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Thread: "Critique my firearm picture" thread

  1. #341
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    Quote Originally Posted by General Mazaki View Post
    Thanks for the critique fellas. It's an old offhand snapshot, but I just wanted to contribute to the thread. I do agree the background is more pronounced than I'd like and I should have moved the chair out of the frame. I was working with natural light, in hindsight I could have easily used a reflector to add more light to the rifle and help equalize it with the background's brightness. I need to recheck the EXIF, but I believe I was stopping down the lens a bit to make sure the rifle was all in-focus; larger aperture to blur the background further may have been the better call.
    Nice view though!

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  3. #343
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    I'm just going to go out a limb here and take a chance. To me... to my eye. I have never seen a lower with that 'emblem' and I'm confused. Is that your means of hiding personal info? If so, I would think that area would normally be the center of attention and that shot draws me right in.

    If not ..the way the depth of field fades off on the numbers makes my brain want to keep going back and forth in unrest.

    Is there a subtle nod to Buddy Guy? I would have continued the polka dot through the trigger guard. Cropped the left off some. I like the word proudly being seen.


    I like it but just for personal taste. If I wanted it on my wall. I would have cropped it just left of the the roll pin on the trigger guard and included whatever happened to roll into view from right.

    Oh, and I like the buckle and take down pin. they seem to compliment each other and keep my eye from wandering. Not sure if that was on purpose or not. If it was, it worked.

    I'm severely left eye dominant and you might not think that looking at a picture on a computer screen would matter, but it does. Ironically, your picture draws my weak eye. The depth of field fade, the take down pin, the buckle, the polka dots, the emblem of course, and the general focus as cropped.

    Overall I like it a lot. That emblem thing aside. I'm not sure what's going on there.

  4. #344
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    I'll play. Given that all I have to work with is a Samsung Galaxy Tab A 6.0 with its crappy internal camera and flash and room light, and my backdrop options are bedspread or hardwood floor--I can't use outdoor light because I'm in a studio apartment and don't want attention from the neighbors--what can I do to improve this? For quick-and-dirty WIP photos this works, but when I shoot the "completion portrait" for the girlfriend I really want it to be the kind of thing that inspires "I can't wait to get on a plane and come try it out for myself" sentiments.



    Obvious: Remove or rearrange sling, reposition or remove bolt-saver and BCG. (That BCG stays in the bag because I've set it aside for her to install; testing will be done with another BCG out of one of my other AR's. Intent is to give her a small token bit of "I helped build that" ego investment.)
    You really have to ask why Conservatives have guns? Because Liberals block freeways, burn cities, throw Molotov cocktails, loot, turn over cop cars, and think this behavior is Socially Acceptable.
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  5. #345
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diamondback View Post
    I'll play. Given that all I have to work with is a Samsung Galaxy Tab A 6.0 with its crappy internal camera and flash and room light, and my backdrop options are bedspread or hardwood floor--I can't use outdoor light because I'm in a studio apartment and don't want attention from the neighbors--what can I do to improve this? For quick-and-dirty WIP photos this works, but when I shoot the "completion portrait" for the girlfriend I really want it to be the kind of thing that inspires "I can't wait to get on a plane and come try it out for myself" sentiments.



    Obvious: Remove or rearrange sling, reposition or remove bolt-saver and BCG. (That BCG stays in the bag because I've set it aside for her to install; testing will be done with another BCG out of one of my other AR's. Intent is to give her a small token bit of "I helped build that" ego investment.)

    To start, lets look at the lighting, which is going to (arguably) be the most important element of the image. In this case, the lighting isn't evenly crossing the subject matter, nor is it coming from a direction. It appears to be coming directly from you (or behind/ above you), which isn't going to ever help an indoor pic. You are also shooting in low light, you need to bump up the light output to help out that camera sensor.

    If you are interested, try this exercise. Take a light source and place a coin directly underneath it, then take a pic. You will see the lack of shadow and contrast creates a rather "blah" pic. Next, take the same coin (or other small item)and put it to the side of the light. Using a table lamp probably works best for this. You will see the lighting now creates detail and shows ridges and texture. Lastly, take a pic with the light at the side, using the lamp shade or white plastic bag as a filter to diffuse the light. This should create the best overall look if you can get enough light onto your subject.

    How does the above help you will your AR15 pic? To start, your light source needs to be coming from the side, preferably the side away from you (your 12 o'clock as you take the pic). Next, stop hunching over the shot so the image doesn't look warped and distended. You will want to zoom out to 2 or 3x, which means you might need to stand on a chair. These things alone will make a huge difference!

    Moving onto the weapon and layout, pull the sling, the BCG, and orange plastic out of the pic, it only adds clutter. Take extra pics to show those things. If you can create an even background color and texture, the image will look better. The multiple shades of grey, combined with folds and design create a less than remarkable background.

    Aside from that, I think you are good! If nothing else, remember to keep the light at 12 o'clock, and don't be so close. Those things will improve it a lot. Lots of light will clean up the shadows and grainy texture. Dump the clutter, and you isolate your subject, which all moves your pic into the win column.

