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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 9:43 pm 
Hi,

This is the follow on from my other post here, they don't really fit in with the theme over there.

All criticism is very much appreciated, I want to learn as much as possible! (don't we all?).

One thing I want to ask is how do you get the backgrounds totally blurred so the only thing in focus is the car? I know it's something to do with the aperture but what's the best practice in these situations? I totally forgot to even try different apertures when I was there, it was a busy day!

All your advice is invaluable to me at the moment so all comments are very much welcome!

Here are the stills...

Image

Shutter Speed: 1/800
Aperture: f/7.1
Focal Length: 70mm
ISO: 200


Image

Shutter Speed: 1/25
Aperture: f/22
Focal Length: 95mm
ISO: 200


Image

Shutter Speed: 1/400
Aperture: f/5
Focal Length: 70mm
ISO: 200


Image

Shutter Speed: 1/500
Aperture: f/13
Focal Length: 82mm
ISO: 200


Image

Shutter Speed: 1/25
Aperture: f/22
Focal Length: 18mm
ISO: 200



These pictures were taken by the Nikon D40 with the Nikkor 18-200mm VR lens.

I have a few others on my Flickr. Enjoy!

Cheers,

Steve


Last edited by SteveExeter on Mon Apr 07, 2008 10:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 10:10 pm 
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SteveExeter wrote:
...One thing I want to ask is how do you get the backgrounds totally blurred so the only thing in focus is the car?...

Great shots! Have a look at Gordon's How to take portraits with blurred backgrounds over at DSLR Tips. For a more technical discussion see Understanding Depth of Field over at Cambridge In Colour.

Bob.

P.S. What's a "Kickel" and why is the writing mirrored. :?

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 10:37 pm 
Hi Bob,

I was at this show with Steve, and the Kicker was one HUGE beast of a HUMMER, not easy to get around the front so that image is a bit cramped and not very good unfortunately.

But here are a couple of shots of it.

Image
The amazing sound this thing threw out was mind blowing! - Oooh and I forgot to put my flash on the camera all day long! So much to learn

Image
Not great but it's the only one I managed to get, I will put some of mine up when I finish going through them all. :roll:


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 10:40 pm 
Feel fre to post more babe shots :D

Well i like to use a fill in flash, if you have an external unit it would be great to fill in those gaps where the sun penetrates! and for those shots where your shooting agains the light! But i think your on the right steps my freind!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 10:43 pm 
alex168 wrote:
Well i like to use a fill in flash, if you have an external unit it would be great to fill in those gaps where the sun penetrates! and for those shots where your shooting agains the light! But i think your on the right steps my freind!


Thanks!

Ok, you've twisted my arm! Here's another shot for you!

Image


I was actually using the SB-600 for those shots, but I agree that another fill in would of been handy but I'm not sure how practical that would of been taking alot of pictures and not having a great deal of time, also it was very crowded so space is limited, what's your thoughts?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 11:17 pm 
Hahaha! awsome man, been brought up in brazil and whot not i dont knw i just love the female figure and i love to photograph it, on the other hand my female models dont want me to share thier shots and i respcet that!

but i guess some poeple over here could cosnider this erotic, in some sort of manner? i got a few shots of a female gogo dancer...which r quite provactive


I was just wondering, did u use ur SB 600 for any ot them shots? never mind this...


Well there is something called a pc cable if i m not mistaken where you can remove your flash from the camera and place it where every you want, the only thing limiting you here is the lenght of the cable, so for example if your shooting a hood shoot plaing the sb with its own difuser under the hood should produce some really neat effects...i m going to get my hands on one of these cables asap.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 11:33 pm 
The models at these type of shows expect to be photographed and then put on the internet, not that they're being used just for our pleasure as such, they just want to get themselves noticed and hopefully spotted.

All of them were really nice, not just to look at but none of the girls had an attitude problem etc., they like it when you thank them after you've finished (taking the pictures that is! :shock:).

I used the SB-600 for all of these shots except for the 1st one of the blue Subaru, I had the Sto-Fen Omnibounce on for all of the pictures taken with the flash. I was talking to Mark-A (above) earlier and he reckoned that I should've taken it off for the model shots and used it without, I think he was right as the background is a bit dark on some of them so I'll try that next time and just use the Sto-Fen for the very reflective cars.

I'll look into that cable, but it was very tight with a crowd of people around you all the time. I expect all the shows will be like that. Although, it's amazing how many people move out the way to let you past when they see you have a DSLR which is bigger than a compact!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 11:42 pm 
Well sure you can take it fo, but bump down the EV abit or the power a bit, thus the flash wont be shooting so strong light burning the skin of the model. When it comes to shooting people i like to have a rather dull/black/dark you name it background, this is because the main subject inst really the background, unless it super intresing!

Yeah its quite a bummer when you have loads of people around you! But thats nothign you can do about it. Try to discover some new angels that is always intresting. I got some shots at a car show (indoors) at my flick see the sig, where i was pretty much sitting down on the floor, you look a bit okward when taking the shot but this something that i have gotten used to, i m getting the nick name floorman blacker haha!


