Friday, 28 November 2014

Trying to improve Photos

You may want to click on each of the photos to enlarge them so you can see any differences.  If you look carefully at the clock face on each photo you will see how the clarity diminishes. 

There is something ironic about my inability to take decent mini photos.  I was married to a professional photographer for twenty-five years.  My photographic inability is a testament to my lack of interest in how anything works - cars, washing machines, you name it - I simply want them to do it without cluttering up my brain with how. (Kind of applies to people too!)

So here we go....

I am unhappy that my Canon A-1300 16 megapixel camera takes such good photographs.  To explain - they are too detailed for quarter scale items and show every little flaw.  I have been trying to find out how to improve them without getting bogged down in technicalities.

I understand that if you are a whiz with Photoshop or similar software this will never be a problem to you but again, being lazy, I don't want to tackle that either.

Incidentally Carole Kubrican of True2Scale has a great tutorial on her blog if you do want to travel that road:

After asking for advice on three groups I belong to the consensus seemed to be - step back from the object.

So here are three photos of the same objects in (sideways) daylight taken at the same time in three different ways.  There is a notation beneath as to what I did.

Close, no zoom

stand back, zoom in, crop

stand back, no zoom, crop

To deal with the first one last - for me that is just out of focus and too vague.  The second one isn't a big enough improvement over the first to put up with the lack of sharpness.  So it looks like I am still stuck with  'up close and personal'.

I am continuing to experiment.  

I adjusted my camera by changing the recording pixel setting but I am not convinced that taking it down to post card size quality made a lot of difference.

I then changed the compression ratio again down to the same post card size quality and yes, it made a slight improvement BUT so slight as to not make it worth chopping and changing settings on my camera each time I use it.

I am going to have a go at decreasing the resolution on the finished picture in Picasa which I suppose is the same as fiddling about with Photo Shop et al so I will let you know if that reaps results.

Just did the Picasa 'How to decrease resolution on Picasa' exercise and it does what it says on the tin.  It decreases the resolution on a sliding scale down to a workable minimum.  Guess what - Mrs Awkward doesn't like that either.  It all becomes so vague it just annoys me on a whole other level.

Quite seriously I have realised the problem lies with me - I want super sharp images of a perfect object; while the object remains imperfect there is no (simple) way to obtain sharp images which make it look perfect - it is an impossible ask.  I am resigned to all my 'manufacturing' flaws showing up and live in hope that it impels me to simply get better at it.


  1. It is good that you are trying. That is what makes us get better. Recognize what we don't like and then take steps to improve.
    For minis and the higher pixel cameras, I don't zoom in. The distance from the object is physically adjusted, then let the digital zoom do its thing.
    As for the flaws, cameras don't know how to be polite. They show what it looks like, whether we want it to or not. And I think it looks good. I like it.
    I also lean towards paint on the laser stuff so I don't feel the need to sand. Just my 2 cents

    1. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a message for me. I am still messing with camera work and will post if I come up with anything more useful than this. I spoilt the tables with my usual problem of not being able t leave well enough alone. They were nicely stained and buffed on brown paper so had a subtle sheen. Happy with hem for days and then thought I would add acrylic gloss - ehhh yuck! Why, oh why can't I leave well alone.

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  3. If you put a finger over that clock to block out it's image you will see that your photo resolution is just fine. The issue is not the photography. The issue is the clock is not a high quality miniature.

    1. I think you have Karin - I just need to get better at what I am doing - I would just like to replicate the impression you get in real life rather than the magnification you get with these super dooper cameras. Eyes are much more forgiving than 16 megapixels. Thanks for leaving a message. Marilyn

    2. supposed to say... think you have nailed it Karin..........