflected of water, that's good. But ISO 640, and a shutter speed of 1/1250 second (deliberately selected with shutter speed priority)? That's sensitivity for very low light, and a shutter speed for sports action or birds in flight!

This is an attractive composition, I like the inclusion of foreground detail, it tells me that I am standing on firm ground not water. But the image needs a small rotation - reflections always drop down vertically, whatever angle they are viewed from, and if you look carefully these don't!

And I would lighten shadows and reduce contrast, just a wee bit.

But I'm curious as to the advice you are getting on ISO and use of shutter speed priority...

dudler Plus
16 895 1504 England
12 Aug 2019 10:23AM
I really like the way that you have layers of scenery, at different distances here, Marilyn. The tree on the left, various sortso f reeds, and the rocky shore across the water.

My feeling is that the reeds nearer the camera are crisper, but that the depth of field at that zoom setting and aperture are allowing hte distance to be soft - which is fine, providing htat's what you want.

I, also, am interested in the advice that you've received.
12 Aug 2019 12:45PM
The speed was due to a windy day, all the greenery was swaying. At that speed the photos were too dark so increased ISO. I was hoping also that the hundreds of dragon flies would show up but when I magnified them, they were still blurry. There were also ducks in and out of the photos, but also blurry or too dark. It was early in the morning, cloudy day and I was sitting on the ground using my knees as a tripod. Smile
The advice was to first try exposure for fast shutter speed and if not bright enough, iso as a last resort, which is what I did. What should I have had as settings? I am still learning and experimenting.
12 Aug 2019 12:49PM
I do like the 1st modification. I am looking for color for my walls and love all the green.
I am looking at the photos on my iMac desktop. Given the breezy conditions, they looked more in focus to me than what I was doing before. It was cloudy and overcast plus early in the morning.
I was trying various settings. I will put up another today.
Thanks so much all.

mrswoolybill Plus
12 1.5k 2066 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2019 1:13PM

Quote:The speed was due to a windy day, all the greenery was swaying.

That can be a problem, although gentle motion blur in leaves can make a very attractive contrast to crisp detail elsewhere. But were the leaves really moving at the speed, say, of a racing car? I would think that 1/200 second would probably cope, 1/320 at the fastest.
I will keep that in mind, thanks. The dragon flies were probably as fast as a racing car Smile. I really was attempting to include but it failed completely. Not one dragon fly was in focus. :-( . The photo actually turned out better than I expected given what I was attempting.
banehawi Plus
15 2.1k 4020 Canada
12 Aug 2019 1:21PM
The depth of apparent sharpness is shallow. This means the closer grasses are sharper than the rock formation.

This has a lot to do with where you focused; and if you are using a single focus point rather than multiple focus points.

The settings make sense when you explain what you were after.

With all this effort, you are using a preset Landscape mode which is best avoided, - use a neutral or natural type when shooting JPEG (You are not shooting RAW?)

The image is not level, - something basic to check and easy to correct.

Ive uploaded mod 3 with this corrected, white balance adjusted, rock formation sharper.


mrswoolybill Plus
12 1.5k 2066 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2019 1:29PM
PS Lack of sharpness on the dragon flies was perhaps down to insufficient depth of field, did you try a smaller aperture rather than ultra-fast shutter speed?
I will take it off Landscape. Thanks. Yes I tried every]thing I could think of, smaller aperture, A mode, S mode, less iso, more iso, but the dragon flies were always too dark or just a blur. The ducks were always in the shade, so they were too dark. I could have PS them but was having to much fun experimenting, thinking I could get it right in the camera.
I need to do some more reading on depth of field as I am not understanding the settings for that.
Headed for my Crossfit work out. Check back later.
mrswoolybill Plus
12 1.5k 2066 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2019 2:09PM
Do try to get to grips with dof, how it works, what different apertures can do for you. Also how it is affected by focal length and the distance you are focusing at.

