A personal achievement/improvement - come have a see and CC :-)

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Joined: 05/10/07
Posts: 427
A personal achievement/improvement - come have a see and CC :-)

This weekend i did 2 maternity sessions and some headshots for a friend. I saw SUCH an improvment in my images that i was beside myself with glee. The mat sessions were so relaxed and fun, both moms wanted to be a bit more risqué since they knew i was PB'ing. My friend was patient and let me fiddle with my camera working on different things. I REALLY tried to pay attention to where the sun was and positioning her accordingly. GOOD LIGHT/EXPOSURE REALLY MAKES A DIFFERENCE IN YOUR IMAGES!! and it cuts down on your post work time too. I know that's something we all already know, and i knew too, but when you actually SEE the results from it, its a bit of an "A-HA!!!" moment Smile

So now I'm off my cloud and looking for CC on the headshots (will post the maternity later tonight). During this session i was working on spot metering (um, love this mode, hopefully I did it right), toggling my focus points (best thing i could ever learn!) and even shot as wide as 2.8 and got some pretty good focus(for me personally) and use of my reflector. Please let me know about colour issues, composition (still a weakness). Plays are welcome if anything stands out to you i think the images are big enough. Edited in LR, sharpened for web.

shot at 6:00p.m.-7:30ish (evening light is so very YUMMY! Lol I leaned on the warm side in post for the sunnier images

1. I don't know the settings for this one, pulled from my facebook

2. again, from facebook...how is the conversion?

3. ISO 100, f/2.8, 1/500 shot with the 50mm

4.ISO 640, f/2.8, 1/1250 The dress is blown, is it bad??

5.ISO 640 f/3.5 1/250

and really, how could i not include my favourite model...i love when i can see my reflection in their eyes! Smile

ISO 640, f/2.8, 1/1250, 50mm lens

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

Gonna have lots of CC for you later...but sadly am off to work right now. I'll be back. You've got lots of good things going on but I see lots of things that could be improved too.

Joined: 10/26/01
Posts: 3395

These are SO lovely! You are right ... you have come so far and are such an inspiration to me! I'm so glad you posted these!

Here are my thoughts ...

1. LOVE the eyes here!!! I feel a little bit like I'm looking down her shirt, but her eyes keep my focus from going too far south. Wink

2. I like the conversion. If you can, I would up the contrast just a bit more (but I like high contrast b&w). The whites of her eyes don't look quite white enough. You might also try a slightly tighter crop. There seems to be quite of bit of negative space above her head and that's making her eyes fall near the center of the image. Trim some off the top and that would raise her eyes to the top 1/3.

3. I love her pose. Focus looks really good and the light here seems so soft and warm. It does look a little over exposed though, especially on her left (our right) cheek. I'm seeing a bit of a yellow cast as well though some of that is not a bad thing when in the evening light.

4. I do't mind the blown dress at all. The dress is not the focus here, her lovely eyes are! Again, she seems to have a slight yellow cast to her. Not sure if that is my monitor. This is probablymy favorite of the set (hard to choose though). Smile

5. I like the trailing lines of the brick, but something feels just a little off on the composition for me though. I think maybe if you had taken a step to your left and shot a little more full on her face this would work better. But that's just me. Focus and exposure look REALLY nice here!

6. could she BE any cuter?!?! LOVE those chocolate eyes!

TFS,
GiGi

Joined: 05/10/07
Posts: 427

"acarbo99" wrote:

6. could she BE any cuter?!?! LOVE those chocolate eyes!

TFS,
GiGi

Totally, looking forward to your cc Amber Smile

GiGi, thank you for the detailed CC. when i looked back at the set i did notice that some of them were 'peeking' down her shirt a bit...supposed if I didn't stand to tall that would've eliminated that. I will go back and adjust the colour issues. I had a feeling some looked a bit green/yellow, so i need to adjust that mroe. And FYI for #6,(OOPSIE!!) that's my son (i.e. not a girl...unless your "she" was a typo) Biggrin LOL.

coolmama72's picture
Joined: 10/20/01
Posts: 8185

Doesn't it feel awesome when you can see your own improvements? Smile I can't comment on them all, as I'm in the middle of editing a TON of photos and am only taking a short break to catch up some here.

