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Author Topic: batch completely rejected from SS, I'm puzzled  (Read 5332 times)

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« on: August 07, 2009, 08:02 »
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that's the batch I'm talking about. Photos are of a set of in-the-ear hearing aids. I looked at their portfolio(and of IS, of fotolia, of DT) as far as I can see there's nothing like mine, and I think they can sell since they are unique. There are more photos of that set, but approx 24 photos there's 24 rejections. while they maybe OK to reject(though I don't really think so) I'm most puzzled by the pieces I attached. All my rejections are marked for low commercial value. Any ideas? Should I submit them back? Can you see any technical errors? Is there anything I can make them better if I shoot again? As a note they are brand new: it's how they are made.
,


« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2009, 08:15 »
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the very shallow depth of field make a few of them very hard to tell what they are.  The third image however seems very clear.  I wouldn't have been able to guess what they were, but if I was in the hearing aid business or looking for a hearing aid I am sure I would know what they were (the third one at the least)

I'm not a big fan of the lighting and cropping on the second image (from the top), perhaps same with the last image, but the third one I like the lighting.

Perhaps try having more fill light another time.  If you can find paper without so much texture that could also be good.  Some paper is completely smooth.  I like the looks of that for backgrounds better.

I am surprised they were all rejected though.

« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2009, 08:21 »
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to me the top one is cropped a little tight, the bigger problem I think would be the lighting. Personally I'd be tempted to reshoot or photoshop to isolate them on pure white

« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2009, 08:29 »
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These would be much better if they were photographed with a model: 1) putting the device in the ear  2) the device in the ear.

Now it's very difficult to see what they are. Especially in the first image. (My first impression was that they were some kind of vibrating sex toys :))

« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2009, 08:34 »
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Apart from the things mentioned above: Why would you submit 24 pictures of that same hearing device? Go for the best 3 or so..?
Maybe the reviewer felt it wasn't their job selecting the best ones out (rightfully so) .

« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2009, 10:06 »
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Apart from the things mentioned above: Why would you submit 24 pictures of that same hearing device? Go for the best 3 or so..?
Maybe the reviewer felt it wasn't their job selecting the best ones out (rightfully so) .

I'll disagree with this as a general principle.  I've found SS to be willing to take a large number of images of the same subject, as long as they're sufficiently different to give a buyer some choice.  24 may indeed be too many, although I've had a dozen accepted of the same subject with some variation.  I'm guessing it's this particular subject that the reviewer didn't think would sell.

« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2009, 10:54 »
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Vacations?

« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2009, 11:24 »
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I have to say that if I were a reviewer, and were handed 24 photos of the same object -and they didn't instantly jump out as exceptional -  I'd reject the whole batch.    

« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2009, 12:03 »
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I have to say that if I were a reviewer, and were handed 24 photos of the same object -and they didn't instantly jump out as exceptional -  I'd reject the whole batch.    
Exactely my point :)

« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2009, 12:52 »
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I have to say that if I were a reviewer, and were handed 24 photos of the same object -and they didn't instantly jump out as exceptional -  I'd reject the whole batch.   
« Last Edit: August 07, 2009, 12:55 by perseus, Who ? »

« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2009, 12:53 »
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nehbitski, I cannot speak for SS, as I don't contribute there. But speaking generally for any site, I
 would try to submit difference objects in a batch. if you must repeat the object, maybe have no more than 3 of the same . it will give you better results of getting some if not all approved.

nehbitski, and now here, a bit OT but related.
i like to point out that this following paragraph is not about your images, so please do not take offence
as it is not about you. ..
but more so to what stockastic said about identical images:

I would take that even further stockastic. I think a reviewer should , even if the photos are outstanding, approve only a couple of those photos of the same objects. Especially when it 's the same shot with a slight variation. This is to prevent anyone to abuse flooding the pages of a keyword search or new images with pages and pages of his or her own images which is the same image but each one having a slight change in colour here and there. Absolutely redundant . Is it no wonder how some "large" portfolios can say they upload 1000 images per week. All the same shot with minute changes in colour ?
That is pretty much SPAM of an image, if you ask me.


[/quote]

« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2009, 13:10 »
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Now back to your images.
Here's my opinion, just that... my opinion... ok?

1) the isolation can be improved. 
Even at this reduced size it looks like the edges are soft .

