Monday, 4 January 2010

Finding the right angle

I never pretend to be a good photographer, but I do like taking photos. I think there are two things in particular that make some of my photos good. First, I always take several photos of the same object. Even if a photo doesn't look bad on the display, a closer look will often reveil problems: focus is wrong, wind caught a thread, the angle make the object look distorted and so on. If you take ten pics, you're bound to get one without any of this. Take one photo and you risk it's a crummy one.

The other thing I do is trying different angles. As mentioned in Diving into the beads and Behind a bead photo, I really enjoy this part. A slight change of angle can make a huge difference in the final picture. It doesn't even have to be a change from bird's eye view to frog perspective. Just taking shots from different sides of the object(s) does the trick. So not only do I take several photos, I also alter the angle in between them (but preferrably I take two photos at least from the same angle). Most photos I show has been selected from a batch of photos, where I have singled out the one that is sharp, clear -- and from a good angle.

Below is a sequence of photos taken of a simple object: dyed rose bronze-lined alabaster Delicas and pink/orange glass chips. One of these has then been chosen to be used in my other blog. The rest I either erase or, if they are good enough, keep for future use.

(click the pic to view in full scale.)

I use the automatic focus in my camera. Doing that means you have to be careful where the camera places the focal point. Sometimes you have to press the button halfway for the camera to focus on a point you want and then move the camera a bit to get the whole object in frame. Of cause, you must never move the camera back or forth, just from one side to the other. Or else the focus will be wrong. After repositioning, you push the button all the way to take the picture.

The closer you are to an object, using the macro setting, the less of the depth will be in focus so that also has to be taken into account. Se for example these pics, comparing the landscape photos with the more close-ups of the berries and leaves.

In other words, it may take a lot of tweaking to get good photos -- but that is the part of the process I enjoy!

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