View Full Version : feedback on pictures

12-20-2008, 03:36 PM
These are a few pictures I took today with my new Canon 5D Mark 2. I did not edit them @ all. Any feedback from the great photographers on this site would be appreciated.
This was on the way home from work today
This is one of my black cats Buddy
My grand daughter Madyson (6 months)
and another I think she thought I was funny
Any input will help.

12-20-2008, 04:05 PM
I'm not one of the great photographers on this site, but I'll toss in my two centavos anyway. ;)

The pics of your granddaughter are great. She'll hate you for them when she starts dating and you show them to her boyfriend. :p

The first picture just needed a quick gamma correction (I know you said you hadn't edited yet.)


With the cat, it looks like you centered on his face, but the end result is an off-center subject. Happens when you center on people's faces, too. You end up with sky above them and no feet showing.

12-20-2008, 05:31 PM
Sharp, contrasty, no blown highlights or lost shadows...all look technically fantastic. That's a great tool you have...but remember it only a tool...you still have to make it work...and so far so good.

The snow on the road shot does seem to have a slight cool cast, but that is to be expected in the snow, and sometimes I prefer it and leave it in.

My only nit on any of the shots ishe cat, as it is a bit centered and static, but still sharp and well exposed.

Enjoy the camera!

Bill O
12-20-2008, 06:03 PM
If you can master the exposure on a black cat you've made a lot of progress. From the looks of Marty photos they are not easy to shoot.

Your cat looks pretty good, exposure wise, it didn't turn into a big black blob.

12-20-2008, 07:46 PM
Thanks for the help and comments everybody. Now that you said that about my cat your right I did cut him off Oops! I am still learning the camera it is big change from my 5 year old rebel. I did buy a polorizer filter for my 28-135 lens and I wonder if I should have put it on for the snow shot. I tried to get out of my truck quick for there was a couple of cars coming behind me. I have been trying to read up on everything I can about photography but I am not much of a book worm. I have been thinking of taking a night course if I kind find one. Oh well I guess trial and error. Again thanks everybody.

12-24-2008, 09:11 PM
I retook my cat Buddy and I do believe this one came out alot better.

12-24-2008, 10:43 PM
I actually think both of the cat shots are good (and the others as well). No points off from me for the off center framing in the first one. Bill is right - black cats are really hard to capture well. I can't tell you how many "black blob" shots I have of mine. Spyboy seems to have mastered this pretty well if I remember his Halloween kitty pics (and he now also has a new toy to work on making them even better). Looks like you're going to have a fun Christmas with your new present...

Patrad Fischroy
12-25-2008, 11:42 AM
Just for fun, take the first one of your cat and crop the heck out of it. Just center on the face and see how the detail holds up. I do like his expression in that one.

12-26-2008, 01:11 PM
i think they're all lovely!
keep shooting!!

Bill O
12-26-2008, 01:26 PM
i think they're all lovely!
keep shooting!!

I say keep shooting as well, but if you want better photos you need some tough comments.

The details and colors are looking really good. I think you need to work on cropping as Patrad said. For example, the tv behind the baby is a distraction for what looks like a great portrait.

KD Talbot
12-26-2008, 07:09 PM
These are good shots but with the magic of digital, can be made even better. Crop the baby shots down to just the baby's face and resize them. All the extraneous stuff in the picture distracts. You want the focus to be the baby's face. The way they are your eye has to wander around the picture a bit to find the main subject. If you can, try to fill the frame with your subject. If you can't do that then crop and resize. That's the magic of digital, that you can do this with ease in a few seconds.

With the cat you want to use a flash. I don't know about Canons, but with Nikon there is a red eye reduction flash that strobe's so the lens of the eye dilates and you don't get red eye. There may be a similar setting on the Canon, I don't know. Anyway, the point is, to bring out the highlights on the black fur, you need the flash. Note the dark areas in both pictures under the cats chin. The detail is lost in the blackness. To me that detracts from the picture. Again, these pictures would be improved with cropping and resizing.

Just my 2 cents.

They are great first few tries, but another magic thing about digital is you can practice by shooting over and over again at no cost but your time.


12-26-2008, 09:39 PM
Thanks KDT for the feedback on my pics. I have been practicing (not on the cat yet) and I hope that my pics are getting better. Here are a few I took this morning at the piers and a few of my grand daughter. Please anybody feel free to critisize or give me any kind of feedback I really aprreciate any help to improve my pictures.

