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Discussion Starter #1
OK. I have seen the photos ya'll are posting and they are much buetter than anything I can do. Does anyone have any tips on how to improve my picture taking skills. My camera is a 3mp and has two settings-Auto and night. Thanks.
 

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Try to take the pictures at a slight angle so that you don't get the reflection of the flash. :D Also make sure the light isn't directly on the item you are photographing, also contributes to glare.

That's all I got, really.
 

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Stagger, stagger, crawl.
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If you can turn off your flash, do so. Use lots of light from another source. I use 1 fluorescent and a couple clip lamps with "reveal" bulbs. Sunlight works great also.
 

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For beginning Mr. Stubbs said it best. Sunlight is your best light source. Flash is ok but really try to avoid flash from camera.

Trial and error is your best way to learn. Mike is the camera pro here, I have seen some pretty amazing open shots from him.

Russ
 

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The best way I've found to get sharp focus is to use the auto timer in the camera to trip the shutter, with the camera mounted on a tripod or other solid stable support.

That way you don't shake the camera when you press the button. The shutter goes off by itself, with no one touching the camera.

Then you can use either the auto exposure function, or the manual setting with a high f-stop and slower shutter speed.

A higher f-stop number means greater depth of field, which means more of the picture is in sharp focus; the slower shutter speed lets in more ambient light so there's no need for a flash; a longer exposure plus more ambient light should give you deeper & truer colors.

You can use a combination of fluorescent and incandescent lamps to increase the amount of available ambient light; they combine to approximate sunlight.
 

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Atomic Punk
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Sounds like you got a lot of good advise so far and my suggestions are all the same as mentioned above.

The one thing I do to try to keep from blurry shots is the tripod thing. I usually go the next step and instead of snapping a pic while the cam is on the tripod, I set the timer so that I am not even touching the camera.

Good luck and post your results. After seeing what you are coming up with, I am sure we can give you even more advise to help get your pics to look as good as your camera will allow.
 

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something I do't know if ws mentioned here yet...
make sure the camera has a macro setting...and use it for shooting diecast

...made the mistake of getting a nice 3.3 MP camera that didn't have macro, and ended up re-selling it and getting another....
 

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CenterShock said:
The one thing I do to try to keep from blurry shots is the tripod thing. I usually go the next step and instead of snapping a pic while the cam is on the tripod, I set the timer so that I am not even touching the camera.
Great minds think alike, no doubt!
 

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Yep pretty much much everything's been said so far as I know...and the camera has got to have a macro setting for most anything close up. And once we see some of your pics helping you out will be alot easier.
 

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I have a question about the MACRO setting. If you have a camera and it has a MACRO setting but you use a different setting like the Aperature setting, does the MACRO feature get applied?

I am asking because I have the MACRO setting but I have scrapped using it a long time ago and you have seen some of my closeups. I get better pics with a greater depth of field with the Aperature setting than I do with the MACRO setting.

Aperature setting pic....


Macro setting pic....


Maybe not the best comparison but you can see a lot more detail further away in the GT pic than you can in the Firebird pic. Both pics were taken with the same camera but at different times and at different distances from the subject. I would think the GT was taken between 6 and 8 inches from the car and the Firebird was about 1 or 2 inches. (to test the MACRO abilities)

Just some food for thought.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Sweet! Thanks for all the advice. Sounds like I need a tripod and a little better camera. Mine is a cheap Kodak that works fine for regular shots but up close is crappy. I cannot turn off the flash. For those that want to see what I am capable of, I have some shots up on the swap and sell board for now, but would like to get better to catalog the loose ones that I am keeping. http://www.hobbytalk.com/bbs1/showthread.php?t=170196

Thanks again.
 

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About the aperture, that's a setting that's indepentdant from macro. Aperture is how much light is let into the lense in each picture, it's not a different setting. I think the normal aperture range is F2.7 to F8.0. The closer you are to 2.7, the more light you're letting in, and you have a smaller range of focus. Vice versa as you approach 8.0 aperture. This setting applies whether you're using macro or not. Try the Firebird pic again, but make sure the aperture is set closer to 8.

