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      05-11-2015, 10:53 AM   #1
Kzang
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Waterfalls

So I picked up a ND filter with variable stops.. I used stop 8 on majority of my pictures. I've used a tripod ( not a cheap one but not a great one either ) and a 2 second timer. My photos seem to have some shakes in it as it appears not as clear. I need directions on how to get a crisper and less blurry ( not the water affect ) pictures. I am using a kit lens 18-135mm.. maybe I need a better lens?

Thanks for looking.

WF16 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF8 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF7 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF7_1 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF6 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF3 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF1_1 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF4 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF13 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

WF11 by Nam Ji, on Flickr

Last edited by Kzang; 05-11-2015 at 11:04 AM.
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      05-11-2015, 01:17 PM   #2
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Try a 10 second time or a remote shutter release maybe? I use a remote shutter release and I got get much blur. You could also try something like mirror lock (is that right, smarter people?) as it can induce some shake.

Edit: I see you linked to Flickr, can't look at it at work so without seeing your meta-data:
Also make sure you are using a small aperature. Some photos looks like large aperatures like the last photo. The rocks in the center look focused but the higher in the picture they aren't. Go up a few f-stops to increase your depth of field.
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      05-11-2015, 01:33 PM   #3
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I've never used a variable stop ND filter. But i don't see the shake you're talking about. I can find sharp looking rocks in all the photos. So i think it's something other than shake. Remember the tree branches are free to move around and will look blury unless it's dead calm with zero wind movement. It may be what happos2 mentioned that you need to increase the DOF by using a larger aperture value (higher number).
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      05-11-2015, 02:51 PM   #4
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      05-11-2015, 03:32 PM   #5
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Are you shooting RAW or JPG? Are you doing any post processing? If so, what are you using to do it?
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      05-11-2015, 05:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M_Six
Are you shooting RAW or JPG? Are you doing any post processing? If so, what are you using to do it?
These were shot in Raw and used photoshop cc for post touch ups.
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      05-29-2015, 04:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
These were shot in Raw and used photoshop cc for post touch ups.
Not bad shots at all. As you are using PS CC for your processing, maybe a little more processing might help.
Try Filter > Sharpen > Shake Reduction.
Then Filter > Camera Raw > Clarity and push the slider over a little.
My example below, of your first image, is a little over done, but hopefully you get the idea.
(Hope you don't mind me using your image to demonstrate ?)

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      05-29-2015, 08:01 PM   #8
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allachie9 Wow that looks great!
I'm having difficulty with processing the image with the correct colors.. It seems that my pictures come out too green or too blue. lol.

Thanks for the tips!
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      05-30-2015, 09:53 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
allachie9 Wow that looks great!
I'm having difficulty with processing the image with the correct colors.. It seems that my pictures come out too green or too blue. lol.

Thanks for the tips!

Your tint may be off (if in light room) the slider will help if too green or too magenta. Otherwise your color temperature may be the thing.
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      05-30-2015, 12:35 PM   #10
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WF7 looks like the right CB to me. As you say, most of the others have a bit of green cast. Try the CB eyedropper on a medium grey part of the WF. It may give you a neutral CB. Try the dropper in several spots.
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      05-30-2015, 12:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcstep View Post
WF7 looks like the right CB to me. As you say, most of the others have a bit of green cast. Try the CB eyedropper on a medium grey part of the WF. It may give you a neutral CB. Try the dropper in several spots.
I think we all perceive colours slightly differently anyway.
To me, for example, and without knowing what the colour of the rocks should be, I agree that WF7 and perhaps WF6 look right.
Monitor calibration is something else to consider for anyone really serious about their colours.
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      06-09-2015, 10:09 AM   #12
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If you are already using mirror lock-up and a 2 second delay, and still getting shake, it could be a number of things.

- It could also be camera strap (if you have one) especially if it's windy. I removed my camera strap for this reason.

- Could be user focus error. Another thought, if you are not using live view with manual focus and 10x zoom to focus, start doing so. You can zoom in on parts of the scene in the background and ensure they are in focus. It could just be a focus issue. Also, use smaller aperture, don't be afraid to stop down to f/18 or f/22.

- If you are already doing all of the above, and still getting shake, it's the tripod. A mediocre tripod during a long exposure even with minimal wind will cause shake. You can try to add a weight to your tripod to keep it firmly planted. Do some research on your tripod and see if others may have this issue. What kind of tripod is it?
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      06-09-2015, 11:09 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddk632 View Post
If you are already using mirror lock-up and a 2 second delay, and still getting shake, it could be a number of things.

- It could also be camera strap (if you have one) especially if it's windy. I removed my camera strap for this reason.

- Could be user focus error. Another thought, if you are not using live view with manual focus and 10x zoom to focus, start doing so. You can zoom in on parts of the scene in the background and ensure they are in focus. It could just be a focus issue. Also, use smaller aperture, don't be afraid to stop down to f/18 or f/22.