2. I'm not loving your conversion. I like more contrast, and something just seems off here. I can't put my finger on it though. Perhaps your WB was off before you converted and that's what's amiss?
3. Her left side seems blown but if you shot in RAW you can probably recover (as it doesn't seem totally off). I really like this composition.

4. This is my favorite of the set! However, when you compare it to the others, it's MUCH warmer. The blown dress is fine, we don't care about the details of it, it's her face we want. Cool this one down slightly and see how it looks.

5. LOVE HIM!

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

Okay...here is my CC, without all the well deserved "you are doing awesome" stuff. You are...you improve all the time. Here are some things to help you improve even more.

1. I wish you weren't quite so far above her here. It does feel a tad like we are looking down her shirt. It might work cropped closer. Right now, her cleavage is just about in that lower right hand third cross section which makes it a natural focal point.

2. I don't love her expression here. I'd crop out the extra space at the top of the frame to get her eyes placed in the top third of the frame rather than in the middle. The lighting is the most problematic aspect of this image. Her eyes are very well lit, but it looks like there is a shadow on the lower half of her face and her neck. She is a lovely girl, but she could really benefit from some skin smoothing of some sort. Or at least the use of the heal tool to clean up some of her more obvious blemishes.

3. This is not the most flattering light. The sun is creating super harsh brightness on the left side of her face and the right side of her face is too dark. There is also a harsh shadow being created by her eyelashes. The shadow could be minimized with the use of some sort of skin softening effect. If the sun wasn't bothering her eyes, I would have turned her a little more towards the light so that shadow would fall in a more flattering way. Or, you could have turned her a little further away from the light so she was more back-lit. The color on this one is also a bit too yellow.

4. I like so much about this one. Good light and good background, but I'm just confused by it. It would make a good portrait, but not a great headshot. If you're going more for portraiture, then you did well....for an actual headshot, it's shot from far too high above. You may want to consider cropping out the blown parts and especially that little flash of red on the lower left hand side. You'd also need to crop a little off the top to keep the composition pleasant. This one is yellow too.

5. Eh, not my favorite. Nothing too exciting about the composition or the background here. It's an okay shot. She looks very stiff. Technically well executed.

You're boy is just so adorable! Beautiful light on him there and his eyes look amazing. THIS is the right angle from up above for a headshot. Above the person just enough to get amazing light in the eyes, but not so high that it seems strange and awkward.

Joined: 05/10/07
Posts: 427

Gwen,Amber...I truly do appreciate the time you took to give such detailed cc. I've been waiting to read yours all day Amber Smile I will work on the corrections. I did shoot raw so these should be easy corrections.

CJWilkes's picture
Joined: 01/04/09
Posts: 880

1. This is pretty good. I wonder if you pulled out some and recropped if I would like it better. This is close but you did not give yourself room to crop it better.

2. Again - ok - but her eyes are smack in the middle. I would try to follow the rule of 3rds. The conversion is ok but I would probably play with the midtones and lighten it slightly. How are you converting to bw?

3. The Bokeh is beautiful but you have blown your red channel and the blown spots are a bit too much on her face. You need to either use a diffuser of some sort or bring down the exposure and then adjust in photoshop.

4. The dress does not bother me but her nose does because you blew it out there.

5. Nice shot. I would play with your selective Color red channel a tad. She is leaning toward the red a bit but really close.

Very cute son and beautiful eyes. Love it when you get reflections Smile

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

I just wanted to say they're looking good and my favorites are #1 and #4 for the color and lighting...her eyes are so pretty.

Joined: 10/26/01
Posts: 3395

OOPS! sorry 'bout my typo! I hope he's not reading yet. Were Loli reading over my shoulder, he'd be offended. NO OFFENSE INTENDED. Wink

Best,
GiGi