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Oct 20, 2018 5:38 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
I love to take pictures! I carry a camera with me almost everywhere I go and take hundreds of pictures. I've thought of selling some of my pictures but have no idea where to start, or even if they are anywhere near good enough! Just starting this thread to ask for any honest criticism and advice from the professional photographers out there. These are some photos I've taken in the last year or so which I consider some of my best.

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Oct 22, 2018 8:12 AM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
Good pictures. When submitting pictures to a photo editor, make sure each one is technically perfect. These people are busy, look at lots of pictures daily. If you waste their time they will not ask for more later. Most photographer's greatest weakness is editing. We are all too close to our own pictures and the fun it was to take them. Each picture has to stand alone, as is without a title. When I say technically perfect I mean correct exposure, focus. IMO, you need some help with both of those. Gene
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Oct 22, 2018 9:01 AM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
A few details. #! - focus is off, needs to be darker. Needs a bit of cropping - gets weak at the edges. #2 - Focus is off. #3 - Way too busy. #4 - Great stuff in center but not the rest. Crop. #5 - Wrong lens, wrong aperture. Would be better if not in the sun.
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Oct 22, 2018 9:14 AM CST
Name: Lauri
N Central Wash. - the dry side (Zone 5b)
Enjoys or suffers hot summers Enjoys or suffers cold winters Seed Starter Greenhouse Foliage Fan Vegetable Grower
Organic Gardener Dog Lover Birds Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
You've got some really lovely photos. I wouldn't know the first thing about marketing though.
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Oct 22, 2018 9:20 AM CST
Name: Rick R.
Minneapolis,MN, USA z4b,Dfb/a
Garden Photography The WITWIT Badge Seed Starter Wild Plant Hunter Region: Minnesota Hybridizer
Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
gasrocks said:Good pictures. When submitting pictures...


Well said, Gene. And yes, everyone of us wants to see, compose and edit a photo as we want it to be. While this is best for our private viewing, it may or may not be what others want or think is best.

Joanna, your photo with the water is a good example. If you prefer a tilted horizon, then good for you. However for most everyone else, it is a unsettling view.

But we are all here to learn, and we only get better with practice and education!
When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the losers. - Socrates
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Oct 22, 2018 9:33 AM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
Yes, selling pictures is a whole 'nother world from just enjoying them. One calendar company states: If it wasn't taken at f/11, midday with the sun shinning, we do not want to see it. Yuk. Most of the time I can divide my beginning students into one of two groups. First are those who know the technical stuff or at least can learn it easily but have limited vision. They would not recognize a good picture if it ran over them. I do not encourage these students much. Second there are those with vision, thoughts, ideas, anxious to share but who do not know the technical stuff so far. I can teach then that part! You are in group #2. I teach photography and so I am biased. Take some classes. Or just spend a week here. Gene
Last edited by gasrocks Oct 26, 2018 10:14 PM Icon for preview
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Oct 22, 2018 12:08 PM CST
Name: Jean
Prairieville, LA (Zone 9a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier The WITWIT Badge Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages
Joanna, when it comes to photography, beauty and value are in the eye of the beholder. Take pictures of things that are pleasing to you. Then consider what may be pleasing to others should you want to sell your pictures. A good picture speaks to the emotions.

You may want to take a look here to see what moved people. https://garden.org/search/inde...

Try to look at the pictures that were most voted for and understand what captured the most interest. Also, try looking at the Plant Data Base here on NGA . See what pictures garnered the most "thumbs" and "acorns". While the technical attributes are necessary, not all of the winners were "technically perfect".
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Oct 22, 2018 12:27 PM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
Yes, study pictures and especially pictures that people like. However, what is popular here is not the same as what sells.
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Oct 22, 2018 12:52 PM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
Reminds me of the student who showed us his favorite picture of his son. A grab shot taken in auto. Out of focus and over exposed but it did bring back many memories to him. One of the other students asked him if it had been in focus and properly exposed wouldn't it be better? He thought about it for a while and agreed.
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Oct 22, 2018 1:06 PM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
Even though I am a man and therefore brutal (AnnaZ) let's get some other's to post pictures in this thread. We might all learn something.
Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 1:39 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Thank you for the comments. Just as I suspected, others are seeing things that I wouldn't have noticed! In the first 2 where you said the focus is off, I can barely see it even looking for it. How do you correct that? Do you have a special program to edit your photos? And I am completely ignorant about lenses and aperture. The camera I use is a Nikon Coolpix L840. In my opinion, it takes pretty good pictures (although maybe not real professional quality?) but I've only used the lens that came with it.

gasrocks said:A few details. #! - focus is off, needs to be darker. Needs a bit of cropping - gets weak at the edges. #2 - Focus is off. #3 - Way too busy. #4 - Great stuff in center but not the rest. Crop. #5 - Wrong lens, wrong aperture. Would be better if not in the sun.
Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 1:40 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Wow, I didn't even notice the tilted horizon until you pointed it out! I agree, it could be better. Thanks!

Leftwood said:

Well said, Gene. And yes, everyone of us wants to see, compose and edit a photo as we want it to be. While this is best for our private viewing, it may or may not be what others want or think is best.

Joanna, your photo with the water is a good example. If you prefer a tilted horizon, then good for you. However for most everyone else, it is a unsettling view.

But we are all here to learn, and we only get better with practice and education!
Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 1:46 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
I do spend a lot of time looking at pictures from professional photographers, especially nature and garden related pictures which is what I take, mostly. As a musician and aspiring writer, I've known for a long time that listening to good music, reading good books, looking at good pictures, will help develop your eye and ear.
Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 1:49 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Ok, I might have more to ask but have to go for now...thanks everyone for your comments, advice, criticism, and encouragement. Smiling
Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 3:10 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
I just tried editing and cropping the first photo, just for the fun of it. I think I like it better, but what do you all think?

Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 3:13 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Yes, please do! It will be fun to learn together! Smiling

gasrocks said:Even though I am a man and therefore brutal (AnnaZ) let's get some other's to post pictures in this thread. We might all learn something.
Last edited by JHeirloomSeeds Oct 22, 2018 3:15 PM Icon for preview
Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 3:16 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
I should try to pay more attention to what makes me like or dislike a photo. Analyzing is not one of my strong points!
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Oct 22, 2018 7:49 PM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
Joanna - much better. Eventually you will get to the point where you are thinking and cropping before you push that button down.
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Oct 22, 2018 8:03 PM CST
Name: Gene Staver
Portage WI 53901 (Zone 5a)
Annuals Houseplants Herbs Cat Lover Garden Photography Cactus and Succulents
Butterflies Birds Hummingbirder Garden Sages
Focus is a huge subject. You and/or the camera must get it correct. If that does not happen, throw the image away, there is no fixing focus in the computer. In every photo class I teach we discuss focus, .in the beginner's class it is about 45 min. worth. Every single picture I take is in MF. AF is not fast enough or accurate enough you will find once you learn about focus.
Avatar for JHeirloomSeeds
Oct 22, 2018 8:06 PM CST
Thread OP

Bookworm Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Morning Glories Herbs Heirlooms
Dog Lover Cottage Gardener Cat Lover Garden Photography Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Thank you. Yes, you have already given me some things to think about and I can't wait to go out and practice.
How about this? After cropping it I did see as you pointed out that it was a little out of focus, so I just tried sharpening it. Seems to have darkened it a little more too though, and I'm not sure if that's a good thing.

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