    Don't feel bad, when I critique myself I'm getting worked up over degrees of angle, or even fractions of degrees. Power ratios and on and on and rarely am I even liking my own work for any length of time.
    Stick


    Board policy mandates I state that I shoot for BCM. I have also done work for 200 or so manufacturers within the firearm community. I am prior service, a full time LEO, firearm instructor, armorer, TL, martial arts instructor, and all around good guy.

    I also shoot and write for various publications. Let me know if you know cool secrets or have toys worthy of an article...


    Flickr Tumblr Facebook Instagram RECOILMAGAZINE OFF GRID RECOIL WEB

  6. #346
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diamondback View Post
    I'll play. Given that all I have to work with is a Samsung Galaxy Tab A 6.0 with its crappy internal camera and flash and room light,)

    On camera flash is bad, very bad. Room light is your friend, especially if you can move it around. If all else fails, take it in the bathroom as most bathrooms have better lighting than regular rooms. There is nothing wrong with leaning it against the wall and taking pics.
    Stick


    Board policy mandates I state that I shoot for BCM. I have also done work for 200 or so manufacturers within the firearm community. I am prior service, a full time LEO, firearm instructor, armorer, TL, martial arts instructor, and all around good guy.

    I also shoot and write for various publications. Let me know if you know cool secrets or have toys worthy of an article...


    Flickr Tumblr Facebook Instagram RECOILMAGAZINE OFF GRID RECOIL WEB

  7. #347
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    Thanks all around, Stick. I'll give those all a go next time I have reason to shoot an Update Pic.
    You really have to ask why Conservatives have guns? Because Liberals block freeways, burn cities, throw Molotov cocktails, loot, turn over cop cars, and think this behavior is Socially Acceptable.
    --unknown, memed by user "KeepnitReel" at Northwest Firearms

    The NRA: Fighting Democratic Party terrorists with military-style assault weapons since 1871. LIFE MEMBER

    Not employed or sponsored by any manufacturer, distributor or retailer.

  8. #348
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stickman View Post
    To start, lets look at the lighting, which is going to (arguably) be the most important element of the image. In this case, the lighting isn't evenly crossing the subject matter, nor is it coming from a direction. It appears to be coming directly from you (or behind/ above you), which isn't going to ever help an indoor pic. You are also shooting in low light, you need to bump up the light output to help out that camera sensor.

    If you are interested, try this exercise. Take a light source and place a coin directly underneath it, then take a pic. You will see the lack of shadow and contrast creates a rather "blah" pic. Next, take the same coin (or other small item)and put it to the side of the light. Using a table lamp probably works best for this. You will see the lighting now creates detail and shows ridges and texture. Lastly, take a pic with the light at the side, using the lamp shade or white plastic bag as a filter to diffuse the light. This should create the best overall look if you can get enough light onto your subject.

    How does the above help you will your AR15 pic? To start, your light source needs to be coming from the side, preferably the side away from you (your 12 o'clock as you take the pic). Next, stop hunching over the shot so the image doesn't look warped and distended. You will want to zoom out to 2 or 3x, which means you might need to stand on a chair. These things alone will make a huge difference!

    Moving onto the weapon and layout, pull the sling, the BCG, and orange plastic out of the pic, it only adds clutter. Take extra pics to show those things. If you can create an even background color and texture, the image will look better. The multiple shades of grey, combined with folds and design create a less than remarkable background.

    Aside from that, I think you are good! If nothing else, remember to keep the light at 12 o'clock, and don't be so close. Those things will improve it a lot. Lots of light will clean up the shadows and grainy texture. Dump the clutter, and you isolate your subject, which all moves your pic into the win column.

    Don't feel bad, when I critique myself I'm getting worked up over degrees of angle, or even fractions of degrees. Power ratios and on and on and rarely am I even liking my own work for any length of time.
    Stick, IME most cameras struggle with the light source directly at the 12. Is that what the diffuser is for?


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  9. #349
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    So glad to have stumbled onto this thread. I hate it when I go to share something in a post, and can't get the image I want. I'm so excited about my new gun, or there is something on it relevant to the conversation, but I don't know a lot about what it is that makes a good shot. I just know I like a shot, or don't when I see it. Other times I get lazy, and throw up a "gun on the floor" shot. I'm careful never to get any feet in, (lol) but of course they are still boring shots. Thanks to Stick for helping out on this. Always good work. No wonder it's your job...

    I do need to go back, and look again, closer, and soak up all the tips. Sure "good light" is best, but what is "good" light? Sometimes you want a deep shadow, other times not.... Then there's the fact that I was just a grunt forever. Never got into real photography beyond pulling something out of a pocket to snap a photo. Hell, my first Army photos were with a 110 camera. Now, same excuse, different era, all I have is an iPhone. One day I can get a shot I like, the next I can't to save my life.

    Anyway here's what I'm talking about. First one is a typical "I need to share right now" shot, (it was night time) and the second is one I tried to do a decent job on. I don't think I was even paying attention to any rule of thirds, or centering... just get the gun in the shot.



    Last edited by daddyusmaximus; 12-30-19 at 17:44.
    You know what I like best about most people?

    Their dogs.

  10. #350
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    I've had people say this one turned out, but other say its was just because the gun in it was interesting... Once again, dead center, close cropped...

    You know what I like best about most people?

    Their dogs.

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