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I have an animal image I was going to submit but having second thoughts. It is a very shallow dof and the focus is on the nose and mouth leaving it a little soft around the eyes. Do you think that would likely be a fail?

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The usual standard for animals is that the eye should be sharp. Having said that, I can imagine a photo in which the mouth and nose are more important so …who knows? Do you like it? If you have a good QC record you probably won't have to wait long for the verdict. I'm not feeling at all confident about giving this advice…..

 

Paulette

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The usual standard for animals is that the eye should be sharp. Having said that, I can imagine a photo in which the mouth and nose are more important so …who knows? Do you like it? If you have a good QC record you probably won't have to wait long for the verdict. I'm not feeling at all confident about giving this advice…..

 

Paulette

I'm not a wildlife photographer, but I agree, best to have the eyes in focus for animals (including Homo sapiens).

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It may also depend on to where your eyes are attracted.

 

In the "Little Red Riding Hood" - 'Oh! but, grandmother, what a terrible big mouth you have!' - you would not focus on the eyes, that was earlier as far as I remember.... :)

 

If in focus and this focus on snout makes sense I would upload.

Edited by Niels Quist
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Having just had an image fail for Soft or lacking Focus, which I am sure would have passed a year ago, I agree that Alamy QC have raised the bar. Having said that I do remember that apart from the animal's eye, the next most important thing to be in focus is its snout - Spacecadet's suggestion of posting the image is a good one - lets have a look!

 

Kumar

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Very nice shot but the focus should be on the eyes. If it had been a snarling tiger, focus on muzzle/teeth might have been appropriate.

 

Personally, with my own zero tolerance regime I would not submit it. Even at this size it looks soft where it shouldn't, to me at least. Whether by downsizing/local sharpening you would get away with it ... That would be your risk.

 

Pity, as it ought to be pretty good seller. Perhaps you should do a Betty LaRue on it and put it on Fine Art America; you might well sell prints.

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I'd be afraid to submit it. Besides the eyes, I think with a tagged animal sometimes the subject is the tags. Anyway, my eyes do go there and they are not sharp. I'd be tempted to crop down to that wonderful snout but I'm not sure I would end up with anything acceptable after doing that. It's a great snout with those smiling lips.

 

Paulette

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I agree with Paulette and Martin. It's more like an animal portrait - and there is a long way from mouth to eyes, and the eyes seem important here.

 

In any case I would remove the ear tags. Draw too much attention.

 

Otherwise it is a nice image - I like the blurred foreground / background

Edited by Niels Quist
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Thanks both, I'm sure you are right, pity I also thought it might be a good seller, not sure about FAA though, I don't think I would hang a sheep on my wall, I thoight it might do well editorially. Oh well  :(

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Thanks both, I'm sure you are right, pity I also thought it might be a good seller, not sure about FAA though, I don't think I would hang a sheep on my wall, I thoight it might do well editorially. Oh well  :(

 

 

You would be surprised by number of people who have a thing about sheep, cows, owls, ... With an arty transformation I reckon prints would sell.

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It is a nice shot, Steve. I can see your frustration. Am I wrong, or is it just the eye on the our left that is soft? If that's so you might use the Clone Stamp Tool in PS to copy and paste the sharper eye in the soft eye's place. Sound crazy? I have done this with women's head shots twice, and it worked. 

 

Ed

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It is a nice shot, Steve. I can see your frustration. Am I wrong, or is it just the eye on the our left that is soft? If that's so you might use the Clone Stamp Tool in PS to copy and paste the sharper eye in the soft eye's place. Sound crazy? I have done this with women's head shots twice, and it worked. 

 

Ed

 

But do remember to invert the eye  :)

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It is a nice shot, Steve. I can see your frustration. Am I wrong, or is it just the eye on the our left that is soft? If that's so you might use the Clone Stamp Tool in PS to copy and paste the sharper eye in the soft eye's place. Sound crazy? I have done this with women's head shots twice, and it worked. 