2) stop down to a smaller aperture to get better depth of field.
or move your point of view to get the focal plane parallel to your subject's axis.
this will increase your depth of field .

3) more than anything else, i think this is the reason of rejection.
your lighting .  there is no enough intensity and this degrades your colour and detail.

4) rearrange the object. it can be better.
if you find it not easy to get a good composition with two object, use only one instead. if you want to use creative focus , then be even more careful with the placement of the two objects, so that one does not cast an ugly shadow on the other.
the problem with selective focus too, is you have to be careful that it will not be seen as "out of focus" as some reviewers of certain sites are notorious .

so, with all that, try to eliminate the chance of things going wrong.
less is more. and if you have trouble with getting your exposure correct,
try to take a reading off a grey card. this will prevent the UE that usually
occurs in isolation shot. or use a spot meter to read off your main subject than set it to manual . or read your background, if it 's white, and set the reading
+2, +2 1/2 to get a white (Zone 7) reading.
remember that a reflective meter read all as neutral grey (Zone V).

hope that helps.

Moonb007

  • Architect, Photographer, Dreamer
« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2009, 14:17 »
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First off, never submit more then five images of the same thing.  If you want to you need to space them out, almost every company will start to reject based on that. 

Other things that stood out right away is every picture only shows one item really focused.  You should expand your depth of field to show both hearing aids as crisp images.

Finally, you white background is not even at all.  Most reviews like to see a solid background as its distracting for an isolation image. 

Overall I think its a good subject, just needs some tweaking.

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #13 on: August 07, 2009, 14:29 »
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yes, some  good ideas of responses here .

Hello Nebitski,
you can try to improve your composition for these hearing aids.
Others have already pointed out most of the vital points.

I didn't know for sure what they were, but thx to Moonb007 who made it clear to me they are off hearing aids.
This is just it. Your image placement must be "tweaked"  (as Moonb007 says)
so that someone like myself , silly as I am, don't have to ask, "what is it?".

Isolation is important to get clean white and clean shadows and intact highlights.
If you want to make it exciting and not do it like isolated image, maybe you can put some related objects in the back to indicate "hearing" , "listening"...you know, stereo speakers? or something like that. this can be with a shallow d o f , with the foreground of the aids in well-focused
and well-lit. your background of the related objects can be lit a little lower if you wish, so long as the shadows are clean and not a distraction.

Sum it up,
if it's isolated, make sure it is clean and clean outlines, no soft edges .
with white white background.

if not, then go for the candid look, with still the foreground nice and neatly arranged and well lit and sharp in detail, with the background a bit less focused and more subdued.


« Last Edit: August 07, 2009, 14:31 by Squat »

« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2009, 06:14 »
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I'd like to correct a misunderstanding here(my fault, of course) there are no  24 photos of aids, just five of them and four of them are here. all other batch consists of different objects, some travel photos, although i got many worse travel photos in and sold them. it's not that I'm not puzzled about it, just the photos you are looking for are most unexpected. for other proble s reviews are probably true. I'll find a less textured paper.for white balance my camera(d50) dont accept gray cards. for lights,i think i need to find real spots, rather than desklamps on steroids :D for depth of field, these objects are TINY, i mean, in sub-cm level. i have no macro lens, I used macro rings instead. eats a lot of light. I maxxed out aperture to smallest that'll not cause diffraction and can be held by hand. (plastic squeaky tripods wont really help in situations like this) this is the max DOF i could get. anyway, a poor workman who blames his tools. I'll try to fix them when I get home though. any advices about equipment that can return money spent? I'm just a starting photographer, my gross total is $10 :) thanks for all the help.  

« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2009, 08:11 »
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oops double post.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2009, 08:35 by perseus, Who ? »

« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2009, 08:30 »
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Here is some of my "poor photographer" help kit  ;)

If you need more lighting , the cheapest would be to buy the 6000K+- daylight bulbs .
(Don't use houselights incandescent due to the colour temperature, nor is the light intensity sufficient.) I can't remember the wattage, 500w ??, it's been over 20 years since I used them as a poor photo student. I am not even sure anybody uses them either. But that was what this "poor photographer " used for lights, when money is an issue.
These lights are hot and very bright. Hot , as in chances of fire, so be careful where you use them . 

