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Out and about with my camera

David_W
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Posts: 2,293
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Registered: 19-07-2007

Out and about with my camera

My third time trying to post this, luckily I figured it would time out so copied my original text Cheesy
My first attempt at this timed out, my own fault for not compressing one of the images (4.9mb, ouch) so a rewrite!
It was raining today which was a downer on me getting my camera but I said to myself "get out there and shoot some stuff!" so I did.  Some of the results are mediocre to poor, one or two I think are very nice indeed, one I totally messed up.
OK, bad_place_to_stand is where I stood to take a photo of a lighthouse (not included), the photo needs work
Church - that's a church, I used Photoshop's auto-things to do colour and stuff
flower_one - that's a nice purple flower, I wish the background was more blurry (if that makes sense) but it works well
more_tulips - my favourite of the day, the way the photo catches a rain drop defying gravity is really nice
tulip1 - another tulip, not as nice I think as the first one but I wanted a "non busy" scene, and it's certainly not busy!
mess_up - I messed this one up, I wanted the church in focus with the palm trees being a "frame", didn't work, the palms are in focus instead
pond - a err pond, you can see the rain landing in the water causing bubbles, it's sort of hypnotic
Well, that's my first day with the camera, the A650 is pretty amazing and I'm thankful for the recommendation!  I enjoyed going out photographing stuff and at times felt exhilarated by the experience (but suffered a major headache walking back, the side effect of agarophobia).  I'm looking forward to sunny weather.
Oh, almost forgot to add one which is a nice one but a weird one.
Steps - I don't know why I took this, I saw the steps and thought "that'd make a great photo!" but I'll leave that up to you lot to decide, though the decision is probably "he's insane!" Tongue
61 REPLIES
Lurker
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Registered: 23-10-2008

Re: Out and about with my camera

To get your background 'blurry' on your Iris (the purple flower...) you need to have a large aperture.
The effect of doing this is a narrow depth of field, throwing everything other than your choice of focal point into soft focus.
I'm not familiar with the camera you shoot with - but have a look for aperture settings in the manuals. Wink
Also, its worth investigating the autofocus; generally you can choose to have it focus on one of a number of points, or for it to choose one from a sample.
Allowing it to choose means that it will select the boldest straight line to focus on.
If you change to centre, (on another one specifically) you can have a little more control, and mess_up would be closer to what you wanted I suspect.

Steps:
Its a fairly classic construction for a photo - something drawing your eye into the photo, guiding you on a bit of a journey as you look at it.
Generally when taking landscape shots, that's the kind of framing you'll be looking for.
Also, avoid shooting at midday if you can - on a sunny day you get far more interesting light early and late in the day - a lot more colour, and a lot of opportunity for interesting shadows and highlights.

Main thing - have fun. Wink
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Re: Out and about with my camera

WildRose52
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Re: Out and about with my camera

Hi David,
I love that single tulip photo, really nice.
The `bad place` and the church are good also.
I think steps look nice in a photo, so no you`re not mad lol.
You`ve taken the pic from a good angle - and I like that one too.
All told : a very good effort for your first day with a new camera.
Sorry it rained for you, but then raindrops always look so beautiful
on flowers, dont they?
Thanks for sharing.
David_W
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Posts: 2,293
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Registered: 19-07-2007

Re: Out and about with my camera

Quote from: James_G
To get your background 'blurry' on your Iris (the purple flower...) you need to have a large aperture.
The effect of doing this is a narrow depth of field, throwing everything other than your choice of focal point into soft focus

The camera will auto set the f thingy when I half click, the more_tulip (which is my favourite!) has the tulip in strong focus with the rest of it sort of blurred out.  It does have manual settings for me to set basically everything.  I should have set the auto-focus onto something so it would focus on the church, my own mistake and one I didn't realise about until I got home and put the SD card into my computer.
I'm hoping the sky clears up, I want to get a nice sunset image!  Though a year or so ago I was riding into Penzance on my motorbike, the day was a bit damn and soggy but not overcast, proper clouds, I came over the crest of a hill so I could see St Michaels Bay and the sun broke through the clouds so rays of sunshine dancing down into the ocean, it has to be said I have never seen a more beautiful sight like that, I only wish I had a camera with me when that happened!
@Jim - very nice Cheesy  I think I'm going to enjoy this photography stuff when the weather changes (it's forcast to be nice.... Monday!)
@WildRose - I think the rain made some of the photos I had, catching the rain on that one tulip, it looks like it's about to fall off but it's stuck there forever in that photo now.  The pond one was also nice, it's the first time I've taken a photo of a pond when it's raining so now I know what raindrops look like when they hit water Cheesy
Community Veteran
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Re: Out and about with my camera

