Olympus UK E-System User Group
Olympus UK E-System User Group

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Looking for improvement This is the e-group critique board. If you post a picture here it will be assumed that you are looking for comprehensive technical feedback - both good and bad, but always respectful. Only post pictures here if you can deal with potentially negative constructive criticism. Anyone is qualified to comment and post feedback, and everyone is encouraged to do so. NB: "Looking for Improvement" is the place to post any pictures you would like advice on improving, no matter how bad you might think they are.

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Old 4th September 2013
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Flowers for Table Decoration

OK, here ist is. My first LFI. No processing apart form a slight tilt adjustment, marginal crop, and resize so feel free to criticise composition and suggest what post processing might enhance it. Did I overdo it with the F1.2?

Zuiko 50mm @ F1.2

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Old 10th September 2013
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Re: Flowers for Table Decoration

I'm sorry but I'm going to be critical (to be helpful) - you've put it in the LFI section after all...

I don't think this works for two main reasons.

1. The (kitchen?) background - out of focus as it is - is distracting.
2. The subject is out of focus - I can't find a single point where the image is in focus.

On the plus side, the light is great.

What I was always taught was - find an interesting subject and isolate it.

So, improvement:

Try to find a less busy (ideally plain) background. You can get big (~ 1 metre) sheets of art card from your local craft shop. These are good for small objects and not too expensive. You can get quite creative with piles of books, sticky tape etc. to support the card sheet.

Make sure that (at least part of) the main subject is in focus. With the OM manual lenses you have to be very careful in focussing. With your lens set at f/1.2, the depth of field is very small so you need to carefully focus. I know that you were purposefully using f/1.2 to limit the DOF, but you missed the vase! Have a look here: http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html to see how limiting f/1.2 is at 50mm. It doesn't have the OM-D on it but the other MFT cameras should be the same as yours.

So in summary, I'd use a plain background, check critical focus, and use a smaller aperture (f/8 tends to be my default). I'd also get the tripod out - that way I can compose the shot and then try several shots with different camera settings to see what worked best. The early evening light is great.

I do hope this helps you.

Brian
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Old 10th September 2013
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Re: Flowers for Table Decoration

Whilst I agree with bilbo....I think its still possible to use the environmental background, but experiment with an angle that provides less distraction...maybe the background could be even more blurred (though I hesitate if you have used f1.2 I doubt you can get more unless you use a much longer focal length).
I hope that helps....please don't be put off by any comments on here.
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Old 10th September 2013
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Re: Flowers for Table Decoration

Brian and Brian,

Your comments are what I was after.

It was deliberate on my part to include a background as that was the context in which I wanted to view the flowers - in fact the management picked and arranged them to brighten up the kitchen. As you say, there is not a lot left to do when you get to F1.2 (unless you have the F0.95). I can try against a plain background with a different vase of flowers to see the difference.

The focus comments are 100% true. When I looked at it 1:1 on the monitor I could not discern wherethe focus point was (it should be the top front leaf so maybe I wobbled a bit when pressing the shutter). I did think of picking the top flower head but realised that most of the leaves would be OOF, hence my musings on whether F1.2 was a bit too much.

Thanks guys.
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Old 10th September 2013
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Re: Flowers for Table Decoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by brianvickers View Post
....please don't be put off by any comments on here.
Yes - please try again!
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Old 10th September 2013
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Re: Flowers for Table Decoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by OM USer View Post
The focus comments are 100% true. When I looked at it 1:1 on the monitor I could not discern wherethe focus point was (it should be the top front leaf so maybe I wobbled a bit when pressing the shutter).
The shutter speed was 1/100th of a second, so I doubt it's camera shake. It's those manual OM lenses! It's so difficult to find an accurate focus with them. I eventually gave up with my OM lenses on the E-3 and they only get a rare outing with the OM-1 these days...

Do you use glasses? That can contribute too...
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Old 10th September 2013
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Re: Flowers for Table Decoration

Quote:
Originally Posted by bilbo View Post
Do you use glasses? That can contribute too...
I need reading glasses but use the viewfinder on the E-M5 with the correct dioptre dialled in.

The shutter speed was perhaps a bit low but I was keeping the ISO down to get the best IQ. I obviously need to reasses my decisions on this (in hindsight).
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Old 10th September 2013
Ulfric M Douglas Ulfric M Douglas is offline
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Re: Flowers for Table Decoration

I'm not reading the other posts yet, just coming in with mine.
Literally thirty seconds to put the vase outside with an organic background is going to make the F1.2 work towards a much more pleasing ... no, can't ... say ... it. the "B"-word, y'know?
This kitchen (?) one is too angular and detracts from the subject.
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