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in focus or out? that is my question
Old 02-21-2003, 06:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I find myself trying to make sure that every image that I take is in focus. and I sometimes miss good shots because I want to make sure the focus is sharp, and my autofocus won't focus or I forget to set the matrix to focus in the right spot. But recently I was looking at some "award winning" images (local art show) and I noticed that many of them had blur. There was no explaination of weather the blur was intentional. when shooting video I can pretty much ride my focus ring on the fly to get the disired look I want, but I find that when I shoot film/still I rely heavily on the autofocus. is this just a rookie dependency or is it something that seasoned still shooters face too? [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img]

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Re: in focus or out? that is my question
Old 02-21-2003, 10:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi Clint,

I find that as my eyes get older and more tired, I rely on the autofocus and just do what I was taught years ago and that is to make sure the eyes are in focus. Of course, rules were made to be broken but for me, if the eyes are out of focus, the whole image suffers. Just my .02 cents. I'm sure many of the other more seasoned professionals here could provide some better input though.

Good day!

Mike
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Re: in focus or out? that is my question
Old 02-22-2003, 12:41 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Sharpness, while sometimes a virtue, is overrated. Blur, specifically motion blur, can add pathos, a sense of the moment, if you will, to an image at times. I use it myself. Misplaced doesn't usually work well, though. Use whatever method you feel most comfortable with when focusing. Personally I hate autofocus and only use it when shooting runway, it occupies a bit too much of my mind and is never as fast as I am, even with a new Canon EOS 3 and L series lenses, and I never got used to the eye control feature (my eyes are always darting all over the frame looking for potential problems). For others, especially those with eyesight problems, autofocus is probably useful. Experience has very little to do with it. Nobody was ever considered a great photographer because he could focus well...
 
 
Re: in focus or out? that is my question
Old 02-22-2003, 09:40 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I've seen the same thing. In come cases it can work well, such as intentional blue from subject motion, selective short focus or appropriate diffusion. But in my view, there is in focus and out of focus, out of focus is ... well, out of focus.

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this a doomed before...
Old 02-23-2003, 12:43 AM   #5 (permalink)
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clint,

you have asked a very important question without knowing it, "how do i expand my vision". adding motion blur, softfocus or smoke/haze to an image to create an affect is not enough.

it's all about how you see the world, in your mind's eye, what do you see. the image is already created in your mind or you recognize a moment and you get inspired and you use your equipment to capture it.

the images you saw that had the out of focus affect were impressive as a whole and the out of focus characteristic is just an element in that photo.

if you run out and take out of focus images, make your image blue in photoshop because you needed to do something because it was to boring etc... are all characteristics of a doomed photo.

but what's important is your recognition that every image does not have to be in perfect focus to be a good image. you have expanded your vision and now you can use soft or out of focus to articulate your vision more clearly.

chung



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Answer.....varies with the photog.
Old 02-24-2003, 01:20 PM   #6 (permalink)
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When I got digital.....I tried auto-focus. Then I went totally manual. For me, I can focus and shoot faster, and more accurately than auto-focus. I suppose, if I was shooting race cars, auto-focus might be handy.....but since I'm not.....the best answer is.....do what works best for the type of work you are doing. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
 
 
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