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dai phan

Please advise on a good camera to do upclose shots.

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4 minutes ago, habu2 said:

 

Your auto-focus may be struggling in lower light and smaller apertures.  Try switching to manual focus.

 

Also try switching OFF image stabilization (IS) on your lens when the camera is mounted on a tripod.  I think the combination of IS + tripod may cause issues with auto-focus.  I have read that suggestion in several Canon lens manuals. 

Yes Sir I will try that. If you see my photos you can see many blurry areas. Dai 

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Posted (edited)
On 5/14/2020 at 2:40 PM, Rob de Bie said:

If yes, then maybe the tripod is too light (actually: not stiff enough). I would test that by putting a sandbag on the camera. That helped me a lot when I was using a tripod that wasn't good enough. It's pretty inconvenient though 🙂

 

 

There are better ways to skin that cat.  I hang a weight from the bottom of my tripod frame, it not only makes the tripod more stable (weight down lower) but it will help to dampen any vibrations.  I often use a gallon jug filled with water, it doubles as a drink station when in the field. 🙂

 

https://www.dpmag.com/how-to/tip-of-the-week/weigh-down-your-tripod-to-make-it-more-stable/

 

.

 

Edited by habu2
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50 minutes ago, habu2 said:

By backing up so that the subject is filling less than a third of the frame without zooming in, the depth of field will increase significantly, due to both the increased subject to lens distance and the shorter focal length.  Cropping (not resizing) the original image down to 1280 wide in post will yield a better picture, and one more appropriate for display on a forum.  Think of it as a cropped cropped sensor (APS-C squared)  🙂

 

Very interesting! But I can't say I really understand it yet..

 

- 'due to ... the increased subject to lens distance' - with that you mean that with a (fictitious) 200 mm zoom lens setting you can make a (say) full frame photo at 1 meter, but you could also move to 3 meters distance and make a 1/3 frame photo. I could guess that the depth of field is a given percentage of the distance to the subject. So in this case you would increase the depth of field three times. Correct?

 

'due to ... the shorter focal length' - are you saying that shorter lenses have more depth of field, for a given distance to the subject? Using the same example, with 200 mm zoom lens setting to make a full frame photo at 1 meter as reference, you would prefer a 100 mm shot at 1 meter, and then crop the photo. Correct?

 

I will definitely try it the next time!


Rob

 

 

 

 

 

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56 minutes ago, habu2 said:

 

There are better ways to skin that cat.  I hang a weight from the bottom of my tripod frame, it not only make the tripod more stable (weight down lower) but it will help to dampen any vibrations.  I often use a gallon jug filled with water, it doubles as a drink station when in the field. 🙂

 

https://www.dpmag.com/how-to/tip-of-the-week/weigh-down-your-tripod-to-make-it-more-stable/

 

Very smart!! If only my tripod had a hook there.

 

Rob

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These 3 threads have images that I shot with my old Canon Rebel XSi dSLR.

1/48 F4U-4B and AU-1 Corsairs

1/48 Monogram F-4J

1/48 Revell F/A-18C

 

If you like how the images look, here's how I set my camera for most of the images -

  1. Used 18-55mm lens (aka the "kit" lens)
  2. Shot outside on bright days in the shade =OR= outside on overcast days
  3. Camera set up on tripod 1 to 2 ft away from subject with legs NOT extended more than 1 section.
  4. IS switch (Image stabilizer) on lens turned "off"
  5. Set the ISO to 100
  6. Mode wheel set to "Av" and F-stop set between "14" and "22" 
  7. Adjust the lens length to a little more area than I want to see in the final image.  (See step 14)
  8. Focus switch on lens set to "Manual"
  9. While zoomed in on rear LCD display, I adjusted focus point about 1/3 from the front of the model.
  10. There was a shutter countdown function in the old Rebel Xsi.   I set it to take the picture 10 secs AFTER I pressed the shutter release button.  (Newer Canon SLRs can have the shutter button triggered with the Canon App on your phone.   I haven't tried it.)
  11. Once I pressed the shutter release button, I took my hands off the camera and moved away from the tripod.
  12. After the "amber" light turned off and I heard the second "click", I knew the camera had finished taking the exposure.
  13. I took a couple more shots with the F-stop a couple of values up and down from where I started.  
  14. After shooting, I cropped the images in my computer to remove stuff I didn't want from the picture.
  15. (OPTIONAL, but I always ended up doing it)   See dog/my hair, feather, dust, finger prints, shadows or leaf/twig/insect in the image.  Slap my forehead.  Go back outside and retake pictures. 