12-27-2008, 10:07 AM

The baby pictures are really cool. As Bill O pointed out things in the background can be distracting. So, when taking the picture see if you can be positioned to not have them there (like the stereo unit). This is hard when taking pictures of kids!

When I was just getting into photography as a boy a friend told me to have 3 levels of interest in a picture. Think about Jim Salge's great pictures - brush in the foreground, mountains, then interesting sky. 3 levels. Really good pictures typically have 3 levels. Get too much in a picture and it becomes too busy. Your 2 red fishing boat pictures are into the too busy range for me.

12-27-2008, 10:08 AM
Wow, what an improvement. :D That shot of your granddaughter with the eyes wide is priceless. Timing is everything and you certainly nailed that shot. The fishing boat shots are great, too. Love the reflections. Well done. :cool:

KD Talbot
12-27-2008, 11:08 AM
You learn quickly! Awesome shots! The baby pictures are perfect and I really like the pier shots! What Brad is speaking of is "The Rule of Thirds". Break the picture into thirds before shooting. This really doesn't apply with the full head shots of your granddaughter. I'm sure if you google Rule of thirds you'll get all the info you could imagine, but also remember in photography rules are made to be broken.


12-27-2008, 03:46 PM
wow, great job!
as i said.....
keep shooting!!

12-28-2008, 03:53 PM
Thanks everybody for the replys. I am trying to get better. I thought the red on the boats were a little much and busy but I liked how they reflected off the water. Of course it is hard to put the camera down around my grand daughter but I will have plenty of pictures to show her boyfriends. Maybe she will be to nervous to bring boys over and become a nun:D.

12-28-2008, 08:23 PM
Maybe she will be to nervous to bring boys over and become a nun:D.
Then you can work on your black & white photo skills.

RI Swamp Yankee
12-28-2008, 08:42 PM
The first and third fishing boat pictures are the best I have ever seen for capturing the real feeling of the busy, crowded New Bedford waterfront while also being just plain pretty with those reflections. As Brad said, the pictures are busy but that is the feeling of that waterfront area with boats often tied up 6 or more across.

Great pictures of the Granddaughter, love that expression on the one with the out of focus stereo. If the stereo was in focus it would have been a real distraction but being out of focus it gives it a "at home" natural feeling and the expression is priceless and the instant eye focus of the viewer.

12-28-2008, 09:37 PM
You can easily do the rule of 3rds with the 5D Mk II (I just got mine the day before Christmas).

(sorry if you knew this already)

select "menu"
then go to the 2nd yellow wrench icon
last option is "live view/movie func set"

** first option is "LV func setting" (this is a separate idea, but I set mine to "stills+movie" and "exposure simulation" so I can see how the shot will look when live view is on. That's helped me get dialed in on settings in low light.

anyway, 2nd option is "grid display"
I have mine set to Grid 1 (3x3), there's also Grid 2 (6x4)

Even on my 40D I used the 3x3 grid with live view, love it, makes setting up a shot much easier (for my panos it's getting the initial shot centered on something depending on the shot, like an interior, getting the door centered)

Now when you're going to shoot, hit the live view button (above the menu) and you'll see your gridded preview


You learn quickly! Awesome shots! The baby pictures are perfect and I really like the pier shots! What Brad is speaking of is "The Rule of Thirds". Break the picture into thirds before shooting. This really doesn't apply with the full head shots of your granddaughter. I'm sure if you google Rule of thirds you'll get all the info you could imagine, but also remember in photography rules are made to be broken.


12-29-2008, 07:12 AM
Thanks Kirk. When I get home I am going to look into the live view option as I don't normally use it. How do you like the 5d mark 2 so far? I am going to print out some info on the "Rules of Thirds" today @ work. I really appreciate the comments and the help everybody has offered. I hope to some day be as good as some of the photagraphers on this forum.
*An added note I think (pretty sure) my inlaws are giving me a 100-400 L series lens for my birthday :D oh its going to be a long 6 days to wait.

12-29-2008, 08:15 AM
If anyone is interested when I did a search for Rules of Thirds I found this web site with lots of information.

12-29-2008, 04:20 PM
Then you can work on your black & white photo skills.

That was rich. :D

12-29-2008, 05:11 PM
That was rich. :D
No intention to offend - just my weird sense of humor showing through.