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TOPIC: Opinions and advice please!

Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2894

  • Bonnie
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Hey guys! Ok, I really am scared to open myself up for critique but I am wanting advice on how to better my skills. I am REALLY limited by my equipment right now. Im shooting with a little Canon Rebel. I am trying to get a small business going at this. Please give me your advice! Here is my website. www.maxfieldphotography.com .If this is the wrong way to get critique, please let me know. Thanks in advance!
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2895

  • Erik Ballew
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Hello Bonnie,

I did a quick once over on your website, and I think you have a lot of the technical skill down. You seem to have a good connection with the subjects and are able to capture their emotions pretty well.

You might want to play a with the rule of thirds a little to make them a little more interesting, even more so on the horizontal portraits. Also I'd suggest that you may try playing with some fill light, either a reflector or a basic off camera flash. I started out with a YongNuo 460mkII and a cheap stand with shoot through umbrella, with my Rebel t2i. (I'm sure the gear police will be here in a few to tell you that only name brands are allowable). But I think your photos would really benefit from some lighting on the subject to make them pop, and give you better color.

Worry about the knowledge of your gear and your technical skill first.

www.amazon.com/YONGNUO-YN460II-Speedlite...-2&keywords=yn+460ii

Rebel t2i, 50mm 1.4, and a cheapo flash with cheapo stand and cheapo umbrella
Last Edit: 3 years 10 months ago by Erik Ballew.
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2896

  • Olaf Kleemeyer
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Hi Bonnie,
I like your site and a lot of your photos. Just go ahead, you´re on the right path, I think. If I want to try something new, I look at pictures of professional photographers and then I try to produce something similiar. That´s a lot of fun and instructive.
Best regards
Olaf
Nikon D700, Nikkor 24mm 1.4, 50mm 1.4, 70-200mm 2.8
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2897

  • Bonnie
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Thank you guys so much! I appreciate the feedback and will gladly take your advice. Eric, shooting with a Rebel, how did you get that picture some crystal clear and "creamy". Is that from your 1.4 lens??
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2898

  • Erik Ballew
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Bonnie wrote:
Thank you guys so much! I appreciate the feedback and will gladly take your advice. Eric, shooting with a Rebel, how did you get that picture some crystal clear and "creamy". Is that from your 1.4 lens??

Yes, I shot this at f1.8 so that helped blur out the background a bit, but the real sharpness comes in from the flash. Getting the subject lit up really makes the difference. I love how you use the sun as a back light and hair light in a lot of your photos, but if you give it some front light to balance the colors and make the subject pop out from the background even more! Just a little bit helps so much.
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2899

  • Bonnie
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OK! Great, I do have a relector, I also have umbrellas. But I'm still learning how to use them. I always blind my subject! I don't have an external flash yet. And for sure the on camera one is terrible. Again, thank you guys for the advice.
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2901

  • Jon Lloyd
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Hi Bonnie.

I have to agree with the other comments - it seems to me that you are already a good way down the track to getting great looking photos. The posing of your subects and the positioning in relation to the light is great! I especially like the back-lit by the sun images.

Right now the camera is not the main issue - you can still get great images from it. It's now about the light and in particular the fill light.

But I have to say you're doing great and you just need to keep at it and accumulate the right gear for you as you go.

You need to continue soaking up how the pros like Greg and others do it. Try Neil van Niekerk too as he specialises in flash and in particular bounce flash. www.neilvn.com/tangents

Regards

Jon
Last Edit: 3 years 10 months ago by Jon Lloyd.
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2902

  • Mark
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I agree, photos look good, for the most part, but need some fill light. Don't forget, a reflector can be an invaluable, and inexpensive asset when it comes to adding a light source.
For the back lit, outside shots, you can use a reflector to bounce light from the sun back on your subjects. And on indoor shots, can be a great companion with a flash to bounce additional light where needed.
One thing missing that I think is important, is catch light in your subjects' eyes - can make a big difference.
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2905

  • Bonnie
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Thank you all so much for the great advice and the compliments. It makes me feel so much better. Sounds like I need to get my reflector out and practice more with it and some fill light. I will work on it and keep reading articles and watching great videos from great photographers like Greg. It is so great to be able to post and ask for advice and not get mean comments, only helpful ones!

Bonnie
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2918

  • Erik Ballew
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You know when I think about it, there was one video from Ben Sant that showed me that cheapo portable stuff can work! This is the single most important video I've seen that got me to make the jump to using a light, and I've never looked back.

Last Edit: 3 years 10 months ago by Erik Ballew.
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #2948

  • Greg S
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  • Pro-thusiast photographer in SW Connecticut specializing in youth sports, landscapes, portraiture and pet photography. Principal photographer for Trinity College Bantams Football, Masuk High Shool Cheer.
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Good work Bonnie, IMHO Nissin or the Vivitar 285 flashes with umbrellas on cheap stands with Cowboy triggers are a great starter gear for any noob...

and if the gear police are watching.. Joe McNally and Zack Arias told me that.
:P

Lance Armstrong always said "it's not about the bike..." and well now we really know about that... but i digress...
Lance and I could swap blood and bikes and he'd still kick my arse..
point is.. the gear isn't what makes it.. like others have said (and I"m working on) get good first, the gear will resolve itself over time.

Best wishes-
We are Sandy Hook and We CHOOSE Love..
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Opinions and advice please! 3 years 10 months ago #3012

  • Bonnie
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Thank you all for all the help! I appreciate it so much.
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