• Greg replied to the topic Robber Fly in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 2wk, 1d ago

    Could the problem with the magic leaf that is blurred on both ends but sharper in the middle be caused by the leaf  being just slightly closer to the camera on one end and slightly farther away from the camera on the other end. Is the depth of field that narrow that an otherwise imperceptible skew of the leaf in relation to the camera’s plane…[Read more]

  • Greg replied to the topic Looking Up in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 2wk, 3d ago

    Thanks, Mistyisle. I’d thought about it, and it may well be a challenge to get samples for background right at the point of the problem — where the leaves almost reach the outside edges. I’ll try some things and get back.

  • Greg replied to the topic Looking Up in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 2wk, 4d ago

    Thank you, Graham. Much appreciated.

  • Greg replied to the topic Looking Up in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 2wk, 4d ago

    Thanks, Peter, you’ve given me a starting point, anyway.

  • Greg replied to the topic Looking Up in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 2wk, 5d ago

    Yes, I agree with both of you. Is there any way to increase the canvas size and fill it in with background color?

    Thanks for the responses.

  • Those are targets — the centers of the two asterisks.

    Actually, I love this. It just sits there silently and screams headlines from this awful year.

    And, if anyone cares, let’s just take the center two urinals out permanently. What possesses some men that they can be comfortable relieving themselves as their bulky winter coats rub against each…[Read more]

  • Greg started the topic Looking Up in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 2wk, 6d ago

    I’m trying out my new light box. Never used one before. Inserted the white background and popped a fading bouquet in it, turned on the light, and shot it with a speed lite flash.

    I’m fairly impressed with how it came out, frankly.

    OK, lemme have it.

    f/ 16.0, 1/10, ISO200, 25mmFL

  • Greg replied to the topic Moon Light in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 2wk, 6d ago

    Hey, Ken.

    The last one (rotated a bit CCW) reminds me of PAC-MAN gobbling a crystal power-up, or whatever. I like the first one. The interesting shapes stand out much more, being more close-up than the other two.

  • Greg replied to the topic Protective Peony in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 3wk ago

    Yes, direct sunlight as filtered through the foliage of the veritable rain forest Dad calls a flower garden. Also, if I remember correctly, the sun was low in the sky, just skimming some of the edges of the petals.

  • Thanks, Falxy.

  • I agree wholeheartedly. There are many varieties of peonies — some look like dreadlocks made of cotton strips, others have incredibly delicate petals that are hard for me to photograph; they’re practically translucent. I’m in Central Illinois, USA.

    BTW, get the “tree” peony. It has sturdy twigs and won’t fall over like the “bush” variety.


  • I’ll look into that software. Sounds very useful to me. I liked the bit about the non-intuitive darkening of this photo.

    Thanks, Frank.

  • I did not use the speed light on this photo. I mentioned the speed light in an attempt at explaining why there are blown highlights and harsh shadows in it — this was taken before I had my speed light.

    As for the common strategy of a shallow depth of field, I really botched the intro to this little exercise.  I meant to provide a series of…[Read more]

  • Oh, my, that’s a very interesting direction to go. Another reason to strengthen my paltry knowledge of Photoshop. Thanks for the different perspective!

  • Anne,

    I’m not sure why the light appears to be coming from two different directions, because this was one shot straight from the camera.

    You might be seeing something odd-looking as a result of the AI Mask software I used. I remember choosing “composite” rather than “transparent,” or something to that effect. Have you had any experience with…[Read more]

  • Greg replied to the topic Aspire in the forum The Shark Tank Feedback Forum 3wk, 4d ago

    I like it – probably because I like heavy machinery. But here’s a question more than a critique. What is the subject of this photograph? Could it be the cab of the crane with the eponymous sign, or could it be the whole structure? Is a subject even necessary?

    Also, the angle almost makes me wince – like it might be falling down. Not that that’s a…[Read more]

  • P.S.  The first photo with no blurring has a more purplish cast to it than the other two. Please disregard this if you can.

  • And, following, is the version with the entire foliage serving as blurred background. NOTE: the leaf at the center bottom is actually in front of the flower, and it seems unnatural to me — like a leaf-shaped, large notch cut out of the petal. Any suggestions on what to do about it or which of the three looks better to you would be appreciated.

    Total background blur

  • Thanks for the comments so far. Here is the same photograph with the leaves in roughly the same focal plane as the flower left in focus. Next I plan to put up a version that has all the surrounding foliage blurred.

    Blurred except leaves in same focal plane

  • f/11.0, 1/400 ISO400, 43 mm

    This was taken before I got my speedlite, so some of the petal areas are blown. My pressing question is, should I blur the background (leaves)? Leave the top layer of leaves in focus along with the flower? Don’t blur anything? Does the brightness of the peony separate it from the BG?


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