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09-30-2008, 11:08 PM   #1
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1 Year with my K10d - want to achieve what's inside

I want to be able to pull off shots like THIS:



I've attempted to achieve various different "looks" to my photos:
keepers - a set on Flickr

but have never been able to achieve a subtly desaturated and vignetted look that the above photo consists of - I have a Pentax K10d, with the kit 18-55mm and the indispensable FA-50mm. I'm self taught and the k10d was my first camera EVER (other than my cell phone camera!) so ANY advice at all is definitely welcome.

Please keep in mind that my work is amateur at best and I'm very aware of this but please, anyone with expertise on the look of the photo at the very top please chime in!

09-30-2008, 11:19 PM   #2
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Who took that shot?

First off, vignette can be done many ways... we have no way of knowing if that was PS'd or not. If it wasn't, then a very wide angle lens with a lens hood could be used. Also, that de-saturated look can be achieved by tweaking either the camera's internal color processing (if you're shooting JPEG) or tweaking the saturation of various color hues in post processing.

As to lens recommendations, well, it all depends. That isn't a picture where very much ambient light is present; you can tell because the buildings and street are very shadowed, but the sky is bright. To get that much detail and color in low light it's possible a lens with a very low aperture value was used, such as the DA* 16-50, or the 50/1.4 prime lens, and that's only if we're talking Pentax.

To be honest, there's a ton of ways you can get that picture. You can either be very good and get it out of the camera like that, or you can be good and make it better with post processing.
09-30-2008, 11:46 PM   #3
Damn Brit
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I would guess I'm about at your level, who knows, we've all got something to learn from each other. So I don't really think I can help too much, but I do want to comment.

The example you've posted, I can't tell if that really is vignetting or whether it's just fortuitous shadow. I will say that I've followed your link to Flickr and i really don't think you have anything to be ashamed of, I'd be proud to take some of those shots, so please, don't be so self critical.

Drewdlephone had some good suggestions so why don't you try a few. I think rather than asking how to take shots like that, maybe you should have just asked how to produce vignetting and then take it from there.

Good luck anyway.
10-01-2008, 12:06 AM   #4
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Original Poster
this pentax community is what reaffirms my choice in Pentax :P
thanks again for the quick replies

I rather do as much as I can to achieve the look I want internally with the camera in order to minimalize post-processing :P I'll practice more with my 50mm f/1.4 - that baby was definitely worth the money :P

I do want a pancake though!

thanks for the advice both of you and the kind words you Damn Brit :]

10-01-2008, 01:09 AM   #5
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It looks like a cloudy day so the light was low, but I doubt it would require a super large aperture lens to recreate as the depth of field looks reasonably large...
I only say this because F1.4 is nice, but used with a moving target (the people), you might have to be lucky to get them in focus.
Hence:
I large version of this picture might show up considerable noise due to a high iso being used...

I'm no pro, but these are my simple thoughts...

And yes vignetting is something easily added after the shot is taken.
10-01-2008, 01:16 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Damn Brit Quote
I will say that I've followed your link to Flickr and i really don't think you have anything to be ashamed of, I'd be proud to take some of those shots, so please, don't be so self critical.
I agree. You have a great set of "keepers" there. Be proud of them and keep developing your our style.
10-01-2008, 01:55 AM   #7
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I snapped this with my K10D and FA-50 back in winter of this year...the first is the original, and the second was one run through Lightroom with some vignetting and desaturation added. The effect is similar. What do you think?

original


Filtered



Jason

Last edited by Jasvox; 10-01-2008 at 02:01 AM. Reason: resized photos
10-01-2008, 01:59 AM   #8
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ahhhh gotcha'!

now only if I could get that straight out of the camera - I WOULD LOOOVE THAT!

there's something we just can't do out in the field ey?

thanks everyone for their invaluable contribution :] I'll start by toning done the saturation and taking it from there.

10-01-2008, 02:05 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by USCdeacon Quote
ahhhh gotcha'!

now only if I could get that straight out of the camera - I WOULD LOOOVE THAT!

there's something we just can't do out in the field ey?

thanks everyone for their invaluable contribution :] I'll start by toning done the saturation and taking it from there.

Not unless your camera is processing something differently than what it sees. Short of using specialised filters on your lens, post processing can help you achieve some cool crazy or subtle effects. I really enjoy lightroom for subtle tweaking or for going after a particular look and feel if I want to change something or go after a mood.

Good luck!

Jason
10-01-2008, 02:57 AM   #10
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Yeh mate just shoot raw and PP. I'd put any money on that shot getting there through PP.
10-01-2008, 04:42 AM   #11
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You can use Pentax Photolab software (The RAW converter) to add vignetting effect. Don't remember the exact name of the setting (writing from work), but it's there where you can set lens angle of view, compensation something. First select the "Apply" checkbox and enter negative values to get noticeable effect.
10-01-2008, 06:13 AM   #12
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Capturing the moment is something you need to do with the camera on the spot, but like other folks mention, it's simple enough to apply those effects in your digital darkroom. Most any reasonable photo software application will be able to apply those effects (it's two clicks plus tweaks in iPhoto, for example).

Have fun!
10-01-2008, 10:20 AM   #13
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Without knowing more about the photo you are trying to emulate, it looks to me it's about equal parts of

1) great skill in setting up and/or idnetifying the scene and composing the shot
2) getting the right exposure
3) good PP skill

So it would to identify which of these areas you are currently havng the most trouble with, and work on that one. Once that improves to the point where it's no longer the limiter, then by definition, one of the other two will now by the one oldn you back, so you turn your attention there. And so on - it's a never ending process. Well, except maybe #2 - that's the easiest with digital, because of instant review and histograms. So you can realistically get to the point of sufficient mastery there than you need only spend the rest of your life on the other two.
10-01-2008, 11:06 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Without knowing more about the photo you are trying to emulate, it looks to me it's about equal parts of

1) great skill in setting up and/or idnetifying the scene and composing the shot
2) getting the right exposure
3) good PP skill
Exactly, spot on. The photograph you posted could have been taken with a P&S for all we know (is there EXIF? I didn't check). Back in the film days there was a lot more mystery and arcane magic to achieving shots like this, but in today's digital world any look is only a few sliders away.

I suggest you perfect your postprocessing skills. Buy a book or read online tutorials about the program you use and practice, practice, practice.
10-01-2008, 11:16 AM   #15
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I'm a logical and practical guy. I can read and do most things if I have some information about that subject. Example: I need to replace the valve's and valve springs in my car engine, I buy a book or find out how I do it from the web. I buy the tools I need and I will manage to change the parts I want to change. Part A goes there, part B over here... it's logical.

I'm not an artistic person. I don't see the picture/scene in my head before I take the shot. Most people are born with that skill. You can learn it, but you will never be as good as an artistic person. You can learn to play the gitar and be very good, but you will never be the next Hendrix without that skill/gift.

QuoteQuote:
1) great skill in setting up and/or idnetifying the scene and composing the shot
2) getting the right exposure
3) good PP skill
1) Artistic skills
2) Logical
3) Logical (also artistic skills is needed here).

This is my point of view.
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