View Full Version : My best clown so far...

02/17/2006, 05:27 AM
here is my best "clown" shot, any comments on how to make it better?
Click to enlarge...
http://img106.imagevenue.com/loc197/th_78960_fixed_clown_2.jpg (http://img106.imagevenue.com/img.php?loc=loc197&image=78960_fixed_clown_2.jpg)

02/17/2006, 07:43 AM
its a little grainy. What ISO did you shoot at?

02/17/2006, 03:03 PM
Its a very good picture when you enlarge it and make it stand out more. Heres a little something I did to bring out the colors in your pictures. :)


02/17/2006, 09:00 PM
Nice composition... here's some technical advice...

The white lines are too bright and just about blown out. The dark red is too dark. Shoot in manual mode. Use a large aperture (small f number) to minimize contrast and set your shutter speed for proper exposure.

Focul depth will be shallow with a large aperture, so focus will be critical. Use manual focus and make sure you are focused on the eye/head.

02/17/2006, 09:35 PM
You really have a lot of good things going on in this photo. The sharpness is really good in the "shoulder" area, but textbook says focus should be the eye. As for contrast, there's not a whole lot you can do except lower ISO and increase your f/stop just a little (bigger number, smaller aperture). What would really help this photo "next time" would be to isolate the fish from the coralline back glass. The red of the fish doesn't POP off of the light purple, but it really would off of green or yellow, or especially black.

Chromatic abberations are pretty strong, or maybe it's just overuse of the unsharp mask. Never take Photoshop's unsharp mask beyond a radius of 0.3 pixels, or you'll get start developing that halo effect (not the game).

Of course, it's not all bad. I just find that I learn the best when people actually tell me what they'd change, instead of "looks great!" Try underexposing the shot to -2/3 EV (two dots to the left, on that RebelXT), and you'll get less blasting out of the highlights and less saturation clip. And taking the time to remove all the debris in the water will go a long way. Here's where you'll spend some time with Photoshop's Heal Tool.

Oh, and for me, I always present my photos at 800 pixels on the longest dimension so they're not too small, and you can still see the whole photo on screen at once.

02/17/2006, 10:21 PM
Ummm.....is it just me or does the clown fish have a mustache? I have never seen that b4, too cool. Great pic btw.

02/18/2006, 12:34 AM
thanks, and I really apprciated the full advice jwedehase, it gives me a good bit to work with :) specially the unsharp radius.
as far as the ISO, that was at 200 so i'm not entirely sure about noise? are you talking on the fish or background?
Here are the settings I used:

exposure 1/40
Shutter priority
exposure compensation +1 (too high)

02/18/2006, 12:45 AM
Is this any better, same shooting day a few changes during post processing...
exposure 1/50
Shutter priority
exposure compensation +0.7

http://img12.imagevenue.com/loc242/th_47117_open_mouth_c.jpg (http://img12.imagevenue.com/img.php?loc=loc242&image=47117_open_mouth_c.jpg)

During shooting:
I would have decreased the compensation further, kept the high ISO. I also wished I would have seen this post before working on it, so I could have been a little more careful with the sharpening.

02/18/2006, 01:26 AM
In What Way Do I get a Picture On To My Thread so It Shows on The Thread? thanks
Steve by the way like that clown

02/18/2006, 06:45 AM
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=6769052#post6769052 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by golfschosen1
In What Way Do I get a Picture On To My Thread so It Shows on The Thread? thanks
Steve by the way like that clown

All of your questions can answered here:


02/18/2006, 08:39 AM
Definitely try at least zero EV, but I always work in the negative. I haven't had much success with positive EV. The darker image will help create a mood, too.

ISO 200 should be alright. I wasn't ever concerned about the ISO. I often have to shoot my fish at ISO400, even. The noise is all the water debris in the background, and this second photo is a lot better about it, actually. Micro bubbles, sand particles, detritus, whatever. If you can take the time to get rid of those, it really helps the fish stand out off the background. The other issue is that coralline algae. If you were able to catch the fish without that in the background, that would be pretty "flippin' sweet, pretty much the best I know of." You could cheat a little in Photoshop and select everything except the fish, then use the levels toolbox (ctrl-L, your best friend in tank photos) to bring down the RGB channel.

Oh, and don't forget auto levels (shift-ctrl-L) first thing. It doesn't always work, and you'll know right away. Either your photo will look obviously better, or very clearly worse. Auto levels is accurate about 90% of the time, in which case it saves you a few steps. I always attempt auto levels before I try anything else.

02/22/2006, 12:05 AM
Thanks jwedehase you have been of great help :)