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Old May 31, 2010, 8:26 PM   #1
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Default Cesar Parra Dressage Clinic 5/20

Dr. Cesar Parra Dressage Clinic at Chimney Hill Farm.

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Old May 31, 2010, 8:31 PM   #2
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Barbara:
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Old May 31, 2010, 8:33 PM   #3
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Sharon:
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Old May 31, 2010, 8:36 PM   #4
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Mimi:
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Old Jun 1, 2010, 6:20 AM   #5
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Daphne:
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Old Jun 1, 2010, 7:04 AM   #6
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Jenn:
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Old Jun 1, 2010, 9:55 AM   #7
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Cesar:
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Old Jun 1, 2010, 2:41 PM   #8
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TCav,

These are very nice. I enjoyed viewing these. Nice capture of the horses' faces and bodies. Very nice framing and angles.

However, there are two small things I notice. The white balance seems to change from pose to pose. it looks like the cycling lights from a basketball gym. Any single shot looks fine. But as a series the colors seem to change from shot to shot, especially in the background. If you are showing both shots it might be good to adjust both to be a closer match.

The other thing is the f/1.8 may be limiting how much is in focus. In some it appears that part of the horse is in great focus but other parts and maybe the rider is not quite sharp. Obviously you need a wide aperture due to the low light but maybe you could bump up the ISO a little and decrease the AV to get a little more in focus.

I would like to see how these would look if you used Manual instead of AV and found the best combination.

But again, these shots are very nice just as they are.

Thanks,
Andy
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Old Jun 1, 2010, 4:04 PM   #9
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Thanks very much.

The white balance is a problem. The riding arena is about 60' x 120', has big open doors in the center of each side, and has sodium vapor lights throughout. The white balance changes radically from shot to shot when shooting in continuous mode. I tried to use a preset manual white balance once and the results were a disaster. The only thing I could do is shoot RAW, but then I'd give up a lot of continuous shooting. Plus I shoot about 4,000 per day, and as it is, I have to stop at lunch, race home, transfer the morning's photos to my computer, and race back to catch the afternoon's rides.

I figure I'm losing as many to shallow depth of field as I am to motion blur. I tried different ISO settings there, and anything above 1600 showed a lot of noise in the out-of-focus wood grain. I tried to use a HIGH ISO NR setting of Normal and lost all the texture in the horses' fur, so they looked like plastic models. These were shot with NR off. I might try to stop down to f/2.4, increase the minimum shutter speed to 1/320, set the maximum ISO to 3200 and set the HIGH ISO NR to low.

Manual is out (and, in a sense, I was using Manual.) The exposure just changes too much from shot to shot. These were all shot at f/1.8, 1/250, and, from top to bottom, the ISOs were 900 & 1250, 800 & 1000, 1100 & 1100, 1000 & 1100, 320 & 500, 400 & 500, and 400 & 900.
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Old Jun 1, 2010, 4:32 PM   #10
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When you say you're losing them to shallow DOF, have you tried recovering them with some simple postprocessing? I've had a go with some of the ones you've posted here and can post the results if it's OK.
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