OK, so now you are taking your pictures at bunny head height and you are taking lots of them knowing that at least one will have your whole bunny actually in it. You're starting to get cute photo's, but the quality is somehow lacking.
When you look at other peoples bunny pics they are somehow more...detailed. You can see the texture of the fur, the depth of the eyes. They are more...sharp.
You wonder how it is they get their pictures to come out so clear, you think you maybe don't have the right camera or the skill to achieve such quality yourself, but you're wrong - all you really need is this weeks Fursday Foto Tip! And this third tip is without doubt the most important tip I will give you...
Bunny Photo Tip #3
To keep your camera steady while taking your bunny shots, rest it on something. A plant pot, against a wall or even on the ground. If nothing else is to hand, there is always your own body:- your stomach, your arm, your foot.
There are three main reasons why your bunny pictures might be coming out a tiny bit blurry, or at least not entirely sharp:
- Something moved
- The subject wasn't in focus
- Bunny snot on your lens
For today let's look at that first one.
Now, the blur from motion can be caused at either end, the camera or the subject. We'll maybe come on to how to compensate for moving subjects in a future post, but for now we'll consider different ways to keep the camera steady.
On conventional photography courses they will (I imagine) waffle on for hours about how you need to be relaxed, control your breathing, stand a particular way, keep your elbows in, hold the camera with the both hands etc etc. All great advice if you don't need to have the camera 2 inches off the ground to get your shot, but since we usually do, those methods are useless for bunny photography.
To get that bunny-head-height shot steady, look for something of an appropriate height and rest the camera on it. If there is nothing to hand, use your own(hand)! Make a fist, rest the fist on the floor, rest the camera on top holding it with the other hand. If you are sitting with your legs out, rest the camera on your knee. If you walk into a situation presenting a great photo opportunity, don't waste time - put your foot in a good spot, put the camera on your foot and hit that button!
Even if you take no other advise from me, know this:
Around half my bunny photo's are taken with the camera resting on my foot. Doing this has probably improved the quality of my pictures more than any other technique I use. It's quick, it's easy and it's effective, so when I spot something cute I'm now far more likely to capture it in the moment.
The foot lifts the camera to around the height we want and in the garden helpfully raises it just above the level of the grass. Where there is no grass to obscure your shot and the situation prevents you getting your foot where you need it, the ground/floor can also be used, but you need to be careful not to damage your camera on hard and abrasive surfaces.
If I have a bunny on top of a hutch or table for a picture, I might rest the camera on top of my big fat tummy. Sometimes instead of resting the camera on top of something, I'll go to the side - a gatepost, fence or wall will do it. The result of using these extra stabilising surfaces is keeping the camera as still as possible as your finger pushes down on the button to take the picture.
In our low-to-the-ground positions we are generally relying on the screen on the back of the camera to see where the camera is pointing, even if we are using our fancy DSLR which also has a viewfinder. But it is also worth getting used to taking pictures without even looking at the screen - it can take a little practise getting the angle right, but it pays dividends in both increasing the number of different angles you can take pictures at (so you don't necessarily need to be able to see the screen) and ultimately reducing the time from seeing something to taking the shot.
Well there you go, another simple and hopefully useful tip. As always, please feel free to add your comments and questions below. See you back here tomorrow for more Tiny Tales!