It happens sometimes that we simply try to include too many elements in an image. My instinct would be - if you want to show dragon flies, go in much closer, focus carefully, forget about the 'bigger picture' of the general view, look to get the insects close up. Otherwise they are never going to be more than insignificant blobs in the landscape.
BTW, I shoot in raw, thanks all
banehawi Plus
15 2.1k 4020 Canada
12 Aug 2019 5:07PM
Heres an online depth of field calculator. Just select any Nikon full frame camera and your focal lenght; enter various apertures and you will see the depth change with the aperture value, AND distance from subject.

12 Aug 2019 5:26PM
Excellent advice above, but something else... have you ever heard of KISS? ...”Keep It Simple, Stupid.”
...One of the best bits of advice you’ll ever hear.
pamelajean Plus
13 1.2k 2085 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2019 8:31PM
What is the dark line at the base of the mountain?
Did you use an ND filter?
The dark line is a water line. Sometimes the level is high in the lake but we have had water shortage for several years so the level is low right now. Off in the distance, there is a bridge in line with the water line, just by chance, unplanned. I will send you a magnified photo.
pamelajean Plus
13 1.2k 2085 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2019 8:52PM
Ah, thank you for the explanation, it had me perplexed for some time. And it was the dark lines of that bridge that foxed me, too.
paulbroad Plus
12 131 1285 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2019 8:53PM
Sharpness depends on a lot of factors. I firmly believe that, n almost every image the main subject should be sharp. however, sharpness depends on focus accuracy, camera shake, subject movement lens quality and lens sweet aperture.

There is no definitive method - you need to analyse the subject and apply the correct procedures. Only experience will finally deal with the problem.

Hi Paul, I tried to see the bridge but since I was focused on the reeds and greenery in front of me, the background is to out of focus to see the bridge.
I meant the foreground to be in focus because I was trying to get the dragon flies to show up. Smile There were thousands of dragon flies. I should have had my macro with me (I think) for that. Someone told me they were hatching and to look for iridescent green caterpillar like (grubs?) that swim on top of the water, but that the hatch was near the end. I had never been to that area of AZ before but will definitely go back. I’m going to check online to see if it is factual.
dark_lord Plus
15 2.3k 582 England
12 Aug 2019 9:32PM
The composition is good, the foreground vegetation provides depth to the scene.

The tilt is unfortunate as it's a basic thing that needs sorting before any upload.

The image has quite a cold colouir balance and benefits from warming up, as Willie's mod shows. As you shoot in RAW, when you do your conversion there should be a Colour Temperature control availabvle. Have a play with that to get used to what it does. Going with what the camera chooses on Auto White Balance doesn't oftwn produce the most appealing result. Auto often gives a cooler look. Warmer looking images tend to be more appealing. Sometimes making them cooler looks better,

Given the distance from front to back here, I'd have been considering using f/11 for a large depth of field.
banehawi Plus
15 2.1k 4020 Canada
12 Aug 2019 11:18PM
Assuming, and its a guess, the grass you focused on was 10 feet away, then at this setting anything beyond 15 feet away will be out of focus.

dudler Plus
16 895 1504 England
15 Aug 2019 9:45AM
Face to face is usually the best way to learn: personally, I'm not sturck by online learning (having encountered it at work a few times). But books are often very good indeed.

I share moira's admiration for Michael Freeman's series of books on composition, exposure, and so on: his knowledge is immense, his approach methodical, and his writing straightforward and careful. For an in-depth understanding, he cant' be beaten.

But I want to suggest a cheap and slender book, 'Read This If You Want to Take Great Photographs' by Henry Carroll, as being a great introduction. It starts from point zero, and is the book I'd most like ot have written. After that, Freeman's books are the serious level.

HC deals with things like the exposure triangle nad depth of field in an accessible way, and my own feeling is that you need a way to get your head round concepts before you learn them in detail. And I think his book helps with the overall concepts better than anyone else's.

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