Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
01-29-2019, 08:45 PM - 3 Likes   #1
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2012
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 10,473
My First Attempt With Still Life.
Lens: Pentax 55~300mm Lens Camera: Pentax K-50 Photo Location: San Juan ISO: 100 Shutter Speed: 1/60s Aperture: F4.5 



Focal Length 55mm, Manual Exposure Mode, used Built-In Flash with CWA Metering.

Thanks for viewing.

TT

01-30-2019, 01:29 PM   #2
Senior Moderator
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
BigMackCam's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: North-East of England
Posts: 14,378
Hi Tony... this is a nice, colourful photo of a well-arranged still life subject, accurately focused on the bottle labels (before you opened and drank one of them )...

Since you've posted in the critique section, I'll make a couple of constructive comments, if I may?

Firstly, given the subject arrangement, I'd probably have looked to achieve acceptable sharpness across a greater depth, by using a narrower aperture - perhaps f/8 or f/11?

Secondly, whilst the on-camera flash has lit the scene evenly, the direction of the light (straight on) results in quite a two dimensional representation of the scene, since there are few shadow areas to provide definition. One way to address this would be to use an off-camera flash (maybe a softbox or other diffuser too) to one side and perhaps pointing slightly down towards the subject. Alternatively, moving the arrangement near to a windows so that it receives soft natural light in a sideways or sideways and down direction, could work nicely. I'm no lighting expert, so others here will undoubtedly have better suggestions for artifical and natural light, but I'm offering my gut feel
01-30-2019, 02:23 PM - 1 Like   #3
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2012
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 10,473
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Hi Tony... this is a nice, colourful photo of a well-arranged still life subject, accurately focused on the bottle labels (before you opened and drank one of them )...

Since you've posted in the critique section, I'll make a couple of constructive comments, if I may?

Firstly, given the subject arrangement, I'd probably have looked to achieve acceptable sharpness across a greater depth, by using a narrower aperture - perhaps f/8 or f/11?

Secondly, whilst the on-camera flash has lit the scene evenly, the direction of the light (straight on) results in quite a two dimensional representation of the scene, since there are few shadow areas to provide definition. One way to address this would be to use an off-camera flash (maybe a softbox or other diffuser too) to one side and perhaps pointing slightly down towards the subject. Alternatively, moving the arrangement near to a windows so that it receives soft natural light in a sideways or sideways and down direction, could work nicely. I'm no lighting expert, so others here will undoubtedly have better suggestions for artifical and natural light, but I'm offering my gut feel

Well thank you very much for your feedback. I agree with everything you mentioned. Of course right after I uploaded the image, I noticed that the lighting was a bit uneven going from left to right. This could be a result of the bottle on the left being darker than the others and thereby absorbing more light. Also, it would present a better view I think by placing the larger bottle on the right, in between the other two as the other two are the same brand. I see what you are saying about better sharpness across the spectrum, but it seems to me that by stopping down to f/8 or f/11 would mean I would have to either increase ISO or decrease shutter speed. I suppose I could try shooting without any flash units and just go with the available room light. Two things that concern me is one; That the image looked absolutely wonderful in the camera's monitor, but was so flat when uploaded that I had to do an inordinate amount of PPE in software. (. The other being that my EXIF data may be a little inaccurate as it clearly indicates a focal length of 55mm. The image appears to be a lot closer than 55mm, but anyway these are areas that are very good to review and do some experimentation. Once again, many thanks for your insightful feedback. I also believe a neutral gray backdrop would really enhance the entire photo as opposed to a dull, pastel colored wall.

Best,

Tony

Last edited by Tonytee; 01-30-2019 at 02:25 PM. Reason: Additional Information.
04-14-2019, 12:37 PM - 1 Like   #4
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
Rense's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Zetten - The Netherlands
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 8,972
Hi Tony!

