Monday, 12 April 2021

Quilt Photography

I have had to spent some time re-visiting my new Camera manual. I have a smallish Panasonic Lumix DC-TZ90. While you can just point and shoot, I have become increasingly confused about all the features that this camera has to offer. In addition, I have little knowledge about photography and what is involved. Reading about it is like learning a new language which is made complicated (being a migrant) as I do not have the English words for some of what they are talking about. I very rarely use the dictionary and rely on picking up the meaning of words by association.  This is a process which takes a bit of time and patience. Of late I have been watching some FB videos by a photographer who offers a video master class (Mark Hemmings - Take your Digital Camera Off Auto). Really like this guy as he speaks in plain English that I can understand. Also like it that he is posting these little videos for free on FB which has been really interesting to watch. Very generous indeed. At some point I might consider doing that master class as I am sure that you learn a lot about your camera judging from the tips and hints I already picked up from those free videos.
It also helps that my husband is a keen photographer, so I can ask lots of questions...however if you don't understand the subject matter it is very hard to work out what to ask. Embarrasingly, I only just worked out that you can adjust the viewfinder to make it more clear. When looking through the viewfinder of this little camera, I thought...gee, my eyes are getting bad...can't see properly, hence I used the screen. Then I discovered the diopter adjustment dial and I said to my husband...why did you not tell me about this?... which of course was funny as he assumed I knew this very basic thing.

Anyway, I took some pictures this weekend and want to see how they look on the blog as I adjusted some settings to pull them over as well. Hopefully this is not too boring.

My camera does nice little 'point and shoot' photos
This is outside, so lots of light...(easy to do on automatic setting). Quilt photography is different though. Often done inside with lower light, tilting the screen to get shots from above...different altogether and in my case, the room I work in is slighter darker than anywhere else in the house. 
So, now I have been bitten with the photography bug, I wanted to put my new knowledge to the test, wanting to achieve a blurred background
Fail...another discussion with my husband about the f-stop again and what this does to photos, so tried again
Nice, nailed it!

Then went inside in my sewing room and tried to shoot photos using the Manual mode and how I understood that to work

Not too bad but difficult to photograph. I am photographing this on the extension table of the Q20 which is sitting beside the window, so I am getting the light sideways.
Another blurry background
Could be sharper, but in principle not too bad..lost some quality in putting this on the blog.

More quilting shots
This is pretty much what the room looks like in the afternoon without the light switched on. Taking this picture in Manual and adjusting for the lack of light gives me a much more realistic shot. Texture is really nice to see, but the colours become very stark. As you can see I have pressed ahead with my 'Year of Stars' quilt.

With the light switched on
Got my shadow in the way now and the texture is much harder to see.

...and a shot of my sewing table in the corner where I used a filter to overcome the yellowish light (now I am just playing with the many different options of the camera).
All done in Manual...pretty impressed with myself. Also spent more time reading the Manual with the camera in my hand to work out some of the functions. Drives me crazy when I cannot work out what all those little symbols mean on the touch screen. Assigned some action to the empty function button (preview...did not even know I had this!) and worked out what some of the others mean and how I can operate this little thing quicker by using the touch screen. There is just so much in this camera and I will have to go over this a number of times to retain the information, I think.  Actually quite surprising and almost a bit too much, but we will press on with the learning.

But back to quilting now...just discovered from one of the photos that I sewed one of the leaves together wrongly.



  1. Very nice photos. I too have an Panasonic Lumix, but mine is older. I've been lazy and only been using auto mode and lately just using my phone. You've inspired me to pull out my Lumix and manual and do some photo exercises. Thank you.

  2. Good for you to play with the manual mode on your camera. The photo exercises were a good practice and your results are great!


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