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DPChallenge Forums >> Individual Photograph Discussion >> Am I doing better?
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Showing posts 1 - 16 of 16, (reverse)
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02/17/2005 09:35:28 PM · #1
Ok, I'm trying again with real flowers and wanted to know if I'm heading in the right direction.

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02/17/2005 09:40:59 PM · #2
#1 is out of focus

#2 is focused well, but highlights are overexposed. A little USM wouldn't hurt either.

#3 is a tad soft, but could be fixed with USM. It is also overexposed in the highlights.

All of them, the color looks a bit dull. Bumping up the contrast and saturation a bit would probably help. Hope this helps
02/17/2005 10:09:54 PM · #3
Your light is too harsh. Shoot in the shade or indoors near a window. Spritz the flower with water and use a white sheet of paper to direct the light for better reflections. Try an off-center crop and a simpler background. Be sure to use a tripod or brace the camera on something solid. Experiment, then stop and smell the roses.
02/18/2005 08:09:18 AM · #4
Thanks for the input (from you both!). What does "USM" mean? Sorry, still very much an amateur here!
02/18/2005 08:27:54 AM · #5
Originally posted by pianomom:

Thanks for the input (from you both!). What does "USM" mean? Sorry, still very much an amateur here!


U(un) S(sharp) M(mask), a.k.a. sharpening.

(Not to be confused with a 'USM' motor on some camera lenses which represents 'Ultra Sonic Motor')

Message edited by author 2005-02-18 08:42:48.
02/18/2005 09:27:09 AM · #6
Oh, ok. Thanks! I actually did try that but only have the software that came with the camera & what was already on the computer. I need to save up the money and get a better photoshop program, I guess. What I have isn't too great. Do you know of one that's pretty good but not horribly expensive?
02/18/2005 10:30:04 AM · #7
Originally posted by pianomom:

Oh, ok. Thanks! I actually did try that but only have the software that came with the camera & what was already on the computer. I need to save up the money and get a better photoshop program, I guess. What I have isn't too great. Do you know of one that's pretty good but not horribly expensive?


The GIMP is pretty powerful and FREE.

Google has also put out Picasa 2 which is also free. It has some editing tools, but is not as powerful as The GIMP, as it's main function is as a photo organizer.
02/18/2005 11:58:41 AM · #8
Hi, Glenda! I've been messing with lighting a lot recently so I thougth I'd chime in and share what recently gleaned from a photography book. Also, as a coincidence I just took some flower pictures last week so I uploaded one to my profile (tn at end) :) This picture was shot in the breakfast nook (lots of windows) in the early evening.

I think pictures tend to come out A LOT better in diffuse natural light than in "fake" light so wait for a good time of day and carry your subject to a window if possible. I also have a serious problem with over-exposure of white items in my pictures. Cameras guess what the best exposure level is and sometimes items in the picture fool the camera into guessing incorretly. I don't know anything about your camera, but many cameras have an exposure adjustment so you can tell the camera it guessed incorrectly. As a general rule, it's easier to fix underexposure in a photo editing program than overexposure. BTW, I'm not sure what price range you're looking for, but I use Adobe Photoshop Elements (less than $100) and have been happy with it.

Sorry for such a long post!
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02/18/2005 12:42:55 PM · #9
My wife is an avid gardener so I shoot a lot of flowers. I use a tripod
and timer to reduce shake. Your color looks pretty good but you might
also try using the custom white balance for better color under different
lighting situations.
02/18/2005 06:50:44 PM · #10
Thanks to all of you for your advice. I'm trying to soak up as much knowledge as I can so I can take better pictures. It's SO much fun! (but also SO much to learn!) I'll check into the GIMP and the Adobe Photoshop Elements. That price is fine. I just didn't want to have to buy one of the really expensive ones.
02/18/2005 07:07:38 PM · #11
I own both photoshop 7 and elements 3, and do 90% of my editting in elements. It's a good, and easy to use, program.
02/18/2005 07:16:11 PM · #12
If you can afford Elements then I would recommend that over the Gimp. Gimp was built by Linux geeks and while it's very powerful it can also be esoteric to learn.

Photoshop Elements is also esoteric to learn but you have the advantage of hundreds of walkthroughs and tutorials on the web and in magazines. Photoshop full version and Elements are the industry standard so in my view your time is best invested in learning one of those.

John
02/18/2005 10:15:40 PM · #13
Are there any to watch out for or to stay away from?
02/18/2005 11:57:14 PM · #14
Besides making the pictures better for light, color, focus, and all, the subject is very good! Maybe another photo editor could help them a bit.. The angles you shot these at are good too!

02/19/2005 12:04:25 AM · #15
Adobe Elements 3.0 (30 days tryout)
02/19/2005 09:17:22 AM · #16
Thanks tolovemoon! (on a side note, I just looked at your profile and realized that I have your feather picture in my favorites!)

Thanks to all for the advice on the different photoshop programs. I'll look into all of those. I definitely need something better than what I have now!
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