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Why Is Focus Off?
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Sep 16, 2022 12:14:02   #
jcsnell Loc: SW Ohio
 
I took this picture 2 days ago: Info as follows Nikon d3100, Nikon 55-200 f4-5.6 lens. Settings were F5.6 at 200 mm, exp. 1 sec, ISO 200 Auto WB, metering matrix. The question is the leaf in front is in focus, the flower in back is in focus, why is center out of focus? Thanks for input.



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Sep 16, 2022 12:20:36   #
rmalarz Loc: Tempe, Arizona
 
You didn't mention your focus mode and selected focus point. That would be the biggest clue.
--Bob
jcsnell wrote:
I took this picture 2 days ago: Info as follows Nikon d3100, Nikon 55-200 f4-5.6 lens. Settings were F5.6 at 200 mm, exp. 1 sec, ISO 200 Auto WB, metering matrix. The question is the leaf in front is in focus, the flower in back is in focus, why is center out of focus? Thanks for input.

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Sep 16, 2022 12:31:38   #
CHG_CANON Loc: the Windy City
 
Photo Analysis requires posting and storing an image file that includes the original EXIF data. Everything else is just guessing from a thumbnail. Your question / problem deserves more than just guessing.

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Sep 16, 2022 12:44:17   #
Mr palmer Loc: Currently: Colorado, USA, Terra, Sol
 
Front leaf is not in focus.
Looks like the flowers along the top are in focus.
High contrast found by focusing system? Depends on your focus system.

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Sep 16, 2022 13:17:36   #
joecichjr Loc: Chicago S. Suburbs, Illinois, USA
 
jcsnell wrote:
I took this picture 2 days ago: Info as follows Nikon d3100, Nikon 55-200 f4-5.6 lens. Settings were F5.6 at 200 mm, exp. 1 sec, ISO 200 Auto WB, metering matrix. The question is the leaf in front is in focus, the flower in back is in focus, why is center out of focus? Thanks for input.


A soothing, serene composition 🍧👀👀👀

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Sep 16, 2022 13:53:45   #
delder
 
Try a smaller f stop [Big #] to INCREASE DOF.
ALSO, 55-200 lens, where did you set it?
I would try to bracket the shot 55, 100, 150 & 200 to see what works best.
The Longer Lens setting will tend to flatten the subject and give more in-focus results.
I DO use the D3100 [18-55 & 55-200 Kit Lenses] and am interested in the solution you find.

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Sep 16, 2022 13:54:38   #
robertjerl Loc: Corona, California
 
jcsnell wrote:
I took this picture 2 days ago: Info as follows Nikon d3100, Nikon 55-200 f4-5.6 lens. Settings were F5.6 at 200 mm, exp. 1 sec, ISO 200 Auto WB, metering matrix. The question is the leaf in front is in focus, the flower in back is in focus, why is center out of focus? Thanks for input.


As said, we need the download to really see the image and answer the question.

That said, from close study of the image the stem and leaves are further away than the flowers since the plant is slanted toward the right front. So the back of the leaves and stem are about the same distance as the back flowers at the top. Those areas are nearly in focus. f/5.6 & 200 mm has a very shallow depth of field, esp when up close like the camera seems to be.
And the focus appears to be on the plane of the stem and far side/top flowers. The 1 sec exposure allows any movement, no matter how small, of the plant or camera to be exaggerated.

You would get greater depth of field at say f/8 and back off further away using less than 200 mm then crop. Also use a higher ISO and faster SS. If necessary, add light to the subject. If the "out of the shadows" look was what you are looking for you can always darken the shadows and enhance the blacks with the processing apps.

EDIT I forgot my example shots.
1. OOC
2. Final edit

Flowers on bush in shade from 3:30PM sun on 11/5/2015 with a beam of sunlight on the flowers.
Canon 6D, Canon 100-400L mk1 @ 250, 1/1000 @ f/8.0, ISO-1000 hand held


(Download)


(Download)

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Sep 16, 2022 14:49:54   #
joecichjr Loc: Chicago S. Suburbs, Illinois, USA
 
robertjerl wrote:
As said, we need the download to really see the image and answer the question.

