On Image Sharpness

It is my view that there are no magic secrets to getting a good photograph and that subject matter and composition always trump technical perfection. However I commonly get clients saying they’re disappointed with the pictures from their expensive cameras and in particular they’re disappointed with the sharpness (or lack of).

I thought I’d write some posts on the subject of image sharpness, which I think is more about perception than actuality. Hopefully these will be coming over the coming days and weeks.

But never let me be accused of consistency because I was taken just now with the fantastic sharpness I got in this picture from my lovely wee M.Zuiko 14-42mm kit lens on my Olympus OMD-EM10.

This picture was taken hand-held, with the subject moving slightly in a medium breeze. I’m not just amazed by the sharpness of the lens but also the accuracy of the focus and the great image stabilisation. This was taken at 42mm (84mm in full-frame equivalent) and 1/125 second. I’ve processed in Lightroom and added my usual amount of sharpening but nothing special.

Here’s the shot, followed by a 100% crop of the centre section.

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and the 100% crop. I hope WordPress doesn’t mangle it after upload.

 

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Borrowdale and Derwentwater

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Visiting the northern Lake District I’d intended to walk round the bottom end of Derwentwater but the lake had other ideas. Heavy rain had raised the level and the paths and fields were now under water. So I tried the other way and walked to the top of the classic climbing crag of Shepherd’s Crag. There I found both fantastic views and beautifully photogenic birch trees. Continue reading

A little bit of snow

By coincidence I exchanged comments a day or so ago with a reader from Helsinki who had posted a YouTube link showing his driving in snow. I responded that with so much snow Britain would grind to a halt. Today we had about an inch of snow and there was chaos on the roads and trains cancelled. My wife’s one hour journey to work turned into three hours. Britain doesn’t understand snow. Continue reading

Coniston Water, Monochrome

Coniston Water

I made this trip nearly three years ago but the shots have languished in the catalogue ever since, untouched and unloved. The day was far too bright and in colour the shots just didn’t work. I found them again and realised that black and white would work much better, so here are the results.

The location is the southern end of Coniston Water, in the Lake District. Most of the views are towards Dow Crag and the Old Man of Coniston, with the Fairfield range in the far distance beyond the head of the lake.