Technical: Nikon D90, 1.200 sec, f4, focal length 18

Hurricane…not so close to the water as it looks! I like the light here…sand…white caps – Susan

Susan, it’s perspective. A photo is a 2D image and depth of field cannot be accurately gauged on a flat image. So yes, the waves looks closer and the effect is nice. There’s not much texture in the sky, but one can’t complain. You have a good shot of the kids. I presume the wind was not to fierce to be a danger.



Technical: Canon DSLR

I’m guessing lynx. Jennifer did not provide details and she stripped the metadata. It’s a very nice image for a relative beginner. Good cropping and detail. The detail in the eyes is especially good with the catch light on the corneas. People tend to get the whole head or the whole animal. The eyes are the focus. And Jen has done this well.


‘Blurred edges because of electrical boxes but wanted to keep door ajar in photo’

Technical: Nikon D90, 1/30 sec, f4.2, focal length 18

The electrical box is not a bother Susan. It’s at the edge and not really in view. The upper corner is blurred. It is an example of shallow depth of field. The f-stop is 4.2 and not enough to keep focus on the whole gate. You can use this to your advantage. Here it’s a little distracting. The bricks are interesting. The wreathes are interesting. There’s not too much to tie this image together. I’d have focused on the details of the wreathes. Needs…work.

Fall and Orange

Technical: Nikon D90, 1/200 sec, f14, focal length 18

Susan kept the pumpkins in the corner for their leaf shadows. Otherwise everything is color coordinated – leaves, farm equipment, both kids clothes, and of course the pumpkins. This shot is a good example of depth of field and focus. The f14 stop is sufficient to get you both grand kids in reasonable focus. They are both on the run. Auto focus caught the scene in detail. There are finer points on action shooting. Knowing Susan, she let auto focus do it’s magic. And she got a good shot. For action a key is shutter speed. You need a fast speed to stop the action. The focus points – there are variations per camera. You can set them up to follow the action. You can set them catch the closest subject. And then there is dynamic focus which allows you to focus on the central subject and follow their movement. It’s all right there in the camera manual. Remember that thing of paper that came with your camera? It actually makes for good reading to know what some of those extra buttons on the camera are. On the Nikon it’s right there on the back right, near to the shutter. Yeah, I used it when I shot the US Tennis Open, but not since. Still, it’s good to know there are options. Usually when you shoot the kids, it catch as catch can, and not about a time out for technical camera adjustments. It’s just good to know that there are other options. Cute shot, very cute shot!


Technical: Canon G11, 1/320 sec, f4.5, focal length 30.5

A little Photoshop can go a long way. I’ve other shots of this fish with more rich brown coloring. But it appears this guy is really black and white. Even for fish it’s the eye. There’s a little catch light and it looks more appealing. This is a big fat fish with little fins and I figured it couldn’t swim fast. Wrong. It’s faster than me. I did a little zoom. The problem with zooming is finding and keeping your subject in the image frame.



Technical: Canon G11, 1/200 sec, f4, focal length 18

I’d have never seen this fish except that it was on the move. The human eye is accustomed to see threat and anything moving is noticed first. I cropped to get this close up. You lose detail as you crop more. But here it’s not possible to salvage the image unless you crop. Otherwise I have a whole lot of homogenous boring sand in the image. With macro focus I could have tried for the eyes. That would have been a shot. But I did not have the time and could not get in close. My BCD kept pulling me toward the surface.


Technical: Canon G11, 1/80 sec, f3.5, focal length 13.7

Clownfish are often symbiotically seen with this coral anemone. And about as often there is one larger than the other in the pair. Neither fish eye is in sharp focus. The shutter speed is relatively slow. I was shooting natural light, custom white balance. Focus on moving objects is a challenge and even more so underwater. You can make an image look sharper by dialing down the exposure or increasing the contrast. It will help. I’m just happy with the image but it is not my best and it is not a keeper.

Motion Freeze Hi Speed Sync

Technical: Canon EOS, 1/5000 sec, f2.8, focal length 60

I thought that David did a splendid job with the other bee (see August 22). I like this shot better. It it a harder shot to obtain because the focusing is critical. See the wings. The high shutter speed captures the wings in mid beat. Depth of field is narrow. Now for the hard part, get this shot head on with the compound eyes in focus. Hey, I’d be just tickled to have this shot or the other. Either way it was a great technical accomplishment. David got his desired effect in that he wanted the wings to be in focus and stopped by the flash.


Technical: Nikon D90, 1/200 sec, f16, focal length 82

Susan was concerned about the background here as it pertains to distracting from the subjects. You really don’t have a choice. So the image is what it is. But if you are thinking about this as you shoot, you might wait another second for the kids to move to the left a bit more. And, no fill flash. You’re too far away. Zoom in more. It will take out the background. Or crop to a panoramic and eliminate the top and bottom distractions. A smaller f stop … f4 or so would decrease the depth of field and make the background an unfocused pattern. There are lots of tricks you can try. But keep in mind that you’re there to see the game and enjoy. Lisa always said that my kids would not recognize me without a camera to my eye. Come to think of it, you said it too.

Lastly, but most important, enjoy yourself. You are not shooting for Sports Illustrated. So have a good time and fire away and make mistakes. My comments are to help. But don’t get too cerebral and not have fun yourself.


Technical: Nikon D90, 1/200 sec, f14, focal length 55

Susan has entered the world of sports photography. Image you on Sports Illustrated. Kevin would be impressed. Don’t get any hopes. SI just cut staff, big time. They are a weekly and the fantastic photos of not too long ago have given way to the new editorial group. Too bad. So for sports, pay attention to the background. Close up shots are better. A few wide angle will set the scene. It’s in the details that sports images are made. It’s the sweat on the brow and the intensity of the look in a player’s eye. All that… but it’s a kids game. So you got a great shot of kids having fun. The background is what it is. SI will not be calling. But keep at it. Oh, and use a high shutter speed… 1/500 or so to catch the action without blur.