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09-03-2011, 08:30 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by enoeske Quote
actually, maybe you can help me out...I just bought this scalpel and surgical scrubs and tried doing open heart surgery but the guy just died a bloody mess. The outcome I was going for was for him to be fixed and good as new, like how doctors do it. Any ideas?
The ribs are the problem. You need to crack the sternum, then use spreaders to keep them out of the way.

09-03-2011, 11:00 PM   #17
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You have had some great advice here already - don't just read it but write it down bullet point style (and take it with you) otherwise you'll remember less than 10% when you get to the shoot.

Planning your shoot is critical - early morning (you should be there just after first light to set up your shoot - at least mentally if you don't have the lighting equipment to arrange - or late afternoon / early evening, and taking practice shots to check that you are getting the effect you want. Keep her out of direct/strong sunlight but not in deep shade either. Don't let the shoot start too late (in the a.m.) as then you will be shooting in harsher light that will greatly (negatively) affect the IQ. If the model can't get there early then switch to late afternoon !

Try bracketing your shots and don't be mean with the SD cards - fill them !

Personally I'd use TAv (the Kx does have this setting right ?) to control the shutter speed / aperture and let the camera control the ISO (set the max to maybe 800 or even 400 for higher dynamic range but best to use 100 if at all possible to maximise the DR).

You should be shooting on a tripod and have SR switched OFF.

You must shoot in RAW and make sure it is DNG not PEF (maybe that is why only your Pentax utility can read them).

If you have a long(ish) quality prime (even a macro lens) then try some shots from further back to get low DoF and a lovely smooth bokeh.

As others have said .... it is all about the light.

I'd also do some Googling to find out how to pose your model (feet and hands placed correctly and pointing in the right direction etc. etc.).

Try reading through some of one of our Pentax posters (Pro shooter for Vogue etc.) articles and blogs :
Benjamin Kanarek Blog | Benjamin Kanarek Blog

Good luck and most of all have fun ... if you are nervous that will transmit to your model so whatever happens just enjoy ! Oh and try to get her involved by encouraging her to try out poses she feels comfortable with (then tweak them) - my daughter models and says she enjoys shoots where she can also feel 'creatively involved' much more.
09-03-2011, 11:18 PM   #18
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I have one word for you: Strobes. (google strobist)

Actually a few more: The time of the day was wrong. Best outdoor photography is when the sun is gentle, not so harsh.
The framing: at least peculiar. Pretty girl, tho.
The ref shot: CTO on the flash, tungsten WB on the cam. Sync speed was high, so the sky is darkened.

Remember, even with the kit lens, you can get exceptional photos. For portraiture, go to the long end for better separation of the subject to bkgr.

09-04-2011, 06:14 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by lovemehate Quote
... Is cause my friend wants to do a shoot monday and I dont have time to learn all the settings
You want to learn in a few days what the photographer of you desired sample picture acquired over many years ???

For the anticipated shoot you may have left it a wee bit late I am afraid. If you come from such a low standard as your sample pics suggest please be aware that you have a lot to learn. What you get from us here is theoretical knowledge. OK, but next you need practice and that takes time. Don't be discouraged though you have to make a start but your advertised shoot is possibly not the ideal starting point because you will be under pressure and stress. No basis for success. I wish you luck though.


