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Hi Fellow Photographers ... I saw that another patron posted a photo that was rejected and he received lots of great input on how to improve his own QC process. I recently uploaded a photograph I took from a trip to Pompeii. It was one of the Pompeii dogs. I felt the image had excellent quality. The picture was taken with a Canon T6s; ISO 250; 1/200 sec. f/5.6 135mm; file size of 16.3 MB; with a resolution of 6000 x 4000 uncropped or enhanced. The image of the dog and surrounding grass is so clear you can see the individual hairs on the dog, the red stitching on the collar, and the grass seed heads at the feet of the dog, which are crisp and clear. The background of the road and surrounding grass are blurred on purpose. Any feedback you can provide would be greatly appreciated. This was the only image I uploaded and I am at a total loss as to how to evaluate my own images at this point. It was rejected as "soft or lacking detail."59472960d4a04_201703PompeiiDogs(IMG_1712)NW.thumb.JPG.4786a791484dcd8eb6194f0cd2fbe088.JPG

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Also ... any suggestions on how to improve the image would be great too. 

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When shooting animals, the eyes are the key to the image.  The dog's head is a little soft without a lot of detail.  I think that is where you have gone wrong. If you downsized this image to 3000x2000 it would probably pass.  It's one of those borderline shots.  Always check an animals head, particularly the eyes.  This dog has his eyes almost shut, so they aren't very visible. And there is very little detail at all on his head.

 

Jill

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I agree with Jill. With animals the eye need to be the point of sharpest focus. Here, it appears the grass at his elbow and the harness I'd in perfect focus.  These things can be tricky. Just because one part is sharp as a tack doesn't mean it's a successful image if the focus belonged elsewhere.

I might have dodged the head just a bit, then downsized.

The background is fine. It's not important to be in focus.  In fact, with an image subject like this, I'd prefer it to be more OOF.

Betty

 

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Looking at the image at 100% size in photoshop it looks to me like something has robbed you of critical detail. The dog's, head looks slightly "mushy" and "noisy" and there are lots of edge artefacts. It looks suspiciously like a jpeg that's been over-compressed and over-sharpened at some point, this has combined with shadow noise (black fur) to rob the image of critical detail. Looking inside the jpeg EXIF data it looks like the camera was set to jpeg mode (not RAW) with an in camera level of sharpening of 4 (possibly too high) and quality level of fine (that's OK). I also notice that Canon Auto lighting optimisation is set to ON. This may have attempted to boost shadows (black fur) and increased the noise. Finally I notice that Picasa appears to have been used in your workflow somewhere (it's left a tag in your jpeg). You'll probably get better results if you shoot in RAW and use DPP/Lightroom or Photoshop for your processing.

 

Tips

  • Shoot at the lowest ISO you can (reduces noise)
  • Shoot in RAW
  • Convert to jpg using a good RAW convertor (e.g. Canon DPP or LR)
  • Don't over-sharpen
  • Downsize if needed to improve sharpness produce a final image that is at leat 6 megapixels (3000 x 2000 pixels)
  • Focus on the eyes

As Betty said, if this image had been downsized to 3000 x 2000 I think it would might have sneaked through. But even then, the grass just in front of the dog looks over sharpened (almost gritty) and the point of best focus appears to be the tip of the dog's nose.

 

Edited by M.Chapman
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Hi Geoff

 

I note from the EXIF data that the camera appears to have selected "Landscape" mode, So it may well have boosted the clarity which ties in with your observation. Although the OP says the image is uncropped or enhanced, Picasa has left it's "footprint" in the EXIF data. I wonder if it actually had some extra processing applied to it in Picasa? The rather large size of the jpg file (17.1MB) also makes me suspicious.  I never got out of camera jpegs that large from my Canon DSLR that were that large if a significant portion of the image was outside the plane of focus. I think it's had some extra sharpening applied somewhere...

 

I think you may be right about focus being OK. I think (to me eyes) the dog's nose looks sharper because it contains coarser features, whereas the fur has disappeared into mush because its detail is too fine to be captured/rendered.

