2 for CC. JMK shot using my new photo lights UPdated new pic

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NicholeC's picture
Joined: 06/09/08
Posts: 284
2 for CC. JMK shot using my new photo lights UPdated new pic

I haven't had a chance to post these but I took these 2 with my new photography lights. This are straight out of the camera. What do ya'll think?

f4.5 1/25sec ISO-800 33mm

f3.5 1/30sec ISO-800 21mm

Here is another one after editing. What do ya'll think?

Muddee's picture
Joined: 03/13/08
Posts: 2119

Your boys are cute.

#1 - The focus seems good on this one, but you did crop the toe on his left foot a tiny bit.

#2 - Love the comp, the focus seems to have fallen on his jeans and not his face.

For both pic's the wrinkles in the fabric is a bit distracting, also the sheet I can't really tell if its supposed to be gray or white.

I am at a work computer so not going to try and comment on colour.

Amy_&_Eva's picture
Joined: 08/23/07
Posts: 2378

Such cute boys!

#1 is underexposed, and looks soft (although I know I have a terrible time keeping my web versions as sharp as the originals sometimes), background is distracting--could you move him farther away from it and blur the bg?

#2 lighting looks better, bg still distracting---the upper half could be easily smoothed out in post-processing, and I think it's ok to leave the floor part as is, or smooth it too; focus looks to be in his middle somewhere, or his legs.

Shutter speeds are too slow...

Ladybugsteph's picture
Joined: 06/21/06
Posts: 2977

I can't give any advice on your settings since I've never done studio lights, but I did want to comment still Smile I agree that the background is distracting. I'd definitely smooth it out one way or another (beforehand with an iron, or in PP). I think that #1 is underexposed, and they're both a bit soft in the face. For #2, I think I would have got down on his level a little bit more. Looks like you're a bit too above him.

Hope you're having fun with your lights! One day, maybe I'll have the $$ to give it a shot!

NicholeC's picture
Joined: 06/09/08
Posts: 284

"Ladybugsteph" wrote:

I can't give any advice on your settings since I've never done studio lights, but I did want to comment still Smile I agree that the background is distracting. I'd definitely smooth it out one way or another (beforehand with an iron, or in PP). I think that #1 is underexposed, and they're both a bit soft in the face. For #2, I think I would have got down on his level a little bit more. Looks like you're a bit too above him.

Hope you're having fun with your lights! One day, maybe I'll have the $$ to give it a shot!

Yeah I wish I would have ironed it before I used it. I bought my lights off ebay. Only paid 149 for the lights, backdrops, and backdrop stand.

sadieruth's picture
Joined: 06/09/05
Posts: 6175

1- the bg is really distracting. I think he's a bit soft here. I don't know anything about lights, but it seems underexposed.
2. again, the bg, but I think the focus fell on his knee? The lighting looks better here.

Way to get out there and practice! I would be OVERWHELMED by them!

NicholeC's picture
Joined: 06/09/08
Posts: 284

I think this is a better one. i found it in the 100 I took that night and tried to get the background problem taken care of. What do ya'll think?

AmberBella's picture
Joined: 02/15/07
Posts: 1831

There are some spots you missed in the background, and whatever method you used caused some funny things to happen to the edge of the chair. There are some easy methods of fixing a white background depending on what editing program you are using.

What program did you use and what did you do?

Joined: 12/08/08
Posts: 6

Also it seems his eyes aren't in focus. I see his sweater before his face. Make sure his eyes are your focus point.

NicholeC's picture
Joined: 06/09/08
Posts: 284

"AmberBella" wrote:

There are some spots you missed in the background, and whatever method you used caused some funny things to happen to the edge of the chair. There are some easy methods of fixing a white background depending on what editing program you are using.

What program did you use and what did you do?

I use a free program called Gimp right now. I used the eraser and erased the background orginally I was trying to do something else with it but I thought it looked alot better like that. I see now that I forgot a spot.

Jeffininer's picture
Joined: 11/07/07
Posts: 1796

Backgrounds are hard to make consistent and even when 1) using cloth backgrounds and 2) using photography lighting.

I think #1 the focus is soft because your shutter speed was so slow. 1/25 (no matter what lens you use) is too slow for handheld. Even if you had the camera on a tripod, any small movement the child makes would make motion blur. I would say that the light output isn't strong enough if your ISO was so high and SS was so slow. Are you able to control the lights or are they continuous lighting?

I won't comment on the background, because it's been pointed out. But, your edit looks a little too 'photo shopped'. He's floating on a white background and also the edges of the photo aren't natural.

Hope that helps you out a little. I had such a hard time (and still do!!) figuring out artificial lighting and backdrops.

Joined: 10/26/01
Posts: 3395

Your last shot looks like it had better focus than the first two.

FWIW, I find darker backgrounds a lot more forgiving than light colored ones, especially with cloth. I have a black canvas background and just a bit of burning will smooth out most wrinkles. But the white .... well, let's just say I rarely even try that any more.

Exposure on the 2nd and 3rd shots are getting a little closer (even before the edited background). And the catch lights on #3 are looking really nice.

Watch the placement of your lights. Judging from your settings, you might need to bring the lights in a bit closer to your subject. I find I get nicer catch lights if at least the main light is up higher and angled down at my subject, with the fill light or reflector placed to help minimize shadows.

HTH some!

Keep trying. Like everything else, new lights are a learning curve. You're off to a good start and I'm sure you'll see awesome results in no time.

Best,
GiGi

Joined: 04/23/06
Posts: 485

I am a fan of natural light photography and have never even tried the studio lighting thing, but I bet it would be super fun to try something new! I love that you were able to get them to sit there and look at you, my kids would have that sheet torn down and the stool flipped over in no time at all! haha

#1 is pretty soft. There is also a lack of color and/or contrast. I would play with that and see if you can improve it, and of course the background sheet needs some blurring or something.

#2 is better as far as contrast goes, but the focus fell on his pants? Same problem with background, too.

Your edit is a huge improvement, but I think a more subtle approach would be better as far as whiting out the background. With that being said though, I think you did great! Those things take time and lots of practice, and this is the very best way to learn!

I can't wait to see more from you, get back in there and take some more pics of those darling little boys!