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% 'Keeper's?

 
 
Mardon
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      12-16-2005
If a slightly above average semi-pro photographer with good equipment were
to spend a day doing a general shoot of their community (no special theme
in mind), how many photos would they generally take and what percentage of
those would be keepers? I feel like I find too many things at the PP stage
that I should have noticed at the shutter-release stage. This causes me to
have a very low % of shots that I would consider worthy of printing or
showing to anyone else. I'm looking for some comparison numbers that maybe
I can use as a target to improve my own on-site composition ability. TIA
 
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Bill Funk
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      12-16-2005
On Fri, 16 Dec 2005 15:19:36 GMT, Mardon <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>If a slightly above average semi-pro photographer with good equipment were
>to spend a day doing a general shoot of their community (no special theme
>in mind), how many photos would they generally take and what percentage of
>those would be keepers? I feel like I find too many things at the PP stage
>that I should have noticed at the shutter-release stage. This causes me to
>have a very low % of shots that I would consider worthy of printing or
>showing to anyone else. I'm looking for some comparison numbers that maybe
>I can use as a target to improve my own on-site composition ability. TIA


Well, consider that National Geographic expects thousands of shots per
pic published.

I don't think that comparing your keeper percentage will help your
composition skills. Maybe, instead, you should be looking at your
non-keepers, and seeing them as learning tools; WHY is this or that
one a non-keeper, instead of counting them. This might help you get
more keepers.

--
Bill Funk
Replace "g" with "a"
funktionality.blogspot.com
 
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Annika1980
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      12-16-2005
>how many photos would they generally take and what percentage of
>those would be keepers?


The percentage of keepers means nothing. It is the number of keepers
that is important.
My percentage of keepers with film is certainly higher than with
digital since I figure each shutter click with the film camera costs me
a quarter. But I'll always get more keepers after shooting digital
since I can try different shots (exposures, angles, lighting, etc.)
with little regard for cost. Buy a bigger CF card for your digital
camera and your photography will improve.

 
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Mardon
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      12-16-2005
"Annika1980" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

> The percentage of keepers means nothing.

<*snip*>

Based on your comments and Bill's, maybe I'll just caulk this off as a
'silly' statistic then. I've had some of my photos selected as POTD on
Internet sites and people often complement me about my work. The thing is,
I generally refuse to show anyone my 'bad' stuff. I was starting to get a
little paranoid about how many of my images I judge as unworthy to make it
beyond the Raw converter in Post. Maybe that's a good thing?
 
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ASAAR
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      12-16-2005
On Fri, 16 Dec 2005 16:53:21 GMT, Mardon wrote:

>>> I'm looking for some comparison numbers that maybe I can
>>> use as a target to improve my own on-site composition ability.

>>
>> The percentage of keepers means nothing.

>
> Based on your comments and Bill's, maybe I'll just caulk this off as a
> 'silly' statistic then. I've had some of my photos selected as POTD on
> Internet sites and people often complement me about my work. The
> thing is, I generally refuse to show anyone my 'bad' stuff. I was starting
> to get a little paranoid about how many of my images I judge as
> unworthy to make it beyond the Raw converter in Post.
> Maybe that's a good thing?


Bill and Annika's advice is good, but you can probably increase
the percentage of keepers by studying composition, either from an
artist's or photographer's course or from a book. One such is
"Photograph -- the art of composition" by Bert Krages. (Allworth
Press, www.allworth.com). I haven't been to that web site so I
don't know if it'll have any more information about the book.

 
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tomm101
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      12-16-2005
One excersize we used to do in college especially with large format
photography was to go out and shot for a day and choose one pic as THE
keeper, and be ready to explain why. But with 4x5 you might shoot 10-20
in a day, sometimes less. This is to give you an idea of editing. It
was good to have a class ready to jump all over the image.
But keeper can just be what you like the pic I took of my wife with our
75lb Lab sitting on her lap in an easy chair. Will I ever show it to
some one, problably not it is really a crappy pic but I like the
memory. Just trying to explain there are many reasons for keepers.
Forget the numbers.