 

PS. Love the fact we can now post images directly in the new forum (oops - I see Alamy are saying this feature will shortly be removed as it will use too much server space).

 

PompeiiDogs-crop.jpg

Edited by M.Chapman
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OP, I shot jpeg in camera for some years and never saw anything like this. That lens scores about the same on DXO as the one I routinely use so that's not the problem, and I've no reason to believe that OOC Canon jpegs are unusable, so something has processed your images, even if it's not you. You don't mention your workflow, so as GS and MC have said you need to wrest control of it from Canon, Picasa and whatever else is interfering. RAWs are always preferable, but there's no reason why you couldn't get that jpeg through QC with the right (ie. much less) processing. I'm not recommending jpegs though.

 

 

Edited by spacecadet
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I would agree that this is some processing issue going on. Checking the linked image & clicking on the full size button, the dog's hairs are lost in a mush of processing artefacts. Maybe the image was enlarged or perhaps a lot of noise reduction applied? As Spacecadet mentions, an idea of your work-flow would be helpful.

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The light halo around the face is oversharpening artifacts. Anyway, looks like it to me.

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Wow ... This was really great. I am still learning so much. Thank-you for all the great feedback. I recently purchased a new Canon 5D Mark IV. My goal is to spend less time in post processing, which is not my favorite thing to do; and more time out and about shooting great images.

Thanks all ...

Kristi

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On 2017-06-19 at 06:49, Betty LaRue said:

The light halo around the face is oversharpening artifacts. Anyway, looks like it to me.

 

Yes, the halo is odd. I've never seen anything quite like it, except perhaps on a Saint Bernard. :rolleyes:

Edited by John Mitchell

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6 hours ago, BJScrapper said:

Wow ... This was really great. I am still learning so much. Thank-you for all the great feedback. I recently purchased a new Canon 5D Mark IV. My goal is to spend less time in post processing, which is not my favorite thing to do; and more time out and about shooting great images.

Thanks all ...

Kristi

Most great images require good or great post-processing. The raw image in camera is just the starting point. Ok compose in camera if possible and get decent exposures but the image treatment and refinement starts on the computer. Shoot raw. Forget in-camera jpegs. 

 

As for the dog picture, no point in commenting on failure reasons as others have done that. However the composition needs a lot of work in my opinion. Lines cutting the image in various directions break it up and are not aesthetically pleasing I think. No flow to the shot. The eye wanders all over the place. Best of luck. 

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19 hours ago, BJScrapper said:

Wow ... This was really great. I am still learning so much. Thank-you for all the great feedback. I recently purchased a new Canon 5D Mark IV. My goal is to spend less time in post processing, which is not my favorite thing to do; and more time out and about shooting great images.

Thanks all ...

Kristi

Hi Kristi,

 

A note of caution. The Canon T6s is more than capable of taking images suitable for Alamy, it's how the camera is used and how any post-processing is applied that are crucial. Although the Canon 5D can undoubtedly take images of even higher quality, it can place greater demands on usage and post-processing, including lenses and focussing, especially if images (from it's higher resolution full frame sensor) are to be submitted without downsizing. Hopefully with the advice given above you will be able to identify what went wrong with the settings or processing of your image from the T6s. If not, you simply run the risk of further Alamy QC failures from a more expensive camera...

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman

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If you don't like post processing I would suggest shooting raw and using Lightroom. The default settings often need very little adjustment and you can do it all in the Basic panel most of the time. It is not as hard to learn as Photoshop.

 

Paulette

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On 6/22/2017 at 11:57, NYCat said:

If you don't like post processing I would suggest shooting raw and using Lightroom. The default settings often need very little adjustment and you can do it all in the Basic panel most of the time. It is not as hard to learn as Photoshop.

 

Paulette

+1

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OP, please help us by telling us your workflow for that image. The processing is so poor that it would help others in future to know what to avoid.

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