 

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I just found this thread and tried to read all the posts, and I may have missed a reference to a technique called 'focus stacking'.  From what I've read in this thread, the original poster's biggest concern is the 'blurry' spots in his close-up photos.  Many of you have written about stopping down the lens as a means to increase the depth of field, and reduce the blurry areas of the photos.  This will work, but only to an extent.  The closer you focus a given lens, the narrower the depth of field, generally speaking.  In addition, if you are critical about your imaging (which I doubt would be the case for model photos), stopping down the lens does begin to increase lens created artifacts due to diffraction, and the amount of diffraction depends to each lens' design.  But stopping down to a lens' smallest aperture is no a panacea.

 

So, to get the ideal situation of sharp focus across an entire image, use this focus stacking technique, whereby you take a series of photos from exactly the same location, but focus on different areas of the image, and then the technique 'blends' the sharp parts of the multiple images into a fully 'in focus' final image.  There are plenty of places where you can read about the details of how to perform the technique, and perhaps it's more involved than you want to get, but it is the only technique I know of to get a fully in-focus frame, outside of a bellows which has already been discussed and is way too involved, in my humble opinion.  Using a tripod certainly helps, and is necessary for this technique, too.

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4 hours ago, Rob de Bie said:

 

 'due to ... the increased subject to lens distance' - with that you mean that with a (fictitious) 200 mm zoom lens setting you can make a (say) full frame photo at 1 meter, but you could also move to 3 meters distance and make a 1/3 frame photo. I could guess that the depth of field is a given percentage of the distance to the subject. So in this case you would increase the depth of field three times. Correct?

 

 

I could type a novel (or you could do a google search) to explain and understand this but, depth of field changes with focus distance for the same lens. In the "old days" lenses had DoF indicators that looked liked bracketed ranges around the focus distance scale:

 

dof_focus.jpg

 

In the above picture the lens is focused at approx 9 meters.  An aperture setting of f/4 would give a DoF of ~7m to ~10m.  An aperture setting of f/16 would give a DoF of ~5m to ~30m.  You can see the distance scale is non-linear so, if you refocused so that your subject was 20m away your DoF would be from ~10m to ~infinity.  There are tons of DoF calculators on the net that factor distance, aperture and focal length to give DoF.

 

4 hours ago, Rob de Bie said:

 

'due to ... the shorter focal length' - are you saying that shorter lenses have more depth of field, for a given distance to the subject? Using the same example, with 200 mm zoom lens setting to make a full frame photo at 1 meter as reference, you would prefer a 100 mm shot at 1 meter, and then crop the photo. Correct?

 

 

Given two different focal length lenses, set at the same aperture and the same distance from the subject, the shorter focal length lens will have greater depth of field.  Of course the subject will appear at a different size in each picture.  

 

https://digital-photography-school.com/understanding-depth-field-beginners/

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1 hour ago, Curt B said:

 'focus stacking'....

 

You could use focus stacking but it involves understanding depth of field so you can calculate your incremental focus points.  It is labor intensive and also requires special software to merge and stack the photos.  For landscape photos, maybe.  Not for a model airplane photo.

 

Yes diffraction increases with smaller apertures, but the effect is minimal for the relatively low contrast subjects of model airplanes.  Also remember probably half the people are looking at your image on their phone while walking (or worse, driving) so image quality wrt diffraction isn't really an issue here.

