New to portraits and looking for comments

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I am starting to poke around at this. I got an 85mm f2 from KEH that give me decent DOF and/but is fairly soft. Do you all think this is too soft? I am also looking at borders with mixed results.

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Welcome to the wonderful world of portrait shooting! :biggrin: To me the image doesn't look soft, look at her sunglasses. To me, it just looks like your focus point was her glasses and not her face. I'm not feeling the choice of border...

85 f/2 huh?? Sounds like a nice piece of glass...any pics of the lens? Is that an auto or manual focus lens??
 
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I think it's a nice image, and I like the DOF. IMO it's sharp enough just a bit dark - maybe in need of a levels adjustment. I agree with Keith on the frame.
 
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Welcome to the wonderful world of portrait shooting! :biggrin: To me the image doesn't look soft, look at her sunglasses. To me, it just looks like your focus point was her glasses and not her face. I'm not feeling the choice of border...

85 f/2 huh?? Sounds like a nice piece of glass...any pics of the lens? Is that an auto or manual focus lens??
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It is a simple AIS manual focus 85mm (KEH $150). Frits got me started on the AI lenses and I am having some fun for little money.

I am just not artistic enough in border choice. Plus it was a pain to do. :confused:

I think it's a nice image, and I like the DOF. IMO it's sharp enough just a bit dark - maybe in need of a levels adjustment. I agree with Keith on the frame.
Thanks for all the comments!
 
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It is a simple AIS manual focus 85mm (KEH $150). Frits got me started on the AI lenses and I am having some fun for little money.

I am just not artistic enough in border choice. Plus it was a pain to do. :confused:

Thanks for all the comments!
Thanks. Don't worry about the borders - they are SOOOOOOOOOO not necessary. If you're actually framing any of the images to hang, the frame is going to cancel out that border anyway.
 
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Hope you don't mind...I took a stab at your levels adjustment, plus a little sharpening around her eyes and mouth, with a gaussian blur on the rest...

yours/mine

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Nice adjustments JBL! Just what this lovely shot need to go the next level.

Awesome start! Seriously, it's the little niggles that can really make a portrait, as a wise old man once told me (who will probably be around any sec now).
 
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Of course, you mean a wise *OLDER* man...there is a distinct difference between being called an *OLDER* man versus being called an *OLD* man...while I resemble the former, I will fight the latter till the end :biggrin:



Nice adjustments JBL! Just what this lovely shot need to go the next level.

Awesome start! Seriously, it's the little niggles that can really make a portrait, as a wise old man once told me (who will probably be around any sec now).
 
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Of course, you mean a wise *OLDER* man...there is a distinct difference between being called an *OLDER* man versus being called an *OLD* man...while I resemble the former, I will fight the latter till the end :biggrin:
Totally excellent, thanks. I am pretty good adjusting bugs and landscapes but this lower contrast just eluded me. I will give this a try, thanks so much.
 
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This is a very nice shot JR. A little dark yes, but nonetheless I like the composition and you captured her wonderful smile. I'm with the others when it comes to borders.

As far as softness goes, Keith correctly pointed out that the sunglasses were in focus. You must focus carefully and keep the cam and the subject very still when shooting with the wide apertures. I like to focus on the lower eyelash area of the eye closest to the cam.

A little post processing can make your images really shine, as John demonstrated.

Kind regards,
 
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Totally excellent, thanks. I am pretty good adjusting bugs and landscapes but this lower contrast just eluded me. I will give this a try, thanks so much.
No problem. Levels are the first thing I always adjust on my photos...it makes a lot of difference for a very little amount of work.
 
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OK I downloaded your image and took a look at the histogram. You have a little 'tail' on the right side of the histogram. If you bring your image into PS, make a levels adjustment layer and move your right slider to where your data starts. Then take a 50% or so black brush on to the mask on her shirt to bring back the data there.
 
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That's a sweet lens. I got rid of my 85mm f1.4 and kept my 105mm f2.5 AIS... there's something to be said about all that IQ for pennies on the dollar... and I've owned some pretty expensive glass.

Here's two tutorials you may find helpful in processing your portraits.

[tutiki]Beautiful_Skin_by_Czechman[/tutiki]

[tutiki]Basic_Photo_Adjustments[/tutiki]

Signed,
The old man
 
Joined
Nov 17, 2006
Messages
1,456
Location
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That's a sweet lens. I got rid of my 85mm f1.4 and kept my 105mm f2.5 AIS... there's something to be said about all that IQ for pennies on the dollar... and I've owned some pretty expensive glass.

Here's two tutorials you may find helpful in processing your portraits.

[tutiki]Beautiful_Skin_by_Czechman[/tutiki]

[tutiki]Basic_Photo_Adjustments[/tutiki]

Signed,
The old man
Thanks to you all!
 
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