Thread: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

1. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Math cannot be applied to art? Dudes, don't diss the engineers. Who made Photoshop and sold it to you for \$1k++? And who saved you by coming up with free image processing software?

2. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

I think some people here are getting confused about making a photograph and making a camera.

3. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by ombre
TS didn't entirely think about photography actually. It was \$\$ issues.

I used the formula to help me decide that 55-250 IS was sufficient for me, instead of a 70-200 F4 L. The 1 step would do little to help me "freeze" the motion of my subjects in the situations where I needed it. And that its okay to use 50mm F1.8. =) Or at least, in each scenario, the cost vs utility was not sufficient to convince me.

Of course after coming up with it, there were a lot more applications so why waste it. =)

In some sense, the application of this formula is in reverse. Formulas are usually designed to advance sciences to greater limits. This one simply points out what you need, what you don't. In my applications, it reduced me to using the bare minimums. Of course it still advances you in theory.

Lastly after looking at this for awhile, I'm starting to wonder why I got so many critiques... I never forced anyone to use it and acknowledged each limitation where necessary.

All in all, I'm pretty happy to have come up with something few realized / tried to do. Even if its not necessarily a revolutionary, PhD level math. Like I said before, I'm not a math person, from a point of view, going into math is a creative process for me.
Haha, yes, money, always a driving factor.

I guess the problem with formulas is that you can't really apply them in the field during a shoot. It's better to trust your experience when you're out there.

It's ok, this is a forum afterall, you've got critiques, but you've got supportive comments too. You're happy with what you've come up with, I think that's good enough.

4. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

A link I came across here in the forum: http://www.normankoren.com/zonesystem.html
Is Ansel Adams artist or engineer? Does it matter when you look at his pictures?

5. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by Octarine
A link I came across here in the forum: http://www.normankoren.com/zonesystem.html
Is Ansel Adams artist or engineer? Does it matter when you look at his pictures?
do you think ansel adams took out a manual on the zone system everytime he shot?

to put it into a cheena context, when zhang san feng was teaching zhang wu ji one set of wu gong (ok i know this is starting to sound corny, bear with me).. he asked him the first time whether he had forgotten anything. zhang wu ji said.. a little. zhang san feng then went through it a second time, and asked the same question. zhang wu ji said.. a lot more. and finally they went through it one last time, and he had forgotten everything.

this is my point, rather than working with figures, why not internalise everything by gaining experience? figures might provide you with insights, but their value in terms of practicality is almost flung out to the four winds in reality. just take the old sunny 16 rule..

6. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Deadpoet shoots only girls what, so he is an "artist".

Funny someone, LittleWolf?, mentioned that cooking does not require food science knowledge. This point is true yet untrue. See, in my class of 45, barely 5 know how to cook! The rest just talk about engineering food. BUT, the top chefs in the world all have an above average grasp of food science, and the recent rise in molecular gastronomy are pioneered by those who are very well trained in food science.

My point is, the reason why some many people are dissing Ombre is because his formula is something new to them and goes against what they have learnt and have been practising.

I fail to see what's so arty about taking photos of F1. If photography were ONLY about art, then I WILL POST PICS OF MY GEL ELECTROPHORESIS in the critique corner. It is art!

The detractors, generally offer two main points of argument. One is summarised by Nightmare86, as "impractical". The other is headed by Deadpoet as "don't get your dirty maths into my art" or something.

The supporters generally appreciate the effort that went in, smile at how formulas scare people like chemical names do (like woah 1,3,7-trimethylxanthine sounds scary!), and move on.

There will always be different types of people, like those personality tests eg MBTI show. The "Just wing it" types and those who seek to be properly prepared and less willing to improvise. Can Ombre do a post on the various personalities of people and how it translates into photograhic styles and habits?

7. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by tjhan
If photography were ONLY about art, then I WILL POST PICS OF MY GEL ELECTROPHORESIS in the critique corner. It is art!
it's been done before..

how ironic.

8. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by night86mare
this is my point, rather than working with figures, why not internalise everything by gaining experience? figures might provide you with insights, but their value in terms of practicality is almost flung out to the four winds in reality. just take the old sunny 16 rule..
My sentiments too, that's why even though I work out the maths, I don't find it useful when shooting...

9. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

I believe some pilots with great mathematics ability don't use SLR shutter speed and aperture and prefer P&S.

There are also great musician who can't read music notes.

And you can't learn to play golf on books without the field.

Because light is not easy to caculate with shutter speed and aperture..

10. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by tjhan
Deadpoet shoots only girls what, so he is an "artist".

My point is, the reason why some many people are dissing Ombre is because his formula is something new to them and goes against what they have learnt and have been practising.

The detractors, generally offer two main points of argument. One is summarised by Nightmare86, as "impractical". The other is headed by Deadpoet as "don't get your dirty maths into my art" or something.

There will always be different types of people, like those personality tests eg MBTI show. The "Just wing it" types and those who seek to be properly prepared and less willing to improvise. Can Ombre do a post on the various personalities of people and how it translates into photograhic styles and habits?
Might be a little blatant/irrelevant, but there's this quote about truth.

All truth goes through three phases. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self evident.
Although we're not talking about truth here, but just a way of doing things.

Agreed, a narrowly skilled engineer won't be a good photographer. But no one ever said an artistic photographer can't be a skilled engineer. Why not have both? Technically you now have a way to confirm your experience.

I can fully understand the "don't get your dirty maths into my art". It always happens. The never ending argument about how dance is not about atheletics, how music isn't about dexterity, etc etc. Its very hard to find agreement no doubt. But Deadpoet crossed a line to say that those who use formulas will never grow as a photographer. There I disagree.

As for "impractical"... I don't entirely see why. If you put these variables into an excel worksheet. (10 minutes max), and play around with the inputs (1 minute), you have your figures in 11 minutes. Free.

If formulas are seriously impractical to photography, I don't see how clubsnapping is practical. They don't help you get the photos, but they serve some uses.

I'm wondering if those against the formulas do use focal length calculators or DOF calculators online? Or perhaps you didn't, and eventually learnt that the lens you bought didn't serve your ideals. Lens reviews and all those MTF figures? Don't like them? If you don't put a number to these things, how sharp is sharp really? As long as its decently sharp, your human eyes can easily translate the visual information to 'fill in the blanks'. I don't think most people can tell the sharpness apart from 2 almost equally good lens. Its just a placebo effect after reading the lens reviews, or other favoritism. The mechanism is just not in your human eyes.

About the personality testing... its entirely possible. Then it will be even more 'science'. Imagine if you had the time and resource to personality test every photographer, you can actually predict what pictures they will take O.o, just by giving them the personality test (a formula in its own right). Social science, is unfortunately, a little more absurd to the public than conventional science. But don't count on me to do it haha.

Here's one theory though, its Freud's theory if you guys have read about this 'weird' psychologist. Summarized and applied version: Sometimes when someone present a work as 'art' (positive), he may actually be habouring thoughts about the disdainful aspects of it. This is called sublimation, and is a defense against anxiety. (eg. if someone is addicted to sex, and feels anxious about his behaviour, he will do nude photography/drawings and pass it off as 'art'). Its only a hypothesis, but a well debated one.

11. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by P3ntx
I believe some pilots with great mathematics ability don't use SLR shutter speed and aperture and prefer P&S.

There are also great musician who can't read music notes.

And you can't learn to play golf on books without the field.

Because light is not easy to caculate with shutter speed and aperture..
Yah Jimi Hendrix doesn't read music notes but Mozart and Beethoven all can? So? It just shows that there are many types of people around.

Btw, your 3 examples are really strangely unrelated. A pilot prefers PnS because he's not into photography what! Like my mom prefers PnS but she can cook well!

You can't play golf without playing, so you can't be a good photographer without taking photos is your 3rd example, but nobody here (ok maybe some who just post on CS) doesn't go out and take photos right?

Anyway, I'm suddenly reminded of Deadpoet's archrival, "Student", who's both a doctor and a self-professed artist. I wonder what he wouldve have said about this.

