Back Modifications (2)
Views: 61 (24 Unique)  Award Shortlist   

My son

By Flymoman
I shot this in my lounge.I adjusted the levels, did a black and white conversion and applied a vignette.
Nikon d5100
F1.8 1/160 jpeg
50mm Auto white balance

Tags: Portraits and people Child aged 2-3yrs

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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
2 Apr 2013 11:30AM
Welcome to ePhotozine.
Well..........he's probably a good looking little boy but all the attention is taken by that dummy. You have used a very wide aperture giving a small depth of field. With virtually any portrait one or both eyes must be in focus. The eyes are soft and the dummy is in sharper focus.
Had the focus been on the eyes and without (my view) the dummy this would have been a pleasing shot.
You could have reduced the speed and lowered the ISO although the quality looks ok here
These are my views, you will get other comments and advice,

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mrswoolybill Plus
11 1.2k 1929 United Kingdom
2 Apr 2013 1:56PM
Welcome to the site, it's good to see a new member uploading in b&w.
I find this image puzzling. As Ian says, the focus is on the dummy, exaggerated by the fact that you have gone in close. I assume that this was deliberate and I wonder why? Apart from the lack of sharpness, and therefore lack of clarity, sparkle, in the eyes, the dummy creates a barrier, visually and emotionally.
That's a brilliant lens for portraits, I hope we'll see more. You have a lovely model, with all the solemnity and concentration that very young children possess.
banehawi Plus
13 1.8k 3881 Canada
2 Apr 2013 4:07PM
Welcome Steven.

To add some information you will find useful also.

When you re size for the web, follow these steps: image, size, set longest side to 1000 pix, save as new file name at maximum quality. Then OPEN the new file, check sharpness, sharpen as required (its likely lost sharpness), save, and then upload.

When focusing for a portrait, focus on an eye, - the one closest to the camera if that happens to be the case. Take a look at how to select a SINGLE focus point rather than multiple. I suspect you used multiple, which will focus on the dummy, and leave the eyes a little soft.

Its a nice shot with the light you had, and will mean a lot to you. Its also great as a learning opportunity. You can see that at a wide open aperture, the lens produces a very soft imeg, which is nice, however its critical to have eye, not dummy, sharp.

Ive uploaded 2 mods, - scroll up this page and click the Modifications tab to view. Mod1 has the eyes sharper and brighter, and is cropped narrower; mod2 has the SINGLE focus point placed on the eye so you can get the idea.

Hope this helps, and enjoy the site,


paulbroad 10 123 1244 United Kingdom
2 Apr 2013 4:52PM
Mostly said. Quite nice but the focal point is the dummy. This may be your attention, but if so I would have stayed with colour, or used colour popping so that the dummy were very bright coloured, very sharp and very dominant.
As a child image, I would focus on the eyes, go down a stop or two for some depth after placing for stronger lighting, then I would stay with colour for this kind of image.

mrswoolybill Plus
11 1.2k 1929 United Kingdom
2 Apr 2013 5:20PM
Coming back again to this one - I wonder if you focused on the eyes and then recomposed? At f1.8 even a relatively small movement of the camera will affect the focus.
Flymoman 5 2 United Kingdom
2 Apr 2013 6:05PM
To be honest my intention was to focus on the eyes but I didn't quite get things set in time. with any kind of child photography,the subject is not still for long so I snapped what I could.I liked the result I achieved in terms of the lighting but could have been better if the eyes were sharp. Thanks for the feedback and particularly the modifications.
Fogey 5 96 13 United Kingdom
2 Apr 2013 11:31PM
Try this tip when photographing young children.

Tell them if they look carefully, they will see a little wee chappy pop out of the lens and wave at them.

They tend to concentrate long enough for you to take the shot.

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