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Cropping Your Images

Lesson 42 from: FAST CLASS: Fundamentals of Photography

John Greengo

Cropping Your Images

Lesson 42 from: FAST CLASS: Fundamentals of Photography

John Greengo

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Lesson Info

42. Cropping Your Images

Next Lesson: Angle of View


Class Trailer

Photographic Characteristics


Camera Types


Shutter System


Shutter Speed Basics


Camera Settings Overview


Camera Settings - Details


Sensor Size: Basics


Focal Length


Lesson Info

Cropping Your Images

going in and cropping your photographs after the fact. I always try to shoot as best I can in camera. But there are times when I need to get in and control things later on. And there's a number of reasons why I'm gonna crop an image. And sometimes I think it just looks better with a certain different frame line. Maybe it's wider angle. In this case, I think a square image looks really nice the first and obvious time to crop in images when you just have a lot of extra space that's not helping you out. And so get rid of that extra space if you don't really need it. And it's not really helping out in the photograph. Now this is one of one of my favorite photos, and I feel really good that I got this photo. But I gotta admit to you, this isn't really the photo I captured. Here's the photo that I really captured. I wasn't his clothes. I had the camera slightly tilted and I had to go in and crop that image a little bit to get that right moment. I did have it focused and exposed in timed righ...

t but I needed a little bit of help in the cropping system to really get it back. Sometimes there are slight little distractions. I didn't really notice that blue poster in the upper left hand corner when I shot it. It was a very quick moment. I got a couple of shots and that was it. And if I don't like it, you know, I'm gonna get in and cropped that out and just clean that corner up a little bit. There's a lot of things that happen when you're out shooting in the field in the right hand corner. It just gets a little bit bright for me. And I'm gonna bring that in just a shade just to knock out some of that extra bright area. That doesn't help the photograph off. I didn't get this exactly a symmetrical as I had intended. Eso It just required a slight little crop to make sure that I got it correct in here. I had to shoot this with a little bit of extra cause. I was trying to get some of the height than within the format of the camera that I was shooting didn't really fit the format of what I wanted to do with this. And so I ended up having to shoot a little bit more and then go back in and crop it later on. One of the things that is most disturbing, at least to me, is unlevel horizons. And so it's something that just shouldn't be done unless there is a really good intention and purpose to it s so make sure that you get that right in your cropping process. We'll talk about direction tomorrow in the composition section. And so I like to have a little bit more space in front of my, uh, my vehicle that's moving down the street. And this is, ah, bit of a radical crop in the sense that I'm cropping in quite a bit and I'm throwing away a lot of pixels. This is, ah, hard subject to get. There's a lot of moving things going on when this is happening, and so I've gone from a 42 megapixel in this case, down to a 29 megapixel image, and so I've thrown away a bit of image. In this case, it's still very usable for a lot of different things, but this is why you try to You want to try to shoot as best you can out in the field. Another thing toe think about is the aspect ratio, because we all have cameras that have a very specific aspect ratio, and it varies. And so let's talk a little bit about the aspect ratio in our cameras. Full frame cameras and 1.5 crop from frame cameras have a 1 to 1.5 aspect ratio. The phones, a lot of the point and shoots and the micro 4/3 system use a 4/3 aspect ratio, which is a little bit boxier than the 1 to 1.5. It's good to know what you're shooting and what you plan to do with your images and what your needs are in your aspect ratio for what you're going to be doing. I remember working back in the days of the camera store, and we actually sold frames and we'd still we do prints and we'd have frames, and every once in a while someone would come in and they would get an eight by 10 photo, or they would get an eight by 10 frame, and then they would get an enlargement from their film. They go, I want I want everything enlarged and then it doesn't fit in here. Can you print it so it fits. It's like Why can stretch the image? But you may not be happy. The only way that we're going to get it in there is we're gonna have to crop it into a slightly different image because it's a different aspect. Ratio aspect, ratio. I don't want to know about math. Just print my photo. You got to know about these things if you want things to fit properly in the right place. And so the three by two or one by 1.5 is a very common aspect. Ratio 4/3 the micro, 4/3. This is what a lot of our phones are, and a lot of other point and shoot cameras are in here. But we also have squares, which are kind of nice as well. Then we have five