So disappointed with this shoot..

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becoming-mom's picture
Joined: 02/11/09
Posts: 169
So disappointed with this shoot..

I did a shoot on Sunday for a woman who I "know" from my success after infertility messageboard. I really wanted to do a bang up job because they pay a "real" professional to take pictures of their son every 3 months and I didn't want mine to be amateurish in comparison.

The shoot was really challenging, toddlers this age are just so impossible. They don't stand still and he really didn't hardly ever make eye contact. But the truly disappointing thing is that the rare moments where he DID make eye contact I totally botched the technical aspects!! I'm so annoyed with the choices I made..I shot at 3.2 instead of 3.5 with my Tammy on the indoor shots because of low light and I forgot how much I SUCK at shooting wide (or almost wide) open lol! I have SUCH focus issues when I go that wide, particularly with a subject who is also not sitting still.

Then, instead of keeping my tammy on or using my sigma 30mm 1.4 outdoors in the park I used the 85 1.8 and botched the focus on a bunch of pics that would have been great otherwise - I always want to get closer with the 85 because I am used to how close I can get with the Tamron but the min. focusing distance of the 85 is like 3 feet or something pretty big Sad

The good news is that the parents love them (or so they say) I'm just so mad at myself because there should have been soooooo many more useable (or up to my standars) pics.

Anyway, if you have any CC on the skintones or composition or PP, at least I can chalk it up to a learning experience Smile

1.

2.

3

4

(back eye out of focus on this one, I know, but I think only photogs notice that sort of thing right??) same thing with this one too:

5.

6.

7.

8.

(this was the best shot in terms of expression I think, but unfortunately it's soft.GRRRRR

9.

I was really happy to get some nice shots of the dad and kid, mom was sick with food poisoning! He is a photo hobbyist and said he's always the one TAKING the pics (I know how that feels..).

On an unrelated note, he has a camera that's better than mine. I really want to upgrade, but now I feel like I don't deserve it! Sad

sweetalienchick's picture
Joined: 10/25/05
Posts: 2106

ohh you totally deserve it! you did great on this shoot in my own personal opinion. I know what we expect of ourselves is more than what others expect of us. All they want is cute photos. And these are cute Smile I still suck at focusing so I think you did great with that one and the soft one doesn't look all that soft when its small.

Joined: 12/10/06
Posts: 200

Aww these aren't terrible! I think they are adorable and I'm not surprised the parents love them!! And yeah, only photogs notice that. In fact, my SIL never noticed that the jc penny pictures of my nephew were 100% OOF... she thought they were great until she saw some I did and asked why they look so different LOL. I L.O.V.E his smirk in #8, and the outfit in the first few is ADORABLE. Don't beat yourself up too much!! I had two newborns recently ... the first one ended like this, I was SO disappointed.. the baby was so fussy and I barely payed attention to things I should have... then the 2nd newborn that same week literally turned out to be my best session ever... hands down! consider it a learning experience! But, I really do think these look good anyway Smile

connorsmum's picture
Joined: 11/29/02
Posts: 1160

I agree that these aren't terrible, you are being faaaar to hard on yourself (but aren't we all like that with ourselves?) I also think these are cute shots and that the parents should love them. His eyes are gorgeous!

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

Don't beat yourself up too much. Toddler shoots are SO hard! You got lots of great eye contact shots and the focus is great on these.

becoming-mom's picture
Joined: 02/11/09
Posts: 169

"AmberBella" wrote:

Don't beat yourself up too much. Toddler shoots are SO hard! You got lots of great eye contact shots and the focus is great on these.

Thanks guys, yeah, these aren't so bad (though the soft ones are really bugging me) it's the ones I'm looking at in lightroom that are SOOOOOO Cute and sooooo out of focus (the ones I haven't shown anyone) that I'm kicking myself about.