Speaking of sports, let us talk about football as an example. In the past, nobody used sports science or sophisticated tactics. Everyone drank beer, ate fish and chips and smoked, ran around wildly with the ball with some rudimentary formation. They scoffed at people like Wenger who tried to get a sports science regime implemented, but nowadays people like nightmare86, normal dudes, are also into it. It was once thought that the single brain cell of footballers couldn't handle the complicated tactical instructions, other than "just hoof it".

Photography is interesting because it developed the other way around. In the past, there were greater limitations on shooting, like film, one-use flash, and such, that anything that would improve the odds of a shot would be welcome. But nowadays with digital, auto-modes, auto-metering, photoshop wonders and all that, people tend to believe it's better to just blast away and gain "experience".

12. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

hmmm... after reading sometime... the main point that keep poking out is that... "go out, take photo and gain experince" ... Yes i think tat is ONE of the way to learn... but remember in sch, there is always theory and practical... and I'm the type tat do better when come to practical stuff, especially when i was in ITE... but theory is not there to make ur learning or life difficult... it is there to help u understand the work better.. so experince is like practical...

anyway, there is a Degree photography course in NTU, wondering if they do this or learn formular like this... and wat is their practical lesson like

13. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

just for fun, at least i think this formula's interesting..

anyways.. most lenses are also made/designed based on mathematical formulas anyway... else most photogs will still be using pinholes (eek even pin holes have to be calculated too)

14. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by skyguy
hmmm... after reading sometime... the main point that keep poking out is that... "go out, take photo and gain experince" ... Yes i think tat is ONE of the way to learn... but remember in sch, there is always theory and practical... and I'm the type tat do better when come to practical stuff, especially when i was in ITE... but theory is not there to make ur learning or life difficult... it is there to help u understand the work better.. so experince is like practical...

anyway, there is a Degree photography course in NTU, wondering if they do this or learn formular like this... and wat is their practical lesson like
They do learn a lot of art theory I think, one of my friends is doing it and from his behind the scenes pictures, it's a lot of stuff that most CS-ers would be turned off by. No XMM!

15. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by tjhan
They do learn a lot of art theory I think, one of my friends is doing it and from his behind the scenes pictures, it's a lot of stuff that most CS-ers would be turned off by. No XMM!
Aww! No XMM is a no go! Lol kidding.

'Art theory' is an interesting word. Comes to remind me that even the 'rule' of thirds, is a subtype of a formula.

Eitherways, photography is so easy now (technical aspects), maybe it should be just called Focus and Framing. Possible ignorant statement, but that's what all most people do yea? Maybe creating poses and arrange too, but I like to thing that all the other elements belong to the world and photography simply taps on them, they're not the photographer's creation.

16. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Dudes, remember hyperfocal focusing? There are mathematical formulas for it, but they are too difficult to calculate mentally. So people printed charts from the fomulas and took the charts out into the field. Another example of the role formulas play in creating a picture.

17. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by ArchRival
Dudes, remember hyperfocal focusing? There are mathematical formulas for it, but they are too difficult to calculate mentally. So people printed charts from the fomulas and took the charts out into the field. Another example of the role formulas play in creating a picture.
the usual trick now is to focus 1/3 of the way into the picture.

but if you still want your hyperfocal charts for peace of mind, why not?

18. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by night86mare
the usual trick now is to focus 1/3 of the way into the picture.
Since a third of infinity is still infinity, your "usual trick" is obvious nonsense.

19. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Originally Posted by LittleWolf
Since a third of infinity is still infinity, your "usual trick" is obvious nonsense.
you are glorious, o maths lord.

your mathematical light will salvage the whole of mankind, and a new age will begin with you at the helm of the state. we shall bask in your numerical dexterity and arcane formulae.

If you don't have a DOF calculator to use in the field then a good rule of thumb to follow if you want everything in sharp is to focus on something that is one third into the scene using a wide angle lens with a small aperture setting. I would suggest using something between f/11 to f/16. This, of course, is just an estimate that most pros use and is only applicable to landscape shots.

lighten up, dude. you're still as uptight as before..

20. Re: Mathematical Formula for motion blurs (or "freezing motion")

Of course, a photographer can set to f11-16 for the shot. With a tripod.
Or he can use f/9 at hyperfocal distance, suffer a little loss in foreground focus, and maybe nail the shot handheld.

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