Nice one, given it is a first try. I have two comments though, but please, bear in mind that it is a matter, as always, depends on what you want to convey. But if I make a still life, and I do once in a while, I see it as a exercise in light and composition. And the first - light - has to augment the composition, and vise versa. And then, a still life becomes a study in forms....
My two comments are about these two: light and composition, and I will start with the second.

Composition: yours is nice arranged, or better: sorted. Bottles by bottles, fruits together, as are the cheeses. And there are many of most. I would say: skip at least half of the items, maybe 75%, and try to arrange them in amore interesting way, as if they were left without purpose...
Light: it's harsh! If you want your light to enhance your composition, you should go for a low-key soft light solution. Place a table near a window, best exposed to the north (given you're somewhere in the Northern Hemisphere ) to ensure soft, blue light, and let it light your composition from aside. Make it a play of lights and shadows... You will see that light and shadows enhance the composition, and your photo will be a study in forms.... Underexpose a tad, and work the lights in PP.

There are many good examples on flickr, you could look there to understand what I mean. But still: this is of course only if you want to have a more classic still life. It's all about what you want to convey...

Good luck!

04-14-2019, 05:24 PM   #5
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2012
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 10,473
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Rense Quote
Hi Tony!

Nice one, given it is a first try. I have two comments though, but please, bear in mind that it is a matter, as always, depends on what you want to convey. But if I make a still life, and I do once in a while, I see it as a exercise in light and composition. And the first - light - has to augment the composition, and vise versa. And then, a still life becomes a study in forms....
My two comments are about these two: light and composition, and I will start with the second.

Composition: yours is nice arranged, or better: sorted. Bottles by bottles, fruits together, as are the cheeses. And there are many of most. I would say: skip at least half of the items, maybe 75%, and try to arrange them in amore interesting way, as if they were left without purpose...
Light: it's harsh! If you want your light to enhance your composition, you should go for a low-key soft light solution. Place a table near a window, best exposed to the north (given you're somewhere in the Northern Hemisphere ) to ensure soft, blue light, and let it light your composition from aside. Make it a play of lights and shadows... You will see that light and shadows enhance the composition, and your photo will be a study in forms.... Underexpose a tad, and work the lights in PP.

There are many good examples on flickr, you could look there to understand what I mean. But still: this is of course only if you want to have a more classic still life. It's all about what you want to convey...

Good luck!

Hey Rense, thanks very much for your assistance. I agree with your whole critique and certainly will take it very seriously.

Tony
04-15-2019, 01:00 AM - 1 Like   #6
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Ireland
Posts: 882
I always thought still life's were done with empty bottles, but of course that does affect the focus somewhat.
04-15-2019, 01:37 AM   #7
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2012
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 10,473
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by PenPusher Quote
I always thought still life's were done with empty bottles, but of course that does affect the focus somewhat.

I'm thinking, corpse or cadaver. Not much chance of motion blur.

TT
04-15-2019, 03:49 AM - 1 Like   #8
dlh
F.O.G. (fat old geezer)
Loyal Site Supporter
dlh's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Northern Piedmont of Virginia
Posts: 1,386
Take a look at how this guy handles the lighting:

https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-b6lXVIR28L8/Uji8OtXtdsI/AAAAAAAABaw/H6i7faPzYOA/w...ith_a+Crab.jpg

I would also point out that this picture doesn't look "posed". I realize yours is a "test" in effect, and the positioning of the subject matter isn't really important for that purpose, but the apparent spontaneity of the shot can affect how the picture is perceived.

04-15-2019, 04:43 AM   #9
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2012
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 10,473
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by dlh Quote
Take a look at how this guy handles the lighting:

https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-b6lXVIR28L8/Uji8OtXtdsI/AAAAAAAABaw/H6i7faPzYOA/w...ith_a+Crab.jpg

I would also point out that this picture doesn't look "posed". I realize yours is a "test" in effect, and the positioning of the subject matter isn't really important for that purpose, but the apparent spontaneity of the shot can affect how the picture is perceived.