09-04-2011, 03:39 PM   #20
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I edited your post to use IMGWIDE tags instead of IMG. Please do not post such large images unless there is a good reason, and in those cases, use IMGWIDE, which causes browsers to resize the image so you can see it without scrolling.
09-04-2011, 04:55 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by lovemehate Quote
the only reason am asking for help now Is cause my friend wants to do a shoot monday and I don't have time to learn all the settings i may need within that time limit
Then in my opinion you should have been honest and said that you are not ready for that shoot as yet. It takes time and practice, practice to know what your camera can do and how to attack various lighting variables.
As for the photos posted - - -
My first thought was that you were a troll just looking for a lot of replies. But I see that you have 111 posts so I apologize since that now does not seem likely.
However trying to compare picture #2 with the professional one is totally out of whack.
The professional one is, well, professionally done with obviously a pro model and under controlled conditions. I think the sky background is a background drop or has been put in via PS or Lightroom, etc. The pro shot has a unique perspective and obviously used a wide angle lens to bring out his original intentions.
What I see in the composition of pic #2 is an uninteresting shot that is totally marred by the distractions of the rest of the scene. That is a pair of old shoes dumped on the couch, an old couch, and worst of all the partial background of a rust scarred metal thing with graffiti on it. It all just looks like a grab shot done on a discarded couch in a random alley.
Sorry for the harsh words. I do not mean to discourage you.
But you do need some guidance on composition more than technical tips at this point. Get a good book on composition and take a lot of experimental photos. It will take time but it will be worth it.
Good luck.
09-04-2011, 05:14 PM   #22
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I just realised that you wanted to do it monday... So I may be a little late, but I found these 2 blog post, which seem to give you a very good outline of how to approach a photoshoot. The second link provides some good "standard" poses for you to aim for, They may be difficult to achieve but I think would be some good reading to start with.

Link #1 HERE This is basically a checklist of things you should be doing pre-shoot, it seems pretty thorough to me but don't take it as the gospel.

Link #2 HERE
09-05-2011, 09:28 PM   #23
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Original Poster
thanks for all the replies so far. am not trying to copy anyone, am not trying to do something like a pro fully knowing I cannot, am just trying to figure out how to do it, or atleast make sure am on the right road.

The reason I have to ask and not have months and years to refine what am doing Is I set up shoots that well. I really want to do, I just don't want to waste this chance to work with these people.
but am still reading and trying to understand everything on this post so far.. a little bit of it is french to me, let me ask this,
I always follow the meter making sure that my settings have it so that its in the middle, I figured I couldent go wrong. but I did not know much about the histogram, Is there some other mode or setting I should try that might help me learn as am going?

09-06-2011, 09:33 PM   #24
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Metering can seem to be a complicated subject, because there are so many methods and shortcuts used. You don't need to remember them all, just find something that works for you. The important rules are:
  • Don't overexpose parts of the image where you want to see detail. I mentioned before that your second example photo has this problem for the model's hands. With digital, once something is completely white, it will stay white no matter what processing technique is used. The camera can be set to show these areas as blinking parts in the preview image. You can also overexpose one color channel, particularily red or blue. That happens sometimes with a subject that is red or blue, like a flower. The meter lumps all the colors together and suggests settings for the total light it sees, ignoring this color problem. You can watch for this on the RGB histogram if your subject has strong reds or blues.
  • Don't underexpose parts of the image where you want to see detail by much. The camera can show extremely underexposed areas on the preview as well. At ISO 100, your camera has a lot of range for underexposure. Software can recover a lot of detail. You can get away with some underexposure. As you increase ISO, your margin of error diminishes. Above about ISO 800, I want to be perfect if I can. Software can still help but noise becomes obvious and ugly.
  • It's OK to let parts of the image be exposed "wrong", as long as you don't need detail there. Say your subject is indoors by a window on a sunny day. Don't worry about the scene outside the window being mostly overexposed. If you try to get that outdoor part right, your subject might be too dark.
  • In extreme conditions, try to capture extra detail if you think you need it, to possibly use later. That usually means taking several shots at different exposures, then combining them later in software.

I call those rules because if you follow them, you can get an image that you can work with. They can be broken for effect, once you have some experience.

The camera's meter will try to give you a workable image too, but it has a major disadvantage: it doesn't know anything about your intended subject or creative intent. There are ways to give it more information, like exposure compensation, scene modes, or other metering modes. That's where the methods and shortcuts come in. If your photos fit certain conditions, the shortcuts can be really easy. Example: I have ~1800 photos of lenses for sale. They're mostly black things in the center of the photo, with a white background. The camera's meter is always wrong but I can guess the correct exposure very well by now. Another example is the "Sunny-16" method, pretty useful here because it's always sunny. The moon exposure is very predictable. I could suggest a lot more but again, the right one depends on how you work. The rest are interesting but less useful.

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