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Old Apr 24, 2005, 11:20 AM   #1
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Can anyone tell me why the colors look too washed out and unnatural looking in this photo. I can't seem to get any good flower shots. All of them look unnatural. This one was shot at vivid but I have also tried natural.
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Old Apr 24, 2005, 11:49 AM   #2
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I'm no expert, but I can think of two potential problems that might cause a washed out look.

1) It could be overexposed. Check your EV. You may have inadvertently upped it a notch or two. If not, try a negative value. Start with -0.3 and go down from there if necessary. Or you can autobracket and see what happens. Check your histogram after shooting, or even better, before and adjust as necessary.

2) Check your white balance. Use auto white balance or sunny or cloudy, depending on conditions. Usually auto works well and then you don't have to worry about it.

It's probably #1 though. Maybe some of the more experienced photographers will respond. In the meantime, check out this article from the Luminous Landscape site on histograms:

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tu...stograms.shtml






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Old Apr 24, 2005, 12:22 PM   #3
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hmm. maybe time for new glasses, but I don't think this looks washed out at all! I think this is a pretty darn good flower shot.

Anyone else? Perhaps it's just your monitor needs calibration orreplacement backywarder1.
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Old Apr 24, 2005, 12:24 PM   #4
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backyarder1 wrote:
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Can anyone tell me why the colors look too washed out and unnatural looking in this photo. I can't seem to get any good flower shots. All of them look unnatural. This one was shot at vivid but I have also tried natural.
The FZ zooms are susceptible to internal flaring, which can be caused by not using a lens hood. This is not just a sun hood or a sunshade it is a hood and it cuts back on ambient light, the cause for washed out pictures. The –1/3 on the exposure bias is also a good idea.
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Old Apr 24, 2005, 12:30 PM   #5
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hahahhahah. Suze, I had to laugh at your reply. When you get to be MY age and you do need glasses for everything, it makes digital cameras a LOT harder to use. I don't think that was a very good example to use for what I am trying to fix. That particular picture does have the flowers a little blurry and out of focus. I think this is a better example. Flowers just don't look detailed enough. Too soft? It actually MIGHT be my eyes. But with an auto-focus camera, it doesn't seem like my eyesight should matter all that much.
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Old Apr 24, 2005, 12:47 PM   #6
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I don't think the colors are washed out. I would check out your monitor calibration. As far as sharpness goes, I can't see the EXIF so I don't know your settings. The FZ can use some USM in most shots. Here is the pics with a little sharpening only.
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Old Apr 24, 2005, 12:52 PM   #7
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#1. I think the focus is OK. USM applied
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Old Apr 24, 2005, 12:58 PM   #8
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Must confess the colours look allright on my monitor.

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Old Apr 24, 2005, 1:04 PM   #9
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the colors themselves are fine... the only problem i can see is that the lighting was rather gray and flat (notice that there aren't any shadows?), and that can make even the most colorful subject appear a little "blah". try the same shot with better light, and see what happens. also, just for fun, try using the flash as a "fill-in" for darker days - sometimes it can add that little extra bit of light to bring out the "zip" in your colors.

also, remember that red is a very hard color to get razor sharp. it very easily oversaturates, and it can look sorta fuzzy even when everything around it is crystal clear. i'm not sure what causes this, i suspect it's more in the makeup of the human eye than anything in the sensor of a digital camera, but if you want red colors to appear really sharp, you have to desaturate them a bit sometimes to get the clarity you want.

as for your eyesight, don't forget, the FZ'z have a diopter adjustment for the EVF - if you're like me, and holding the camera at arms's length while wearing reading glasses ISN'T your idea of good photographic technique, try adjusting the diopter for your vision and using the EVF. i use it all the time - only use the LCD for reviewing images - and it seems to give me pretty decent results.

i took the liberty of tweaking your photo just a tad, only using Irfanview for some basic adjustments to saturation and contrast, and a touch of sharpening. to me, it helps - the image is clearer, not so "soft",although the colors still don't "pop", because of the flat light...









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Old Apr 24, 2005, 1:12 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone. Great advice. I'm not sure what all of it means (what is USM?). I think probably what I need the most is a good digital photography course. I'm a freelance writer and its a LOT easier to sell an article when you have pictures to go with it. I rarely get paid extra for the photos, but they do help "sell" an article.

And yes, the EVF is a must!!! I love the squirrel photo, squirl033!
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