Help please

5 posts / 0 new
Last post
Joined: 07/30/06
Posts: 835
Help please

These are not technically great photographs but as a JMK type thing I liked them. I went to print and they look completely washed out. Is it my photos? Is it the printers? They look 'ok' on my screen but I am not calibrated. They are not vibrant and don't really "pop", but they don't have this washed out / purple-grey look to them like the printed versions.

If you want to give CC on them too that would be appreciated. I know they are not very good but all my stuff seems to be like this lately.

I'll try and put my big girl panties on and be brave Smile

P.S. I forgot to watermark so added in Flikr.

1. 50mm, 1/80, F2.8, ISO100, (should have bumped up SS and ISO)

19-09-11 Healesville Sanctuary (86) by Gem_D, on Flickr

2. 50mm, 1/200, F2.2, ISO250

19-09-11 Healesville Sanctuary (164) by Gem_D, on Flickr

3. 41mm, 1/320, F5.6, ISO250

13-10-11 (33) by Gem_D, on Flickr

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

I'm no pro, but overall I think #1 and 2 are really good, but #1 needed more light in her eyes and they might be printing "washed out" because of the brightness of her skin on her right "surfaces." If it were my pic I would also up the vibrancy/color a little. If it's printing cool then maybe warm it up a tad.
#2 might use a bit of brightening/boosting too but it's adorable.
#3 looks very orange and the light did not make it to their eyes at all. It looks like they were lit from the floor upward? not sure.

TracyF's picture
Joined: 08/14/06
Posts: 2416

Your kids are really cute! I love your daughter's hair. Smile

They do look kind of gray/blue to me, so it might be good to adjust colours a little. I think you could do a lot to make them pop by increasing the contrast a little bit as well. Unlike a lot of ladies here, I'm not very good at knowing what needs to be done when I look at a photo, I just play with it till I get something sort of right Wink so it's hard for me to say for sure. But that's where I'd start: play with curves to increase contrast some, and modify the colour balance to warm them up.

The last one looks a little "flash-y". Some editing might help. Is that black backdrop cloth very big? If so, next time you might just extend it down across the floor too. Looks like there's a couple of small wrinkles you could clone out pretty easily.

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

Yeah, the color looks a little off to me in the first ones. Greyish-blue to me too.

Really, what has helped me out the most lately is figuring out how to read the light better. I've been able to get better pictures right out of the camera (with the right WB setting) since figuring out where to place my subject in relation to the sun. Also, figuring out what time of day works best for me. In my newest ones, for example (the ones where Carson is in the green and white striped shirt), it was taken at around 4pm in our back yard with the light more at his back. When I try to take pictures in the mid part of the day, I get bad shadows and washed out pictures that require more editing than I'd like to do. (I hate PP! lol!)

I think that 1&2 need to be warmed up. They're looking very cool to me. I think that once you warm them up, you'll see a bit more pop to them. So start with that, and then go from there. Maybe levels after that? I really don't know. I'm not much on editing, though I'm trying to learn more.

For me, I like the lighting in #2 better than #1. In #1, you have quite a bit of shadow on her face. What time of day was this? Probably the easiest thing to have done was to use a reflector, but I can't talk, because I don't own one so I wouldn't have used it either. I love the eye contact and smile you have from her! She is soooo adorable!

The pose on #2 is so darn sweet! I wish my kids would do that! It needs straightened slightly, and maybe crop it not so centered vertically. I'd also take out a bit above their heads as well making their heads higher in the frame.

#3 looks orange/red to me, so you might want to cool it down a bit. Lighting is off here, as there's no light in their eyes and you have some strange shadows. The pose is a little off to me, since she's slumping over a bit. It's hard to pose little kids though (read: virtually impossible Wink ). I think I would also try to not get the bottom of their feet. You'd have an easier time with your older one, but I'd try to get them to put their feet off to the side, or hold on to their knees or something.

You are on the right track!! You're getting great eye contact, and cute smiles from your kids! I'd just work on your lighting a little more. I think once you do that, you'll really like what you see Smile

Joined: 07/30/06
Posts: 835

Thanks for the CC ladies. I'm going to play with them tonight if I get the chance. The first two were taken mid-afternoon (around 3-4pm at a guess) on a reasonably sunny day. #3 was taken on our back verandah. It was a VERY hot, bright day and the only shade was our verandah. The back drop is tiny so I will have to find something else for backdrop so that can go under them too.

Steph,, I didn't really like the pose for #3 either but was attempting something a bit more formal for them (I failed, this is pretty bad and it is the best of the lot).

I can't wait to get more than 1 day in a row without rain. It is so grey and dull here all the time of late