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First real field test with Nikon 105mm F/2.8D.

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Testudo Man View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Testudo Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Feb 2014 at 8:25pm
Originally posted by will will wrote:

@Gemma - it's interesting, the whole DOF thing - I personally really like a blurred background - the whole 'bokeh' thing, which can give a snake or lizard portrait a real 3-D look, but I know some people who take this to extremes and who just want an eye to be sharp, which is too much in my view.  For hand held, in situ shots without the VR stabilisation feature I would say these are lovely portraits, but it's completely subjective, just a question of what you, as the viewer, want to see from a portrait I guess. I posted a photo a couple of years ago of a common lizard on a rock with a Welsh beach behind it which could only have been taken with my old bridge camera, since the DOF was about 1km!


It sounds like we are both "singing from the same Hymn book" Will.Wink
A shallow/blurred DOF is my preference too, but not to the extent of just the smallest portion of an image in focus.
As you say, and others will also echo...photography, like all things in life, is totally subjective.
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Testudo Man View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Testudo Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Feb 2014 at 8:40pm
Originally posted by GemmaJF GemmaJF wrote:

I think Will macro photography of herptiles presents some interesting challenges, small head compared to elongated bodies makes them rather unique in that respect, as does the very three dimensional habitats they frequent.

Certainly plenty of room for experiment between deep and shallow focus to be explored. It's not that I don't like the pictures either, not at all. I remember similar comments when I first posted up macro shots which led to quite a lot of experimentation with DOF with my new lens and as my understanding developed of both that and post processing I was able to use DOF as composition device and also increase it when needed.

A bit of constructive criticism can at times be more helpful than a list of 'wow' what a great photo comments and Testudo Man clearly titled the thread first field test!

Be interesting to see how his work develops with the new lens. Wink



I much prefer honest comments, i would disregard a "WOW" comment...Im not interested in "WOW" commentsWink I can, and do, get plenty of those on Flickr!

Im a lazy photographer when it comes to camera settings. I normally just shoot in Sportsmode, letting the camera chose optimum shutter/aperture/iso etc. etc...I could get away with that using bridge cameras, and even my 70-300 Tamron zoom lens on a DSLR.
Prime lenses force you to think more...dedicated macro lenses force you to get to know your manual settings more......................which can only be a good thing i guessWink

I also only shoot in Jpeg! (shock horror)...and as for PP/editing...i use a very prehistoric Potoshop 6 Embarrassed...Im such a dinosaurSmile
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will View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote will Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Feb 2014 at 8:54pm
@testudo man - I'm a JPEG guy too! (partly too much of a dinosaur also I have a thing about manipulating images aside from the odd crop...)  camera body was Nikon D3200 now for this season I sold my other kidney to pair the macro with Nikon D7100.  So the only reason for poor photos will be the camera operator...   
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Testudo Man View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Testudo Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Feb 2014 at 8:54pm
Originally posted by Tom Omlette Tom Omlette wrote:

the closer you are to the subject the more dof becomes a problem. macro lenses are designed for this though and tend to handle diffraction better at smaller apertures so you can get away with using f11 and above if you need to. light becomes a problem then though and slower shutter speeds = camera shake which can be the difference between an acceptable shot and something super sharp, especially if you are hand-holding. 
i like to see a variety of shots really so isolating the eye or a particular feature can work very well, nice blurry bokeh can be really effective but shots that show the immediate habitat and even wide angle shots can work really well. 
so many things to get right in a picture - focus, dof, composition, sharpness, interest etc its a wonder we ever manage anything half decent!!!

looking forward to seeing more pics from the 105vr :)

tom

ps where are you btw?


Hi Tom, i thought i mentioned it before, that Im in Kent Wink

Not sure if you got your wires crossed?  but my 105mm lens does not have VR, its the older model/lensWink
As already said, still learning how to get the best out of this macro lens...Ive never ventured beyond F8(never really needed to before)...so still a lot to learn, in regards to potential optimum images.
Available light certainly plays a part with this lens too...A few more sessions, and i should get to grips with it. But i really needed to test it in the field, in real world conditions...cant wait to try it on some butterflies too.

