We were arranging some stuff on the walls and had the mirror propped in the hallway for a bit. I caught Veebs catching his handsome self in the mirror, so I had to drop everything and run for the camera. I cannot resist reflection shots.
A usual evening after work, where human tries to relax on couch, and cats try to relax on human.
After I took that shot Bunny successfully overthrew Veebs from the throne, and I caught him – and his reflection against the glass coffee table – making himself more comfortable.
I had never paid attention to the reflection made against that glass. It was pretty! A mini photo-session ensued. I was also experimenting with the picture control settings on my camera. I usually shoot in “Standard” mode (equivalent of “Faithful” mode in Canons, I think) because I find “Vivid” to be way too much so for portraits, pets and people alike. The Vivid mode seems to be highly touted by other Nikon D300 users however. I think at the end of the day it’s a matter of taste.
But I decided I’d experiment more to confirm that I didn’t like it, or find situations where Vivid mode might be more suitable to my eyes.
The below shot SOOC (straight out of the camera, no post-processing applied) in Standard mode (what I usually shoot in):
I see your true colors…
The next shot is SOOC in Vivid mode:
The colors coming out of Standard mode is pretty as-is in real life. But honestly, if you’re striving for creativity, “as-is” and “true to life” are not necessarily qualities what you want to convey. At times both can be really flat and BLAH. Tweaking with colors, tones, hues, among other things, can do a lot to enhance the mood of your work. I just don’t know if super-tweaking the vibrancy of the colors in these kinds of images apply, know what I mean? Maybe in landscapes. In portraits it just looks too garish.
I probably post-process my Standard shots to a level with more saturation, but not at all to the level of Vivid. It’s somewhere in the middle. Usually. Depends on the lighting situation too. And the White Balance. Damnit so many variables to consider (I’ve had this camera for 10 months now, and still there is MUCH to learn). In any case, I find it impossible to fine-tune these settings in the camera. I want to have vibrant colored portraits, but setting the Saturation just one level up produces unnaturally blood-shot skin tones. I’m going to download some additional controls here, experiment with those and see if I can’t find a happy medium. The more I do in-camera, the less I have to do off-camera.
So what do you think of the Standard vs Vivid photos above? Just curious…
Bunny thinks he doesn’t give a flip what picture mode I shoot him in, as long as I get that camera out of his face. He’s so unhelpful.