Quote from: James_G
To get your background 'blurry' on your Iris (the purple flower...) you need to have a large aperture.
The effect of doing this is a narrow depth of field, throwing everything other than your choice of focal point into soft focus.

Alas that's not really the issue here. Having had a look at the Exif of the photo in question, the lens's max aperture was f/4.0, and the aperture it was taken at was the very same. You're no doubt used to the beauty of DSLR shooting, where the larger sensor has a favourable impact on DOF for these situations – plus, of course, much wider apertures are available with the right lenses.
The best advice here David, I think, is to consider subject distance – as with a static object such as a flower, one can get as close or far away as one needs to create the perfect result. Moving closer to the subject will decrease the depth of field (which means more blurriness behind and in front of the subject), as will zooming in further. When it comes to choosing between moving back and zooming in or moving closer and using macro mode, however, there's no right answer, as they both result in the same depth of field but they give you a different perspective.
Try it and see next time you see a pretty flower: zoom out as far as you can, then walk as close as possible to the flower and take a photograph. Now, zoom all the way in and walk far enough back so that the resultant size of the flower in the viewfinder or on the LCD is the same as the first photograph. You'll see that the perspective has changed significantly: in the second photograph the background will look less busy (and perhaps more blurry) because behind the flower, there's a much narrower view of the flower's surroundings. Smiley
Community Veteran
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Re: Out and about with my camera


The best advice anybody can take about photography is ... "move your feet" ... think about it!
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3Mb FTTC
https://portal.plus.net/my.html?action=data_transfer_speed
pierre_pierre
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Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Out and about with my camera

the top dial on the right Av allows you to select your aperture from F2.8 to f8.0 and the effective film speed on the small button on the right back ISO from 80 to 1600, this will allow you to get a lot of different depth of fields (Blurr)
David_W
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Registered: 19-07-2007

Re: Out and about with my camera

Lots of good advice for me to take in and yep, experiment with next time I'm out and about!  I've managed to play with the lighthouse ones too, not sure what went wrong with the far one, I turned on the grid mode on the camera so it's on horizontal 3 line, but I can't seem to place what I was using for the bottom line, I would have assumed I was using the ocean, my hands must have been shaking? Not sure, but the zoom, impressive!
Community Veteran
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Re: Out and about with my camera

Hmm. That wouldn't happen to be the huge long beach one that runs down to Hayle would it?
pierre_pierre
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Re: Out and about with my camera

I wouldnt use the digital zoom much, best to just use the optical zoom and then play around back home  - Optical 6x, digital 24x
David_W
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Posts: 2,293
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Registered: 19-07-2007

Re: Out and about with my camera

Indeed it would Be3G, 3 miles of golden sands!
So use the normal zoom without hitting digital, then fiddle with the raw files back home?
pierre_pierre
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Re: Out and about with my camera

in effect all you are doing with digital zoom is using just the centre of the collector disc at a lousy resolution,  - the "Film" is cheap, so have a play round
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Re: Out and about with my camera

Quote
I love that single tulip photo, really nice

Here's a nice flower one for you ..
Lurker
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Registered: 23-10-2008

Re: Out and about with my camera

Yep - many camera's have an option to disable digital zoom - use it!
All digital zoom does is crop your image - that's why it ends up blurry.
As you've mentioned, RAW is best to shoot in if you can be bothered! It simply records the data that the sensor sees, and also the settings you chose at the time.
You can subsequently alter lots of settings, since they are really just a processing mask.
Downside is that you have to process every shot if you want to convert them to jpegs to share with others.
It all depends what you are shooting (again, some cameras allow you to shoot in both, and record both - some even allow you to record jpegs to one card, and RAWs to another.)