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9 hours ago, habu2 said:

 

You could use focus stacking but it involves understanding depth of field so you can calculate your incremental focus points.  It is labor intensive and also requires special software to merge and stack the photos.  For landscape photos, maybe.  Not for a model airplane photo.

 

Yes diffraction increases with smaller apertures, but the effect is minimal for the relatively low contrast subjects of model airplanes.  Also remember probably half the people are looking at your image on their phone while walking (or worse, driving) so image quality wrt diffraction isn't really an issue here.

I just want to grab the camera and snap photos while on work bench. Not glamor shots or anything. Dai 

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The photos you are taking are good and mainly sharp and well in focus. In taking photos of models in progress on a work bench everything will not be in focus. Nor do you want it to be...like the paint bottles behind the model.

 

One thing that I do not think has been discussed is number of focus points. If you leave that as the "factory setting" they will probably all be active. The camera will have a hard time deciding what to focus on. Change it to one focus point and place that on what you want to be sharpest. Depth of field will increase (somewhat in this case) with smaller f/ stops....f/11, f/16 and f/22.

 

Bob

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1 hour ago, Bob Beary said:

The photos you are taking are good and mainly sharp and well in focus. In taking photos of models in progress on a work bench everything will not be in focus. Nor do you want it to be...like the paint bottles behind the model.

 

One thing that I do not think has been discussed is number of focus points. If you leave that as the "factory setting" they will probably all be active. The camera will have a hard time deciding what to focus on. Change it to one focus point and place that on what you want to be sharpest. Depth of field will increase (somewhat in this case) with smaller f/ stops....f/11, f/16 and f/22.

 

Bob

So how do I change to one focus point? The manual is not clear on this. Dai 

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2 hours ago, dai phan said:

So how do I change to one focus point? The manual is not clear on this. Dai 

 

I don't think you can select individual focus points on a T6, it has only 9 AF points in a pattern. You can select an AF "method" though (p.148)

 

You can magnify the image in the viewfinder and focus manually (p.156)

 

The T6 also has a DoF Preview function (p.112) that can also be used in Live View (p.143)

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I took a look at the owner's manual for your camera.  It doesn't look like there is an option to select a focus point, but it does say what I pasted below (note the bold, underlined text in particular).  You should be able to move the camera around so that you get focus lock on the spot you want to be the most in focus, and even if that isn't in the center of the image, by holding down the shutter button after you get focus lock, you should be able to recompose while keeping the focus on that point, and then fully depress the shutter button.  I hope I didn't make that sound too complicated.

 

One-Shot AF for Still Subjects

You can select the AF (autofocus) operation characteristics suiting the shooting conditions or subject. In Basic Zone modes, the optimum AF operation is set automatically for the respective shooting mode.

  1. 1  Set the lens’s focus mode switch to <AF>.

  2. 2  Press the <Zf> button.  [AF operation] will appear.

  3. 3  Select the AF operation.
     Press the <Y> <Z> keys or turn the

    <6> dial to select the desired AF operation, then press <0>.

  4. 4  Focus on the subject.
     Aim the AF point over the subject and

    press the shutter button halfway. The camera will then autofocus in the selected AF operation.

Suited for still subjects. When you press the shutter button halfway, the camera will focus only once.

  •   When focus is achieved, the dot inside the AF point achieving focus

    lights up briefly in red, and the focus indicator <o> appears in the

    viewfinder.

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On page 99 of the Rebel T6 manual it explains how to "Selecting the AF Point". This explains how to select a single one of the AF points.

