Back Modifications (3)
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Yellow Iris

By Tianshi_angie
Taken with the 24/240 lens and away from the flower bed Lens on a tripod which was much easier for me.

Tags: Iris Yellow Flowers and plants

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dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1833 England
17 May 2020 11:10AM
Easier for you, and easy on the eye.

There's still an exposure issue here: my mod increased by 1 stop, but others may prefer more.

Did you do any processing work on the background, or is it simply that it was darker, and well out of focus?

You're definitely getting there!
17 May 2020 11:22AM
I was lucky in as much as it clouded over and so I went out to try the longer lens. I did lighten it quite a bit in pp but should I have either reduced the shutter speed or increased the aperture? But having the camera on the tripod was so much easier for me The background came out very dark and when I got into processing increasing light increased the view of the fence (which is even worse where this iris is) so stopped at the point where it was not obvious. Your modification has made all the difference. I have a habit (bad) of over-processing things so I am trying to pull back a little. Thank you again for all your help.
dark_lord Plus
17 2.8k 761 England
17 May 2020 1:23PM
Softer light, tripod and an aperture that's sufficient have resulted in a much more pleasing result/

Your uploadis dark yet you had to lighten it to get that far which says there's an issue with your metering. Shooting a bright yellow flower in any lighting condition will cause some underexposure. Is that what you took a reading from here?
Taking a reading from nearby grass or foliage in the same light as the maing subject is where to start. That results in little or no adjustment in post processing.
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2395 United Kingdom
17 May 2020 1:33PM
It's still underexposed but I think what you may be learning from this is to read light conditions much better, to recognise useful light. This was taken early evening, and you waited until the sky clouded over - this is a big step forward!

You've used a larger aperture and avoided background distractions - again that's progress.
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2395 United Kingdom
17 May 2020 2:12PM
Modification uploaded - I lightened and brightened a bit, used the burn tool set to shadows, with a large brush, just 3% exposure, to bring out textures in the petals. Then I used the clone tool at reduced opacity to mask a few blown highlights in the leading petal.

It's a good file, and apart from underexposure it's your best iris upload to date.
Alfie_P Plus
13 927 2 United Kingdom
17 May 2020 2:32PM
Lovely image and the 2 mods already submitted will show you the way, you are doing a great job
17 May 2020 3:12PM
Thank you Moira - if I may make an excuse for myself, I think it is the new camera (I know, my Dad always said a poor workman blames his tools!), but it is not so easy as the 850 was, particular I find the viewfinder much more difficult to judge the lighting. (And the white bits on the petal are white - I went out to check - I think it is the landing strip for the bees!).

Thank you Alfie.

pamelajean Plus
15 1.5k 2211 United Kingdom
17 May 2020 4:37PM
Yellow flowers are notoriously difficult to get right. As with red, they can come out as oversaturated. However, you had everything working for you here and the result is good. You handled this well.
17 May 2020 4:59PM
Thank you PamelaJean
mrswoolybill Plus
14 2.7k 2395 United Kingdom
17 May 2020 5:05PM
A little story... Every summer (and it may still happen this year) I photograph local flowers and gardens for the town's In Bloom competition. I spend several days going round with the judges and the Town Clerk. By the time we are all assembled and have been briefed, it is mid-morning before we start and we carry on until mid afternoon.

The photos were the Town Clerk's idea many years ago and it's an event that I love doing. But in the early days she would greet me with 'It's a lovely bright sunny day, you'll get some great pictures'. I have now trained her to understand that bright midday sunshine is the last thing that I need!

Thanks for entering into the conversation here, it helps so much. And keep enjoying your photography!
dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1833 England
17 May 2020 6:51PM
Exposure: I know you prefer manual, but can I suggest trying out Aperture priority, and also reading up on how the viewfinder and screen show the camera's reading of the scene?

If you don't have a paper manual for the camera, here's the link to the Sony website to download a PDF:

And this (or something like it) may be a help: camera manuals are often written by people for whom it's all so obvious that they deal in obscure detail instead of telling you where the on/off switch is...
17 May 2020 8:15PM
I do understand that Moira - many people still say lovely day for photographs! And at the moment it is difficult as I am not going out at all - I have asthma and being 80 I know that if I caught this dreaded virus I would not survive. And I have another great grandchild on the way so I want to be around for that plus a granddaughter who is 21 this year and may well finish her degree with a bit of luck.

I do have a manual Dudler but it doesn't go into much detail - as you say it tends to assume quite a lot. What I have found with the Sony A7 is that the enlargement when you are focusing is an excellent idea but it is not very quick - either in enlarging or going back to normal size, which I find means that although it helps tremendously in getting anything in focus it sometimes confuses me with how much or how little light there is. I will have a look at the Amazon link. Thanks again - I think I must just be a little more patient and take more time.
dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1833 England
17 May 2020 9:30PM
Ah, now I can offer you a thought. Unlike the A850, the buttons on the A7 are customisable. I've customised the one nearest the shutter release to bring the magnification rectangle up in the viewfinder: a second press enlarges it, and a third enlarges more. A fourth press takes it back to full image view, as does a first pressure on the shutter button.

And, crucially, the four-way buttons on the back allow you to move the magnification area around the frame. And while the A7 II and III made using this approach easier, it's not bad on the original Alpha 7 models. (It also works on the Alpha 6000 series.)

Using the magnified view allows an accuracy of focus that I've not achieved with any other camera: as much as anything else, it makes me rate the Alpha 7 line as excellent.

It took me a couple of years, using the A900 and A7 in parallel before I found that I simply wasn't using the 900 very much at all.
17 May 2020 10:48PM
That is a very useful tip Dudler - i'm just off to bed so I will experiment with that tomorrow. I looked at the lenses on Wex and there weren't any in the used section but the 45mm f1.8 lens was reduced by almost 100 so I have ordered it. Only one comment on it but that said it was excellent. Hopefully will arrive on Tuesday. First prime lens I have ever had (I think - that sounds a bit odd but the first SLR I had was a Petra for which I had 3 lenses and one of those may have been a prime). Anyway - there has been so much help from everyone I just hope that I can fulfill all the possibilities which you have shown me.
dudler Plus
17 1.6k 1833 England
19 May 2020 8:08AM
I've found the 45mm to be excellent - and 100 off sounds like an absolute bargain.

It's a bit more expensive than the 50mm Sony lens, but it is, in every way, superior: sharper, more responsive, and lighter. I think you may find it good for your pictures, and a lot of fun to use.
19 May 2020 9:58AM
I hope so Dudler - arriving hopefully this morning. And it is cloudy here so I may just get a chance to try it out today. Tried Aperture priority yesterday - but couldn't get to grips with it. Sad
chase Plus
15 2.1k 562 England
19 May 2020 9:34PM
I am late to this but never mind.
Some great advice above and some nice mods too.
I can see the improvements you are making, it's great when advice is taken on board and we see the results.
Yellow is such a difficult colour to work with, but you have some lovely detail here, tripod has benefitted you in several ways too.
Just a wee bit under exposed which has been addressed and perhaps a touch tight in the frame, especially on the right.

Really great to have replies and thoughts from you, it doesn't happen very often in the Critique gallery, it is a pleasure to see, thank you.
20 May 2020 12:26PM
Thanks Chase - I knew it was a bit tight in the frame - but there was another flower to the side and in front of the yellow Iris which I was unable to get to a position where it wasn't in the frame. Result - tight frame! The raised border is waist height and it is bricks but not wide enough to put the tripod on and with my current physical difficulties I would be unhappy standing on it. Hobson's Choice!

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