Tom

 
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Daniel Silevitch
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      12-16-2005
On Fri, 16 Dec 2005 15:19:36 GMT, Mardon <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> If a slightly above average semi-pro photographer with good equipment were
> to spend a day doing a general shoot of their community (no special theme
> in mind), how many photos would they generally take and what percentage of
> those would be keepers? I feel like I find too many things at the PP stage
> that I should have noticed at the shutter-release stage. This causes me to
> have a very low % of shots that I would consider worthy of printing or
> showing to anyone else. I'm looking for some comparison numbers that maybe
> I can use as a target to improve my own on-site composition ability. TIA


Some numbers from my last sequence (a park in downtown Chicago after
last week's heavy snowfall):
Frames taken: ~65
Decent enough to stick on the web: ~15 (and I have fairly low
standards)
Good enough to consider printing: 2

I'm an amateur with a decent-quality P&S.

The 15 photos:
http://ri22.uchicago.edu/~dmsilev/Mi...nium_Park.html
Photos #3 and #15 (numbering starts from 0) are the two that I liked
enough to consider keepers.

-dms
 
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Mardon
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      12-16-2005
"tomm101" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
<*snip*>
> But keeper can just be what you like the pic I took of my wife with our
> 75lb Lab sitting on her lap in an easy chair. Will I ever show it to
> some one, problably not it is really a crappy pic but I like the
> memory. Just trying to explain there are many reasons for keepers.
> Forget the numbers.
> Tom


You really 'hit home' with your example about your 75lb Lab sitting on your
wife's lap. There's a 'neighbourhood' Chocolate Lab that lives near me and
I just love this big old fella. I recently reacted exactly as you
describe. I posted his photo on alt.binaries.pictures.animals on Dec 10th
(Subject: "Hero"), not because I thought it was a great picture but because
the dog is so special to me. I wanted to show HIM off; not my less-than-
great photo! Have a look at him. He's such a wonderful dog. If all
Labs are like him, I can understand why they are so popular.

 
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Mardon
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      12-16-2005
Daniel Silevitch <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

<*snip*>
> The 15 photos:
> http://ri22.uchicago.edu/~dmsilev/Mi...nium_Park.html
> Photos #3 and #15 (numbering starts from 0) are the two that I liked
> enough to consider keepers.


Thanks. I think that other posters have talked me out of paying much
attention to the 'keepers' stat but it's still interesting to see a
concrete example of how other people assess their own shots and filter out
the keepers. Thanks for the response! BTW, I rather like image 4.
 
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Daniel Silevitch
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      12-16-2005
On Fri, 16 Dec 2005 19:21:17 GMT, Mardon <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> Daniel Silevitch <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
><*snip*>
>> The 15 photos:
>> http://ri22.uchicago.edu/~dmsilev/Mi...nium_Park.html
>> Photos #3 and #15 (numbering starts from 0) are the two that I liked
>> enough to consider keepers.

>
> Thanks. I think that other posters have talked me out of paying much
> attention to the 'keepers' stat but it's still interesting to see a
> concrete example of how other people assess their own shots and filter out
> the keepers. Thanks for the response! BTW, I rather like image 4.


Image4.html, the self-portrait? It came out nicely, but as the caption
notes, that particular type of photo has become an instant cliche ever
since the sculpture was installed ~1 year ago.

The fourth image in the sequence, named Image3.html (why do you do this
to me, iPhoto? Why?), was one of the two keepers that I mentioned above.
I liked the way reflections of the sun and the oncoming stormfront
meshed with the buildings on either side. Seeing that scene really
explained to me why the artist named his creation 'Cloud Gate' (as
opposed to the unofficial, but far more prevalent name, of 'The Bean').

-dms
 
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