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Tom Omlette View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tom Omlette Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Feb 2014 at 9:22pm
yes you mentioned both things i just wasn't being alert!!!

definitely worth weening yourself off the modes and taking control of the camera yourself. it really does't take that much getting used to. a couple of years ago i knew next to nothing about photography now i would never trust the camera to set more appropriate settings than i could myself. 

in camera processing isn't as good as most post processing software either so shooting raw has advantages too. 

just my opinion and what works for me.

impressive shots though and looking forward to seeing more. 

tom
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tom Omlette Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Feb 2014 at 9:28pm
@ will. if you shoot in jpeg there is still processing but the camera does it for you. i'd rather do it myself afterwards than trust the camera tbh. 

traditionally all digital images have been a little soft and absolutely require a bit of sharpening under all circumstances. however, your d7100 is one of the first to have to antialiasing filter removed from the sensor which has apparently improved sharpness straight out of the camera. a little sharpening may still be required though.

noise reduction is also more effective post rather than in camera and that can be important. 

tom
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote will Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Mar 2014 at 9:01am
Thanks Tim, appreciate your advice as always- it's probably laziness on my part to let the camera do the processing with JPEG rather than me doing it with RAW...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GemmaJF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Mar 2014 at 11:06am
Originally posted by Tom Omlette Tom Omlette wrote:

yes you mentioned both things i just wasn't being alert!!!

definitely worth weening yourself off the modes and taking control of the camera yourself. it really does't take that much getting used to. a couple of years ago i knew next to nothing about photography now i would never trust the camera to set more appropriate settings than i could myself. 

in camera processing isn't as good as most post processing software either so shooting raw has advantages too. 

just my opinion and what works for me.

impressive shots though and looking forward to seeing more. 

tom

It was starting out with macro photography that got me off the auto-settings and into using RAW, DOF again, darker pictures for increased DOF were easier to rescue in post processing when shot in RAW.

Got a bit lazy of late, use the macro more as a portrait lens and shoot 90% in JPEG - I might make an effort this year to get back into 'taking control' and exploring macro again.

I get a real buzz out of watching peoples photography exploits on the forum Smile

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Testudo Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2014 at 11:08am
Originally posted by will will wrote:

@testudo man - I'm a JPEG guy too! (partly too much of a dinosaur also I have a thing about manipulating images aside from the odd crop...)  camera body was Nikon D3200 now for this season I sold my other kidney to pair the macro with Nikon D7100.  So the only reason for poor photos will be the camera operator...   


I did a test some years ago, shot both Raw an Jpeg images of a common lizard. I edited both types of files(as i normally would) resized down to my normal file sizes, that i upload on the Web/Net. Compared them side by side for images quality, and i struggled to choose which type of file/image was best.
Thats not to say that they are the same, i would agree that RAW files are superior, but it all depends what you choose to do with your final images.

Once again Will, you have almost travelled the same path as me with your Nikon bodies.
Your D7100 is not that far off of a FF D600, so you have a great camera there mateWink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Testudo Man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2014 at 11:30am
Originally posted by Tom Omlette Tom Omlette wrote:

yes you mentioned both things i just wasn't being alert!!!

definitely worth weening yourself off the modes and taking control of the camera yourself. it really does't take that much getting used to. a couple of years ago i knew next to nothing about photography now i would never trust the camera to set more appropriate settings than i could myself. 

in camera processing isn't as good as most post processing software either so shooting raw has advantages too. 

just my opinion and what works for me.

impressive shots though and looking forward to seeing more. 

tom


Sports mode for me, works well in most situations, for my chosen subjects. As you know with wild life, you come across it, then you have a small window in time to capture some decent shots, before the creature runs/flys/slithered off!!...So once i have shot several record/decent shots of a subject, i then put the camera into manual/aperture mode, and finish off shooting pics of the subject, using various settings. I agree with you, manual mode is better, get to know your camera and its optimum settings, and utilize what works best for you. Its definitely all about experimenting, until you find the right settings, for the right situations.

As I mentioned in Wills post, i know Raw files are superior to Jpeg files. In fact, I shot some side by side images late last year, of a female adder(using my Nikon D7000) to once again compare Raw against Jpeg. I just have to get around to spending some time, sorting through those images, post processing/editing them, and comparing the outcome.
Personally for me, since i have never printed any of my my images, shown any of them as full size files, Jpeg works for my current needs. If i should to choose to print images, or show large full size files, then i would spend that extra time it takes, and edit my images in Raw, because that would be the best option in that situation. 
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