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Old Oct 8, 2009, 7:45 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Chato View Post
Try auto focus at fifty miles an hour heading right at you.

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I never had any luck at all with these kinds of shots with auto-focus, always a touch behind.

Dave - I'm afraid I'm not terribly impressed with those shots - they look overcropped and lacking in detail. Certainly not up to the standards I see from wildlife photogs using AF. Take a look at Wacky Roger's shots or NHLs. From my own part - I'll take the sharp results I get from AF:

And of course it works good at about 300mph:

And good luck getting results this sharp manual focusing on a subject not moving in a predictable speed/direction

Last edited by JohnG; Oct 8, 2009 at 8:04 PM.
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Old Oct 8, 2009, 8:13 PM   #22
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[QUOTE=JohnG;1007270]Dave - I'm afraid I'm not terribly impressed with those shots - they look overcropped and lacking in detail. Certainly not up to the standards I see from wildlife photogs using AF. Take a look at Wacky Roger's shots or NHLs. From my own part - I'll take the sharp results I get from AF:

I must admit to a little annoyance. My bad. But you keep bringing this up with every post. Since I don't shoot sports photography, I thought it innapropriate to argue with you on that thread. The first shots are over-cropped because of the distance. An editors choice. The following shots in that thread, would not have been possibile with MY auto focus lenses.

Good equipement, appropriate equipment, is what equipment the job calls for. You say that it's necessary to have auto focus for sports shooting? I wont argue. Is auto focus a good thing for wildlife photography? Absolutly not. Aside from these open kind of shots, wildlife is often shot in heavy brush, tree's etc. It took a while before I realised that auto focus and wildlife photography simply don't mix.

NHL does some fine work. I have no idea if he uses auto focus or not. But if he shoots in the woods, as I often do, he wouldn't be posting those shots.

At any rate, I'm hijacking this thread - My bad. We can settle this on some other thread.


Last edited by Chato; Oct 8, 2009 at 8:15 PM. Reason: addendum
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Old Oct 8, 2009, 9:56 PM   #23
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Getting back to the original question (ahem, ahem), I see it as needing two parts : A technical side - exposure, lighting, composition, etc. An artistic side : drama, impact, pathos, etc.
There are any number of us who can create excellent technical photographs. Given a bit of study, I would say most people can do this, if they pay attention and plan ahead.
Capturing a fleeting moment of drama - being in the right place at the right time with the right equipment - is, as Bynx says luck, at least in part. Part of the luck, though comes from the foresight to anticipate the possibility of the moment. Experience counts.
A snapshot can be a great photo. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.
Capturing the essence of a scene or situation, though, requires a bit more thought and planning. A picture can be just another landscape, or it can tell you something about the land and yourself, by your reaction to it. You can take a picture of a scenic area and leave, or you can go there and wait for the light to turn it into something special, if it takes days - weeks - or years.

Above all, have fun. When it starts to feel like work, take a break.

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Old Oct 9, 2009, 1:04 AM   #24
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My answer to this thread is this;

Being able to see something creatively. Like, looking at a specific subject and instead of just taking the picture, first go through these steps:

Backgrounds - What do I want to show? Do I want to preserve only the main subject (high aperture setting) or do I want to show where I am using the background (low aperture setting)? Example being a portrait on a beach. Do I just use the face with a very blurred sunny and bright blurred background or do I want, maybe a lifeguards tower, blurry but still visible just to the side of the persons head?

Lightning - Can I wait for a better time during the day for this shot? Or can I simply position myself in a way that I still have my subject represented the way I want, but getting, maybe better shadows casting or highlights from whatever light source I have at my disposal?

Color - Using the White Balance modes, set in the camera, as a way of getting the way that I see the subject. For example, a set of flowers or leafs during the autumn. If the AUTO WB isn't enough for me, maybe because of the lighting in the area or anything else that may hinder the colors I want from appearing in the photo.
Using the setting for shooting pictures with cloudy conditions, will give of a warmer tone to your images. And this can give a very nice boost for your desaturated images.

Angles - Instead of just taking the picture on the subject dead on. Would it help if you moved a bit to the right? or to the left? or maybe if you were beneath it?

Movement - Okay. This one is special. Because sometimes the creative picture taken isn't always just taken with a tripod. If you for example have a big bed of flowers in front of you, or a great tree of autumn leaves, instead of holding still and more often than not, get a boring "here is a tree" picture. Jiggle the camera around, jump, zoom while taking the picture or twisting your body can be a GREAT way of getting a very cool result. That way you can get a very artistic effect close to Monet.

I hope my little words of "wisdom" helps out
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Old Oct 9, 2009, 7:53 AM   #25
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You've covered it pretty well Acapulco. I think every newbie camera clicker should read that and hopefully take something home with them.
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Old Oct 9, 2009, 3:33 PM   #26
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For me the best shots are slightly accidental. In that there is something about the shot that is hard to explain, usually something subtle. Usually something you didn't realise was there when you took it.
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