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Some questions about focus )
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KuAlla


Joined: 18 Dec 2012
Posts: 62
Location: Moscow-Melbourne

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:05 am     Reply with quote

I've got some questions about focus.. I was shooting muffins today and had a problem with focus. If I zoomed in, the focus was too shallow and I couldn't get whole muffin sharp. If I didn't zoom in and then cropped everything was sharp, but the picture became too small. I watched a video about shooting food and a guy shot from 5-10 cm from the food without zooming in. I tried to shoot like him and my camera couldn't focus in such small distance.. I've got Canon 24-105 lens... What lens do I need to shoot closer? Or maybe I just don't know how to use my lens???
And there are some shots )) I don't post crops, because I'd rather need critique about composition and lighting for now ) Thank you!



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matthi


Joined: 30 Sep 2010
Posts: 589

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:27 am     Reply with quote

KuAlla wrote:
I've got some questions about focus.. I was shooting muffins today and had a problem with focus. If I zoomed in, the focus was too shallow and I couldn't get whole muffin sharp. If I didn't zoom in and then cropped everything was sharp, but the picture became too small. I watched a video about shooting food and a guy shot from 5-10 cm from the food without zooming in. I tried to shoot like him and my camera couldn't focus in such small distance.. I've got Canon 24-105 lens... What lens do I need to shoot closer? Or maybe I just don't know how to use my lens???
And there are some shots )) I don't post crops, because I'd rather need critique about composition and lighting for now ) Thank you!


you have to know your gear, one of the hazzles everyone has to go through

read the technical specifications for your lens, there is some data about it's minimum focal distance, which will be most likely around the 40 cm and far away from the 5 you have mentioned, so there is no way you can go any closer than that minimum distance, except...

if you have seen someone shooting from a distance of 5cm he most probably has used extension tubes, best combined with a dedicated macro lens in that case

there is no such thing as an all-in-one device
KuAlla


Joined: 18 Dec 2012
Posts: 62
Location: Moscow-Melbourne

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:47 am     Reply with quote

Thank you for explanations ))
marcusvdt


Joined: 12 Feb 2009
Posts: 1966
Location: www.flashbackfoto.com.br or www.facebook.com/flashbackfoto

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:10 am     Reply with quote

To focus from close, you can also use a macro lens without extension tubes.

For longer DOF, use smaller aperture, but don't go above F11 for this types of subject.

Notice that shooting from too close, the depth of field usually gets shorter and shorter and depending on the focal distance you are using, the angle of view will introduce distortions.

I don't own a 24-105, but if I was you, I would put it at 70mm F11 and would then get as close as I can get so the resultant DOF is enough to cover the interesting part of the subject. If you are able to get the right DOF and simultaneously you are able to get close enough to have your desired composition, that's great! If not, step back until you have the right DOF. This means your composition/framing will not be what you wanted, so you will need to crop in post processing.
This is how it is.
David P. Smith


Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 28320
Location: Our Stock, Food & Portrait photography books at www.rindersmithphotography.com

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:40 am     Reply with quote

Close ups of food is something that I do on a regular basis. Having an understanding of DOF is vital if you are going to get it right.

DOF is dependent on three basic things. The type of lens, the aperture and the distance from camera to the object. All three of these have a relationship to each other. If you change one the others may need to be adjusted as well.

As mentioned there are certain minimum focusing distances a specific lens will give you. If you want to shooting something closer than that lens allows then you need to go to a different lens.

My go to lens for my food work is my Tamron 90mm 2.8 macro and I can get pretty much as close as I want to what I am shooting. But remember that with that lens you will also have to be aware of the distance from the lens to the object. The slightest movement closer or further away from the object after you focus will make a big difference.

Here are some shots of mine that were done from just inches away.



http://www.shutterstock.com/cat.mhtml?prev_sort_method=popular&sort_method=newest&gallery_id=66695&page=1&images_per_page=150&thumb_size=small&show_descriptions=off&image_previews=on&safesearch=1#id=57109360



http://www.shutterstock.com/cat.mhtml?prev_sort_method=popular&sort_method=newest&gallery_id=66695&page=1&images_per_page=150&thumb_size=small&show_descriptions=off&image_previews=on&safesearch=1#id=61179310



http://www.shutterstock.com/cat.mhtml?prev_sort_method=popular&sort_method=newest&gallery_id=66695&page=1&images_per_page=150&thumb_size=small&show_descriptions=off&image_previews=on&safesearch=1#id=22863907

As for your composition, not bad. Image 4084 has some problems because the white bowl in the right front foreground is much larger than the muffin and because of the DOF it being OOF draws the eye of the viewer away from where you want it to go. If you use DOF properly you can use it to put the eye of the viewer where you want it to go.

The scattered chocolate chips is OK but make sure that you also get a shot without them. It is what I call building the shot. Get the overall shot then add things to the image to get other shots. You can combine this with the shot within the shot to get even more images from a set up. Just look closer into the overall setup to find other shots.

Showing ingredients in a shot is fine if used properly and remember that a buyer may also want the shot without the ingredients in the background.