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On 5/15/2020 at 1:23 AM, John B said:

If you like how the images look, here's how I set my camera for most of the images -

  1. Used 18-55mm lens (aka the "kit" lens)
  2. Shot outside on bright days in the shade =OR= outside on overcast days
  3. Camera set up on tripod 1 to 2 ft away from subject with legs NOT extended more than 1 section.
  4. IS switch (Image stabilizer) on lens turned "off"
  5. Set the ISO to 100
  6. Mode wheel set to "Av" and F-stop set between "14" and "22" 
  7. Adjust the lens length to a little more area than I want to see in the final image.  (See step 14)
  8. Focus switch on lens set to "Manual"
  9. While zoomed in on rear LCD display, I adjusted focus point about 1/3 from the front of the model.
  10. There was a shutter countdown function in the old Rebel Xsi.   I set it to take the picture 10 secs AFTER I pressed the shutter release button.  (Newer Canon SLRs can have the shutter button triggered with the Canon App on your phone.   I haven't tried it.)
  11. Once I pressed the shutter release button, I took my hands off the camera and moved away from the tripod.
  12. After the "amber" light turned off and I heard the second "click", I knew the camera had finished taking the exposure.
  13. I took a couple more shots with the F-stop a couple of values up and down from where I started.  
  14. After shooting, I cropped the images in my computer to remove stuff I didn't want from the picture.
  15. (OPTIONAL, but I always ended up doing it)   See dog/my hair, feather, dust, finger prints, shadows or leaf/twig/insect in the image.  Slap my forehead.  Go back outside and retake pictures. 

 

Step 15 is sooo recognisable 🙂 🙂 I always have sanding dust on my models / parts, and it drives me nuts... Nice photo reports BTW!

 

Rob

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On 5/15/2020 at 4:25 AM, Curt B said:

I just found this thread and tried to read all the posts, and I may have missed a reference to a technique called 'focus stacking'.

 

If I can add a technique too: I recently experimented with High Dynamic Range photos. Basically you shoot 3 or 5 photos with different exposures (under to over-exposed), and the software combines the best parts of those photos to one. It's comparable to the human eye that adopts very quickly to different lighting conditions. I stayed on the (very) conservative side, you can 'enhance' the photos a lot more. Top photo is normal, bottom is HDR. The difference is not that big, but I really like how the underside of the model is shown now.

 

hdr-03.jpg

 

hdr-04.jpg

 

Rob

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On 5/15/2020 at 5:37 AM, habu2 said:

Given two different focal length lenses, set at the same aperture and the same distance from the subject, the shorter focal length lens will have greater depth of field.  Of course the subject will appear at a different size in each picture.  

 

https://digital-photography-school.com/understanding-depth-field-beginners/

 

Thanks, interesting! I will definitely try it during the next photo shoot.


Rob

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11 hours ago, Mstor said:

On page 99 of the Rebel T6 manual it explains how to "Selecting the AF Point". This explains how to select a single one of the AF points.

 

I thought the T6 had that capability but missed it in scanning the manual.  I also have a T2i and, when comparing the specs, the T6 is almost identical, and I knew I could select AF points on the T2i.

 

My DSLR progression started with the original Digital Rebel (D300), then T2i ->7D mkII -> 5D mkIV.  Also recently picked up an SL2 for a price I could not pass on.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/16/2020 at 9:50 AM, habu2 said:

I thought the T6 had that capability but missed it in scanning the manual.

 

I used a little known feature called a "Table of Contents" or sometimes just "Contents". :whistle:

 

I have an old film EOS Rebel, but never bought a digital one. I have a very old digital point and shoot Canon somewhere around the house.  But now that I have access to my old lady's Rebel XTi, I just need to get off my a*** (I think the censors on this site are a little out of hand) and try it out. An old film Rebel was the one I did all my experimenting with years ago. Not the one I have now, but one a few years older that went to my ex. along with the lenses I had for it. Oh well, fortunes of war.

 

Anyway, there is a wealth of good info in this thread. I'm going to bookmark it for future reference.

Edited by Mstor

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On 5/14/2020 at 10:37 PM, habu2 said:

   In the "old days" lenses had DoF indicators that looked liked bracketed ranges around the focus distance scale:

 

dof_focus.jpg

 

The indicator is still there on the new lenses. But I really miss long travel focusing rings eliminated by autofocus.

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None of my “digital” Lenses have DoF indicators, just distance scales. Some have an IR index and infinity compensation marks, and of course focal length on zoom lenses. But no DoF indicators. 