If you prefer the safe less hot lighting. You can try to get small speed lites (electronic flashes), and a couple of slaves. Then use your on camera flash to trigger these remote flashes.

White background. A white poster board is cheap and you can buy them at any art store. You don't have to spend too much on background paper, if you know how to add light to the white to make them seamless. It merely a case of adding more light to get it to be textureless white. (zone 7 texture white, zone 8 textureless white ).

Most often the problem of getting off white background is that your exposure reading. Also the lighting . If your lighting is insufficient or improper, you take an exposure reading from your subject. Whether it is reflective or dark, or light, it will give you an improper exposure reading. What I mean is, taking a light reading on a dark image can get an OE, and conversely, a light object or a shiny object an UE.

What I suggest is to arrange a basic setup with your lighting equipment all well placed. Put any object, a neutral object is best, something like a plain wooden board for example, which will give you a proper zone v reading.
make a note of the exposure setting. 
make test shots to find the one that give you a well lit object with white background.  then make a note of the f stop and shutter speed. then set your camera to manual and shoot at this setting .

if your object is well lit, but the white background is not white, you will have to add more light to the background. or use layers during post processing.
but best to get it right on camera.

once you have the empirical f stop and shutter speed. you can easily transpose the fstop and related s speed for your sweet spot aperture that your lense will give you the sharpest and best depth of field.

the sweet spot will depend on each lense. so you will have to make test shots to find what is your sweet spot of your working lense. usually it's 21/2 - 3 stops from wide open.

Lenses.
you really don't need anything more than a prime lens . a zoom lense is not only more expensive, it is also slower (lower effective aperture) and never as sharp as a prime lenses.  a zoom lense will also have more cases of CA and edge distortion or vignette.  You can even find a used prime lense to do the job well,
without needing to buy a new one.

Well, that's my poor photographer starting kits help list.
Hope it helps.

Other than this, I guess the only thing left to say is, make lots of test shots
until you find the right combination for a constant studio set up for still life , or isolated product shot.  Since you are not using existing light, the exposure will not change . you can mark this and work with your camera mode on manual.
and get correct exposure all the time.

« Last Edit: August 08, 2009, 08:35 by perseus, Who ? »

« Reply #17 on: August 08, 2009, 15:16 »
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I'd like to correct a misunderstanding here(my fault, of course) there are no  24 photos of aids, just five of them and four of them are here. all other batch consists of different objects, some travel photos, although i got many worse travel photos in and sold them.

Heres my 2 cents:

If you submitted 24 photos, 5 of which were the hearing aids, and the reviewer saw the first 3 or 4 that he didn't like, he/she is likely to reject the whole batch. I know it doesn't seem right, but that's what they do. Who knows if the hearing aids were the first ones they saw, or if others out of your batch were the first ones they didn't like.

It's always best to submit in small batches and if you have multiple views of the same subject, I always split those up and submit those with other subjects.

« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2009, 15:46 »
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Cathy's right.  Small batches are more likely to be accepted. 

Also, I am not sure if those are supposed to be shot over white?  They would look a lot better if you lighted and exposed them so that the white is actually white, rather than bluish gray. 

« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2009, 14:15 »
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If you submitted 24 photos, 5 of which were the hearing aids, and the reviewer saw the first 3 or 4 that he didn't like, he/she is likely to reject the whole batch. I know it doesn't seem right, but that's what they do.

this definitely does not seem right, but you have a point. I always thought most people were uploading in large and fewer batches instead of the other way. I'll try it.

@perseus that's one really helpful guide. you should make it sticky on beginner forum. I will be getting two flashes with stands and a (gasp)real softbox and planning a camera upgrade so these issues will hopefully be no longer bugging me. But I still can't figure out that, when I get textureless white(when I blow-out whites completely) white color "bleeds into" my object.is it normal or expected?

tobkatrina

  • Crazy Bird Lady
« Reply #20 on: August 25, 2009, 11:59 »
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Put yourself in the reviewer's shoes.

You look at mostly "crap" all day then you see a batch of multiple images that don't seem to pass the muster. Of course you would reject them too =)

It's hard to see it from the other side of the fence but when you're about to submit, put on a reviewer's glasses and really try to see. Self critique can be hard but it's a lesson we all need to perfect =)

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