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Thread: Portrait practice

  1. #1
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    Default Portrait practice

    1. in what area is critique to be sought?
    anything that can make my skill improve

    2. what one hopes to achieve with the piece of work?
    great portrait picture

    3. under what circumstance is the picture taken? (physical conditions/emotions)
    ISO 1600, f/5, 1/15sec, no flash, when I was review previous shot, then this moment just flash into my sight

    I did some soften on face due to heavy noise

    4. what the critique seeker personally thinks of the picture
    for now I really don't know which path shall I take to become better photographer, I had try to take landscape, portrait, I hope from all your comment and advise can help me to choose which way shall I go, other picture already posted in critique corner as well (tittle: Tanjong Chempedak for example), as beginner I need to know which is my weakest point while taking photography, and also perhaps if any, talent

    I haven't invest anything yet on any lens other than my kit, I hope after knowing my weakness and maybe if any my talent I can decide which lens or any equipment that I'm going to invest later

    Last edited by ndaniel; 8th December 2012 at 05:01 PM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Portrait practice

    can you post the original unprocessed pic?
    you can buy better gear but you can't buy a better eye

  3. #3

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    I like the feel of this picture, really do, even though it's OOF. I believe there's great potential after some PP work. Let's see how Sifu Zaren can help transform this picture
    "Time is often the best editor" - Alex Webb

  4. #4
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    The child seems out of focus here, and it seems some severe sharpening have been attempted to save that. This caused some artifacts on the ears and eyes of the child.

  5. #5
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    The weakest point for many pictures is the amount of thinking that went in before pressing the shutter. We don't know about your case here, that's something you need to reflect about.
    Composition wise it's good, having the fireworks and the child's face roughly at the Rules of Third points. But don't take it as hard and fast rule, use Google to find the thousand and one pages about portrait composition and see how and when it works best. The weakest point obviously is the focus not being on the child's face. Use the AF point selection that your camera offers and use one at the child's face. Don't let the camera select the AF point(s). At first, your cam cannot know what you have in mind and secondly, at night it's even harder for the camera and harsh light contrasts as from the fireworks easily fool the focus system. Shutter speed is good to get the trails of the sparks.
    Practice more to get the basics of portraits right. Then you can go into special light conditions.
    EOS

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    Hi Octarine, thank you for your feedback, this picture was taken on incidental event, when I was reviewed my previous shoot, this moment just occur, I just aim and shoot, lucky I put my camera on Aperture mode, but absolutely no time to adjust anything...., normally I shoot if not on spot then matrix focus, never use center weighted (my camera is Nikon D5100), and it was taken at 8.30 my time, which 9.30 yours, quite dark

    I hope I can increase my skill by training and feedback from all of you..

    Nis Daniel
    Last edited by ndaniel; 10th December 2012 at 07:12 PM.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    Quote Originally Posted by zaren View Post
    can you post the original unprocessed pic?
    Hi Zaren, below is original picture, no PP, just straight out of camera, appreciate your feedback


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    yes indeed, massive blurring and massive sharpening indeed happened on this picture, forgive me since I am very new to photography, just have this camera on August 2012, and no experience on photography before

    definitely need a very hard effort to learn, and yes already learn something from your comment, thank you for that

  9. #9
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    Quote Originally Posted by ndaniel View Post
    [...]I just aim and shoot, lucky I put my camera on Aperture mode, but absolutely no time to adjust anything...., normally I shoot if not on spot then matrix focus, never use center weighted (my camera is Nikon D5100), and it was taken at 8.30 my time, which 9.30 yours, quite dark
    Please learn the terms and their meaning first. Exposure metering modes are Matrix (Canon: Evaluative), Center weighted and Spot. Focusing can be done using one or more AF points, many people will use the center AF point since it's a cross type. Check your manual how you can quickly change the AF points (buttons, joy stick), this will help you in similar situations. Focus modes are either Single Shot or Continuous Focusing (tracking). Many cameras also have a mode in between, where the cam switches from Single to Continuous if motion is detected. Your manual has it all
    EOS

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    wah... it was a big oops... my bad

    on D5100 not many shortcut available, fastest one is through FN button, which I allocate to ISO, for other short cut we have to deep down inside the menu, if not on information button, thanks for correcting my terms though
    Last edited by ndaniel; 10th December 2012 at 09:50 PM.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Portrait practice

    i don't think there is a need to crop the image further, it's quite nice to see the boy surrounded by the darkness, illuminated only by the sparklers. white balance can be corrected, as well as improving contrast and sharpness, without aggressive noise reduction.
    e.g.
    you can buy better gear but you can't buy a better eye

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    Hi zaren... Just curious.. did you sharpen the image with unsharp mask or highpass layer? Care to share your work process?

  13. #13

    Default Re: Portrait practice

    Quote Originally Posted by KageV View Post
    Hi zaren... Just curious.. did you sharpen the image with unsharp mask or highpass layer? Care to share your work process?
    Hi KageV,

    None of the above. I used a free software, "Irfanview", applied sharpening (using the auto sharpen function), increased contrast, decreased saturation and adjusted white balance through colour balance (Red/Blue).

    Cheers,
    z.
    you can buy better gear but you can't buy a better eye

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Portrait practice

    Quote Originally Posted by zaren View Post
    Hi KageV,

    None of the above. I used a free software, "Irfanview", applied sharpening (using the auto sharpen function), increased contrast, decreased saturation and adjusted white balance through colour balance (Red/Blue).

    Cheers,
    z.
    Damn Zaren, why you always know how to make picture much nicer (excuse for my language)

    I did cropping cause I feel my son just toooo much on the center of the frame...., but well that's a newbie point of view, my son picture indeed looking much better

    thank you for sharing me your tip, appreciate it

    Daniel

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