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Old Oct 23, 2009, 12:05 AM   #1
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Three shots of the daughter of a friend of mine. I had a long lens mounted on my camera when the little girls insisted I take her pic...then she posed with her sister. What do you think? Taken with a Pentax K-7, Sigma 70-200/f 2.8. First shot softened in pp.



Sepia filter in pp



With sister



Ideas welcome. Thanks.

Paul
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Old Oct 23, 2009, 8:59 AM   #2
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Paul - really like the third shot in the series - that's a very good one. Good lighting and nice expressions. There's a bit of a yellow color cast - especially in the girl to the left of the frame

The frst one has way too much noise in it and lack of detail - it looks like it was side lit from the left - the hair on that side looks good and then as soon as her face starts the noise starts as if it were lightened up in post processing. I'd be interested to see the un-softened shot - this looks like it was just out of focus, accept again for the hair on the left side which is reasonably sharp.

Shot 2 - again, noise and loss of detail and just too soft. Also this shot has noticable places (piece of hair on top sproting to side) where you can see where you were softening. Especially with head shots, you want to make sure you're a little more careful when using a brush technique because of all the detail and texture normally there. Again with this thot I'd like to see the un-touched version as I think it may be the processing and not the original image that is causing the issues.
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Old Oct 23, 2009, 3:20 PM   #3
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i agree john the first two just dont work right ... the first would look better tighter cropped i think and no pp or very little?
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Old Oct 23, 2009, 5:18 PM   #4
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Paul - really like the third shot in the series - that's a very good one. Good lighting and nice expressions. There's a bit of a yellow color cast - especially in the girl to the left of the frame
........ Again with this thot I'd like to see the un-touched version as I think it may be the processing and not the original image that is causing the issues.
John, I tend to agree with you. It's one of the reasons I posted the shot asking for critique. Both of these were "opportunity" shots taken inside a press box before I did P.A. The little girl was following me around begging me to take her pic. I used only natural light. I loved the little girl's expression, particularly in the first one. There were some shadowing problems, and I think I went too far in trying to overcome them.

I'm going to start over on the processing and take a much lighter hand at it to see if the shot can be saved.

The yellow cast on the third is a white balance problem. I'm going to run it through Lightroom and see if a slight tweak can take care of it without degrading the original image.

Thanks for the comments. You confirmed my gut feelings.

Paul
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Old Oct 23, 2009, 6:05 PM   #5
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I used only natural light. I loved the little girl's expression, particularly in the first one.
Paul - can I ask why? You're correct - it's a wonderful expression. Why not use flash and not have to deal with the techinical issues caused by the lighting situation? When you have to get it 'right' in only one try, why not err on the side of caution and add the extra light?

Truth be told - it's one of the things I dislike about my camera - no built in flash. I understand why it doesn't have one but it is annoying in instances like this one where it's an opportunity shot.

Good luck on the re-process. If you can tone it down I think you'll end up with a nice photo.
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Old Oct 24, 2009, 12:10 AM   #6
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Paul - can I ask why? You're correct - it's a wonderful expression. Why not use flash and not have to deal with the techinical issues caused by the lighting situation? When you have to get it 'right' in only one try, why not err on the side of caution and add the extra light?
I had brought the camera hoping that one of the young ladies that help me sometimes would be able to go down on the field and shoot some with the K-7 and the 70-200 f/2.8, and that was the only lens I had with me. Because of the length and diameter of the lens, the built-in flash shadows horribly off the end of the lens.

Just one of those cases when you don't expect a shot to happen and when it does, you don't have the right gear.

Paul
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Old Oct 24, 2009, 12:40 AM   #7
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I went back on #1 to the original and did a very minimal adjustment in Lightroom...adding a little fill light and a tweak on White Balance...ran it through a low level noise reduction in Noiseware since it was originally shot at ISO 3200...then unsharp mask at 40%, radius 0.9, and 0 threshold. Resized for forum.

No selective lightening or blurring.

Paul
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Last edited by Trojansoc; Oct 24, 2009 at 12:42 AM. Reason: left off photo
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Old Oct 24, 2009, 9:48 AM   #8
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Hi Paul,

First - thanks for clearing up about the flash - that makes total sense. I've been stuck using external flash for the last few years and forgot about that.

I'm afraid even the re-work shows too much noise/loss of detail over 85% of her face. THere just appears to be too much damage to the hair (except on the extreme left) and the neck and especially the eyes. If it were a full body shot it might not be noticable but for a head shot it's very noticable. Especially because it's such a contrast to the hair on the far left which still retains detail.
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Old Oct 24, 2009, 4:36 PM   #9
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Hi Paul,

First - thanks for clearing up about the flash - that makes total sense. I've been stuck using external flash for the last few years and forgot about that.

I'm afraid even the re-work shows too much noise/loss of detail over 85% of her face. THere just appears to be too much damage to the hair (except on the extreme left) and the neck and especially the eyes. If it were a full body shot it might not be noticable but for a head shot it's very noticable. Especially because it's such a contrast to the hair on the far left which still retains detail.
I actually really like this shot, and I worked and worked and worked on this image. I was able to get far better results than the OP's version, but couldn't eliminate all the noise from her hair without damaging the image.

Even so, the image would probably print just fine. And at a normal viewing distance, the noise would not really be visible. Whenever we look at images on this board, we're always looking at 100 percent, and even a small amount of noise is objectionalble. But does the noise actually print?

Dave
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Old Oct 24, 2009, 4:52 PM   #10
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My version of the shot. A bit too red, and I'm too lazy to go back - But I really don't think this noise will print...

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