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Still Life Photos
#1
Am interested in info on how to take good still life photos, i.e., arrangements of subjects. I'm doing Florida indigenous plants in vases on my dining room table and nothing I do to arrange looks right to me. I know this stuff has to be staged, but this is hard to do for me for some reason. Thanks in advance.
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#2
Posting one of your Pics, and details of settings etc used, would help. Ed.
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#3
   
(Sep 26, 2013, 07:33)EdMak Wrote: Posting one of your Pics, and details of settings etc used, would help. Ed.
Hello Ed, I took 24 pics; there is a whole grouping, but, I decided to show one cone because of the flower. The other cones are all red and beautiful, but, I didn't want to take up the airwaves?? with lots of stuff. Pat Oh, it's still the same little point and shoot Canon on Auto

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#4
Really, you are not to far away. If possible try and isolate the main item, sometimes a bit difficult. A bit of black cloth or similar will help.
This is where the power on post editing comes in, See this,

http://www.4shared.com/photo/Db6gzTZB/St...zed_a.html

3mts. Photoshop, background could have been anything, literally, Cheers. Ed.
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#5
(Sep 27, 2013, 11:13)EdMak Wrote: Really, you are not to far away. If possible try and isolate the main item, sometimes a bit difficult. A bit of black cloth or similar will help.
This is where the power on post editing comes in, See this,

http://www.4shared.com/photo/Db6gzTZB/St...zed_a.html

3mts. Photoshop, background could have been anything, literally, Cheers. Ed.

Thanks Ed! Copied the changes you made to my system so I could study what you did. I see what you are saying, and I really do have to get more expensive photo editing equipment. (In time). But, if I'm on the right track, I now know I have a lot of photoediting learning work to do. Again, it is so nice to have this forum where people help you. Pat

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#6
(Sep 27, 2013, 11:47)czkid Wrote:
(Sep 27, 2013, 11:13)EdMak Wrote: Really, you are not to far away. If possible try and isolate the main item, sometimes a bit difficult. A bit of black cloth or similar will help.
This is where the power on post editing comes in, See this,

http://www.4shared.com/photo/Db6gzTZB/St...zed_a.html

3mts. Photoshop, background could have been anything, literally, Cheers. Ed.

Thanks Ed! Copied the changes you made to my system so I could study what you did. I see what you are saying, and I really do have to get more expensive photo editing equipment. (In time). But, if I'm on the right track, I now know I have a lot of photoediting learning work to do. Again, it is so nice to have this forum where people help you. Pat

czkid/Pat;

You do NOT need to "get more expensive photo editing equipment" until you completely understand what you've got or can get for free. Don't buy anything until you get to the point that your equipment/camera are limiting you in what you want to accomplish.

Try Picasa, or Gimp, or one of the other FREE editing programs.

Photography is capturing the light. Learn to look at and understand the light.
One thing I see on the image you posted, is that the light is very harsh and specular. Soft light is much more pleasing to the eye. Do NOT use the on-camera flash!

Suggestions:
Use a tripod.
Open up your f stop to blur the background more (unless you WANT that other branch cutting through the back of the bud/flower)
Use the lowest ISO you can manage.
Use a remote shutter release. If you don't have one, you can set the self timer so that the motion from your hand pushing the button won't blur the image.
And, as Ed said, use a backdrop. Nothing fancy, just something black that's not shiny. Even a piece of clothing like a jacket lining or a dark shirt.
Valley of the Sun, Arizona
D2Xs, D200's, D100's, LightRoom, CS-CC
2HowardsPhoto.biz
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#7
I agree with all that as been said by the above, the background is far too busy and distracts from the image you are trying to achieve, if you do not have a shutter release try your mirror lock this will help to reduce vibration giving more clarity to you image. On the subject of flash, try using off camera flash with a diffuser as this will soften the light on the image.
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#8
Welcome averyphotography! Glad to have you on board!
Barbara - Life is what you make of it!
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#9
(Sep 26, 2013, 03:59)czkid Wrote: Am interested in info on how to take good still life photos, i.e., arrangements of subjects. I'm doing Florida indigenous plants in vases on my dining room table and nothing I do to arrange looks right to me. I know this stuff has to be staged, but this is hard to do for me for some reason. Thanks in advance.

(Sep 27, 2013, 05:17)czkid Wrote: Hello Ed, I took 24 pics; there is a whole grouping, but, I decided to show one cone because of the flower. The other cones are all red and beautiful, but, I didn't want to take up the airwaves?? with lots of stuff. Pat Oh, it's still the same little point and shoot Canon on Auto

Lovely thing about still life is that you have all the time and space you need. Try making it clean and simple and not too macro, it often works with still life. Move around the table, find the right angle, add some light if needed, choose a simple background, then make a photo. See what you're missing - colors, composition, light, etc - add it, and shoot again and again.

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