Funny thing is I'm pretty sure you're the one that told me all this a long time ago CS :drunk:

Here's a pic, in macro, with the aperture at F2.7. Notice the Mustang and other background objects.



And in this pic the aperture is set to F8.0. Look at the background objects now.

 

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I'm still working on these things myself, but I found I got a better picture when using the macro setting, and a little bit of zoom, but you have to keep the camera about 20 to 24 inches from the car. Also, optical zoom will give you a much clearer picture that digital zoom if you have that option.
 

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I do not use Macro settings, as I manually shoot the photos. This way as mentioned above you get a much better DOF. But I use a Nikon D70, so only basing this on my experience. And also with the new cameras getting huge pixals now, you just just take the big picture and resize to your "macro" position needed.

Russ
 

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jedimario said:
About the aperture, that's a setting that's indepentdant from macro. Aperture is how much light is let into the lense in each picture, it's not a different setting. I think the normal aperture range is F2.7 to F8.0. The closer you are to 2.7, the more light you're letting in, and you have a smaller range of focus. Vice versa as you approach 8.0 aperture. This setting applies whether you're using macro or not. Try the Firebird pic again, but make sure the aperture is set closer to 8.

Funny thing is I'm pretty sure you're the one that told me all this a long time ago CS :drunk:

Yep, I was the one to open you eys to the aperature settings. What I was getting at was I didn't know what all the hype is with the MACRO setting. All I use is the AP setting. I guess I can experiment with the MACRO setting and see if I can also adjust the aperature. That I never tried before. I was always getting good close ups without using the MACRO setting.
 

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I'm going to have to do a little experimenting with these settings myself and see what sort of results I get. By the way, CS, by setting the quality that you mentioned helped in cutting down the size a lot compared to my first monster pics. Thanks!
 

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Most computers come with some kind of photo editing program. Learn how to use one. It is worth the extra effort. I use the one that came with my computer. Photostudio 2000. You can crop, resize, add text and borders, etc., to make your photo's more appealing. And you don't have to be a computer genius to use an editing program, it just takes a little practice.

Think about where you put your subject. You want what you are photographing to be the center of attention.

A curved piece of posterboard works really well.

And as has already been mentioned...lots of light. I use three clamp lamps with reveal bulbs and filters with the above mentioned poster board.

Click image to ENLARGE




You can just sit the car on the table and take a pic.



But a little effort can bring better results.



The above photo was:

cropped [to center the subject]
re-sized smaller [this will allow it to upload faster & fit these forum pages better - 600 pixils wide is best on most forums - having to scroll from side to side to see a giant photo really sucks]
enhanced [for best tone]
sharpened [for clarity]
border added [just looks better]

Camera settings:

Macro
3 mega pixils
exposure value - +1.5
white balance - incandescent
aperture priority- 8.2
sharpness - hard


 

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Old School

Macro is just a feature for a type of lense.
In the old days in order ro take close up pics you needed a wider lense than the standard 50mm that came with most SLR's. The macro allowed you to do many types of pictures without changing lenses.
On my old SLR I have the standard 50mm for just snap shots. I also have a
29mm I can use for close ups. I have a 200mm for shooting things far away and lastly I have the Macro 37-70mm wich gives me a wide range of focal lengths so I don't have to change lenses so often.

F-Stop is the scale for the Aperature. It determines how much light is let into the camera. It affects the depth of field or what is in focus.

Shutter speed is how long the light is allowed into the camera

A simple rule of thumb is to shoot your film speed and adjust your aperature in a middle of the road range.
ie: film speed ISO/ASA 100- shutter speed 1/125- F-4
 

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Discussion Starter #20
OK. I have been playing a little and backing out and then cropping the pic seems to work best with the camera I have. There are some examples in my latest trade posting: http://www.hobbytalk.com/bbs1/showthread.php?t=170563 I did find where I could turn off the flash but when I did that the subject was too dark and the table where I am taking pics is right under a 4 bulb light. I will try some more with closer light but I think it all comes down to I have a crappy camera.
 
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