Crossdressing Photography Tips part 2-Portraits a Specialty

In an earlier post about crossdressing photography I focused on my friend Claudia Tyler Mae. Claudia was not only lucky enough to get a professional makeover and try on beautiful clothes, he also had a photographer shoot him.

You may not have that option, or perhaps you’re just shy when you’re all dressed up. Butt wait…you don’t need a photographer, you don’t need a fancy $5,000 camera, and you don’t need Photoshop and/or Lightroom.

I have several cameras as well as all the editing software, but the real key is a good subject. And what better subject than a very girly-girl that loves to dress up from head to toe, and pose in all kinds of sexy positions-you!

Use any camera you have or even your phone. The real key to a great portrait is the look of the model-you.

Sure, you can read about portrait photography and they’ll insist that the real keys are lighting, background, aperture, composition, and possibly the rule of thirds. Well listen; any time I hear the rule of thirds mentioned I want to throw up. Photography is about capturing a moment, if the image isn’t tack sharp, perfectly composed or has a bit of noise it doesn’t matter. Your crossdressing selfies are probably not going to appear in National Geographic.

By the way, there are actually two different Pinterest pages titled crossdressing selfies. Google it if you need inspiration.

Be bold, be creative, and most of all have fun like this young man. Not only does he look great and have a wonderful expression, he found a unique location at his storage shed. Photo found on Pinterest.

Crossdressing Photography

Crossdressing Photography

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 Macro Test

Despite what I said I went out and bought a Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 Sunday. It is amazing! Within 3 days I had taken a gorgeous TACK SHARP 5472 x 3648 photo and had it printed out at 10 x 15 inches and framed.

I’ve taken night shots, sunrises, sunsets, and experimented with every one of the many settings, modes and features available. Except Macro because I was under the impression that the Sony RX100 is not very good at that. So I had to see for myself.

As you may or may not know, there is no dedicated Macro focusing mode on the Sony RX100. There is a Macro scene mode and it isn’t very good. But you can shoot great close up shots with any of the Autofocus modes, as well as with any shooting mode. This camera will focus on objects as close as 2 inches.

I did a quick test with my new Sony RX100 using a tripod, a small aperture, low ISO, and a red pepper. I took a group of shots using different settings, and found that using the Autofocus area set to Center worked best.

The full size image has been cropped to 2000 x 1723 and resampled to 72ppi. No sharpening or other adjustments were made in Photoshop.

My best shot was made using f8 1/2 sec ISO 125, Aperture Priority, and Autofocus Area Center.

Click here to see the full size image

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 Macro Test

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 Macro Test

The original is 5472 x 3648, but how large do you really need pictures of your peppers?

By the way, the base ISO for the Sony RX100 is 125, so using the two lower settings does not improve dynamic range or reduce noise to any real degree.

I also shot a red apple but it wasn’t as pretty as the pepper.

More pictures to come. From what I’ve been hearing it might be a snow scene by Thanksgiving.

The Search For The Perfect Camera

I went to look at cameras today, again. The whole thing is very frustrating for several reasons.

First of all many stores carry only the most popular and best selling models. It’s like trying to buy motorcycle gloves, or boots, or a Shoei helmet in white. Even if by some miracle you find the gloves, boots or helmet you want, the chance that they will have your size is as slim as an anorexic model.

Then, there is the variety of cameras to choose from. The DSLRs are so big and bulky I knocked almost every one I looked at off the little stand just putting it back. The EVIL cameras have a small body, but with a big long lens they get heavy and are just not what I want.

So I’ve decided to wait until next year, prices are supposed to drop towards March as new models come out. Maybe something like the Fuji X100S, only for about half of the current $1300 price.

I read a great book last month called The Minimalist Photographer by Steve Johnson. The concept is to look at photography in a different way, and focus more on simple subjects and better composition. For example, instead of an old train with a complete snow covered mountain range in the background, consider just part of one car.

My first attempt at minimalism

My first attempt at minimalism

I also realized that less effort and obsession with perfection can be more rewarding, and certainly easier. Going through hundreds of pictures to edit in Photoshop can take hours.

The camera I have is very, very good at many things and not so good at others, like shooting an old train with a complete snow covered mountain range in the background. I just can’t seem to get enough detail in those mountains!

One thing most compact cameras do extremely well is macro. Flowers, butterflies, leaves, or even the pin on a pinhead.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE ORIGINAL AT 2560 X 1712

Macro Setting f4 1/125 sec ISO 100 and HANDHELD!

Macro Setting f4 1/125 sec ISO 100 and HANDHELD!

Yes, I think I’m going minimalist, I think I’m going minimalist, I really think so.

Who Do I Have To Blow To Get A Sharp Photo At 100%?

OK, let me rephrase that: “Why am I having so much trouble getting a PERFECTLY sharp photo taken at the maximum size my camera allows and viewed at 100%?” Smaller sizes such as 2560 x 1712 look good enough for me even actual size.

Here is a sample I took on Monday with my Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS19. It was about 9:14 am (I looked at the EXIF data). I used Aperture Priority, Macro Mode and zoomed in a bit.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE ORIGINAL AT 2560 X 1712

Taken at f4.4 1/200 sec ISO 100 and HANDHELD!

Taken at f4.4 1/200 sec ISO 100 and HANDHELD!

Now to be honest this one is very good quality wise, it was starting to get windy because I spent so long looking for the right leaf, and I did not use a tripod.

I ALSO DID NOT USE PHOTOSHOP.

You might feel I’m being obsessive about this and that I definitely do not need a new camera. This is what I’m trying to figure out.

Yes I realize it’s a budget compact and it shoots JPEGs.

Today as an experiment I set the image size to the maximum: 4320 x 2880. Don’t even ask if I have the quality set to the highest (yes).

I spent several hours taking pictures in great light with a tripod. I got mad and deleted them all but it was probably close to 100. Not as many as I usually take but I felt I had enough to test the sharpness at 100%.

They were all beautiful until I viewed them at actual size in Windows Picture and Fax Viewer. Not 1 out of probably 100 was as sharp as the leaf shot.

My question is; will a better camera help me make better pictures?

Easy Ken Rockwell, I’ve read your article on “Your Camera Doesn’t Matter” and understand completely, but dammit I want perfect photos at full size!!!

I’ve also read the reviews for advanced compacts including the Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 and the Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 II.

I even looked at the RX-100 and its really small, not to mention I did find issues with it as reviewed by Professional Photographer Ming Thein as well as others including the very helpful Ken Rockwell.

Just to drive myself crazier about this, I downloaded very large JPEGs taken with all the cameras I’ve been looking at as well as top of the line DSLR’s and viewed at 100% magnification.

I was not overly impressed.

I’ve decided to get a new camera with a larger sensor, and if I really hate it return it after a few weeks.

An advanced compact such as the Panasonic Lumix LX7 or even an interchangeable lens compact camera system is on my list, but I have a feeling I’m going to be disappointed in the image quality.

No DSLRs.

Essential info if you have any suggestions:

I know how to use every function and setting on my camera and can do it with my eyes closed.

I shoot at ISO 100 as often as practical and use a tripod when I feel its needed (no it’s not needed every time Scott Kelby).

I understand that if I get a couple of good photos out of every 100 that is success.

I do realize that a $200 camera is not going to be perfect, but as Ken R said: My camera doesn’t matter.

In conclusion, here is a deer shot I took earlier this year, maybe April 21st at 7:44 am.

Doe!

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE ORIGINAL AT 2560 X 1712

Taken at f5.5 1/320 sec ISO 100 and HANDHELD!

Taken at f5.5 1/320 sec ISO 100 and HANDHELD!