New to photography - constructive criticism please

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by redrabbit, May 28, 2007.

  1. redrabbit macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #1
    Hi, I looked for a thread on posting random photos from critiquing, but didn't see one, so if this is a useless thread, I apoligize. I just got into photography. I don't have any formal training or plan on taking any for a couple semesters, so all I know about it is from online and just going out and taking shots. I went on my first real shoot this weekend, to some charity even in a mall here in Shanghai, and snapped over 350 photos. Here are my favorite ones from the collection. Any advice or tips on how to better improve my technique would be VERY appreciated. Thanks!

    Link to my flickr photos:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/8507311@N02/
     
  2. Mydriasis macrumors 6502

    Mydriasis

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    #2
    Overall, I think they are decent photos! They are mainly documentary and sports but some artistic.

    My favorites are
    • 112: simple, nice hard side light, great moment with the girls facial expression
    • 196: simple, color compliments, warm light, good crop
    As for some advice: try to keep it simple, most of the images are cluttered and show to much. Think about what you want to show and then capture it is such a fashion that the center of attention and focus lead immediately to it. Work with point of view, depth of field, color and lighting, composition etc to tell a story.

    I highly recommend http://www.radiantvista.com they have a daily picture critque, where they talk about this kind of stuff with examples in a videocast. Check it out!
     
  3. failsafe1 macrumors 6502a

    failsafe1

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2003
    #3
    Good start. Keep shooting. Somethings that will help are to keep taking photos o help define your style. Look at tons of photos that you like and see what makes them work. Keep it up!!
     
  4. The Past macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    #4
    I agree with Mydriasis that you may want to consider reducing the noise in your pictures (too much happening). Once you start shooting pictures you are happy with regard to how you framed the shot, then you could move on to tweaking other aspects such as lighting, exposure, etc.

    Good luck!
     
  5. redrabbit thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #5
    Thanks guys. I should clarify that I work as a writer for a magazine so my photography probably won't stem towards the artistic kind in nature, but more journalistic. On the too busy comments, it's very hard getting a simple and non busy shot in China! :D
    Thanks again
     
  6. The Past macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    #6
    Very true, one way to handle it will be to play with aperture. I have had much luck canceling noise this way. Of course, there is no rush. Take your time and enjoy clicking!
     
  7. redrabbit thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #7
    Thanks for the tip. Right now my biggest frustration is with taking sports shots. Out of the over 350 photos I took, most of them were of the skaters, and I only liked a few, the others were really blah. :rolleyes: What camera settings do you recommend to get cool action shots? A lot of the coolest sports shots I've seen online sort of had the background and blurry and the athlete completely in focus. How would I go about getting shots like this? Here’s an example, a friends photo:

    [​IMG]

    Thanks again.
     
  8. Mydriasis macrumors 6502

    Mydriasis

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    #8
    Its called panning. It a technique where one follows a moving object with the camera while remaining in the same position. Thus, the moving object will be in focus and the background have a motion blur.

    This is one on the techniques to direct a viewers focus of attention to the main subject, i.e. keeping it simple.

    Another one you could use is depth of field. Get a telephoto lens, close the aperture and take the shots. Here you get a similar effect where only the short distance of the main subject is in focus. The for and background are blurred. But its a different blur, softer and with no implied motion.

    Then there are also special lens with a selective focus such as lensbabies.

    Or you could do a slap zoom. Here your zooming in or out while taking the picture. This gives you a streaked radial blur.

    etc.
     
  9. mcmadhatter macrumors 6502

    mcmadhatter

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2005
    Location:
    Bath, UK
    #9
    I particularly like 196 it has lovely warm lighting.

    With regards to panning, you can do it in post production (tutorial). Though in my opinion the best results are obtained whilst you are taking the shot

    Here is a tutorial on panning on animal shots, though the techniques car's, bikes, anything else will be virtually the same.

    It just takes practice, though it is easier (in my opinon) if you use a tripod or monopod to begin with.
     
  10. redrabbit thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #10
  11. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #11
    Actually, you want to open the aperture, not close it for the shallowest depth of field.
     
  12. redrabbit thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #12
    Which do you guys consider the better photo? I've been playing around with different settings. I can post the exif data too if you'd like:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  13. MorzillA macrumors 6502

    MorzillA

    Joined:
    May 16, 2007
    Location:
    Miami
    #13
    I really like both pics, the bottom one wins out though, the cool feel works better for the background and focuses more on the front building. even though the top image gives that metropolitan feel a real concrete jungle, For me I'd go for the subtle one. works great in any room/space!

    Keep shooting, photos. places,people,things, your skill will get better with time, it's how I did it.

    Now I can't wait to take a second semester of photgraphy.

    ALSO, archive all your images, u never know when they might come in handy!!!


    :apple:
     
  14. redrabbit thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #14
    Yea I like the colors in the blue one as well, but I really dig the old school communist feel of the orange one, especially since its a soviet building juxtaposed with a banner reading "Millionaire Fair"...something I wish I had emphasized more when I took the shot :D
     
  15. magicjames92 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2007
    #15
    u have some good ones, but i dont get some of the car ones, and the dark shots need to either be brightened or given a mood effect,,,
     
  16. teleromeo macrumors 65816

    teleromeo

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2006
    Location:
    kidnapped by aliens
    #16
    I like the one in the kitchen with the red girl. I see lots of pictures every day but that is one that sticks to the eye. A little bit more contrast and sharpening is the only thing I should add,
     
  17. redrabbit thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #17
    the car ones were just me practicting panning...there's no meaning to them:D
     
  18. redrabbit thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    #19
    The previous photos were all taken with a "near-SLR" (that's what my photography friend calls them). The other day, I got to take out a digital SLR Canon XT Rebel to have fun with. My first time ever using one. Here are the photos:

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