Practising with my new d5300

gpanozzo

New member
Hello everyone.
In the past few days I went out and took a few random pictures. There's one I would like some feedback from the more experts: It's a portrait of my daughter, taken from about 10 metres far from her. I used a MANUAL 135mm lens that used to be my dad's, so I don't have the complete exif as the camera couldn't take the data off of it.
So here are the details:

Nikon d5300
Lens: Nikkor F manual 135 mm 1:28
Setings:
aperture 5.6,
shutter speed 1/200

I just put the exif for your information, together with the picture,
I LOVE portraits and I would like to get better, so what do you think?
P.S.: I have resized the picture so it's a little smaller jpeg...

Thank you so much for your feedback!
Gabs
 

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Clovishound

Senior Member
I don't do portraits anymore. I used to back in the film days, so take this for what it's worth.

Good points:

It is nicely lit, with soft light.

The background is out of focus, which is a good thing with portraits.

It looks very natural.

The not so good points.

I assume you took this while she is sitting in a car. The background, though nicely softened, is somewhat distracting. I understand that sometimes you have to take a shot where things are happening, but portraits are normally posed, and I would choose a different background.

I find the composition a bit awkward. Others may not. My feeling is that if you are going to go tight, go really tight. If you aren't going to go tight include the whole face. If I had this photo in my stack, I would probably try cropping it bit. This would give you better (in my opinion) composition, and would have the added benefit of cutting out some of the slightly distracting background. I hope don't mind. I cropped the photo to put the eyes on a 1/3 line. This removed the bit of her hand on the edge, and all the color bits behind her head. To me this makes a tremendous difference in the image. This was a simple edit.

Overall, you did a good job. Keep up the good work, and always strive to improve.

BTW, I just noticed this is in the feedback and suggestions forum. It probably should be in the photo feedback section. Perhaps a mod could move it, if appropriate.



Cele.jpg
 
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gpanozzo

New member
I don't do portraits anymore. I used to back in the film days, so take this for what it's worth.

Good points:

It is nicely lit, with soft light.

The background is out of focus, which is a good thing with portraits.

It looks very natural.

The not so good points.

I assume you took this while she is sitting in a car. The background, though nicely softened, is somewhat distracting. I understand that sometimes you have to take a shot where things are happening, but portraits are normally posed, and I would choose a different background.

I find the composition a bit awkward. Others may not. My feeling is that if you are going to go tight, go really tight. If you aren't going to go tight include the whole face. If I had this photo in my stack, I would probably try cropping it bit. This would give you better (in my opinion) composition, and would have the added benefit of cutting out some of the slightly distracting background. I hope don't mind. I cropped the photo to put the eyes on a 1/3 line. This removed the bit of her hand on the edge, and all the color bits behind her head. To me this makes a tremendous difference in the image. This was a simple edit.

Overall, you did a good job. Keep up the good work, and always strive to improve.

BTW, I just noticed this is in the feedback and suggestions forum. It probably should be in the photo feedback section. Perhaps a mod could move it, if appropriate.



View attachment 405223
Thank you so much! Lots of ideas and a lot to think about! Thank you for cropping my picture: it does look better than mine.
Thank you for your feedback!

Sorry about the post in the wrong place i’m still trying to know this forum! 😀
 

Needa

Senior Member
Challenge Team
I LOVE portraits and I would like to get better, so what do you think?
Are you post processing or shooting? I have no problem with the off center composition as here head is pointed in that direction only eye are on you or the interior of the car. The main problems as I see it are the distraction in left upper and lower corners. While you can go in close there are multiple options.
Cele_04.jpg


Here is yours with distractions minimized.
Cele_07.jpg
 
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Woodyg3

Senior Member
Contributor
I have no problem with the background. The only issue to me is that the point of her nose is in sharp focus, but the eyes are slightly out of focus. Nice expression and it has a nice mood.
 

gpanozzo

New member
I have no problem with the background. The only issue to me is that the point of her nose is in sharp focus, but the eyes are slightly out of focus. Nice expression and it has a nice mood.
Hi ! Thank you for your feedback! So what could I do to make it better? Keep in mind that I was in manual with a lens that is 40 years old. so I had only one point of focus and to put her in focus I pointed at her nose… What should I have done? maybe a slightly smaller aperture?
Thanks!
 

gpanozzo

New member
Are you post processing or shooting? I have no problem with the off center composition as here head is pointed in that direction only eye are on you or the interior of the car. The main problems as I see it are the distraction in left upper and lower corners. While you can go in close there are multiple options.
View attachment 405234

Here is yours with distractions minimized.
View attachment 405240
Ho Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry I don’t understand the question . This was just a shot and I didn’t post processed. Of course I am planning to
go in post process for more important shots, though I am now trying to get better at shooting: focus, aperture, shutter speed, iso etc…
Even though photoshop does miracles I think that a good starting shot is better so you can minimise the post production.
What do you think? 😀
 

blackstar

Senior Member
Hi ! Thank you for your feedback! So what could I do to make it better? Keep in mind that I was in manual with a lens that is 40 years old. so I had only one point of focus and to put her in focus I pointed at her nose… What should I have done? maybe a slightly smaller aperture?
Thanks!
Can I assume that you can move your focus point to one of the eyes? (without changing composition)
 

Clovishound

Senior Member
These days post processing is normally considered part of the overall process of taking a photo. Trying to get it as perfect as possible in camera is a great goal, but don't neglect the editing. Often, even minimal editing can make a big difference.

A lot of us shoot in RAW. That has the advantage of providing more latitude post processing. RAW images are basically designed to be edited after the fact. This is no different than shooting with negative film in the old days. Good printing was a necessity of the process, and prints were made using adjustments for proper exposure, contrast, hue, etc. The main difference now is the flexibility and ease of post processing.

Of course, in the end you have to develop your own style and preferences in how you shoot and how you process. Follow your instincts, but keep them informed by listening to and evaluating advice from others, and from research from good sources.
 

blackstar

Senior Member
Uhmmm…. I’m not sure about it. I have to dosuble check.
But even if i was able to, wouldn’t the nose be out of focus then?
Hopefully, that is not much out of focus with the nose, but at least you can always check the DOF by adjusting the aperture. AW, I "think", after re-examining the photo, you have the focus on her left eye and her right eye just a little OOF. Then your photo's Exif shows f-number = 0. ???
 

Needa

Senior Member
Challenge Team
Sorry I don’t understand the question .
My bad it should have read: Are you post processing or shooting JPG?
Even though photoshop does miracles I think that a good starting shot is better so you can minimise the post production.
What do you think?
Better results are achieved with a better starting point.

But even if i was able to, wouldn’t the nose be out of focus then?
This is a depth of field question. How much of the image is in focus will depend on the lens choice, aperture and distance from subject. Find a depth of field calculator on line and plug in what you used, then vary one factor and see how it changes the depth of field.


I see you were using CenterWeight Average for metering and have exposure compensation set to +1 were these choices you made?


If you haven't already you may want to go here and download and peruse the owners manual and the reference manual.
https://downloadcenter.nikonimglib.com/en/products/25/D5300.html
 
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Woodyg3

Senior Member
Contributor
Hi ! Thank you for your feedback! So what could I do to make it better? Keep in mind that I was in manual with a lens that is 40 years old. so I had only one point of focus and to put her in focus I pointed at her nose… What should I have done? maybe a slightly smaller aperture?
Thanks!
Move the focus point to the near eye, and in this case since the back eye is farther away from the camera, a smaller aperture would help to get both eyes in focus. Hope that helps. :)
 
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