If you want to add other elements such as the fruit you may also want to show that differently as well. Keep the muffin on the plate but add a bowl of fruit in the background. This will increase the value of the shot by showing more of what can be looked on as a healthier breakfast and the the fruit becomes more than just a garnish.
cpaulfell


Joined: 07 Dec 2011
Posts: 3860

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:09 am     Reply with quote

KuAlla wrote:
What lens do I need to shoot closer?


For $389 you can buy a Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens. I use this lens and it is very sharp, quite, fast and an almost perfect match your your camera. It is also great for doing portrait work. You will be VERY hard pressed to find a comparable lens for the same price.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=371176&is=GREY&A=details&Q=
KuAlla


Joined: 18 Dec 2012
Posts: 62
Location: Moscow-Melbourne

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:34 pm     Reply with quote

Thank you guys!
Dave, thank you for your examples ) What light do you usually use? I'd like to buy something but don't know what I need.. Now I've got speed light for Canon and reflector ) and the problem is I don't have enough light to shoot at f11
KuAlla


Joined: 18 Dec 2012
Posts: 62
Location: Moscow-Melbourne

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:35 pm     Reply with quote

cpaulfell wrote:
KuAlla wrote:
What lens do I need to shoot closer?


For $389 you can buy a Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM Lens. I use this lens and it is very sharp, quite, fast and an almost perfect match your your camera. It is also great for doing portrait work. You will be VERY hard pressed to find a comparable lens for the same price.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=371176&is=GREY&A=details&Q=

Thank you! I'll add it to my wish list )))
Laurin Rinder


Joined: 12 Jul 2005
Posts: 45597
Location: Contact www.rinderart.com/Books and Workshops www.rindersmithphotography.com Youtube/rinder

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:09 pm     Reply with quote

Dave uses Large 600W strobes and softboxes.Speedlight is not for this kind of work without a lot of unnecessary effort. Also. I disagree with Paul on a 60MM focal length for macro.It hurts my neck. 90MM is perfect and also better aspect ratio/Perspective for portrait.Even on Crop cameras.But both will work. For product work I now prefer a wide Lens 24-70 and with a D800 at 36 MP I can get 3/5 shots by taking One and cropping.and better dof control and less distortion.
David P. Smith


Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 28320
Location: Our Stock, Food & Portrait photography books at www.rindersmithphotography.com

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:09 pm     Reply with quote

KuAlla wrote:
Thank you guys!
Dave, thank you for your examples ) What light do you usually use? I'd like to buy something but don't know what I need.. Now I've got speed light for Canon and reflector ) and the problem is I don't have enough light to shoot at f11


I use Flashpoint strobes from Adorama. Several of us here use them. Inexpensive and built to last. I have 4 lights but you can get by with 2 depending on what you are photographing. These are the ones that I use.

http://www.adorama.com/FP1820APWK.html

The only difference is that I use the 600 w/s lights which are model #1260. You can also get soft boxes for these as well.
KuAlla


Joined: 18 Dec 2012
Posts: 62
Location: Moscow-Melbourne

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:29 pm     Reply with quote

Thank you! And what about continue lighting light? What is it for?
David P. Smith


Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 28320
Location: Our Stock, Food & Portrait photography books at www.rindersmithphotography.com

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:26 pm     Reply with quote

KuAlla wrote:
Thank you! And what about continue lighting light? What is it for?


Generally speaking continuous lighting is not used very often. Many of the continuous lights generate heat which can be uncomfortable for models and it can also affect product work, especially food.

There are lights that don't generate too much heat but they can be hard on models eyes.

Also many of the continuous lights do not have power adjustments to regulate the intensity of the lights. This can be problematic because you will need to move the lights or what is being photographed to control the intensity.

Some say that they like continuous lights because they show how the light falls on the subject. Strobes with modeling lights do the same thing.
KuAlla


Joined: 18 Dec 2012
Posts: 62
Location: Moscow-Melbourne

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:01 pm     Reply with quote

Thank you Dave! That's helpful ) And one more question... Who holds spoons and forks on your photos? Is it a person or it's like a holder or something?
David P. Smith


Joined: 20 Jun 2006
Posts: 28320
Location: Our Stock, Food & Portrait photography books at www.rindersmithphotography.com

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:10 pm     Reply with quote

KuAlla wrote:
Thank you Dave! That's helpful ) And one more question... Who holds spoons and forks on your photos? Is it a person or it's like a holder or something?


That's a trick I have in our book but I'll give it to you. The fork or spoon is held in a block of florist foam. I have blocks of it and I simply set the shot up then put the handle of the fork or spoon into the foam which holds it in place.

Here is one of my shots using this. The drips of milk are actually a combination of Elmer's glue and heavy cream.



http://www.shutterstock.com/cat.mhtml?gallery_id=66695#id=16326250
greenfield54


Joined: 21 Jun 2009
Posts: 2699
Location: Philippines

Post Posted: Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:04 pm     Reply with quote

As the others have pointed out already, the DOF depends on the aperture,subject to lens distance and focal length. The link below can help you ascertain the limitations.

http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html
 
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