A study in ORBS

Started Jan 3, 2012 | Discussions thread
OP PF1944 Forum Member • Posts: 65
Re: A study in ORBS

Hi Silent Oracle and Timur Born,

Thanks for your thoughtful comments. I give my picture by picture answers below. On the whole, however, I disagree with Silent Oracle on all but one of the photos, #3, which is indeed affected by camera motion blur, and should have been deleted. The general point I was making remains valid: whether they be orbs or blooms, this effect does not mar the pictures, at least in my opinion. For the reasons I give with respect to each of the photos, I am satisfied that both cameras deliver really well on low light photography.

Photo 1:

I do not believe that the blur that you see is caused by camera motion; camera motion blur affects the entire picture; in this case, clearly, there is no blur at all in the name of the excavator (Deere), nor in the utility wires overhead. Nor can I discern any blur in the trees in the background, in the lights or in the railroad tracks. There is definitely blur in the weeds in the foreground, caused by the strong wind, I believe.

This is the only picture for which I used a unipod. It was so cold that I stayed in the car for the other pictures. It is also the only picture that I took at ISO 800 (set manually). The DR was set at 400%. As with all the other pictures, however, I increased the contrast and adjusted the blacks until all signs of noise disappeared from the sky.

Photo 2:

Same scene as Photo 1, but only a portion of it, thanks to the X10 zoom. There is no camera motion blur anywhere in the picture. However, there was much more noise than in the first picture, so the black adjustment was greater, resulting in a loss of detail and a more contrasty image. The ISO was set automatically at 3200. In turn, this produced a faster shutter speed. For all X10 pictures, I used the Pro-Low-Light mode, which combines four pictures into one to reduce noise and blur (as the manual says…).

Photo 3:

Here, I’m afraid that my handholding ability failed me, as there is some apparent camera motion blur, despite the higher ISO setting of 1600. It is apparent as a little “thumbs up” in all the lights. This picture should have been deleted.

Photo 4:

Thanks for the compliment. However, for me, it is probably the least satisfactory of all the pictures (except, of course, #3), because it does not tell the story that I wanted it to tell: it is as if human activity in the refining process is completely absent and there is no interaction between the plant and the outside world. This is due to the fact that I had to crop the original image significantly to reduce the number of telephone poles that marred it much more when I saw it on the screen than I had thought they would when I was taking the picture. This is another instance of the brain leaving out irrelevant information that the camera insists on reproducing.

Photos 5 and 6:

I don’t know what significant issues you refer to, but I can certainly guess that noise, particularly in photo 6, would be one of them. Noise was inevitable, considering that I used the digital zoom extender!

I am nevertheless quite happy with them both. The noise is not distracting (at least to me), and the story gets told fairly well of a very complex engineering process taking place with the people running it enclosed in their darkened workplaces.

Again, many thanks.


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