That said, from close study of the image the stem and leaves are further away than the flowers since the plant is slanted toward the right front. So the back of the leaves and stem are about the same distance as the back flowers at the top. Those areas are nearly in focus. f/5.6 & 200 mm has a very shallow depth of field, esp when up close like the camera seems to be.
And the focus appears to be on the plane of the stem and far side/top flowers. The 1 sec exposure allows any movement, no matter how small, of the plant or camera to be exaggerated.

You would get greater depth of field at say f/8 and back off further away using less than 200 mm then crop. Also use a higher ISO and faster SS. If necessary, add light to the subject. If the "out of the shadows" look was what you are looking for you can always darken the shadows and enhance the blacks with the processing apps.

EDIT I forgot my example shots.
1. OOC
2. Final edit

Flowers on bush in shade from 3:30PM sun on 11/5/2015 with a beam of sunlight on the flowers.
Canon 6D, Canon 100-400L mk1 @ 250, 1/1000 @ f/8.0, ISO-1000 hand held
As said, we need the download to really see the im... (show quote)


Superb shooting 🔆🔆🔆🔆🔆

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Sep 16, 2022 14:54:44   #
robertjerl Loc: Corona, California
 
joecichjr wrote:
Superb shooting 🔆🔆🔆🔆🔆


Thanks

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Sep 16, 2022 16:04:39   #
Grahame Loc: Fiji
 
jcsnell wrote:
The question is the leaf in front is in focus, the flower in back is in focus, why is center out of focus? Thanks for input.


The "centre" 'area' is out of focus because the subject material around that 'area' is in front of the focus plane. E.g. it is closer to the camera than the in focus leaves and in focus flowers.

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Sep 16, 2022 21:10:37   #
Blenheim Orange Loc: Michigan
 
It is out of focus because... it is out of focus. The White snake root inflorescence is a complex subject and you are very close to it. A conscious decision about exactly where you want the focus to be is necessary. I would manually focus carefully to get that shot. In theory auto-focus could be used, of course, but for close ups or macros of small complicated subjects like this I would focus manually.

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Sep 17, 2022 08:31:38   #
Larryshuman
 
jcsnell wrote:
I took this picture 2 days ago: Info as follows Nikon d3100, Nikon 55-200 f4-5.6 lens. Settings were F5.6 at 200 mm, exp. 1 sec, ISO 200 Auto WB, metering matrix. The question is the leaf in front is in focus, the flower in back is in focus, why is center out of focus? Thanks for input.


You are at F:5.6 and your point of focus is at the rear of the image, you need to use F:16 or smaller and focus in the middle of the image. Check your depth of field to be sure all is in focus. Moving back will also increase depth of field then you can crop in post processing.

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Sep 17, 2022 09:02:56   #
davidrb Loc: Hangar i13
 
jcsnell wrote:
I took this picture 2 days ago: Info as follows Nikon d3100, Nikon 55-200 f4-5.6 lens. Settings were F5.6 at 200 mm, exp. 1 sec, ISO 200 Auto WB, metering matrix. The question is the leaf in front is in focus, the flower in back is in focus, why is center out of focus? Thanks for input.


The flower is not a flat plane but a figure with different distance from your lens across the entire flower. At the close proximity you need to get a deeper depth of focus or back away from the flower and re-focus. Using f/11 or higher may eliminate your problem. A study of a depth of focus chart will help explain what you have done and how to avoid it.

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Sep 17, 2022 09:35:37   #
Bayou
 
Mr palmer wrote:
Front leaf is not in focus.
Looks like the flowers along the top are in focus...




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Sep 17, 2022 09:45:00   #
Orphoto Loc: Oregon
 
This particular flower is relatively large, front to back. As others have mentioned, you have to be aware of depth of field issues when you encounter such subjects. Pick a strategy -- do you want the entire flower sharp or just a slice? Which slice?

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