Don't you just wish there was a "magic focus" plugin for photoshop??? Smile

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

why are you beating yourself up? don't beat yourself up. I really don't think any look soft. I think your AP is just fine ... it's not like shooting at 1.4, right? the kid is a cutie, and you really did a great job capturing him!

(and yes, I think mainly photographers would notice the back eye oof there Wink )

Joined: 03/16/15
Posts: 53852

"becoming-mom" wrote:

Thanks guys, yeah, these aren't so bad (though the soft ones are really bugging me) it's the ones I'm looking at in lightroom that are SOOOOOO Cute and sooooo out of focus (the ones I haven't shown anyone) that I'm kicking myself about.

Don't you just wish there was a "magic focus" plugin for photoshop??? Smile

That would be a GREAT button to have!!! Or an "amber photodhop help" button. ROFL

I would love these if I were ht mom. Don't be too hard on yourself. Like the others have said, they are nice and clear. Lovely.

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

"becoming-mom" wrote:

Don't you just wish there was a "magic focus" plugin for photoshop??? Smile

yep!

becoming-mom's picture
Joined: 02/11/09
Posts: 169

"coolmama72" wrote:

why are you beating yourself up? don't beat yourself up. I really don't think any look soft. I think your AP is just fine ... it's not like shooting at 1.4, right?

I *Think* (someone correct me if I'm wrong) that DOF decreases with focal length, so because I shot this zoomed all the way in with the tammy (75mm) even though 3.2 doesn't seem that wide normally it's really really shallow right?

Because look at this one: his eyes are perfectly clear, but the whole rest of his face is OOF!:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/becoming-mom/4009759759/sizes/o/

Joined: 12/10/06
Posts: 200

"becoming-mom" wrote:

I *Think* (someone correct me if I'm wrong) that DOF decreases with focal length

I'm pretty sure this is true, that was one of those lightbulb moments... but I found it really interesting... distance from subject also really plays a part in the DOF.

Joined: 10/26/01
Posts: 3409

While you may have many "sub par" images you are hiding, the ones you have shared here all look REALLY nice!!! What a cutie! My favorites are #1 and #2. I really love that punch of red from the bow tie. Your composition is to DIE for! I'm not at all surprised mom and dad are thrilled.

TFS,
GiGi

becoming-mom's picture
Joined: 02/11/09
Posts: 169

"MollyDoll" wrote:

I'm pretty sure this is true, that was one of those lightbulb moments... but I found it really interesting... distance from subject also really plays a part in the DOF.

Interesting.. yeah, I wonder if it's distance in terms of focal length or ACTUAL physical distance? Or both? hmmm. I know DISTANCE matters, but now I'm not sure what kind Smile

becoming-mom's picture
Joined: 02/11/09
Posts: 169

"acarbo99" wrote:

While you may have many "sub par" images you are hiding, the ones you have shared here all look REALLY nice!!! What a cutie! My favorites are #1 and #2. I really love that punch of red from the bow tie. Your composition is to DIE for! I'm not at all surprised mom and dad are thrilled.

TFS,
GiGi

Oh, wow, thanks!! I don't often hear my composition is to die for - but I like it! Smile

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

"becoming-mom" wrote:

I *Think* (someone correct me if I'm wrong) that DOF decreases with focal length, so because I shot this zoomed all the way in with the tammy (75mm) even though 3.2 doesn't seem that wide normally it's really really shallow right?

I didn't even think about it that way. Yep, see I still have a lot to learn! Lol

sadieruth's picture
Joined: 06/09/05
Posts: 6178

Don't beat yourself up. I think these are amazing shots. Loving the shots with dad, and #7 is great.

La123's picture
Joined: 04/11/08
Posts: 815

No one would ever know this was a tough shoot.. The ones you posted are great, and that kid is sooo cute! Look at those lips!

Joined: 03/15/09
Posts: 576

I think you did great. If I had shots of dd like this I'd be jumping up and down! Way to go!