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Workflow and Quality

The more steps we take to produce an image will increase the possibility the quality will suffer. Minimising quality reduction as much as possible should always be factored in our planning processes.

THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN PLANNING A SHOT:
  • Equipment.
    • We need to make sure we have the right equipment for the job. This includes things like the lens. A wide-angle lens is great for landscapes but not so good for portraits. Using a wide-angle for a portrait will distort the image, with the result being a face with unnaturally large features. However, this might work well with an environmental portrait (a portrait which includes the surrounding environment to tell the story). Make sure you know which lens you need before taking your shot.
    • A tripod is essential for long exposures to keep the camera still.
  • Camera Settings.
    • Shoot in RAW to have the highest quality image available.
    • To reduce digital noise, we need to keep the ISO as low as possible.
    • Your aperture and shutter speeds will depend on what you want to photograph and how much available light you have to work with.
    • Using a light meter will help you determine your aperture based on your shutter speed.
  • White Balance.
    • Cameras have several pre-set white balance settings but they aren’t always accurate for your situation. Using a grey card will help correct the white balance later.
  • Time of Day.
    • it’s generally advisable to avoid shooting outdoors in the middle of the day. At this time, the sun is high and the light it casts is harsh and unflattering. Organising your shoots during the golden hours (an hour after sunrise, or an hour before sunset) will have much better light.
    • Shooting a long exposure during the day is a good time to photograph flowing water or time lapses, but even if you stop your aperture down, you could still overexpose your image.
    • Using a neutral density filter over your lens will let less light pass through, allowing for longer shutter speeds.
  • Post-Processing.
    • Make sure you’re using a colour calibrated monitor so the printed image will match the digital image.
    • Don’t push the editing process too far. A heavily edited photograph will have banding, or a halo will surround your subject. An over-saturated photograph looks unrealistic.
1/250 | f8 | ISO-100