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 12:27 am 
SteveExeter wrote:
I used the SB-600 for all of these shots except for the 1st one of the blue Subaru, I had the Sto-Fen Omnibounce on for all of the pictures taken with the flash. I was talking to Mark-A (above) earlier and he reckoned that I should've taken it off for the model shots and used it without, I think he was right as the background is a bit dark on some of them so I'll try that next time and just use the Sto-Fen for the very reflective cars.

I'll look into that cable, but it was very tight with a crowd of people around you all the time. I expect all the shows will be like that. Although, it's amazing how many people move out the way to let you past when they see you have a DSLR which is bigger than a compact!


Seeing as you've progressed to the D200, you can run without the cable and use the wireless command facility with the SB-600.

As for the omni-bounce, remove it when you find that your flashgun doesn't give you enough power. Otherwise keep it on, especially when you're taking portraiture - an undiffused flash causes a horrible colour on skin.

On the matter of portraiture, it's better to forget the background detail - the less clutter you have, the better, and here I side with Alex. The darker background isn't a negative.

As Bob has hinted/suggested, you (and also Mark-A) should start playing with apertures and depth of field. There is too much front-to-back sharpness, and when you're taking subjects like people and cars, it may be beneficial to single out the subject from the environment.

To me, I'm not convinced you've learnt to control your apertures from your sample images. Let me briefly give some feedback on your initial images:

Image 2: there is some visible diffraction here as you've gone to a very small aperture. The image isn't sharp partially down to this, but also handshake. At f22, you need a long shutter speed to get the light in, and at 95mm, you should be using 1/100 (purely by reciprocals). A wider aperture, say f8, would give you a better result if you wanted sharpness front-to-back. In this case, I'm wondering if you're trying to focus only on the NO canister - if so, then use the widest aperture available to you, as well as controlling the distance to your subject to achieve some bokeh to single it out.

Image 3: There's no focal point to this image, which could again benefit with some DoF control. If you're going for front-to-back sharpness, f5 won't give that to you. You can see that the sharpness drops off slightly to the sides of the car.

Image 4: The framing isn't right here in many ways. You could have gone close for an upper body + shoulders + head shot, or stepped back and zoomed out to get a full length shot. Cutting the legs off the frame is a big negative. The model is also quite central in the frame. Here I'd be wanting to move the model to the left third of the frame and have more room leading on the right. Once again, DoF could be reduced with a smaller aperture to isolate the model from the environment.

Image 5: Be careful with shadows - you might have captured your own shadow and possibly your arm (bottom left of frame). Other than that, the image is partially over-exposed - most evident on the white in the background.

These were my immediate thoughts when I viewed your images. I don't mean to be deliberately harsh. When are where are your next events? Are they based around the south of England? Can you PM me details?

Finally, thank you for sharing your work.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 8:20 am 
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Really nice girls... i mean shots... :twisted:

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 9:43 am 
Photoj...

Many, many thanks for your comments, those are the sort of comments I need as this is only really the start of my photography hobby and they will really help me get better shots so thank you.

Photoj wrote:
To me, I'm not convinced you've learnt to control your apertures from your sample images.


I didn't use apertures at all. I said to myself before I went that I should use aperture priority for all the show shots and shutter priority for the panning. I completely forgot about the apetures, I had so much on my mind on my first day out. All the apertures and shutter speeds were on auto for most of the day in program mode apart from the panning, that's why I seem to have f22 and a fast shutter on some shots. I didn't think about the technical side at all, I was just trying to get some decent shots.


Photoj wrote:
There's no focal point to this image, which could again benefit with some DoF control.


I really need to understand depth of field and apertures. Would you still be able to get a blurred background with the Nikkor 18-200mm VR? Or should I be looking at a f/2.8 lens so I can get better depth of field?

Photoj wrote:
Cutting the legs off the frame is a big negative


Unfortunately I couldn't get that shot with the full body, she was standing on top of a vehicle through the sunroof so everyone could get a view of her which was a shame as a full body shot I agree would have been better.

Photoj wrote:
When are where are your next events?


There's 3 coming up in the near future:

17th May - Japfest (www.japfest.co.uk) - Castle Combe - £13 in advance

24th & 25th May - Modified Nationals (http://www.modifiednationals.co.uk/) - Peterborough - £12.50 in advance

1st June - Japanese Tuning Show (http://www.japanesetuningshow.co.uk/) - Silverstone - Probably going to be £20 in advance


Me and Mark are definately going to Japfest and we need to decide which one of the other two we'll be going to.

Again, thanks for all your comments, they are much appreciated.

Cheers,

Steve


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:25 am 
I could be available for the one in Silverstone. May is a busy month for me, and I rarely get time to have leisurely photography trips then.

As for DoF, you don't necessarily need a 2.8 lens. You can achieve it with the 70-300 4.5-5.6 and many other relatively slow lenses. The 18-200 isn't famed for its bokeh, but it can generate some. DoF control isn't about just the aperture; you also have the focal distance to consider, as well as how the background is in relation to the subject.

Don't worry about the technical side to the photography at the beginning; just make sure you find it enjoyable.


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