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Follow up on focusing thread: How do you focus?

jmiguez

Lafayette, US
534 posts

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jmiguez Silver Member Nikonian since 17th Oct 2010
Fri 11-Mar-11 12:18 PM

In JohnE Nikon's lens testing thread much was said about proper technique, especially focusing technique. Could those of you who have been taking pictures for a while help those of us who may not have hundreds of thousands of pictures experience?

I see photography as both art and a technical skill. Is there an art to taking the shot? I always figured the art was in the composition, lighting, exposure, etc. Not in focusing?

Most modern lenses no longer have the DOF markings, so you can't just set it and forget, like the newspaper reporters of old. Unless it is a portrait or mountain that doesn't move, manual focusing seems unrealistic in most cases.

That leaves us with the auto-focus. It has to work, if we are to reasonably expect a decently focused picture. I know that with my D40 my 18-200 lens would sometimes not focus. The camera and lens had trouble with certain situations. With the D-7000, I do not recall it ever not focusing? However, sometimes the shots weren't in perfect focus.

I have always written this off to the myriad of variables the camera deals with. That is why I never take one picture of anything. I figure, take enough shots and changes are one or two will be close to perfect.

Can anyone provide guidelines on how to achiever proper focusing? What techniques insure more accurate sharpness? How do you make sure the camera is focusing on the point you think it is focusing?

John

My Pictures may be seen here: http://jmiguez.smugmug.com/

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