I'm getting stale...

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Paul
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Put this together in 10 minutes flat (including setting up the lights) then switched off, job done, but should it be better?



Not really looking for critique of the composition but the lighting really, just strikes me that I'm just doing an OK job and not pushing further these days, so perhaps need to post up the occasional picture for people provide some objective opinions!

Set-up was fairly standard three head: large overhead softbox, low gridded standard reflector to the left and Fresnel spot high pointing down (iris narrow and very low power) just left of camera, plus some black flags (left & right) and scatter silver reflector to the subject right.

Paul
 

blakester

Shine On Harvest Moon
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6,300
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Iain
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First impressions on looking at it was that the lighting is very flat.
You've almost killed all the shadows in the scene, I feel it needs more 'drama' to lift it.
I would ask what your intentions were for this? You say you set it up in 10 minutes, job done, what was the purpose of this exercise?
 
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paul williams
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932
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Paul
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First impressions on looking at it was that the lighting is very flat.
You've almost killed all the shadows in the scene, I feel it needs more 'drama' to lift it.
I would ask what your intentions were for this? You say you set it up in 10 minutes, job done, what was the purpose of this exercise?
It was part of a basic tutorial session for beginners I was running with no experience of studio lighting and this was the set-up I was using - the objective was to get a clean clear image showing the control of highlights and shadows. There would have been a whole sequence of shots leading to this one, with lights being added, subtracted, variations in intensity and so on, but I had a no attendees, so prepared a chilly pepper & onion dressing for that evenings meal instead which was really tasty....;)

_DSCF9086 by Paul Williams, on Flickr

Paul
 

blakester

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Iain
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The specular highlights have been mostly handled well, the green and red peppers in particular but the highlights on the blue bowl do tend to draw my eye.
I find them a little distracting.
 
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paul williams
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Paul
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Yes, if I had continued the bowl would have be raised on the left-hand side & the Fresnel move to the right-hand side of the camera and directed away from the bowl perhaps.

I've got another session running in a few weeks, which is to be a romanticised picture of a single flower on a reflective surface so may also post that for critique.

Paul
 

blakester

Shine On Harvest Moon
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Iain
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Yes, if I had continued the bowl would have be raised on the left-hand side & the Fresnel move to the right-hand side of the camera and directed away from the bowl perhaps.

I've got another session running in a few weeks, which is to be a romanticised picture of a single flower on a reflective surface so may also post that for critique.

Paul
Coming back to your OP Paul, with the above in mind, perhaps you could have spent more time and finessed the shot?
Your question "should it have been better?" Suggests you perhaps weren't happy with the finished product?
 
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paul williams
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Paul
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Coming back to your OP Paul, with the above in mind, perhaps you could have spent more time and finessed the shot?
Your question "should it have been better?" Suggests you perhaps weren't happy with the finished product?
Yes, that's one of the reasons I posted the image - I'm getting a bit complacent! I've been using studio flash for over 40 years, I don't do it professionally and only ever have to please and answer to myself, time to get more critical!

Paul.
 
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The problem I have with this is in the composition itself. It all looks crowded and busy. perhaps that was the purpose, but it looks like you have just crammed as much as possible in turned on the lights and fired the shutter. I would have liked to have seen the lighting used bit more creatively this looks all even and flat. . You said it was part of a lesson so perhaps that was the plan, but I cant help thinking that if you would have had the time and really played around with the potential was there to come up with a really good pleasing image. You've done a far better job in setting up the lighting than I could and you must really know your stuff but in pure terms of composition for me it just doesn't work.
 
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paul williams
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932
Name
Paul
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The problem I have with this is in the composition itself. It all looks crowded and busy. perhaps that was the purpose, but it looks like you have just crammed as much as possible in turned on the lights and fired the shutter. I would have liked to have seen the lighting used bit more creatively this looks all even and flat. . You said it was part of a lesson so perhaps that was the plan, but I cant help thinking that if you would have had the time and really played around with the potential was there to come up with a really good pleasing image. You've done a far better job in setting up the lighting than I could and you must really know your stuff but in pure terms of composition for me it just doesn't work.
There was little thought put into the composition, just wanted to get a variety of textures, type of surface, reflectivity etc.. Needed to ensure the edges of the glass were clear, the papery texture of the garlic bulb and so on. If I had to change anything for the shot composition wise, it would have been to turn the pepper stems away from the camera, turn the sliced pepper through 180degrees and replace the plastic bowl with a ceramic one, but the exercise was more to do with the lighting.

Paul
 
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hi Paul
this is not a forum i normally use, but stumbled across your picture. I am looking at it from a painters eye not a photographer, the types of textures you have there are good, just too many for one shot. If i may be so bold as to say, please lower the camera and lights, you have taken away the shadow which is really important to define each item and to give depth and roundness to what could be a very flat surface otherwise, you photo is lovely and clear, please experiment and post more.
 
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Darren
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Not sure, what you are trying to achieve, I do not like the green cutting board with the green pepper.And the oils and salt and pepper are too inline for me.
Have you tried the red pepper cut up on the green board and the salt and pepper set up in a triangle formation. Just looks flat and something missing ..sorry.
 
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