Wonderful and thank you very much for sharing.

TT
05-16-2019, 08:11 PM   #10
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
micromacro's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Florida
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3,569
Tonytee, I see you move toward serious challenge. Still life is absolutely amazing way to study light and composition, you will not regret that. Forget about build in flash. If you have the natural light source, play with that and reflectors. If not- continuous light source is good. You can add flash lights, but continuous light will help to visualize shadows, and it helps to study, but really there is no limit to experiment and practice. It took me about a month before I took control over still life basics. And it's fun, enjoy!

---------- Post added 05-16-19 at 08:29 PM ----------

Check of the famous still life photographers. There is only one video in Italian, but you can take a look at his set up

Here is his web site:
Christopher Broadbent
05-16-2019, 09:22 PM   #11
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2012
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 10,473
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by micromacro Quote
Tonytee, I see you move toward serious challenge. Still life is absolutely amazing way to study light and composition, you will not regret that. Forget about build in flash. If you have the natural light source, play with that and reflectors. If not- continuous light source is good. You can add flash lights, but continuous light will help to visualize shadows, and it helps to study, but really there is no limit to experiment and practice. It took me about a month before I took control over still life basics. And it's fun, enjoy!

---------- Post added 05-16-19 at 08:29 PM ----------

Check of the famous still life photographers. There is only one video in Italian, but you can take a look at his set up
11 maggio 2017 - Chris Broadbent - Una Metrica Per Lo Still Life - YouTube

Here is his web site:
Christopher Broadbent


Hello Lana and thank you very much for the video. My Italian is a bit more rusty than I suspected, but I got the points that were made. Some very interesting arrangements in the still life photographs. I will continue to review the video many times over. Again, many thanks. Tony )
10-01-2019, 04:18 PM   #12
Senior Member
kjfishman's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: St. Louis
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 136
QuoteOriginally posted by Tonytee Quote


Focal Length 55mm, Manual Exposure Mode, used Built-In Flash with CWA Metering.

Thanks for viewing.

TT
Nice composition but seems a bit over saturated to me.
10-01-2019, 11:32 PM   #13
Forum Member




Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 60
QuoteOriginally posted by Tonytee Quote


Focal Length 55mm, Manual Exposure Mode, used Built-In Flash with CWA Metering.

Thanks for viewing.

TT
Nice photo and it is a great start. I would suggest making the lighting a little more complex. You can find plenty of videos on product photography online.
10-26-2019, 11:59 AM   #14
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
henrikpedersen33's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Roskilde, Denmark
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,061
QuoteOriginally posted by Tonytee Quote


Focal Length 55mm, Manual Exposure Mode, used Built-In Flash with CWA Metering.

Thanks for viewing.

TT
To hard lightning.
Try next time with a coloured background - and mayby even daylight?
12-02-2019, 06:24 PM   #15
Loyal Site Supporter
Loyal Site Supporter
BigDave's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Hudson Valley, NY
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,352
QuoteOriginally posted by Tonytee Quote


Focal Length 55mm, Manual Exposure Mode, used Built-In Flash with CWA Metering.

Thanks for viewing.

TT
Nice set up. Try using softer lighting. Too much reflection on the center label, not enough light on the dark label. Consider a polarizing filter also.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
attempt, critique, flash, fruit, kitchen, life, light, pentax, photography, picture, pm, post, rot, source, still, study, tonytee
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Still Life Second attempt at a still life. Tonytee Post Your Photos! 5 02-08-2019 06:39 PM
Still Life First attempt at still life. Tonytee Post Your Photos! 4 01-31-2019 05:06 AM
My first Still Life giancarlospillo Monthly Photo Contests 18 06-15-2016 12:29 PM
My first still-life with wireless flash. blwnhr Post Your Photos! 5 01-28-2008 07:49 PM
My first arranged still life Alcazar Post Your Photos! 6 01-21-2008 06:33 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:43 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top