GOOD PHOTOGRAPHY TIPS



Not sure if this is a perfect sample of what has been discussed so far but notice:
1) bike fills frame.
2 ) Unusaul angle. I was laying on the ground, not standing up.
3) Late afternoon light. See shadow going more towards the back then straight down
4) bike away from the background.
5) slightly shallow depth of field (focus). Bike sharp so it helps it pop off the background.
As to Photo shop work:
1) Used one of my edges from an old polaroid I had.
2) Vignetted the edges to keep your eye inside the frame. ( a little heavy but was going for a look)
3) created the glow to make the headlight look like it was on.
Hope this helps put a visual on the discussion.
 

The Renaissance Man

__CERTIFIED DIVER__ (Open Water & Open Dumpster)
Nov 24, 2012
8,208
19,697
The Tropics of Alabama
I would suggest to do some home work before setting out to shoot. We have all looked for inspiration and ideas for things pertaining to building the bike, so looking at pictures for ideas on how to frame a good shot is not very different. The real difference is looking at the composition instead of the subject.

Everyone has been making good points!
The one pet peeve that I have is using a brick or a big chunk of wood to raise the kick stand off the ground! A trick that I've used is a socket. I have a set of impact sockets that are black or I have wrapped one in black masking tape also to try to minimize the focus.
Here's an example...
 
I found this pic on the net but it has a couple things that I like to do when setting up a photo shoot. I don't just look at the background and the lighting, but I look at how everything flows. That includes the pedals, cranks and especially the valve stems. Place the cranks either horizontal or vertical with the ground, not at a random angle, the pedals should both be at the same angle too, not having one at 33 degrees and the other at 246 degrees, plus put the valve stems in the same location on both wheels. I know this sounds petty but many years of art and design school and work has made me a little anal retentive about the small stuff. When I do a photo shoot on a hot rod I make sure the hub caps/wheels are all at the same position too.



This is a poor quality pic, another one taken from the internet, but this really shows how the composition flows when everything is in line. I can be a photo nazi on the small things or maybe it's a little OCD.

 
Mar 1, 2012
1,451
728
Murray, KY
Actually, I love this shot by our good friend irzouts. Is shows the kind of spirit and good-natured attitude I associate with bicycles. It may not be the best composition (NOT saying it's bad!) but something about it makes me smile. Irzouts, yer a winner in my book! The bike is Stella Bread Racer from a previous build-off.

Rg

 
Jun 12, 2014
39
12
51
Woodstock, GA
Here is what I've learned about photography and subjects.

It is all about the framing of the subject.

My wife is an Actress so I take her pictures.

With dealing with subjects (such as my wife and her other actress friends)

Framing makes the shot.

Too much clutter in the background makes a bad shot.

When ever my wife has a hair style change etc. It is time for new headshots.

We do some test shots and scout areas (we have found this to be the best approach due to weather changes and location changes).

We have also found so far natural light works best ( I use a cheap reflector to bounce the natural light on the subject (no flash)).

I've seen a lot of bike shots cant make out what I'm looking at due to blurred images, reflector bounce etc.

Some cameras the more you zoom the more the blur.

Try and keep the subject tight focus.
 

kingfish254

CHECK OUT MY SALE THREAD FOR COOL STUFF!
Aug 31, 2009
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Historic Savannah
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make sure there is nothing incriminating in the background and check for mirrors. :)
Or you can use mirrors and reflections for fun.


 
Jan 12, 2013
2,177
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Clearwater FL
Ok, here's an opinion question, what about component posistioning?
Such as seat and bars.
I like to see the seat up, at ride height, others I have read prefer them down for photos....
 

kingfish254

CHECK OUT MY SALE THREAD FOR COOL STUFF!
Aug 31, 2009
28,094
26,488
Historic Savannah
www.ratrodbikes.com
Ok, here's an opinion question, what about component posistioning?
Such as seat and bars.
I like to see the seat up, at ride height, others I have read prefer them down for photos....
Depends on the build. I think a lot of builds have the seat slammed for the coolness factor. I remember a few times hearing the saying "Low for show, Up for go" meaning some people put the seat low to show off the build, but sometimes raise it up when they are actually riding it.
 
Feb 22, 2010
2,260
289
DFW Area Texas
Take multiple shots. Digital "film" is free now days. Take what you think is your best shot, then move to the left and take another, then move to the right and take yet another. I can guarantee that one will be better than the others. Be your own harshest critic. Look carefully at your photos. If your photo is full of problems, don't use it. Go out again and re-take until you get a better image. JMHO.
 
Nov 22, 2011
4,026
8,927
KS
In looking through the final bikes listing, I would say that the overall photography is up a few notches this year. Some great photos and backgrounds showing up! Nice work fellow builders.
 
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