 

Ed

 

But do remember to invert the eye  :)

 

 

I tried it and it didn't work because neither eye is sharp enough -- sorry. I think Jeff is probably right; he's submitted more images than most anyone. Experience counts.  But . . . I would not get too concerned about any one image, unless it's a unique, important subject . . . which a cow is not. Sorry, Miss Sheep for calling you a cow. I'm a city boy.  :huh:

Edited by Ed Rooney
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I wouldn't submit. A search for sheep head on Alamy yields 5,500 results. So unless this photo is of a particularly unique/unusual sheep (you know the breed etc) or you're making a point about the sheep's nose in caption/keywords, why risk your QC reputation when the chance of sale is low?

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Now that I have seen the shot I would submit it. I like the come hither Mona Lisa smile that is in sharp focus. The focus draws attention to the smile.

 

I would clone out the ear tags and also the grass head and its shadow on the face. I would also attempt to remove the flower head upper left, but would not waste a lot of time on it.

 

I think this is a good example where the sharp eyes rule should be ignored. I often struggle with the balance between technical rules and creativity.

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Bill is right.  If it was an owl, you would want the eyes. But these eyes look a bit hopeless: probably only uses them to follow other sheep around and avoid cow pats when munching.  You might want to leave the ear tags in, though, if you want farmer's weekly (et al) to use it. It's not a sentimental picture, and all the better for it.  Take the grass head out, but otherwise the slight messiness makes it an interesting picture.  If you want to be even cleverer you could blur out the eyes and background a bit.  Or make the eyes a bit deader: could be a cloned sheep (thinks pic editor, seeing red faced news editor bearing down upon him, desparately looking for an illustration for an article about sheep cloning). 

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Reduction to 2400 x 3600 is a good start, and then there's an excellent program called Piccure, which is designed to analyse and eliminate camera shake but from my experience also does a pretty good job dealing with marginal unsharpness.

 

piccure-processed-1024x640.jpg

 

This is from an article dealing with the Sony A7R, which has a serious problem with stabilised lenses (almost all of them as far as I can tell - you get less risk of shake if you use an unstabilised lens as the camera clearly interfaces incorrectly with stabiliser timing).

 

http://www.photoclubalpha.com/2014/04/28/sony-alpha-7r-the-swiss-army-knife-camera/

 

I also use Photoshop's excellent recent additions of lens sharpness and shake correction. Combined with file size reduction to the minimum, they can be used selectively and enhance critical details like eyes considerably, without creating the kind of artefacts that lead to QC rejection.

Edited by David Kilpatrick
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I wouldn't submit. A search for sheep head on Alamy yields 5,500 results. So unless this photo is of a particularly unique/unusual sheep (you know the breed etc) or you're making a point about the sheep's nose in caption/keywords, why risk your QC reputation when the chance of sale is low?

I get 116,008 results when I search Alamy for "sheep" (click on "Relevant"). Maybe enough is enough already. But I guess there's always room for one more. Having had a couple of POF issues with QC, I would be wary about submitting this one as well,

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Reduction to 2400 x 3600 is a good start, and then there's an excellent program called Piccure, which is designed to analyse and eliminate camera shake but from my experience also does a pretty good job dealing with marginal unsharpness.

 

piccure-processed-1024x640.jpg

 

This is from an article dealing with the Sony A7R, which has a serious problem with stabilised lenses (almost all of them as far as I can tell - you get less risk of shake if you use an unstabilised lens as the camera clearly interfaces incorrectly with stabiliser timing).

 

http://www.photoclubalpha.com/2014/04/28/sony-alpha-7r-the-swiss-army-knife-camera/

 

I also use Photoshop's excellent recent additions of lens sharpness and shake correction. Combined with file size reduction to the minimum, they can be used selectively and enhance critical details like eyes considerably, without creating the kind of artefacts that lead to QC rejection.

Very interesting. Thanks for this, David. Do you know if the latest version of Photoshop Elements has the sharpness and shake correction additions that you mentioned?

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