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You're right, I confused it with distance in feet scale 🙂

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Posted (edited)

I still have all my gear from my film days, but no desire to shoot film.  A while back I picked up a Sony a6000 body (24MP, 1.5x cropped sensor) and some Canon FD to Sony e-mount adapters.  It requires manual focus and manual exposure, but that's how I learned so it comes naturally to me.

 

Vivitar Series 1 35-85mm f/2.8 on a Sony a6000

 

VE1SR06.jpg

 

Canon 17mm f/4 lens on an adapter with tilt-shift capability

 

oOhlmbg.jpg

Edited by habu2

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1 hour ago, habu2 said:

I still have all my gear from my film days, but no desire to shoot film.  A while back I picked up a Sony a6000 body (24MP, 1.5x cropped sensor) and some Canon FD to Sony e-mount adapters.

 

I used to shoot Kodachrome 64 and film, but I would never go back to film again. I can't even think of where I could get film processed anymore.

Sony is making making fantastic mirrorless camera bodies.   The max number of frames per second in multiple exposures sounds like a 3 high-end FILM cameras with motordrives going off at same time.  The only criticism I have of them is the short battery life and body that is too small for my hamhock hands.  I think you've hit the perfect combination of quality lenses with high-tech Sony electronics.👍

On 5/16/2020 at 4:46 AM, Rob de Bie said:

 

If I can add a technique too: I recently experimented with High Dynamic Range photos. Basically you shoot 3 or 5 photos with different exposures (under to over-exposed), and the software combines the best parts of those photos to one. It's comparable to the human eye that adopts very quickly to different lighting conditions. I stayed on the (very) conservative side, you can 'enhance' the photos a lot more. Top photo is normal, bottom is HDR. The difference is not that big, but I really like how the underside of the model is shown now.

 

Rob

 Sometimes I feel like using the HDR function is cheating... sometimes .😉  I never had the capability before my current Canon body.  I used to bracket the exposures of my images, but there is a limit to exposing for highlists and shadows. HDR makes it so easy and it allows me to capture images that would have required a lot of work in the darkroom in the old days or Photoshop just a decade ago.

 

On 5/16/2020 at 7:26 PM, Mstor said:

I have an old film EOS Rebel, but never bought a digital one. I have a very old digital point and shoot Canon somewhere around the house.  But now that I have access to my old lady's Rebel XTi, I just need to get off my a*** (I think the censors on this site are a little out of hand) and try it out. An old film Rebel was the one I did all my experimenting with years ago. Not the one I have now, but one a few years older that went to my ex. along with the lenses I had for it. Oh well, fortunes of war.

  Definitely break out that XTi!   Every technique you learned the expensive way on film will apply on the XTi.   In fact, you'll find it very familiar territory and many things will be even easier on the dSLR body.  The old film SLRs didn't have preview, couldn't show you results in almost real-time, and you couldn't change ISO at the press of a few buttons to name a few.   Experiment all you want to with settings in digital, it costs you nothing and it is so forgiving.  It's becoming the new "normal" to learn photography on digital first and learn on film ONLY if there is some look that you're trying to achieve that is impossible on digital. The latest and greatest dSLRs have so many menus to go through that they can discourage for those making the transition from film and/or point & shoots.  The Canon Rebel XTi is the perfect bridge for people coming from a film background who don't want to invest too much in learning the latest dSLR technology.   You won't regret playing with that Canon Rebel dSLR.

 

I like to tell people new to photography that film was like driving a car with manual transmission, no power steering, and no GPS navigation.   Digital SLRs like the Canon Rebel series is like driving a car with automatic transmission, cruise control, and a backup camera.   Using the latest point & shoots in full auto mode (for me) feels like letting the car drive itself.   My personal feeling is "Let me drive the car, I pay for the fuel and insurance.   If I'm about to drive off the unseen cliff or I swerve into oncoming traffic, please don't hesitate to intercede and get me back to safety".😜

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