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Photography Question 
joy e. GLENN
 

sharpness (Again!)


Hi,
try as I might I cannot get sharp pictures... I just got some prints from Shutterfly and I really wasnt happy with the sharpness...
Here's what I know....f/8, mirror lockup, unsharp mask, tripod,..highest camera setting, what am I leaving out? I have a digital rebel.


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9/15/2006 5:55:25 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  Hello Joy,

Sounds to me you are doing all the right things. Hmmm?

Do the photos look sharp on screen?
What resolution are you saving at?
Are you ordering enlargements beyond 8x10?
Do you resample with save?
Are you re-scaling your photos?

If you have a decent inkjet printer, try printing one yourself and see.

Pete


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9/15/2006 6:31:02 PM

 
joy e. GLENN   Im doing all those things,,,my photos dont look sharp on the computer screen.


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9/15/2006 7:01:27 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  Can you post one here?
Obviosly if it doesn't look good on screen, it will not print properly.

Pete


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9/15/2006 7:16:41 PM

 
joy e. GLENN   Hi,
If you dont mind, I have photos in my gallery. Id love your advice..JOY


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9/15/2006 8:25:56 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  Joy,

Could you email me your original "Island Girl?"
It is hard to tell with uploaded photos.

I chose that one because it is a closeup and really should be sharper.

Pete


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9/16/2006 4:13:10 AM

 
Kay Beausoleil
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/31/2004
KayBeausoleilPhotography.com
  Joy, one mechanical thing not on your list (and which I learned from bitter experience) is the link between your camera and your tripod. Can you move your camera when it's attached? On mine, the screw on the tripod plate was a little too long, and it needed a rubber piece right next to the camera to keep it steady.


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9/16/2006 9:25:32 AM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
 
 
 
Ok...
Joy I hope you don't mind me reposting your photo.
I think I have your answer after reviewing the photo you sent me.

1) Yes; it is out of focus.
2) It's not your camera or your screen.
3) It's not a printing problem.

What it is: You have a depth of field problem in this photo.
My guess is that you got pretty close to your subject and used a f/stop quite wide open.. 2.8/3.5/4.0 etc....or possible used a zoom and were too close.

I made a few notes on your photo so you can see (where) this occurs. I circled the HAIR as sharp and the EYE as not sharp.
The hair in one area is well focused, but in another area it is not. This is limited depth of field. (DOF)

Remedy: Close down your aperature a little more. Getting close to your subject is OK; but if you need the subjects face entirely in focus, you will need to shoot at least f/8...f/11 is even better.

If you are shooting let's say 135mm from a distance, ok, no prob, but again, if you're close to your subject, (10-15 ft) you REALLY need to close down the aperture if you desire the entire face, from the back to front to be in focus. Shooting @ 135mm close to your subject is getting in the Macro arena where DOF is quite narrow.

When you close down the aperture; obviously less light enters the film/digital sensor plane. If need be, simply up the ISO or use fill flash.

***Not sure what you did here, but it appears you tried to remove some facial blemishes and maybe got a tad carried away with the blur tool. :) I've noted those areas as well with a "?"

I'll email you the photo with the notes and delete this one when you've read it.

Hope this helps,

Pete


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9/16/2006 6:47:56 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
 
 
 
Ok...
Joy I hope you don't mind me reposting your photo.
I think I have your answer after reviewing the photo you sent me.

1) Yes; it is out of focus.
2) It's not your camera or your screen.
3) It's not a printing problem.

What it is: You have a depth of field problem in this photo.
My guess is that you got pretty close to your subject and used a f/stop quite wide open.. 2.8/3.5/4.0 etc....or possible used a zoom and were too close.

I made a few notes on your photo so you can see (where) this occurs. I circled the HAIR as sharp and the EYE as not sharp.
The hair in one area is well focused, but in another area it is not. This is limited depth of field. (DOF)

Remedy: Close down your aperature a little more. Getting close to your subject is OK; but if you need the subjects face entirely in focus, you will need to shoot at least f/8...f/11 is even better.

If you are shooting let's say 135mm from a distance, ok, no prob, but again, if you're close to your subject, (10-15 ft) you REALLY need to close down the aperture if you desire the entire face, from the back to front to be in focus. Shooting @ 135mm close to your subject is getting in the Macro arena where DOF is quite narrow.

When you close down the aperture; obviously less light enters the film/digital sensor plane. If need be, simply up the ISO or use fill flash.

***Not sure what you did here, but it appears you tried to remove some facial blemishes and maybe got a tad carried away with the blur tool. :) I've noted those areas as well with a "?"

I'll email you the photo with the notes and delete this one when you've read it.

Hope this helps,

Pete


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9/16/2006 6:48:13 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
 
 
 
Ok...
Joy I hope you don't mind me reposting your photo.
I think I have your answer after reviewing the photo you sent me.

1) Yes; it is out of focus.
2) It's not your camera or your screen.
3) It's not a printing problem.

What it is: You have a depth of field problem in this photo.
My guess is that you got pretty close to your subject and used a f/stop quite wide open.. 2.8/3.5/4.0 etc....or possible used a zoom and were too close.

I made a few notes on your photo so you can see (where) this occurs. I circled the HAIR as sharp and the EYE as not sharp.
The hair in one area is well focused, but in another area it is not. This is limited depth of field. (DOF)

Remedy: Close down your aperature a little more. Getting close to your subject is OK; but if you need the subjects face entirely in focus, you will need to shoot at least f/8...f/11 is even better.

If you are shooting let's say 135mm from a distance, ok, no prob, but again, if you're close to your subject, (10-15 ft) you REALLY need to close down the aperture if you desire the entire face, from the back to front to be in focus. Shooting @ 135mm close to your subject is getting in the Macro arena where DOF is quite narrow.

When you close down the aperture; obviously less light enters the film/digital sensor plane. If need be, simply up the ISO or use fill flash.

***Not sure what you did here, but it appears you tried to remove some facial blemishes and maybe got a tad carried away with the blur tool. :) I've noted those areas as well with a "?"

I'll email you the photo with the notes and delete this one when you've read it.

Hope this helps,

Pete


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9/16/2006 6:48:46 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  oops..sorry, double post. My bad LOL


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9/16/2006 6:50:08 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  PS: Always focus on the eyes.


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9/16/2006 6:52:03 PM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  triple post.
the flower is very crisp.i think pete is pretty much right.too much camera.
not enough understanding.matrix.spot.
manual.auto.handholding?
sam


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9/16/2006 7:28:03 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  Man! It is a triple post..I have no idea how that happened. Yikes!


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9/16/2006 7:30:36 PM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  bump it down to f4.0 to f4.5 and see what you get.i don't think f8 and people really get along that well unless you tell them in advance they need to hold really still.
even with a tripod,if you don't have a remote release or use the self timer,pushing the shutter button can cause blur.
oh well,sam


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9/16/2006 8:19:11 PM

 
KIM SCHULTZ
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/15/2004
  I sometimes have the same sharpness issues. I don't have a very good tripod, so I have to compensate in other ways. I need to turn off the Image Stablizer, the continous motor tends to shake the long lens just enough to cause a little blur. Use a remote triggering device when possible.

I fixed the problems by using a remote device, turning off the IS, and when doing micro work I use the mirror lock-up feature.


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9/18/2006 12:04:25 PM

 
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