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05/25/2007 12:38:10 PM · #1
I have noticed a problem that seems to come up when i do group shots. I will have 5-7 individuals posing for me but not all are in focus. Is it just a matter of opening up my apperature to something like 5.6? Should i be focusing on the first person in the line? I would appreciate some thoughts on this. thanks

here are two examples: prom
graduation

It's really bothersome and I need to figure out how to fix this... thanks in advance.
05/25/2007 12:40:41 PM · #2
Unless all the people are on the same visual plane then you will need to close down the aperture to achieve more DOF.

Message edited by author 2007-05-25 12:40:53.
05/25/2007 12:40:49 PM · #3
I'd probably even take it to f8 for that type of shot. If you're going too shallow you're always going to get that happening.

EDIT: spelling

Message edited by author 2007-05-25 12:41:14.
05/25/2007 12:44:00 PM · #4
So, in the graduation photo, should i have marked the guy on the right as my focus point instead of the girl on the left, and then maybe the F5 DOF would have reached back to her?

do you always focus on the person closest to you?
05/25/2007 12:47:30 PM · #5
If it were me and my DOF was set right I'd look for a 'mid point' maybe? In the graduation photo maybe I would of either moved the guy on the right in a bit or actually moved 1 step to the left and shot from a slightly different angle perhaps, just to even everyone out. That will help keep everyone within your dof.
05/25/2007 12:49:28 PM · #6
DOF is 1/3 in front of the focus point and 2/3 behind. You need to set the aperture so that when you use this ratio all the people are in focus. f5 might not be enough depending on the lens used. It might be achievable with a WA lens but with a short telephoto like an 85mm lens you may need f11 depending on the size of the group.

Message edited by author 2007-05-25 12:54:50.
05/25/2007 12:51:58 PM · #7
ok, the ratio def helps. i was using an 18-70 but was in tight on them... group formal shots are the worst for me, i prefer the candid route....but with another wedding coming this weekend, i want to make sure this sort of thing doesnt happen again...
05/25/2007 12:52:37 PM · #8
Did you try the DOF preview? This would show you how much is in focus before you snap the shot!
05/25/2007 12:54:37 PM · #9
Definitely use DOF preview if it's an option.
05/25/2007 12:56:54 PM · #10
not an option on the D70S
05/25/2007 12:58:58 PM · #11
Originally posted by jjbates4:

not an option on the D70S


Sorry, wasn't aware it didn't have the capability.
05/25/2007 01:03:58 PM · #12
Without the option then you could bracket based on the aperture or do a couple of test shots before you start.
05/25/2007 01:09:28 PM · #13
Originally posted by kawesttex:

Originally posted by jjbates4:

not an option on the D70S


Sorry, wasn't aware it didn't have the capability.


D70s does have a DOF preview button.
05/25/2007 01:15:42 PM · #14
where/how?
05/25/2007 01:17:44 PM · #15
Originally posted by jjbates4:

where/how?


On the front by the lens mount. Read the manual.
05/25/2007 01:18:49 PM · #16
I was trying hard not to say RTFM.
05/25/2007 01:19:41 PM · #17
got it, thanks
05/25/2007 01:20:18 PM · #18
if i wasnt at work, i would have. thanks
05/25/2007 01:34:43 PM · #19
DOF preview can be difficult. Some people never understand it and some people use it all the time. I used it to learn about how it works, but I no longer use it.

Once you start shooting many at different focal lengths and different apertures, and start studying them, you would have a good idea of how it's going to turn out. I now rely on the information stored in my head and I don't use the DOF preview buttom.

When you do have the time, try it and see what you can learn.
05/27/2007 03:49:11 AM · #20
when i shoot group shots, i just make sure they are parallel with the "film" plane. If the groups at an angle, some people will always be outta focus unless you are shooting small aperture. This way, I can shoot a group at F4 and still have them all in focus.

But, when you are indoors, I doubt you'll be using small apertures so, next bet use flash. Just shoot it at the smallest aperture your flash can reach.
05/27/2007 04:39:39 AM · #21
Originally posted by jjbates4:

I have noticed a problem that seems to come up when i do group shots. I will have 5-7 individuals posing for me but not all are in focus. Is it just a matter of opening up my apperature to something like 5.6? Should i be focusing on the first person in the line? I would appreciate some thoughts on this. thanks

here are two examples: prom
graduation

It's really bothersome and I need to figure out how to fix this... thanks in advance.


That really depends on the desired effect you are looking for. I often play with foreground background DOF effect. If you are however looking to have all of the individuals in your composition appear in focus, they must be on the same focal plain. Depending on your focal length objects will go out of focus more quickly than others. Longer focal lengths accentuate DOF more than wide angle does. If you want the image focussed on to have great DOF you must stop down to do so. Check your Focal Plain Preview button to visually confirm what will and what won't be in focus before taking the photo. This will assist in avoiding the problem.

Ben
05/27/2007 07:36:34 AM · #22
Looking at these photos, I'd say the aperture and DOF is possibly not the problem at all.

The backgrounds of the examples is in sharp focus, much sharper than the subjects. This is really noticeable in the prom shot. If you are autofocusing, I'd check out how well the autofocus is working, or whether you've got any strange settings, like spot focussing in the corner of the image, or maybe you forgot to switch it off manual focus (I do this way too often).

Closing the aperture to increase the DOF will help, but if it's focused properly in the first place, even a wide aperture should not be as bad as these images are showing.

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