- If you are already doing all of the above, and still getting shake, it's the tripod. A mediocre tripod during a long exposure even with minimal wind will cause shake. You can try to add a weight to your tripod to keep it firmly planted. Do some research on your tripod and see if others may have this issue. What kind of tripod is it?
I still think his DOF is too shallow. Because there is some portion of every image that is well focused and sharp. Using a ND filter in a shaded forest will make it easy to be at a fairly large aperture.
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      06-09-2015, 11:30 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Tonka View Post
I still think his DOF is too shallow. Because there is some portion of every image that is well focused and sharp. Using a ND filter in a shaded forest will make it easy to be at a fairly large aperture.
"Large aperture", "small aperture", let's make sure we're talking about the same thing.

To me a "large aperture" means that the opening of the lens is wide, so the f-number is low, like f/2.8. A "small aperture" to me means that the lens opening is small, which translates into an f-stop such as f/16 or f/22 (you may need to start worrying about diffraction at these small apertures, particularly with a high pixel-density sensor).

I do agree, that the posted images tend to be in focus somewhere within the image. If the OP wants more DOF, then he should stop-down his lens.

Dave
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      06-09-2015, 11:48 AM   #15
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Thanks guys for your input and tips. One thing to consider is that some of the pics were taken on a wooden bridge walkway where people would walk by and shake the bridge.

But as you can see from pic 2 and 3 the trees and the edges of the photos seem to be out of focus or blurry. I would much rather have the whole picture to be crisp.
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      06-09-2015, 12:37 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
Thanks guys for your input and tips. One thing to consider is that some of the pics were taken on a wooden bridge walkway where people would walk by and shake the bridge.

But as you can see from pic 2 and 3 the trees and the edges of the photos seem to be out of focus or blurry. I would much rather have the whole picture to be crisp.
Looking at the EXIF on Flickr, you used a kit lens, wide open, with no digital lens optimization. You're going to get shallow DOF, geometric distortion and smearing in the corners with that setup.

You seem serious about your IQ, so maybe it's time to move up to L-series lenses, shooting in RAW and apply DLO to your shots during RAW conversion. Oh yeah, and use apertures that maximize DOF, not minimize. Really. You've got a good body and your demonstrating some good basic skills, so maybe it's time to pull out the wallet again.

Before you pull out the wallet, try similar shots with the same equipment, but shoot in RAW, stop the lens down to f/16 and apply DLO in RAW conversion. (You have LR, but Digital Photo Professional, that shipped with your camera, has excellent DLO modules).
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      06-09-2015, 01:45 PM   #17
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Also the detail about the bridge and people walking ... 100% you're going to get camera shake on long exposures in that situation.
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      06-09-2015, 02:43 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcstep View Post
Looking at the EXIF on Flickr, you used a kit lens, wide open, with no digital lens optimization. You're going to get shallow DOF, geometric distortion and smearing in the corners with that setup.

You seem serious about your IQ, so maybe it's time to move up to L-series lenses, shooting in RAW and apply DLO to your shots during RAW conversion. Oh yeah, and use apertures that maximize DOF, not minimize. Really. You've got a good body and your demonstrating some good basic skills, so maybe it's time to pull out the wallet again.

Before you pull out the wallet, try similar shots with the same equipment, but shoot in RAW, stop the lens down to f/16 and apply DLO in RAW conversion. (You have LR, but Digital Photo Professional, that shipped with your camera, has excellent DLO modules).

I was afraid that I may need a quality lens instead of kit lens but wasn't really sure if I could get by with them. I do shoot in RAW but after post production I change it to Jpeg in order to post it to my flickr site. I wasn't aware that we could upload them as raw file?

Thanks again for your tips dcstep! Can you also check out my car photography thread and give me some critiques?
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      06-09-2015, 03:50 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcstep View Post
"Large aperture", "small aperture", let's make sure we're talking about the same thing.

To me a "large aperture" means that the opening of the lens is wide, so the f-number is low, like f/2.8. A "small aperture" to me means that the lens opening is small, which translates into an f-stop such as f/16 or f/22 (you may need to start worrying about diffraction at these small apertures, particularly with a high pixel-density sensor).

I do agree, that the posted images tend to be in focus somewhere within the image. If the OP wants more DOF, then he should stop-down his lens.

Dave
I try to be specific and use large and small to describe aperture and F values to describe aperture settings. Was the more difficult of concepts for me to grasp as a noob. I'm sure it is for others as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kzang View Post
Thanks guys for your input and tips. One thing to consider is that some of the pics were taken on a wooden bridge walkway where people would walk by and shake the bridge.

But as you can see from pic 2 and 3 the trees and the edges of the photos seem to be out of focus or blurry. I would much rather have the whole picture to be crisp.
Sometimes you can't get the wind to cooperate either. And even with just a marginally slow shutter, those pesky branches and leaves can move on you.
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      06-09-2015, 04:31 PM   #20
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Go to Flickr and look at these images full-screen. Almost every one has sharp elements somewhere in the frame. I think that most of the OP's problems relate to wide aperture (f/4.5), cheap zoom lens and no digital lens optimization.
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      06-09-2015, 04:48 PM   #21
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      06-09-2015, 06:58 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcstep View Post
Go to Flickr and look at these images full-screen. Almost every one has sharp elements somewhere in the frame. I think that most of the OP's problems relate to wide aperture (f/4.5), cheap zoom lens and no digital lens optimization.
I think we're on the same page.
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