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Thread: Photo self critique - motion assignment

  1. #1
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Photo self critique - motion assignment

    OK, I thought I'd flip through some of the photos I shot for the last assignment and tell you why I liked or didn't like them. I don't know if it'll be helpful, but every time I hear someone else talk about their shots, I learn something.

    So, in that spirit, I'm going to show a couple of mine and tell you about them.

    I went to Infineon (Sears Point for the rest of us) Raceway a couple weeks ago and shot some of the local club racers. I didn't have much time, but took 20 or so anyway. I was trying to get a crisp image of the bike and rider, with a blurred background.

    I got some stuff like this.



    Notable issues: No blur of the background. While we know the riders are moving quickly, given their body positions, the wheels on the bikes are frozen solidly and there's no sense of motion.

    The background of browing grass, would have provided a great soft background, but with the intense sunlight (just before noon), I couldn't get the camera to take a slow enough exposure.

    So much for capturing racing. At least this time.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  2. #2
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Last weekend, I went to the Legend of the Motorcycle show in Half Moon Bay, CA. It's a great show, but with a bunch of static bikes, motion shots were going to be hard to come by. But when they started announcing the winners at the awards ceremony, they started riding them up to get the trophies. Which gave me an opportunity.

    I stood across from the crowd, hoping to get some decent reactions on them, along with the bike cruising across the frame. The fog held exposure settings to a point where I could do some small amount of panning, even though the bikes were very close to me.

    Regardless, I really liked this one, except for one small problem. The rider's eyes are closed. I don't care much that his hat is cut off or the front wheel isn't complete, the blurred spokes, the blur of the background show the motion. Better luck next time, right?

    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  3. #3
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    I caught this one a second later, but again, not enough motion is portrayed, even though the rest of the elements I wanted, the crowd, the bike and all, are pretty well arranged. In a perfect world, the giant drain pipes and the hotel wouldn't be there, but hey, you work with what you have.

    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  4. #4
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    This one, I'm happier with. Good crowd reaction. Good position for the rider, capturing his eyes as he looks ahead. If I'd managed to get this one framed better, I'd be happier with it. There's a minimal amount of background clutter beyond the crowd.

    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  5. #5
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    OK, so what do you have?

    And what did you like and not like about it?
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  6. #6
    SNC1923
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    Quote Originally Posted by KBasa View Post
    Last weekend, I went to the Legend of the Motorcycle show in Half Moon Bay, CA. It's a great show, but with a bunch of static bikes, motion shots were going to be hard to come by. But when they started announcing the winners at the awards ceremony, they started riding them up to get the trophies. Which gave me an opportunity.

    I stood across from the crowd, hoping to get some decent reactions on them, along with the bike cruising across the frame. The fog held exposure settings to a point where I could do some small amount of panning, even though the bikes were very close to me.

    Regardless, I really liked this one, except for one small problem. The rider's eyes are closed. I don't care much that his hat is cut off or the front wheel isn't complete, the blurred spokes, the blur of the background show the motion. Better luck next time, right?

    Dave, these are all admirable shots, but similar to you, I like this one.

    What's most intriguing here to me is the amount of thought you put into selecting a background, wanting to capture the faces of the onlookers. You were blessed with the foggy weather, not only allowing for slower shutter speeds, but that beautiful, even lighting.

    This would have been even better if it were even slower, but as it stands it's a remarkablly successful shot. That his eyes are closed is unfortunate, but doesn't ruin the photo by any means.

  7. #7
    Rally Rat torags's Avatar
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    You're depth of field is too large.

    to have the cam blur the background (called boka) You have to open your lens (open is inverse numbers= lowere numbers = larger opening (aperture). Pro lenses open real large = 1.4. Consumer lenses f4.5 or f5.6 to f22. This is where you separate your subject from the back (like flowers)

    The larger the aperture (smaller #) the faster the shutter will close, thereby capturing the closest subject and freezing motion - while not having enough time to get the background (thereby blurring)

    If you have an inexpensive cam and you want blur; you have to "pan" follow the subject as it moves in front of you. this can give your image motion. This more successful with lateral motion subject

    I suck at panning but here's one. See the blurred ground



    This is a shot you can't pan.. coming at you at 45 degrees... but the background is blurred (bokeh) An open lens - small number.



    There are other variables, I 'm keeping it simple. You may be a candidate for lens lust. This could result in your spending more than on your BMWs

  8. #8
    Registered User burnszilla's Avatar
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    Dave, are you panning when you are shooting these moving objects?
    Stephen Burns - 2007 R1200GS
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  9. #9
    Rally Rat torags's Avatar
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    BTW Dave I was there also. I usually leave by 10am; as I do at all auto shows. There are just too many people to get clean shots.

  10. #10
    rocketman
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    Quote Originally Posted by KBasa View Post
    This one, I'm happier with. Good crowd reaction. Good position for the rider, capturing his eyes as he looks ahead. If I'd managed to get this one framed better, I'd be happier with it. There's a minimal amount of background clutter beyond the crowd.

    This a perfect example of why I often shoot a bit wide when possible, as Dave said an overall nice shot, with the exception that one guys head is cut off right above his eyes (the guy in the hat cut off doesn't bother me as much, not sure why really but there it is) and the tire getting cut off, both of which could have been avoided by a slightly wider shot. On the other hand in a crowd shot its rare that you can avoid cutting people off on the left or right but as long as the main focus isn't that generally isn't a issue. By shooting wide both those could have been avoided and any adjustments made in cropping. With 8 to 10 or more mega pixels a 30% crop would still have left enough detail for any reasonable enlargement in printing.

    As for self-critiquing, that is probably one of hardest lessons in any art form, being able to stand back and give an honest assessment of your own work is critical to becoming better, good on ya Dave for bringing this up. Its something I have been thinking about and how to encourage folks to do it, hopefully this will encourage others to give it try.

    RM

  11. #11
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burnszilla View Post
    Dave, are you panning when you are shooting these moving objects?
    Yep. I've had success with it in earlier attempts, but didn't really get an appropriate opportunity this time - or my skillz were so weak I couldn't make it happen.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  12. #12
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rocketman View Post

    As for self-critiquing, that is probably one of hardest lessons in any art form, being able to stand back and give an honest assessment of your own work is critical to becoming better, good on ya Dave for bringing this up. Its something I have been thinking about and how to encourage folks to do it, hopefully this will encourage others to give it try.

    RM
    I was hoping other folks would share their learning experiences over the last week with this topic. It perplexed me quite a bit.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  13. #13
    Rally Rat torags's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KBasa View Post
    Yep. I've had success with it in earlier attempts, but didn't really get an appropriate opportunity this time - or my skillz were so weak I couldn't make it happen.
    Nah the subjects were too slow... BTW what kind of camera?

  14. #14
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by torags View Post
    Nah the subjects were too slow... BTW what kind of camera?
    Nikon D Fiddy. It ain't the camera, that's for sure.
    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  15. #15
    looking for a coal mine knary's Avatar
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    I haven't tried much, but this weekend I played a little with motion.

    Even though not much is crisp and it looks like something was on the lens, I like this (as it came out of the camera);


    I also like this.

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