Wednesday, February 03, 2010

text tip

This is a small crop of a larger image i shot for stock a couple weeks ago. I finally got around to preparing the images for the web today and i thought i would play with this one just a bit.
Other than the crop i used the clone tool to remove another icicle on the left side. I sharpened a fair bit and also did a curve for contrast and color.
Then i did something i havent done for awhile and plopped some text on it. I found a really cool website that you can download movie fonts from for free. Just go to google and type in movie fonts, i think it was the first link. This was a font called signs and i thought it might work here. Why i dont know.
One little tip for text that i will pass on is reduce the opacity of your text layer a bit, like down to 75% or so. It just makes the text blend in better with your image and not look so pasted on. I also like to play with the formatting tab to make the letters closer together or spread further apart.
This image was shot with a 300mm lens at f4 and a fast shutter speed. When i see other people post their image info, aperature and shutter speed and iso, i often wonder why some choose the settings they do. For example, lets say i posted my shot info for this image and it was f8, 1/320 sec at 200 iso. Would you not look at that and say "what was he thinking". The f8 means that i was not going for shallow depth of field or everything sharp, its just middle of the road. The shutter speed probably would not freeze the drop sharp enough and its not slow enough for a blur. Low iso at least is good for sharpness and low noise. But as an overall recipe for a shot its bland, no taste, no reason. The program mode on your camera would rest around there for sure.
I guess what i am trying to say is make a decision as to what your trying to accomplish. Do you need to freeze movement, if so go for it, 1/500 sec or up. Do you need a shallow depth of field to isolate a subject, then crank it down, stay below f4 and your on the right path. Use your iso to help accomplish either one of these feats. A 100 - 800 iso will keep your noise down, depending on your camera, and if you need more shutter speed without sacrificing your chosen aperature then turn the iso up some more.
So the advice part would be to make a decision early on in the image creation of what you want and then set your camera to achieve it. You have three things that affect exposure and you can play them off against one another to accomplish your goal. Just try to stay away from that bland cuisine. Theres not as much fun in it.

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