by four, which is eight by 10 equivalent five by seven. Those are also popular here. Right now you're watching by nine screens, which is the HD video, and so you have to be thinking about all these different aspect ratios. What do you shooting in and what do you going towards now? I got to tell you, this is an issue very close to my heart because I shoot full frame cameras. But most of my work is seen here on the screen that you're looking at right now, which is 16 by nine aspect ratio. And so I am sometimes at a loss. Do I show you the whole photo, or should I fill the frame and really give you the full video experience? And so in this class, I've done a bit of both. Sometimes I like my images full 16 by nine other times. Like if I'm trying to show you cropping, I am showing you the exact whole frame that I see in the camera. And so you do have to be very careful about shooting and not shooting too tight. One option is to shoot very tight, But if you shoot very tight and then you need to put this in a 16 by nine frame, you need that extra space that you forgot to shoot. And so shooting a little loose can be very, very handy if you're gonna be cropping and doing something different with this than the aspect ratio of your particular camera. I do have favorite aspects for different systems for vertical. I think the three by two aspect ratio is too tall and skinny for most things. And in this class, most of the vertical images that I am going to going to show you are five by seven in its aspect ratio. I think it's easier to see five by four a little too square for me. But that's an eight by 10 in each of those images are gonna look a little different when you project him into those frames. So be aware of what those frames air gonna look like. And that's one of the reasons for shooting a second shot, a little backed off of the first shot. And when it gets down to horizontal frames, the phone's point and shoots will shoot in a four by three aspect ratio, which is kind of squarish are full frame cameras are going to shoot in a one by 1.5 aspect ratio 16 by nine is a little bit wider, and then you can go to any number you want. I kind of like to try to keep it in whole numbers to buy one if I want a bit more of a panoramic image. And so this is very easy to do if remember, the tilt shift lenses where I was shooting panoramic, so I usually end up with about a 2 to 1 panoramic out of that. Now I'm also a big fan of the movies, and movie standards are right around this, so the movie standards are going to be typically 1.85 to 1 for what is called widescreen. And then there is ultra widescreen, which is 2.39 to 1, which is right around that 2 to 1 ratio of. So, if you like that cinematic look, you can try for images in that aspect ratio. And then from time to time you'll have some even longer purposes. And it really depends on what you are doing with your image, as's for us. How why do you want to make it and so just be aware of aspect ratios? And in most programs, you can go in and set standards, and so one of my standards that I, uh, develop My photos, too, is 16 by nine because I want it to appear full frame on my computer screen or in a monitor like this in a classroom. And so sometimes it's nice having those panoramic images for cropping your AST faras is a reason why you want to crop your images. Sometimes you're just trying to maximize the space, and the standard frame just doesn't fit for you, and you need more from side to side. And so doing a panorama stitch or cropping the top and bottom a little bit is something that I think it's perfectly fine to Dio. There are different philosophies. I know there's somebody I was watching here, creative life, who doesn't like images that air cropped out of the standard frame and, you know, everybody's different. And so I think one of the things is that everybody expects to see that standard one by 1.5 frame. And when you give them something different like this, it sometimes people don't know what's different. They just know it's different, and they like the fact that it feels different in that regard. Square pictures have kind of made a comeback in recent years and so square is a very beautiful way of presenting a camera, and so look for squares that think about it. A lot of cameras will now have crop marks that you can turn on for. Seeing that square right in the camera is one of the reasons why I love muralist cameras is that you can turn on crops that you actually see and work with. Some of the SLR is you could do it as well, but with the muralist cameras, they can completely block out everything else. And you could just view through the View finder in a square, which is really nice this case. I just wanted to crop out some of the bottom just to add a little bit of mystery as to the exact nature of the falls in the landscape around it, and so cropping an image can give it a new look. And so I often like images that have a little bit wider. Look to it. It just gives it that different feel that is different than the standard photographer who just uploaded the full image that they that they got from the camera. And so think about these things when you want to change your aspirin aspect ratio

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